Evan Turner and Lance Stephenson got into an intense fistfight the day before the Indiana Pacers’ first playoff game against the Atlanta Hawks, according to a report.
Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski dropped the bomb late Tuesday night, reporting that Turner and Stephenson got into a brawl and Turner had to be pulled away by teammates during the team’s Friday practice before Game 1 Saturday.
Woj says Turner was cut from the fight. He also says Turner isn’t the first player to lose his temper with Stephenson in recent weeks, though no other fights have been reported.
The Pacers inexplicably lost to the Atlanta Hawks in Game 1 101-93 and looked pretty dreadful. Stephenson had 19 points and 7 rebounds in 35 minutes while Turner scored 9 points in 18 minutes. Indiana looked much more like the team that earned the top seed in the East during a 101-85 win in Game 2 on Monday.
A source told Woj that these types of fights are a regular occurrence, but they acknowledged that the timing was poor.
This really should not come as a surprise in the least. The Pacers began sliding towards the end of the season after a great start. Roy Hibbert called out his teammates for being selfish and then was reprimanded by coach Frank Vogel, but maybe he was just telling the truth.
It was obvious something has been wrong with the Pacers, and this finally explains things — they’re having chemistry problems. And bringing in Evan Turner was obviously a bad move.