Myles Turner stood up to Rudy Gobert and the Indiana Pacers knocked down the Utah Jazz.
Malcolm Brogdon scored a season-high 30 points and grabbed nine rebounds, leading the Pacers to a 111-100 victory on Thursday night that ended Utah’s unbeaten home start.
Turner, Gobert, Donovan Mitchell and Joe Ingles were ejected with 4:01 left. Turner shoved Gobert, planting his shoulder in his back after a missed layup. Gobert responded by bear hugging him and trying to wrestle Turner to the floor. The two players had to be separated near the basket across from the Pacers bench.
Turner blamed the scuffle on Gobert knocking him to the floor after the initial play.
“I had to stand up for myself in that situation,” Turner said. “I don’t think I did anything wrong. But that’s not for me to decide. We’ll talk to the league and see what happens from there.”
Mitchell scored 26 points and Gobert added 19 points and 11 rebounds. Mitchell blamed the scuffle on built-up frustration over the referees allowing too much contact early in the game.
“That whole thing could have been avoided — just draw the line early, as opposed to letting it build up for the whole game,” Mitchell said.
Mitchell got off to a fast start and gave the Jazz an early boost. But after Bojan Bogdanovic drove for a layup to give Utah a 42-38 lead midway through the second quarter, the Pacers held the Jazz to just four baskets over the final 6 ½ minutes before halftime. Meanwhile, Indiana crashed the boards and repeatedly scored second-chance baskets to go back in front.
The Pacers closed the half on an 11-3 run punctuated by back-to-back baskets from McConnell and took a 60-51 lead.
“They were able to get in the paint against us put pressure on the rim,” Jazz coach Quin Snyder said. “That wasn’t just our guards. That was breakdowns in a lot of different areas.”