Apr 19, 2014; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indiana Pacers guard Lance Stephenson (1) plays defense against the Atlanta Hawks in game one during the first round of the 2014 NBA Playoffs at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

NBA Rumors: Lance Stephenson confirms fight with Evan Turner, denies punches were thrown

One of the biggest stories in the NBA today is that Indiana Pacers guards Lance Stephenson and Evan Turner got into a physical confrontation in practice before Game 1 of their series against the Atlanta Hawks. Stephenson has since addressed this matter and while has confirmed that there was indeed a scuffle, he denied that any punches were thrown by himself or by Turner.

Note the use of the term ‘scuffle’ as opposed to fight as that’s what has been being reported today and it’s a word that implies a lot of violence. In Stephenson’s interpretation of the incident, things simmered down to a scuffle but no matter if there were punches thrown or not, the matter is still a massive deal.

Anyone who follows the NBA can tell you that the presence of Evan Turner in Indiana is threatening to Lance Stephenson’s future with the team. Essentially, they’re playing for the same contract in the offseason that only one of them will get. That’s not to say the Pacers wouldn’t re-sign both but they’ll only give one a big contract and not the other.

That’s the root cause of the frustration and really what is throwing off team chemistry. This situation can’t be blamed for all of the Pacers problems, but it’s a good look inside what the rotting roster of the Pacers.

Tags: Indiana Pacers