Pacers top Jazz in game featuring four ejections after scuffle
Malcolm Brogdon scored a game-high 30 points and the Indiana Pacers ended a four-game road trip with a 111-100 victory over the Utah Jazz in a wild game Thursday night in Salt Lake City.
A night after losing at Denver against a Nuggets team that was playing without suspended MVP Nikola Jokic, the Pacers seemed at a disadvantage against a Jazz team with all of its starters and a spotless home record entering the night.
Utah, however, finished the game without three of its key players after Donovan Mitchell, Rudy Gobert and Joe Ingles were ejected following a fracas that also resulted in the Pacers losing starting center Myles Turner for the final four minutes.
With Indiana leading 102-92 — after taking the lead for good in the second quarter — Gobert and Turner got involved in a physical tit-for-tat that threatened to devolve into a large brawl at the 4:01 mark of the fourth quarter. The ruckus began when Turner hit a driving Gobert from behind under the basket.
Things got heated between Myles Turner and Rudy Gobert after Turner blocked Gobert's shot. pic.twitter.com/O34Z7gckwC
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) November 12, 2021
Officials didn’t call a foul, and a frustrated Gobert tugged at Turner’s shorts. Gobert got up and began running down the court when he was hit from behind by Turner. The two players then grabbed each other and began grappling.
Players from both sides rushed toward the two bigs, with Mitchell and Ingles appearing to be the most agitated and needing to be restrained.
Referees reviewed the brouhaha for several minutes before determining that the Jazz trio and Turner had earned early showers. It’s possible the league will levy fines as it did earlier in the week when Jokic and Markieff Morris had their skirmish.
— Indiana Pacers (@Pacers) November 12, 2021
Brogdon hit a pair of the three technical free throws, and the Pacers cruised to their second road win in eight tries.
Wrestling match aside, the Pacers showed from the first quarter that they weren’t just going to lay over despite being on a road back-to-back against one of the best teams in the NBA. Indiana held a 32-30 lead after the first quarter, and then used a Brogdon-sparked 11-2 spurt to regain the edge from the Jazz and take a 60-51 lead to the locker room against a Utah team that didn’t play up to its usual defensive standards.
Though Mitchell scored 26 and Gobert totaled 19 points and 11 rebounds, the rest of the Jazz failed to pick up the slack. Jordan Clarkson was the only other player in double figures with 11 points.
The Pacers, meanwhile, had five players in double digits: Brogdon, T.J. McConnell (21 points), Kelan Martin (14), Turner (13) and Chris Duarte (11).