The Warriors got a lesson in the toughness level of playoff basketball Tuesday night. They were literally shoved off the court in a mid-fourth-quarter scrum and then bullied out of Bankers Life Fieldhouse for the rest of Indiana's 108-97 victory.
"Teams are gearing up for playoff basketball and amping up the intensity," said Warriors point guard Stephen Curry, who had a season-high 38 points in what was a one-man show for most of the night. "It's healthy to not back down and to be physical.
"You'd like to not see that tussle happen, but, for the most part, it was just a good, clean, physical game that we've got to expect for the rest of the year."
The Pacers led 95-85 with 6:10 remaining when Indiana center Roy Hibbert took exception to a high elbow from David Lee on a rebound attempt. Hibbert shoved Lee with two hands, and the big men squared off with a violent chest bump.
Curry was the first to the scuffle, but he was twice swatted away like a gnat by Hibbert. Center Andris Biedrins tried to get involved, but the Pacers pushed Biedrins and Curry over and into the first row of the crowd.
"I didn't even feel him," said Hibbert, who's 7-foot-2, 280 pounds. Curry is 6-3, 185. "I don't want to start something with someone who is smaller than me."
Once Hibbert was ejected and six technical fouls were issued, the Pacers went on a 9-2 run to a 17-point lead and put away a game that had playoff-style physicality throughout.
The Warriors had won three in a row in response to a season-worst, six-game losing streak, but they've now lost 11 of their past 15 road games and still have three more on this trip before returning to Oracle Arena for 16 of their final 22 games.


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