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Knicks’ Donte DiVincenzo hits Pacers’ Myles Turner with fake tough guy label after Game 5

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Game 5 was eventful. During the New York Knicks‘ Tuesday win over the Indiana Pacers, a lot happened. From scuffles, to an anklebreaker, to Precious Achiuwa playing without a shoe, Madison Square Garden fans were entertained to say the least. Speaking of the scuffles, one of them involved Donte DiVincenzo and Myles Turner. Both got tangled up on a screen by Turner, which resulted in exchanged words and multiple players getting in to break up the altercation.

Following the game, DiVincenzo called out the Pacers big man and his team.

“They’re trying to be tough guys,” DiVincenzo said, per the New York Post’s Stefan Bondy. “And that’s not their identity…Nobody is going to fight in the NBA. Take the foul and keep it moving. You’re not a tough guy.”

It was a heated clash

© Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

That’s one way to add more fuel to the fire. The entire series has been a slugfest, with plenty of physical play and trash talk from both sides. Besides Donte DiVincenzo and Myles Turner, Game 5 also featured an altercation between New York center Isaiah Hartenstein and Pacers forward Isaiah Jackson. Following a hard screen by Jackson on DiVincenzo, Hartenstein made it known that he didn’t appreciate the act, confronting Jackson face-to-face. Alec Burks joined in on the action, pushing Jackson away by the neck. All three were assessed with technical fouls.

Additionally, DiVincenzo was already jawing at TJ McConnell during the first quarter. It seemed like the history of those Knicks-Pacers matchups in the 90s still lives on today, and it makes for top-tier entertainment. While some might disapprove of watching many heated moments take place, it’s bound to happen. After all, there’s a reason why they call it playoff basketball. With how intense the clashes become, emotions will surely run high.

The Knicks take control of the series once again

The Knicks are currently up 3-2, with the series shifting back in their favor. The team took the first two games at home, but the Pacers also protected their homecourt, tying the series with victories in Games 3 and 4. The Knicks experienced a blowout days ago, which was why they returned the favor on Tuesday.

Jalen Brunson scored 44 points while Alec Burks and Josh Hart added 18 points each as New York broke away in the second quarter and led the entire way. As the final buzzer sounded, the Knicks took home a 30-point victory, 121-91.

One stat that stood out between both teams was rebounding. New York did what they do best: control the boards. The Knicks outrebounded the Pacers, 53-29. Additionally, New York hauled down 20 offensive boards, 12 of which came from Hartenstein. The center had 17 rebounds in total while Josh Hart followed with 11.

Being a win away from the Eastern Conference finals, the Knicks prepare for Game 6, which commences on Thursday.

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