Battle Of The Benchwarmers



INDIANAPOLISJuwan Howard and Lance Stephenson haven’t played any significant minutes of this playoff series, but their time on the court Sunday was intense.

Neither actually played in Game 4. Instead, they had to be separated during the pre-game warmups, a confrontation that was a culmination of bad blood between a 17-year veteran and a player who was only six years old when Howard turned pro.

For the second time in as many days, Howard actively sought out Stephenson, who gave the choke sign late in Game 3 after LeBron James missed a free throw. Stephenson apologized for that. But Howard marched over to Stephenson while the teams were warming up, spoke animatedly, and then went nose-to-nose with Stephenson before they were broken apart.

On Saturday afternoon, while the teams practiced inside Bankers Life Fieldhouse, the Indianapolis Star‘s Mike Wells reported Howard shouted “Where’s Stephenson?” and walked toward the Pacers’ locker room before being turned around by Pacers guard Dahntay Jones.

About the confrontation on Sunday, Howard said: “We had a two-man difference of opinion. We both said what we had to say.”

The two had scuffled back on March 26 when Howard objected to rough play, and apparently, Howard didn’t forget, especially when Stephenson mocked LeBron.

70 Comments

  1. lmao! says:

    Lebron James needs OLD DUSTY people to stick up for him ..aw :’)

  2. NbaFan says:

    Juwan Howard is a joke though…Not saying Stephenson isnt in this situation, but Jwuan Howard? just stop you’re already a freaking joke. Garbage. He doesn’t get any playing time and he is a veteran, at least Stephenson is in his first year or second. Howard probably never has to wash his jersey..what a waste of space and money for the Heat.

  3. rj says:

    Juwan should have smacked Stephenson when he had the chance. Stephenson was never any good; he rode the ESPN hype train into the league. There are 100 guys who are better than him right now who are still in high school.

    Young boys need to show respect.

    Punks jump up to get beat down!

    • NbaFan says:

      Juwan Howars would get smacked back. And probably knocked down by it..hes too old and weak to do anything but just sit on a bech and run his mouth.

    • lmao! says:

      No…Juwan Howard is too scared to do anything but run his mouth.

  4. ax says:

    lol, reggie miller made a choke sign to spike lee when he was a pacer playing against the knicks, its in their blood

    • rj says:

      Reggie was a better player than this bum.

      Spike makes great movies.

      Great television!!!!

      Lance is a dweeb!

      Juwan should have smacked him AND his mama!

  5. J.Morales PHX says:

    Okay.. the fact here is that Yes, Juwon Howard WAS good at one point in his career and is now a bench warmer. Yes, Lance Stephenson is a young buck and probably needs to learn some conduct, BUT that was all part of the game…AND it’s part of the POST SEASON. Playoff psyche-outs, and little things like these get under players skin and mess with their ability to show up. Lebron for one has to know this by now. Juwon for one should definitely know this, being that he’s a veteran in the game. It’s all part of playoff basket ball. Whatever you can do to get under the other teams mental status to make them throw off their game, is what it’s all about. Sure Stephenson will need to rethink the next time he does something of this nature, but oh well. we’ve seen bad boys in the league time and time again, and if he goes down as one of those dudes come 5 – 10 years from now, so be it. Everybody needs to step up during these post season games and not let the little antics of the opposite team get to you, or you’re not going to win.. bottom line.

  6. Kobe Bryant says:

    think this is the funniest thing ive read on nba.com 2 bench warmers having a segment LOL

  7. GIZZY_allstate10 says:

    yes Stephenson is disrespectful but a good player he scored 22 against Derrick rose, so his game has nothing to do with the situation. he jus needs to learn some respect

  8. timo says:

    juwan is trying to find something to do…

    why would he acknowledge it

  9. iwok says:

    granger would not get in wades face when hes pissed did u say miami….. is this the same dwayne wade who cried when he dislocated his shoulder and went off on a wheelchair, yeah he sounds like a real scary guy

  10. iwok says:

    juwan howard you are a moron thats the only thing i can think of to write after reading this article

  11. Wan says:

    who cares

    -Red

  12. ROCK says:

    HOWARD NEED TO CHILL.MAD BECAUSE OF NO PLAYING TIME,JAMES CHOKE AT TIMES JUST LIKE ANYBODY ELSE.HOPE PACERS BEAT THOSE DUCK PLUCKERS

  13. Bigmac says:

    I’m not sure how Howard going up to a rookie and trying to pick fights and express his opinion OUTSIDE OF A GAME is any more of a respectful gesture as a choke symbol is. As far as I know people use to express their opnions on the court by agressive play. But clearly since Juwann Howard has had a handful of good games since his college days he doesnt get any playing time…so he resorts to this kind of behaviour. I agree that there are too many rookies these days that dont have a grasp for whats proper and whats not in the public eye. But as far as who is the bumb out of the two, I’d Juwan Howard for being a *veteran* and not being able to control his emotions. He’s getting paid to sit on his butt, just shut up and watch the game…retirements coming. Normally he’d be one of those players that just disappears and no one notices that they retired, But because of what he did in college theyll make reference to the fab5 thing and thats the last youll hear of him.

    • uoykcuf says:

      lol, you don’t watch much basketball eh? Every team has one/two enforcer, On miami’s team, Howard is one of them, he’ ll “watch over” players. Same as Hockey. Charles Oakley, Ben Wallace, Rick Mahorn, Xavier McDaniel, Darryl Dawkins to name a few but you get my drift. So your “howard is acting up because he’s not playing” is the dumbest comment I ever heard. Peace buddy boy and go back to school if you can.

  14. W/E says:

    The heat r so soft and weak,even a mediocre team like the pacers is giving them a hard time

  15. Swatguy says:

    So the bullies hve met their match. Dwayne Wade is quick to jump into someones face. Well these Pacer’s are not moved by the bully. Howard wants to challenge a smaller rook, intimidation, wow. Juwan will not speak with the leader, he will not confront David West. I call this Cowardice. Obviously the league have spoken to the Pacers about being mean to the punk-azz Heat. Cry babies, whiners the lot of them.

    • q't18 says:

      let’s see who’s going to cry…your pacers together w/ Lance “WATERBOY” Stupidson will going to cry!!!hahahaha!!!!

    • Miami says:

      Granger is fake as hell. He is soft as hell and everyone knows that cos he fights when no fight is required. I doubt he would really put his face in front of DWade when he is pissed!

      • Chris says:

        I just wanted to co sign on this — if you watch the game Granger is ALWAYS by the refs, always crying about a play whether he had something to do with it or not. Just always crying to the Ref. He has to be by far one of the biggest Cry baby ‘Super Stars’ in the league. Yes Granger is potentially a super star, he just doesn’t act like it.

      • joe says:

        agreed, he’s over compensating. just settle and play ball. as for the howard thing, no issue with that. Stephenson ”apologised to his COACH” for the incident. if howard wants to take excemption to him, let him

  16. Lance says:

    ‘Bron’s a choker we all know that…

  17. MONEYMAIN says:

    lance stphenson is a bumb. i hate undeachievers . he was suppose to be the next big thing. juwan did good. i would of smacked him for pushing his baby moms down the steps. he’s not tuff at all.

  18. Swatguy says:

    So what is the meaning of the sign Wade flashed late in the last game? That sngle hand movement (flat) across his neck. After the choke and scuffles he does this. I’m pulling for the Pacers for sure.

    • Chris says:

      Lol Sorry, I think you answered your own question 2006 Final’s MVP Dwayne Wade made a gesture saying “Our house” after making a game winner. a Bench Warmer, who no one knows about while sitting on a bench, probably didn’t even take off his warm up suit made a choking gesture towards a super star, where he has NEVER played in the game, nor has he been put in a situation where he had to be ‘the man’. Just know your place is all we’re asking. If Danny Granger would have done it, it would’ve been like “Oh snap!” But I’m sure it wouldn’t of been that serious.

  19. MGS12 says:

    Sometimes it’s just disappointing how childish these big boys are! So Stephenson made a choking gesture…WHAT’S THE BIG DEAL? Even LBJ did not bother. What the hell this Juwan Howard thinks? It doesn’t matter if he has been a really good player before. The fact is, it’s the playoffs!!! Teams are playing mind games. Stop being silly and just show what you’ve got in the court!!!

  20. chin says:

    we didn’t pay any attention to paces before because……, but this time we did wach them play and we are surprised that the indiana pacers is a such DIRTY team! very dirty special D. GRANGER. maybe because their COACH has DIRTY behavior too–that’s why he got fine of $15 thousand, it’s really a bad example: coach dirty—-> players dirty. hope they change their bahavior, don’t dirty our eyes.

  21. ITS MORE THAN A GAME says:

    LOL lucky to play in this league i cant recall him playing minutes i use to think he was ane equipment manager or medic staff oh so he is an nba player damn he’s lucky he gets payed

  22. Aj says:

    Lance Stephenson try to prove something in the league before make some choke signals to others, @Juwan keep it up :)

  23. Bev says:

    Its all about RESPECT

  24. howard says:

    Juwan Howard should have kept himself on his side. He’s insignificant and should mind his own business.

  25. markangelo says:

    Lol the title “battle of the benchwarmers make my day

  26. Lord P says:

    Well said Average joe!!Lance you’re lucky to play in this league so try to be humble!!

    • rj says:

      BTW…

      Lance can’t read. Needs someone to sign his contract for him.

      You can’t sign your contract with an “X”…

  27. anthony says:

    juwan you don’t need to do that he did that it was childish just let it go he apologized. Lebron has had worse thrown at him.
    when you play cleveland i don’t see you going into the cleveland crowd and telling them to be quiet. and im a miami heat fan

    • q't18 says:

      i think howard did it right, when you’re best basketball player mocked by a “WATERBOY” i think your blood will go up to your head..the PACER’S WATERBOY doesn’t have the right to mocked the MVP!!!howard you should have beaten the “WATERBOY”!!!LOL…………

  28. Average Joe says:

    We all know that Juwan Howard is one of the most skilled big men in his time. And when he was paired with C. Webb in Washington (in a reunion of two member’s of the fabled Michigan Fab Five), they were the best forward combo in the league, playing both forward positions and making spectacular plays. So for this writer, who doesn’t seem to recall that time, I say to you sir that using the term bench warmer for Juwan Howard is disrespectful to say the least. At least the guy stayed for 17 seasons in the league, a testament to his discipline and professionalism. I respect you Shaun, especially your opinions, but you definitely didn’t do it right this time.

    • Vincent says:

      Sir, it doesn’t matter if Juwan Howard was a 10-time MVP, or if he was Michael Jordan at some point in his career. Point is, he’s not a starter NOW and is DEFINITELY a bench warmer. So Shaun’s use of the said term for Howard is apt and not disrespectful.

    • NBAfan says:

      He IS a bench warmer NOW…and the writer is only talking about NOW..this ain’t a Juwan Howard tribute…

      • farouut!! says:

        hahaha well said.. somebody loves juwan too much getting butthurt of the term and even making an appeal to the writer.. lol.

        anyway, its funny how people are using bosh injury as the reason the heat are losing. so lebron and wade isnt enough talent and there HAS to be 3 superstars for them to lose? teamwork wins basketball games not a barrage of superstars on one team. remember what happened last year when an equally balanced mavs pawned the bosh-accompanied miami? heck, they even had brian cardinal chipping in 3′s and that meant winning. TEAMS win championships.. not the superstars.. this isnt the all star weekend..

  29. New york says:

    haha I like what howard did go to the other team bench haha Kip doing it howard

  30. wooderson says:

    its a shame that the pacers are playing dirty and ugly because they dont think they have the talent to beat the heat. focus on your own game not the miami heat danny granger. pacers dont deserve to even be in the series

    • Dirty? Hmm, which plays were dirty to you? The sad part is that people like you don’t seem to understand the idea of team basketball, and team basketball is what’s going to stop the heat from making past the Pacers this year. The Pacers are focusing on their game, which is why they have been outplaying the Heat. Even with today’s loss, Pacer fans aren’t concerned, because at the end of the day our TEAM defense and TEAM offense will prove to be too much for the Miami James and Miami Wade.

      • Alpha Male says:

        OUR team? you a Pacers roster?! or the water boy?

      • Miami says:

        You’ve been reading a lot of those superstars on team piece of sh** articles! Media just spices up everything. There aint no team player like Lebron- Enuf said.

      • AM says:

        they haven’t been outplaying the Heat, first of all, last night they lost against two guys playing with no help. and if the’ve won two games, it has been because of bosh is injured

    • MackDaddy says:

      “they dont deserve to be in the series” ??
      Umm… seen the series running score recently? 2-2 tells me they very much deserve to be here.
      The way Miami have been playing, they are the ones not deserving so far.

  31. King_Gee says:

    Yeyaaaaaa! Juwan puttin it down!!

    • NBAfan says:

      NEVER imagined Juwan Howard would be the ENFORCER in this team…oh man how SOFT is the heat? Joking aside…good job on the vet to give the HEAT some spine..maybe trying to make everyone forget about Wade shouting and cussing at his coach on national TV too….

      • TRU*NBAFAN says:

        No kidding, why didn’t he PUBLICLY get in Wade’s face and demand that he show respect to the coach. I don’t buy the old school trying to show the youngin how to behave. He was pissed about the rough play and thie choking thing pissed him off more. He was using it as an excuse, that’s all.

        The kid apologized, Lebron handled it, all it did was make Howard look like an All-STAR’s Kiss A##

      • rj says:

        Wade lost his swag when he started messin’with Gabrielle…LOL!!!!

    • rj says:

      Does Lance have a shoe contract? or does he wear those ugly team-issued adidas…

  32. Amitpal says:

    Come on Howard. The kids is like ur sons age let him go. Yeah he’s stupid and we all know that by his choke signal but more important he’s been suspended for stupid stuff before but still. Let the kid be.

    • MtheGOAT says:

      Couldn’t disagree more rookies need to learn how to respect people just like the teenagers of today! Nothing wrong with someone who has been a damn good player putting some Rookie in his place! He wont think it now but in 10 years time if Stephenson is still in the league he’ll be glad someone showed him that sort of thing aint respectful or tolerated!