The Nets-Pacers rivalry that developed in the playoffs boiled over in bad feelings last night.
In their first meeting since the Nets' dramatic double-overtime win in the deciding Game 5 of the first round, host New Jersey defeated Indiana, 102-91, in a game that included the ejection of three players, including Jason Kidd.
"It did get kind of out of control," Pacers forward Jermaine O'Neal said. "It almost turned into a circus. It's going to be that way. It's going to be that way for a long time.
"They have a young team over there and we have a young team over here," he added. "We're going to have the same teams for the next four or five years. It's going to be great games. Hopefully, they don't end up that way."
Nets backup guard Anthony Johnson and Pacers guard Erick Strickland were also tossed in a game that featured 9 individual technical fouls, 4 flagrants and 59 personal fouls.
Richard Jefferson led five Nets in double figures with 19 points. Dikembe Mutombo added 14, Kenyon Martin and Rodney Rogers had 11 and Lucious Harris had 10.
"It's a great win," Nets Coach Byron Scott said. "A lot of things went on in this game that I haven't seen in a long time."
* PISTONS 109, GRIZZLIES 86: Richard Hamilton scored 23 points and Chauncey Billups added 15 as host Detroit routed Memphis.
Detroit also got 13 points from Zeljko Rebraca and eight points and 14 rebounds from Ben Wallace. Pau Gasol and Drew Gooden led Memphis with 21 points each.
"Getting off to a good start is always going to be a key for us, and that depends on our defensive effort," Pistons Coach Rick Carlisle said. "Tonight, that was really good and it let us play from ahead."
* 76ERS 98, KNICKS 86: Allen Iverson scored 35 points despite another poor shooting performance and host Philadelphia overcame a 17-point, third-quarter deficit.
Aaron McKie had 22 points and a career-high 13 rebounds and Keith Van Horn added 17 points and 12 rebounds for the Sixers, who are 2-1.
* TIMBERWOLVES 111, MAGIC 105: Kevin Garnett recorded his seventh career triple-double with 23 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists as host Minnesota handed Orlando its first loss.
Guarded mostly by Garnett, Tracy McGrady struggled with his shooting. McGrady, who scored 31 and 24 points in Orlando's first two games, had 18.
"That's the best I've ever been defended," McGrady said. "Ever."
Grant Hill, who went 17 for 17 from the free throw line, had 27 points to lead the Magic.
* BULLS 84, HORNETS 79: Jalen Rose scored 21 points and Donyell Marshall added 15 points and 12 rebounds to lead host Chicago.
"It's important to get off to a good start just because there's been so much negativity surrounding our team the last few years," Rose said.
It's the first time since 1996-97 the Bulls have won their first two games.
* LAKERS 108, CLIPPERS 93: Kobe Bryant took charge while Shaquille O'Neal again watched in street clothes, posting the fourth triple-double of his career to lead the Lakers to victory.
Bryant had 33 points, a career-high 15 rebounds and 12 assists as the three-time defending NBA champions won for the first time in three games this season, all played without the recuperating O'Neal and the suspended Rick Fox.
* SUPERSONICS 106, WARRIORS 93: Gary Payton had 26 points and 10 assists in a visit to his home town as visiting Seattle defeated Golden State.
Desmond Mason came off the bench to score 23 points and grab nine rebounds and Rashard Lewis had 19 points and nine rebounds for Seattle, which beat Golden State for the 13th straight time.
Antawn Jamison, coming off a 36-point performance in Golden State's season-opening win over San Antonio on Wednesday, led the Warriors with 24 points and seven rebounds. Erick Dampier added 13 points and 11 rebounds and Gilbert Arenas had 19 points, 11 assists, 6 rebounds.
* SPURS 91, RAPTORS 72: Tim Duncan had 22 points and 15 rebounds and San Antonio held Toronto to an NBA record-tying six points in the final quarter in the Spurs' first game in the new SBC Center.
* ROCKETS 83, NUGGETS 74: Cuttino Mobley scored 12 of his 29 points in the fourth quarter, and Houston spoiled Denver's home opener.
* SUNS 78, CAVALIERS 74: Shawn Marion had 21 points and 16 rebounds as host Phoenix overcame an awful shooting night to beat Cleveland. Phoenix shot 33 percent and Cleveland 35.