Two teams moving in different directions will square off Wednesday
when the San Antonio Spurs travel to Minnesota to play the
Timberwolves in the Twin Cities.
The surprise is that the Timberwolves (6-4) will carry the better
record and more momentum into Wednesday’s contest after winning two
of their past three games, including a 120-114 victory on the road
Monday over Detroit.
Andrew Wiggins scored 33 points, and Karl-Anthony Towns scored 25
points for Minnesota in the win, which snapped an eight-game losing
streak to the Pistons.
“Every good thing that happens to Andrew, Andrew deserves, because
Andrew does work hard,” Minnesota coach Ryan Saunders said. “He had
a different mindset this summer. We had a conversation, so all the
credit goes to him for buying in and really delivering for us.”
After making just 6 of 45 3-point shots in a home overtime loss to
Denver on Sunday, the Timberwolves were on fire from long range
early on in Monday’s game, hitting 8 of 10 from beyond the arc in
the first quarter to take a 15-point lead that the Pistons never
Jake Layman made four 3-pointers and added 16 points for Minnesota.
The Timberwolves ended up 15 of 34 from 3-point range.
“I have been getting great shots every game,” Layman said. “Some
games they haven’t been falling, but it’s all great looks all
around our offense. So, I’m going to keep doing the same thing.”
Minnesota played without point guard Jeff Teague (illness) and
guard Shabazz Napier (right hamstring strain) in the win. Both
should be available for the San Antonio game.
Not even the anticipation of the jersey number retirement of former
star Tony Parker could pull the Spurs out of their doldrums on
Monday, when they fell 113-109 to Memphis in a game that the
Grizzlies controlled throughout.
“Well, you know, it’s a 48-minute game and we’re not executing or
competing enough for the 48 minutes,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich
said. “A little spotty in and out. So we’ve got to be more
consistent in our play, competitive-wise and execution-wise. You
just keep going. You just keep playing. There is no magic formula.”
The loss to Memphis was the second in a row at home and the fourth
in five games overall for San Antonio (5-5), which struggled with
consistency once again.
LaMarcus Aldridge and Rudy Gay led the Spurs’ scoring with 19 and
18 points, respectively. Derrick White (15), Bryn Forbes (14) and
DeMar DeRozan (12) rounded out San Antonio’s double-figure scoring.
“We need a win,” said Gay, who led San Antonio with eight rebounds.
“One win. Get this taste out of our mouth. Just takes one. We have
to flush these down the toilet. These are over. We can’t get it
back. The more we win, the more we forget.”
San Antonio owns an 89-30 all-time series lead on the Timberwolves.
The Spurs have won the season series against Minnesota 22 times in
30 seasons, including the last six.
The Spurs do have a piece of history at Minnesota. The now-retired
Parker holds the record for most points in one game in Target
Center history (55) on Nov. 5, 2008 in a double-overtime Spurs win.
He also has the most field goals in the building’s history with 22
in the same game.
–Field Level Media