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Edwards scores 40 points, Minnesota Timberwolves outlast Phoenix Suns to finish first-round sweep



Edwards scores 40 points, Minnesota Timberwolves outlast Phoenix Suns to finish first-round sweep

PHOENIX (AP) — Minnesota star Anthony Edwards observed early within the third quarter that the Phoenix Suns switched up their protection, taking part in him one-on-one more often than not as a substitute of utilizing the double groups from the primary half.

The budding famous person took that as a problem.

“It was like — you have to beat us,” Edwards stated. “And I confirmed them.”

Edwards scored 31 of his 40 factors within the second half, Karl-Anthony Cities added 28 and the Timberwolves pulled away late to beat the Suns 122-116 on Sunday evening and sweep the first-round playoff sequence.

The franchise’s first playoff sequence win in 20 years got here after coach Chris Finch left the sport late within the fourth after an inadvertent collision with Wolves guard Mike Conley. The staff stated he had a ruptured patellar tendon in his proper knee.

Edwards completed 13 of 23 from the sector, together with 7 of 13 from 3-point vary. The 22-year-old threw down a strong, one-handed jam to present Minnesota a 115-111 lead with 2:14 left.

“We have watched him develop, evolve as a pacesetter, as a participant, as a person,” Wolves heart Rudy Gobert stated. “It has been enjoyable.”

Phoenix would by no means get better.

The Wolves completed off the Suns regardless of Devin Booker’s 49 factors on 13 of 21 capturing. He additionally made 20 of 21 free throws. Kevin Durant added 33, however the remainder of the staff struggled.

Assistant coach Micah Nori took over for Finch for the ultimate 1:41 and the Wolves closed with relative ease.

“Everyone has their position, everyone has one another’s again,” Nori stated. “I do know it sounds corny, nevertheless it’s simply subsequent man up, even with the teaching employees.”

Minnesota’s Jaden McDaniels scored 18 factors on 6-of-12 capturing and the Wolves had a 44-33 rebounding benefit.

It was a decent fourth quarter and the Suns tied it at 107 on Royce O’Neale’s 3-pointer with 4:30 remaining. Edwards and Jaden McDaniels hit back-to-back nook 3s to place the Wolves up 113-109 with 3:20 left.

The Wolves now wait to see if they may face the Denver Nuggets or Los Angeles Lakers within the second spherical.

“Their complete staff created quite a lot of issues for us,” Suns coach Frank Vogel stated. “The position gamers, the celebrities. Anthony Edwards is a particular, particular expertise. And their bigs performed rather well.”

Edwards hit back-to-back 3-pointers early within the third and McDaniels adopted with a strong dunk, serving to Minnesota flip a six-point deficit right into a 68-66 lead. It was a part of a giant third for Edwards, who hit 4 3-pointers and had 15 factors.

Booker responded, scoring 18 factors in the course of the quarter and the Suns took a 92-90 lead into the fourth. It was a tricky recreation for three-time All-Star Bradley Beal, who scored simply 9 factors on 4-of-13 capturing earlier than fouling out.

“They have been executing late and we did not,” Booker stated.

The Suns threw numerous appears on the Wolves within the first half, utilizing 5 perimeter gamers at numerous instances to attempt to pull massive males Gobert and Cities away from the basket.

Booker hit a fallaway jumper on the buzzer to present the Suns a 61-56 halftime lead. Durant led Phoenix with 20 factors earlier than the break, whereas Booker had 17. Cities had 15 for the Wolves.

Suns guard Grayson Allen missed his second straight recreation due to a sprained ankle suffered in Recreation 1 that he aggravated in Recreation 2. He averaged 13.5 factors per recreation and led the NBA in 3-point proportion in the course of the common season.



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