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Timberwolves 115-70 Nuggets (May 16, 2024) Game Recap



Timberwolves 115-70 Nuggets (May 16, 2024) Game Recap

MINNEAPOLIS — — Anthony Edwards flashed seven fingers to the roaring crowd as he walked off for a fourth-quarter timeout throughout a blowout by the Minnesota Timberwolves.

He had that tenacious look of a famous person participant refusing to cede to the defending champs all night time.

Edwards scored 27 factors to tug the Timberwolves out of their mid-series hunch and ship a flawless 115-70 victory over the Denver Nuggets on Thursday to power a Recreation 7 on this roller-coaster matchup.

Jaden McDaniels pitched in 21 factors and lockdown protection, and Mike Conley had 13 factors in his return from damage. Huge males Rudy Gobert, Karl-Anthony Cities and Naz Reid mixed for 38 rebounds and a relentless effort to maintain NBA MVP Nikola Jokic to a comparatively quiet 22 factors.

The Wolves posted the most important profitable margin in a postseason sport since 2015, when Chicago beat Milwaukee by 54 factors in a first-round collection clincher, based on Sportradar.

“Guys simply believing in themselves,” Edwards stated. “I believe the final three video games we had been all down on ourselves.”

The decisive sport for a spot within the Western Convention finals is in Denver on Sunday night time. Simply as Edwards promised the locker room staffer at Ball Area after the Wolves misplaced in Recreation 5.

Jamal Murray struggled once more with 10 factors on 4-for-18 taking pictures whereas battling a sore elbow for the Nuggets, whose bench was outscored 36-9 — and 7 of these factors got here within the ultimate 5 minutes. The Wolves reserves led a 24-0 run within the fourth quarter on the way in which to a staggering 50-point lead, a becoming follow-up to the 20-0 surge the starters led within the opening body.

“We talked lots in the present day nearly getting our edge again, our swagger, enjoying a little bit extra free and straightforward,” coach Chris Finch stated. “It simply felt like we hadn’t had our greatest effort on either side of the ball but.”

No defending NBA champion had ever misplaced within the playoffs by greater than 36 factors till this flop by the Nuggets, who had been outrebounded 62-43.

“That to me speaks volumes in regards to the sport and our strategy,” Denver coach Mike Malone stated.

Aaron Gordon had 12 factors and eight rebounds for the Nuggets, who completed simply 7 for 36 from 3-point vary and trailed by no less than 17 factors for the final 31 minutes of the sport.

For the Wolves, offense from McDaniels is often a bonus, however he can’t be as quiet as he was over the primary 5 video games with a complete of 35 factors. He was everywhere in the courtroom this time, going 3 of 5 from deep and mixing in some well-timed dunks to ignite the group.

Edwards, whose 44-point efficiency was finally wasted in a Recreation 4 loss the final time he performed at Goal Middle, had 9 factors within the 20-0 spurt and wanted solely 9 photographs from the ground to get 19 factors within the first half.

“Simply shoot it each probability I get, as a result of final sport they took the ball out of my palms,” Edwards stated.

Within the third quarter, he turned a steal into a quick break earlier than utilizing two crossover dribbles to get Michael Porter Jr. within the air and blow by him for a dunk. A couple of minutes later, he drove previous Porter to attract a foul and landed onerous on his again. The Wolves known as timeout to offer Edwards extra time to catch his breath, and when he walked again on the courtroom with out lacking time the “MVP!” chants fired up.

The Wolves had been steadily in disarray on offense throughout Recreation 5 in Denver whereas Conley sat out with proper leg soreness, and the 17-year veteran level guard clearly helped preserve the half-court units crisp and arranged in his return.

“It was a no brainer. I used to be going to attempt to discover a manner,” Conley stated. “We’re simply higher after we’re a whole group.”

The Wolves held the Nuggets to 14 factors within the first quarter, tied for the second-lowest whole within the league this postseason behind Miami (12 factors) in a Recreation 3 loss to Boston within the first spherical.

Murray had a satan of a time doing something productive in opposition to McDaniels, Edwards and the remainder of the NBA-leading protection that snapped to life after revealing some sizeable cracks during the last three video games.

Murray, who had a 3-for-18 clunker in Recreation 2, tried all the pieces from leaners, fadeaways and spot-up 3-pointers. He even air-balled a finger roll from the baseline, then obtained backed down in a foul matchup by Naz Reid within the publish on the next possession for a flip-in that put the Wolves up 43-24.

McDaniels tipped in a missed 3-pointer by Reid on the halftime buzzer to make it 59-40, a pointy distinction from the 55-foot swish Murray had on the finish of the second quarter in Recreation 3 to cap an 8-0 run over 20 pivotal seconds of that contest.

“Talking from expertise,” Murray stated, “Recreation 6 is all the time the toughest.”



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