Timberwolves dominate three-quarters, survive Irving’s barrage in 4th-2nd Dallas – Twin Cities


Minnesota Timberwolves center Rudy Gobert (27) faces Dallas Mavericks’ JaVale McGee (right) during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Dallas on Monday, February 13, 2023. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

The Timberwolves dominated Dallas for three quarters in the Lone Star State on Monday.

Recent Mavericks acquisition Kyrie Irving scored 26 points in the fourth quarter, but it wasn’t enough to undo 36 minutes of good work from Minnesota as the Timberwolves won 124-121. bottom.

Irving made it 95% of the final frame, but Minnesota got the one stop they desperately needed. Trailing by three with 15 seconds remaining, Timberwolves coach Chris Finch asked if he wanted to foul the Timberwolves in a timeout huddle.

Anthony Edwards and the Wolves had none of that.

“I said, ‘Let’s stop,'” Edwards said in an on-court interview after the game. Play one and see what we do.

And they did.

McDaniels flipped an inbounds pass for Luka Doncic. Doncic recovered and stole the ball, but was unable to do so. Neither could Irving, who was locked down by Edwards. This two of him went back and forth looking for a little bit of oxygen that was nowhere to be found until Irving turned the ball over in his 3 seconds to seal the win for Minnesota.

“It was the best stop,” Finch told reporters. “The guys wanted to do it. Trust the defense in the moment. You did a really good job of interfering with their play with pressure and denying catches. After that it was kind of a broken play.” and made multiple efforts to win good contests and push them inside the line.”

A final defensive possession showed coolness in the final frame. It would be easy for Irving to fold in his final 12 minutes as he came 11-12 into the frame from the field. As a team, Dallas missed just 8 shots in the 4th, grabbing offensive rebounds in 5 of them.

Irving had 36 points and Doncic had 33 points and 12 rebounds.

Due to its prominence, the Wolf’s attacks left little room for error. And to their credit, they did most of it. Minnesota went 9-for-17 from the field in the fourth inning. Kyle Anderson led the attack with 10 points in the final 12 minutes.

He executed his offense flawlessly when things seemed to be in disarray. Anderson also picked Doncic’s pocket with 65 seconds remaining. The veteran was the stabilizing force the Wolves desperately needed.

“Offensively, he calmed us down in fourth when they got away,” Edwards said. “He’s a great veterinarian and we’re happy to have him.”

“Kyle is huge for us if you see us playing all year round,” Finch added. And it gives us peace of mind.”

even in severe storms.

Minnesota finished without Rudy Gobert and Dallas came out with a narrow lineup in the closing stages, but the center dominance paved the way for Minnesota to build a 26-point advantage early in the contest. Finch pulled Gobert with six minutes to play, intending to reinsert him into the lineup with about three minutes remaining. But when the time came, he felt the small-ball lineup was doing a good job staying in front of Dallas on defense.

Gobert had 21 points and 14 rebounds on a perfect 9-9 shooting. He and newly acquired point guard Mike Conley continue to display their previously established chemistry.

Conley recorded nine assists. Underutilized point guards open up opportunities for other players around them to succeed. Gobert made his production and McDaniels came off the field 7-for-8 with him scoring 19 points and Edwards leading with his 32 points.

“He doesn’t want to shoot it. I have to tell him to shoot it,” said Edwards. “I’m like, ‘Buddy, you can shoot that.'”

But passing certainly paid off.

Finch said he “moved the ball quickly and played with the pace”. “They did a good job figuring out where the kickout is and their exit. I thought they did a really good job finding Rudy tonight. Offensively it was a complete game. .

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