Love, Beasley lead Wolves' rout of Jazz
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Kevin Love had 24 points and 12 rebounds and the Minnesota Timberwolves rolled to a 122-101 victory over the sputtering Utah Jazz on Friday night.
Love extended the longest double-double streak since 1973-74 to 53 straight games and Michael Beasley scored 23 points for the Timberwolves, who snapped an incredible 20-game losing streak to Northwest Division opponents.
Gordon Hayward scored 18 points for the new-look Jazz, who have lost 10 of their last 13 games and are falling out of the playoff picture in the Western Conference.
The Jazz are 3-6 since trading start point guard Deron Williams and are looking a little lost without longtime leader Jerry Sloan, who resigned as coach on Feb. 10.
Their latest loss was their worst yet. The Jazz were down 19 points in the second quarter, pulled within two points in the third, only to get run out of the building by Beasley and Love in the final 4½ minutes of the period.
The Timberwolves closed the third quarter on a 20-5 run during which Love grabbed a rebound to extend his streak and then hit a 3-pointer on the other end to make it 97-72 going into the fourth.
It was the second straight blowout victory for the Timberwolves (17-50), who beat the Pacers by 26 points on Wednesday and have now won consecutive games for just the fourth time all season. They have two straight wins by at least 20 points for the first time since 2001.
Darko Milicic had 14 points, six rebounds and two blocks and Jonny Flynn added 13 points for Minnesota.
Former Timberwolves centerpiece Al Jefferson, who was traded to Utah in the summer, had just nine points on 4 for 13 shooting and nine rebounds against his former team. He entered the night averaging 28 points per game since the All-Star break, which was tied with Amare Stoudemire for tops in the league.
The Jazz were missing big man Paul Millsap for the second game in a row because of left knee tendinitis, and it certainly showed early. Millsap averaged 26.5 points and 9.5 rebounds against the Wolves in the first two games of the season, and the Jazz looked soft without their best banger.
The Timberwolves hit their first 11 shots from the floor and shot 75 percent in the first quarter, the surest sign yet that these aren't Sloan's Jazz anymore.
Beasley scored 10 points and the Wolves put up 39 in the quarter to take an 11-point lead. They led by 19 points early in the second quarter after Nikola Pekovic's two free throws capped a 17-5 run.
But Utah started chipping away, getting 3-pointers from Gordon Hayward, C.J. Miles and Earl Watson to trim the deficit to nine points at halftime.
Jefferson's putback early in the second half made it 68-66, but the Jazz scored just six points in the final 9½ minutes of the quarter to turn the fourth into garbage time.
NOTES: C.J. Miles scored 15 points for the Jazz. Rookie Jeremy Evans added 14, including three soaring dunks. ... The Timberwolves held a moment of silence before the game to honor those fallen in the earthquake in Japan.