Timberwolves trip up Grizzlies
MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The Minnesota Timberwolves made a season-high 12 threes and got 30 points from power forward Kevin Love as they defeated the Memphis Grizzlies 101-93 on Sunday night at the FedExForum.
Love hit 4 of 8 from 3-point range and Minnesota (12-12) made 12 of 26 (46.2 percent) Love also had nine rebounds and four assists. Center Nikola Pekovic scored 19 points, guard Jose Barea scored 15 off the bench, point guard Ricky Rubio finished with 12 points and forward Corey Brewer had nine points and 12 rebounds.
Much worse for the Grizzlies (10-13), point guard Mike Conley limped off the court with just under four minutes left in the fourth quarter. Conley scored a team-high 28 points on 12-for-20 shooting from the floor, including 4-for-8 from 3-point range. Memphis is already without All-Star center Marc Gasol (left MCL sprain).
Memphis power forward Zach Randolph had a double-double with 20 points and 12 boards. Forward Jon Leuer scored 15 off the bench and reserve guard Jerryd Bayless had 14.
The Grizzlies were within two, 81-79, with 9:24 left in the fourth quarter when forward Dante Cunningham blocked guard Nick Calathes’ layup. On the other end, a flagrant-1 foul and a goaltending led to five Timberwolves points and an 86-79 lead. A finger-roll layup by Randolph at 2:26 cut the lead to 95-92, but Memphis never drew closer.
The Timberwolves broke their 11-game losing streak to the Grizzlies, and an eight-game losing in Memphis. The Timberwolves last beat the Grizzlies in February of 2010 in Minnesota.
Love missed all three games with Memphis last season due to hand surgery. He didn’t waste time going to work Sunday, scoring 19 first-half points on 7-for-12 shooting from the floor, 3-for-5 from behind the arc.
The Timberwolves led 28-17 after a quarter, a 3-pointer from Brewer just beating the buzzer. Minnesota hiked the lead to as high as 19 points, a 22-foot jumper from Love making it a 50-31 lead with 4:28 to play in the half. But the Grizzlies finished the half on a 15-6 run to make it a 56-46 Timberwolves lead at the break.
NOTES: The Timberwolves began the night with the worst opponents’ field-goal percentage in the NBA at .477. In Friday’s loss to the Spurs in San Antonio, they gave up 62 points in the paint. “We’re not really challenging people,” Minnesota coach Rick Adelman said. “Our rim protection is not there right now.” ... Timberwolves PF Kevin Love posted a season-high 42 points, hitting 15 of 27 shots from the floor and a franchise-record-tying eight 3-pointers in nine attempts in the loss to the Spurs. Over his previous three games before Sunday, Love averaged 31.3 points, 15.0 rebounds and 4.7 assists and 4.3 3-pointers. ... In Grizzlies F Jon Leuer’s previous six games, all off the bench, he averaged 16.0 points and 8.0 rebounds in 28.2 minutes. His numbers through the first 81 games of his career: 3.6 points and 2.1 rebounds in 10.1 minutes.