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(Wednesday, December 11th)
Final Score: Minnesota 106, Philadelphia 99
Minneapolis, MN (SportsNetwork.com) - Kevin Love scored 26 points with 15 rebounds and five assists to help the Minnesota Timberwolves erase a 19-point first half deficit en route to a 106-99 win over the Philadelphia 76ers.
Ricky Rubio posted 21 points with seven assists and Nikola Pekovic added a double-double with 20 points and 10 boards for Minnesota, which won its fourth consecutive game over the Sixers for the first time in franchise history.
Tony Wroten and Spencer Hawes each scored 20 points with Hawes making 4-of-5 from distance.
Thaddeus Young and James Anderson registered 16 points apiece, while Evan Turner added 13 points.
Robbie Hummel's deep two early in the fourth gave the Wolves their first lead of the game at 87-86. Hummel's bucket was part of a 10-0 run that Dante Cunningham capped with a nifty reverse layup for a 91-86 advantage.
"When you can erase a lead like that, the momentum is going in our favor, it's like a boulder rolling down a hill," said Hummel.
Hawes hit his fourth triple of the game to pull within two, 95-93, but Love answered with a nice jump-hook in the lane and then Corey Brewer converted a layup off a Rubio feed with 2:18 left.
Love tipped in his own miss for a 101-95 cushion and the Sixers turned it over after Rubio jumped the inbounds pass with just over a minute left. Turnovers were the Achilles heel for the Sixers all night as they committed 26 to Minnesota's 13. The Timberwolves came out of the ensuing timeout and Hummel knocked down another 3 to complete the comeback and hand the Sixers their ninth consecutive road loss.
"Obviously, the first quarter was awful," said Minnesota head coach Rick Adelman. "They (Philadelphia) are a young team that run up and down the court and try to attack the basket as quick as they can. They just got going, got us on our heels and it took us a long time to get into it."
The Sixers hit their first four shots of the game and Turner's jumper with 2:49 left in the first ignited a 16-0 run to end the quarter. James Anderson hit a 3-pointer and converted a dunk on successive possessions to cap the spurt and help the Sixers to a 39-20 advantage after 12 minutes of action.
Philadelphia shot a scorching 77.3 percent in the first on 17-of-22 shooting.
The hot start from Philadelphia quickly turned in the opening stages of the second as the Sixers missed their first seven shots. Turner hit a 3-pointer at 7:12 for the first bucket and ended an 8-0 Minnesota run in the process.
Turner's bucket not only squelched the Timberwolves run, it also was the first in a string of seven straight shots made by the visitors.
Hawes buried a triple late in the second to run the lead back to 61-43, but Love converted five free throws in the final minute to cut the deficit to 13 at half.
"In a big picture, we put ourselves in a position to win a game," said Philadelphia head coach Brett Brown. "We put ourselves in a position to win a game on the road and it's hard to do that."
Minnesota fired out of the break with a 12-2 run capped after a Love 3- pointer.
Following a runner from Hawes that extended the Philly lead back to double digits, Minnesota ran off seven straight and trailed by three with 2:57 left in the third.
Rubio tied the game at 78 just over a minute later with a triple but the Sixers brought an 81-78 lead into the fourth.
Hummel scored 10 points in just under 12 minutes off the bench ... Minnesota snapped a two-game home losing skid ... Philadelphia has lost four straight overall to add to its road woes ... The Timberwolves were 25-of-29 (86.2 percent) from the free throw line ... Minnesota outscored the Sixers 27-9 in second chance points ... Philadelphia plays Toronto on Friday while Minnesota will meet up with the Spurs in San Antonio.
12/12 00:11:54 ET