NBA Game Summary - Washington at Minnesota
(Sunday, December 26th)
Final Score: Minnesota 109, Washington 74
Minneapolis, MN (Sports Network) - Kevin Garnett ended with 18 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists and sparked a key third quarter run that helped the Minnesota Timberwolves to a 109-74 rout of the Washington Wizards at the Target Center.
Wally Szczerbiak recorded a game-high 23 points, nine rebounds and six assists for the Timberwolves, who ended a two-game slide and won for only the third time in seven outings. Sam Cassell shot 9-of-11 from the field on his way to a 22-point night, as Minnesota will next travel to New York on Wednesday.
Gilbert Arenas had 21 points for the Wizards, who have dropped two straight and five of seven. Larry Hughes tallied 13 points and Antawn Jamison was held to a season-low eight points, as Washington ended a five-game road trip 2-3.
The Timberwolves began to build a lead in the second quarter. Leading 25-21 early on, a 13-3 run gave Minnesota a double-digit cushion. Eddie Griffin, who had all seven of his points during the run, started it with a three-pointer and Cassell's jumper with 3:46 remaining in the half ended the run, putting the team ahead 38-24.
Minnesota would then carry a 47-36 lead into the third and would come out of the locker room to put the game out of reach.
Ahead 65-53 with 3:46 remaining, another 13-3 run put the game out of reach. Garnett, who started the run with a tip-in, had six of the 13 points and ended the third with a jumper that gave the Timberwolves a 75-56 lead.
In the fourth, the cushion ballooned to as many as 35 points, the final score, thanks to a 23-8 run by Minnesota to end the game.
The Timberwolves ended 21-of-22 from the free throw line. Mark Madsen missed from the stripe with 52 seconds left to account for the lone miss. Overall, Minnesota shot 48 percent from the field and turned the ball over a season-low seven times.
"We handled the ball well," said Minnesota's Fred Hoiberg. "They are number one or two at forcing turnovers."
Washington went only 10-of-14 from the line and shot a dismal 39 percent for the game.
"We didn't fight, we didn't help each other and we didn't do the things that got us winning," said Arenas.
Prior to the game, the Wizards activated guard Steve Blake from the injured list and placed guard Laron Profit on the IL with a strained left foot. Blake had been out since December 8 with a strained left foot...This tied the third largest win in Timberwolves history.
12/26 23:11:22 ET