NBA Game Summary - Minnesota at Utah
(Friday, April 15th)
Final Score: Minnesota 100, Utah 84
Salt Lake City, UT (Sports Network) - Kevin Garnett scored 22 points and grabbed nine rebounds, as the Minnesota Timberwolves kept their playoff hopes alive with a 100-84 victory over the Utah Jazz at the Delta Center.
Wally Szczerbiak collected 17 points and eight boards for Minnesota, which moved within two games of Memphis for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference with three games remaining. The Grizzlies lost to Denver on Friday.
"We've got three games left," said Garnett. "We've got to win. Period."
Sam Cassell had 14 points and Latrell Sprewell added 13 for the Timberwolves, who have won two in a row and nine of their last 12 contests.
Keith McLeod paced Utah with a career-high 20 points. Matt Harpring chipped in 12 points and eight rebounds for the Jazz, who have dropped seven of their last 10 games.
The Timberwolves opened the third quarter with a 9-2 spurt, highlighted by seven points from Sprewell, to stretch their advantage to 57-46.
Utah then stormed back and cut the deficit to 59-57 on a layup by Mehmet Okur with 5:35 remaining in the period. The Jazz eventually trailed 70-65 after 36 minutes.
Minnesota then put the game away by scoring 14 of the first 18 points of the fourth quarter. Fred Hoiberg netted six points during the decisive burst that staked the Timberwolves to an 84-69 lead with 6:35 left.
Utah did not threaten again and fell behind by as many as 18 in the closing minutes.
The Jazz used a 12-2 run in the first quarter to take an 18-8 advantage. Harpring had six points during the surge.
Minnesota battled back and closed within 27-22 after 12 minutes.
Utah was able to push its lead to 36-27 on Kirk Snyder's dunk with 8:51 left in the second quarter. However, the Timberwolves countered with a 14-2 burst, keyed by four points apiece from Eddie Griffin and Szczerbiak, to grab a 41-38 advantage.
Minnesota carried a 48-44 lead into the locker room.
Griffin finished with 10 points and nine rebounds...Okur had 10 points and eight boards...Howard Eisley scored 10 points for Utah...The Timberwolves won the season series from the Jazz, 3-1.
04/16 00:55:20 ET