NBA Game Summary - LA Clippers at Minnesota
(Sunday, March 27th)
Final Score: Minnesota 89, LA Clippers 85
Minneapolis, MN (Sports Network) - Kevin Garnett notched his 61st double- double of the season as the streaking Minnesota Timberwolves continued their pursuit of the postseason, posting their fourth straight victory with an 89-85 decision over the Los Angeles Clippers at the Target Center.
Garnett scored 20 points and grabbed 13 rebounds for Minnesota, which trails red-hot Denver by 2 1/2 games for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference. The Nuggets next game comes Monday at Phoenix.
"We got a couple of teams we got in front of us that we can look at (catching)," Minnesota's Fred Hoiberg said. "Hopefully we catch one of them. We just have to keep going out and taking care of business."
Sam Cassell collected 16 points and five assists, while Wally Szczerbiak contributed 12 points for the Timberwolves, who have won nine of their last 13 overall.
Troy Hudson and Eddie Griffin chipped in 11 points apiece. Griffin also had eight boards in the win.
Leading the Clippers, who had a three-game winning streak snapped, was Elton Brand with a game-high 25 points on 9-of-14 shooting.
Corey Maggette added 14 points and 13 boards, but missed a potential game- tying three-point attempt in the final seconds of the game. Zeljko Rebraca recorded 12 points off the bench, while Bobby Simmons chipped in 11 for LA, which fell to a dismal 7-25 as the visiting team.
The game was tied 80-80 with three minutes to play when Minnesota got a three- pointer from Cassell and a jump-hook from Garnett to move in front 85-80. Garnett then added a free throw before blocking a shot attempt by LA's Shaun Livingston on the Clippers' next possession.
A three-pointer by Simmons coupled with a pair of missed free throws by Hoiberg gave the Clippers the ball, trailing by three with 15.8 seconds to play. Maggette's triple attempt hit the short side of the rim and bounced off, all but ending the game.
"We didn't pull it out at the end, that was the main thing," Livingston said. "We got some good opportunities, some good looks. A couple mental mistakes and defensive plays that we could have cut back on."
Trailing by one point after three quarters, Los Angeles tied the game 68-68 a little more than two minutes into the fourth quarter on a jumper by Simmons. The T-Wolves responded with a 10-0 run, during which Cassell had four points and Garnett netted six.
LA answered however, going on a 12-2 burst to pull even at 80-80 with a little more than three minutes to play.
With Minnesota opening the game 0-for-4 shooting and LA turning the ball over six times, the teams were tied at just 12-12 some eight minutes into the first quarter, which ended with the teams playing fairly even and LA ahead, 20-18.
After Minnesota grabbed its first lead at 30-28, the T-Wolves closed the second quarter on a 15-8 burst to take a 45-36 advantage into halftime.
The Clippers came out of the locker room and chipped at the nine-point deficit, getting as close as one point on several occasion, but could never regain the lead before heading into the fourth quarter down, 65-64.
Garnett entered Sunday's game leading the Timberwolves in scoring (22.4 ppg), rebounding (13.8 rpg) and assists (5.6 apg)...Minnesota improved to 21-15 at home this season...The Timberwolves kick off a three-game road trip on Thursday that takes them to the Lakers, Phoenix and Sacramento...The Clippers seven-game road trip will continue with stops in Cleveland, New Jersey, Detroit, Atlanta, Charlotte and San Antonio...LA has won five of its last eight games overall.
03/27 19:03:35 ET