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Timberwolves top Grizzlies, 127-103, for sixth consecutive win

Chris Hine, Star Tribune on

Published in Basketball

Anthony Edwards started Friday's game for the Timberwolves, but he wasn't long for the evening.

After landing out of bounds during a play in the first quarter, Edwards checked out because of the right hip pointer that caused him to miss two of the previous three games, and the Wolves had to complete the night without him.

That wasn't much of a problem against an injury-riddled Memphis team, as the Wolves again used a strong third quarter to blow out the Grizzlies, 127-103, for their sixth consecutive win.

The Wolves (17-4) entered the night with a third-quarter net rating of 13.8, and they came out of halftime with a 38-24 performance in the third quarter for a 98-79 lead that allowed them to cruise through the fourth. Karl-Anthony Towns led a balanced night scoring for the Wolves with 24 points.

Troy Brown Jr. began the second half in place of Edwards, and Brown got the party started by hitting three 3s early in the quarter. Brown finished the night with a season-high 20 points on 7-for-9 shooting and was a part of a big night for the bench. Shake Milton, who has struggled all season finding his offense, scored a timely 17 points with Edwards out.

Rudy Gobert was again dominant on defense with six blocks and 20 rebounds while pitching in 16 points on the offensive end. Nickeil Alexander-Walker blanketed Grizzlies leading scorer Desmond Bane (16 points) while scoring 14 of his own.

 

Edwards' exit came with 8 minutes, 17 seconds remaining in the first quarter after he landed out of bounds on the baseline trying to avoid a ball hitting him out of bounds, and the Wolves had to adjust quickly. Brown checked in for him as Gobert had his fingerprints on the Wolves' effort from the start. He even converted a mid-range jumper as part of a 10-point first half. Gobert also had three blocks in the half and now has two or more blocks in nine consecutive games, tying a Wolves record held by Kevin Garnett and Eddie Griffin.

With Edwards out, Milton helped the Wolves pick up some of the slack on offense. Milton scored 10 first-half points, which included two 3s. The Wolves led by as many as nine in the first half before taking a 60-55 lead into halftime.

Then they turned up the heat in the third. The Wolves held the Grizzlies (6-15) to 9-for-25 shooting from the field with Gobert wreaking havoc around the rim, as he has all season.

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The Star Tribune did not send the writer of this article to the game. This was written using a broadcast, interviews and other material.


©2023 StarTribune. Visit startribune.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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