Love helps Timberwolves edge SunsMar 13, 2012 - 6:01 AM Phoenix, AZ (Sports Network) - Kevin Love scored 23 of his 30 points in the second half, leading the Timberwolves past the Suns, 127-124, in a back-and- forth shootout.
Minnesota started its seven-game road trip by ending a nine-game losing streak to Phoenix. It was a nice boost for the T-Wolves, who lost rookie star Ricky Rubio to a season-ending knee injury last week.
"That's just a terrific win for our team starting this road trip. We've had a few disappointments the last few days but our guys came out and played hard," Minnesota head coach Rick Adelman said.
Nikola Pekovic added 24 points and a eight rebounds, while reserves Derrick Williams (19 points), Wayne Ellington (15), and Michael Beasley (15) also contributed in snapping a two-game slide.
The Timberwolves shot 14-of-22 from three-point range and still outscored the Suns in the paint, 46-32.
Jared Dudley and Steve Nash carried the Suns with 28 and 25 points, respectively, on a combined 20-of-36 shooting. Nash handed out 10 assists in a losing effort, Phoenix's first setback at home since losing to Golden State on February 22.
"We just did a poor job defensively obviously to say the least," Dudley said. "But even with that, our offense kept us in the game and still gave us a chance at the end to win the game."
The high-scoring affair featured 15 lead changes, the last coming when Luke Ridnour made a runner to put Minnesota in front, 121-120 with 1:50 remaining.
Nash missed shots on Phoenix's next two possessions, and the Timberwolves went 6-for-6 from the foul line in the final minute to come away victorious.
Marcin Gortat had a chance to bring the hosts with one, but missed two attempts at the foul line with 12.2 seconds on the clock. Wesley Johnson grabbed the board on the second miss and secured the win with two free throws.
Phoenix led, 34-28 after the first quarter, but in the second frame Williams and Beasley each netted 12 points, carrying the T-Wolves to a 63-56 halftime advantage.
Dudley went off for 14 points in the third, but the Suns still trailed, 92-90 entering the final stanza.
Mavs reserve guards J.J. Barea was expected to miss a third straight game due to a sprained left ankle, but played 15 1/2 minutes and scored three points...Ridnour totaled 10 points and nine assists...Channing Frye hit four of Phoenix's nine three-pointers...Phoenix will finish its four-game homestand against Utah on Wednesday.
- MINNESOTA: 127
Mar 13 12:25 AM
- MINNESOTA: 92
End of 3rd
Mar 12 11:50 PM
- MINNESOTA: 63
Mar 12 11:07 PM
- MINNESOTA: 28
End of 1st
Mar 12 10:38 PM
- MINNESOTA: 0
1st Quarter - 12:00
Mar 12 10:12 PM
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