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Pistons-Timberwolves Preview

Apr 13, 2010 - 4:07 PM By MIKE LIPKA STATS Writer

Detroit (26-55) at Minnesota (15-66), 8:00 p.m. EDT

In the final game of a miserable season, the Minnesota Timberwolves still have something to play for.

With a victory over the visiting Detroit Pistons on Wednesday, the Timberwolves would avoid matching the worst record in franchise history.

Minnesota (15-66) has arrived at this ignominious position with a woeful two-month stretch, losing 28 of its last 30 dating back to before the All-Star break. One more defeat would match the 1991-92 Timberwolves, who finished 15-67 in the club's third season of play.

"If it happens, it was just meant to happen,' Wolves forward Al Jefferson said. "That's how I look at it. Of course we don't want it to happen, but it's life."

The young club doesn't seemed primed for a victory after losing its last six, including the last two by an average of 25.0 points.

Minnesota, which is guaranteed to finish with the league's second-worst record, allowed more than 130 points for the fifth time in a 133-111 defeat at San Antonio on Monday night.

"We've got one game left, and I hope for them to come out and give a positive showing. Leave with a good taste in their mouths for over the summer," first-year Wolves coach Kurt Rambis said. "This team was not built to win this year. We knew that."

The Wolves lost 108-85 at Detroit on Feb. 16, but the Pistons' season has hardly been any more successful.

On the downswing after eight straight playoff appearances - including an NBA title in 2004 - the Pistons (26-55) will finish with their worst record since they went 20-62 in 1993-94.

"It's really disappointing," forward Tayshaun Prince said.

Detroit had won three straight before losing its last two games. Reserve forward Charlie Villanueva guaranteed a victory over Toronto on Monday via Twitter, but the Pistons lost 111-97.

"I don't think that fired them up because they had something to play for," Villanueva said. "I thought we would come ready to play, and I'm shocked we didn't after the way we've played lately."

Although the Pistons have won their last four trips to Minnesota, those were all more competitive teams. This season's club has gone 9-31 on the road, including 2-12 at Western Conference opponents.

Going into the summer, Detroit will be reminded of one of the franchise's major missteps. Darko Milicic, whom the Pistons chose with the No. 2 pick of the 2003 draft, has been trying to salvage his NBA career as Minnesota's starting center.

Milicic made virtually no impact with the Pistons, while the three players chosen after him - Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade - developed into stars.








  • NBA
    DETROIT 103
    MINNESOTA 98 FINAL

    Apr 14 10:32 PM
  • 83
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 20 roots (Close Finish)

    Pistons 90, Timberwolves 87  4th - 4:59Apr 14 10:09 PM
  • 63
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 36 roots (Close Finish)

    Pistons 83, Timberwolves 84  4th - 7:59Apr 14 10:01 PM


  • NBA
    DETROIT 68
    MINNESOTA 79 END, 3RD QTR

    Apr 14 9:49 PM


  • NBA
    HALFTIME 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    DETROIT 27 21 48
    MINNESOTA 29 29 58 HALFTIME
    HIGH SCORERS AT HALFTIME
    DET - TAYSHAUN PRINCE 18, BEN WALLACE 7, TWO
    PLAYERS WITH 6
    MIN - COREY BREWER 14, DARKO MILICIC 11,
    ALEKSANDAR PAVLOVIC 8

    Apr 14 9:05 PM
  • 27
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 27 roots

    Pistons 48, Timberwolves 58  HalfApr 14 9:05 PM


  • NBA
    END 1ST QTR 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    DETROIT 27 27
    MINNESOTA 29 29 END 1ST QTR
    HIGH SCORERS AFTER 1ST QUARTER
    DET - TAYSHAUN PRINCE 12, BEN WALLACE 5, TWO
    PLAYERS WITH 4
    MIN - COREY BREWER 9, DARKO MILICIC 7, RAMON
    SESSIONS 7

    Apr 14 8:35 PM