Friday , Apr , 30 , 2004 C.Y. Ellis

Timberwolves try to move into semis

Minneapolis, MN (Sports Network) – The Minnesota Timberwolves attempt to win
a playoff series for the first time in franchise history tonight, as they
welcome the Denver Nuggets to the Target Center for Game 5 of their Western
Conference quarterfinal set.

The Timberwolves, who have lost seven straight years in the first round of the
playoffs, are 0-2 all-time when they have a chance to eliminate their
opponent from the postseason. In 1998, Minnesota led Seattle 2-1 in the best-
of-five series. The SuperSonics would win Game 4 at the Target Center and
dismissed the Timberwolves, 97-84, at KeyArena in Game 5.

After winning Games 1 and 2 at home and dropping Game 3 at the Pepsi Center,
Minnesota beat Denver, 84-82, on Tuesday to take a commanding 3-1 lead in the
series. Kevin Garnett poured in 27 points and grabbed 14 rebounds to lead the
Timberwolves to the victory.

Sam Cassell finished with 15 points and Trenton Hassell scored 14 for the top-
seeded Timberwolves.

The Timberwolves played Game 5 without forward Wally Szczerbiak, who is
expected to miss at least the rest of the series because of three transverse
process fractures of his lumbar spine.

Voshon Lenard netted a game-high 28 points Tuesday as he drained 6-of-7 three-
point tries for the Nuggets. Rookie Carmelo Anthony, who was bothered by a
sprained left knee that caused him to miss some time in the third quarter,
struggled all night as he scored only two points on a dismal 1-of-16 shooting.

On the injury front, Anthony (knee) is questionable, while Denver forward
Rodney White (ankle) is doubtful.

Denver is 3-2 in its last five Game 5s in the postseason, while the
Timberwolves are 0-2 all-time in Game 5s.

Minnesota has won two straight and three of its last five road games in the
playoffs. The Timberwolves are just 6-9 all-time as the visitor in the

In the 1994 playoffs, Denver came back from a 2-0 deficit to knock off the
Seattle SuperSonics in five games in the first round of the postseason. The
Nuggets have never won a best-of-seven series after dropping the first two

The Nuggets have never comeback from a 3-1 deficit to win a best-of-seven
series since joining the NBA in 1976-77.

The winner of this series will face the Sacramento Kings, who defeated Dallas
in five games.

If Denver wins tonight, Game 6 would be played on Sunday at Pepsi Center.