Tuesday , Jan , 24 , 2006 C.Y. Ellis

Timberwolves have a tough week ahead of them

(Sports Network) – The Minnesota Timberwolves are 19-19 and trail the Denver
Nuggets by 2 1/2 games in the Northwest Division. The Utah Jazz own the same
record as the Timberwolves.

Minnesota is scheduled to play the always tough Detroit Pistons on Tuesday.
The Pistons attempt to extend their winning streak to eight games when they
visit the Timberwolves at the Target Center.

Detroit head coach Flip Saunders, who was fired by the Timberwolves in
February 2005 after 9 1/2 years of service, faces his former team for the
first time. The 50-year-old Saunders went 411-326 during his tenure with
Minnesota, as he guided the Timberwolves to a franchise-best and league-best
58-24 mark in the 2003-04 campaign. Minnesota advanced all the way to the
conference finals before losing to the Los Angeles Lakers in six games in the
2004 playoffs.

It is the first of two meetings between Detroit and Minnesota this season. The
Pistons are scheduled to host the Timberwolves on February 1st at The Palace
of Auburn Hills.

Minnesota wraps up a three-game homestand on Tuesday as it is 1-1 on the
current stand. On Sunday, Andre Iguodala’s putback as time expired lifted the
Philadelphia 76ers to an 86-84 comeback victory over the Timberwolves at the
Target Center.

Tied at 84-84 with nine seconds left, Philadelphia inbounded the ball to Allen
Iverson, who was quickly double teamed. Iverson dished out to Chris Webber who
then drove to the hoop. The layup did not fall, but Iguodala was able to grab
the rebound and put back a shot in midair from about 10 feet that fell through
the hoop as time ran out.

Wally Szczerbiak scored 18 points in the loss to Philadelphia for the
Timberwolves, who lost for just the second time in their last six games. Kevin
Garnett finished with 13 points and 14 rebounds and Eddie Griffin contributed
13 points and 10 boards.

On the injury front for Minnesota, guards Troy Hudson (flu), Richie Frahm
(foot) and forward Nikoloz Tskitishvili (ankle) and center Michael Olowokandi
(dental) are all questionable for Tuesday’s contest.

The Timberwolves are 13-7 as the host this season. After Tuesday’s contest,
they will embark on a three-game road trip that consists of games against
Memphis on Wednesday, Houston on Friday and San Antonio on Sunday. Minnesota
is 0-3 combined this season vs. the Grizzlies, Rockets and Spurs.

Szczerbiak has scored in double-digits in 28 straight games. He is averaging
21.7 points and 6.2 rebounds per game in his last 10 outings.