Garnett, T-Wolves cool off Bulls
Chicago, IL (Sports Network) – Kevin Garnett posted 18 points, 11 rebounds and
eight assists, as the Minnesota Timberwolves cooled the red-hot Chicago Bulls,
91-81, at the United Center.
“This game was kind of a picture of our week,” Minnesota coach Dwane Casey
said. “We came out aggressive in the beginning and set the tone. Then, when
they made their run we were able to stand up to it. They came out with grit
and hustle and we were still able to withstand it tonight.”
Ricky Davis and Mike James both netted 15 points for the Timberwolves, who won
their fourth straight. Marko Jaric added 12 points and seven boards. Trenton
Hassell and Mark Blount both scored 11 points.
Ben Gordon scored 21 points for the Bulls, who had a seven-game winning streak
snapped. Andres Nocioni netted 17 points, and Kirk Hinrich had 15 points and
eight assists. Luol Deng added 10 points and 10 boards.
After Nocioni drilled a three-pointer for a six-point Bulls deficit, Garnett
got fouled with 32.1 seconds left and converted the front end before getting
his own rebound. James then hit a pair of free throws with 28.1 seconds left
to seal the win.
Minnesota got out to an early 24-17 lead heading into the second quarter.
The Timberwolves went on an 11-3 run capped by a pair of Jaric threes for a
38-29 lead with 6:05 remaining, and led 53-40 at halftime.
Closing the stanza on a 9-0 run ignited by a Deng tip shot with just over two
minutes left, Chicago trimmed three points off its deficit in the third to
trail by 10 heading into the fourth.
“I felt we did not start playing until two minutes to go in the third
quarter,” Chicago coach Scott Skiles said. “We went really small at one point
and we started playing with energy.”
Minnesota shot 34-for-77 from the field, while Chicago finished 30-for-76.
This was the first of two meetings this season between Chicago and the
Timberwolves. Minnesota will host the Bulls on December 26th at the Target
Center…Minnesota has won six of 17 meetings at Chicago. The Bulls have won
three of the last five contests in this series.