Kevin Love body slammed the Portland Trailblazers by dropping a season high 42 points and grabbing 10 boards as the Timberwolves snapped a two game skid beating Portland 122-110 for the first time since 2007.
Behind Love’s amazing performance was Martell Webster who quietly dropped 21 points. Webster’s night wasn’t the only that saw success overshadowed by Love’s 42. Ricky Rubio had 11 first half assists –12 total– while Luke Ridnour and Derrick Williams both entered double digits in scoring with Williams continuing his growth as a force for the Wolves grabbing 15 points.
Williams also saw a bomb in minutes yet again tonight, playing 20 points and draining a three pointer.
But Love was the story of the night as he led the Wolves to their 19th win of the year and balanced them back out at .500. They also proved that they can run hard against a team vying for their playoff spot in the West. The loss drops Portland back below .500 and moves the Wolves a game and a half out from the eighth seed in the West.
Give mild redit to LaMarcus Aldridge, who tried his hardest to slow down Love. Aldridge fouled out early in the fourth quarter as he played Love as physically as he could. Aldridge only managed 14 points on the night and was really a non-factor against Love.
The Wolves could have made it a true blowout, but the fact that they allowed three Portland starters to get into the 20s in terms of scoring, the Wolves still pulled away hard late. Once the fourth quarter rolled around, it was clear that Portland didn’t stand a chance as Minnesota showed off the ability to close out fast and harsh.
The win moves the Wolves into third in the Northwest and although they really have no hope of catching up with the Thunder, they are eyeballing a playoff spot with real passion. Sitting just a game and a half below the cut off line, Minnesota heads home to gear up for a tough three game stretch that sees both Los Angeles teams roll into town plus these very same Blazers.
But it will be a fun ride home as the Wolves bounced back nicely and closed out this West Coast trip as violently and pleasantly as they did so to the Blazers.
Next Three Games
3/5 – Vs. Clippers
3/7 – Vs. Trailblazers
3/9 – Vs. Lakers