Player grades from Minnesota Timberwolves’ road loss to Rockets

Andrew Wiggins of the Minnesota Timberwolves drives to the basket. (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)
Andrew Wiggins of the Minnesota Timberwolves drives to the basket. (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images) /

The Minnesota Timberwolves were thoroughly dominated by the Rockets on Saturday afternoon in Houston as James Harden broke the 20,000-point mark for his career.

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The Minnesota Timberwolves had a chance to get back Karl-Anthony Towns on Saturday night after missing the last 12 games due to a knee sprain. Unfortunately, per the Fox Sports North broadcast Towns came down with an illness, and the Wolves chose to hold him out for his 13th consecutive game.

Truthfully, it’s unlikely that Towns’ presence would have made much a difference in this one.

The Wolves came out flat on both ends of the floor. Thankfully for Minnesota, so did the Rockets.

The first quarter was an affront to lovers of beautiful basketball, as the Wolves couldn’t buy points and the Rockets turned the ball over seemingly every time down the court. Houston was so sloppy early that James Harden has 11 turnovers by himself before halftime. Eleven!

But the Wolves couldn’t hit the broadside of the barn from the field, struggling from everywhere on the floor. The free throw line also proved to be a challenge for Minnesota, where they shot 66.7 percent on 36 attempts.

The Rockets led by 13 at halftime and expanded their lead to as many as 40 points in the second half. The result was never really in question from about the midway point in the second frame, and the Wolves head back to Target Center for Monday’s game with a 15-23 record.

Harden finished with 32 points (8-17 FG, 6-11 3P, 10-13 FT), 12 rebounds, eight assists, and two steals. He had 11 turnovers, all of which occurred before halftime.

Player Grades

Minnesota Timberwolves. ANDREW WIGGINS. D. For as good as <a rel=. Wing

B+. <a rel=. Guard. Minnesota Timberwolves. JARRETT CULVER

ROBERT COVINGTON. B. <a rel=. Forward. Minnesota Timberwolves

B. It was another solid game in short minutes for <a rel=. Center. Minnesota Timberwolves. GORGUI DIENG

Minnesota Timberwolves. SHABAZZ NAPIER. D. It was another rough game for <a rel=. Guard

JOSH OKOGIE. B+. <a rel=. Wing. Minnesota Timberwolves

Other Players

Jeff Teague played 22 minutes off the bench and was a -26. He was 2-of-9 shooting and had four assists and four turnovers.

Naz Reid contributed 14 points in 18 minutes, shooting 5-of-14 from the field. He only had two rebounds and one assist. Keita Bates-Diop had 11 points in 19 minutes and was solid off the bench.

Treveon Graham played 14 minutes and struggled defensively on Harden. Noah Vonleh only played six first-half minutes, and Jordan Bell used up eight minutes of garbage time.

What could the 76ers trade for Robert Covington?. dark. Next

Next Up

The Wolves will head home to take on the Oklahoma City Thunder on Monday at 7 p.m. CT.