Charlotte at Minnesota

Morrison scores 26 second-half points, Bobcats rally past T-Wolves

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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MINNEAPOLIS -- Rookie Adam Morrison finally found his shooting touch, just in time for the Charlotte Bobcats to send the Minnesota Timberwolves to another frustrating loss.

Morrison scored 26 points -- all in the second half -- to help the Bobcats rally from a 17-point deficit and beat the Timberwolves 100-95 on Wednesday night.

The reserve forward was 0-for-5 in the first half but finished 10-for-19. He scored eight straight points for Charlotte during the third quarter and 13 consecutive late in the fourth.

"He shot an assortment of shots tonight, everything," Bobcats coach Bernie Bickerstaff said. "Off one leg, off the move. It was just a great game."

Matt Carroll added 20 points and Gerald Wallace had 18 for Charlotte, which won its third straight game. The Bobcats, last in the Southeast Division, improved to 9-18 on the road.

Kevin Garnett had 22 points and 11 rebounds to record his NBA-leading 47th double-double for the Timberwolves, who lost their second consecutive game and fell to 3-7 in their past 10.

Mike James added 17 points, but just two during the second half, in a reserve role for Minnesota, which lost the opener of a key five-game homestand. Minnesota, a much better team at home than on the road, dropped to 16-10 at Target Center.

The Timberwolves' next four games are against division leaders.

"We fell into worrying about ourselves as individuals instead of worrying about the team," said Minnesota interim coach Randy Wittman, who is 5-9 since taking over after Dwane Casey was fired Jan. 23.

The Timberwolves, who began the night in eighth place in the Western Conference standings, looked as if they would coast to a victory after James sparked them in the second quarter.

The point guard, maligned for his inconsistent play during the first half of the season, had 15 points in the second quarter as Minnesota went up by 17 en route to a 58-45 halftime lead.

The Bobcats and Timberwolves both played Tuesday night, but the younger Charlotte team -- especially Morrison -- looked much fresher in the second half.

The Bobcats trailed 78-66 after Garnett's tip-in with 3:08 left in the third quarter, but Morrison scored the next eight points to pull Charlotte within 78-74 late in the third.

Then the first-year forward from Gonzaga really took over in the fourth quarter, scoring 13 straight points for the Bobcats. His 3-pointer started the streak and brought Charlotte to within 88-87 with 4:52 left, and his runner from the baseline with just more than a minute remaining gave the Bobcats a 97-90 lead.

"My teammates did a good job of getting me the ball in the right situation," he said. "I was hot, and that is what the NBA is all about, getting the ball to the right guy."

Morrison, the third pick in last year's draft, struggled before the All-Star break, but he scored 18 points in Charlotte's 104-100 home victory over New Orleans on Tuesday night.

"I haven't played to the best of my ability, but I still have decent numbers," said Morrison, who entered Wednesday second among NBA rookies with an average of 12.8 points per game. "I would definitely like to improve that. My teammates are doing a great job of sticking with me."

For the Timberwolves, meanwhile, it was another confounding loss in an inconsistent season.

As an example, Minnesota rallied from a 20-point deficit to win 102-96 on Jan. 1 at Charlotte Arena in the teams' other meeting this season.

"It's been a tale of two teams; that's been our season," James said.

Casey was fired with a 20-20 record because management was upset with the team's up-and-down play. Moving Wittman from assistant to head coach has done little to solve those problems.

"I'm tired of guys pouting on the floor, during the game," said Wittman, whose team had just two assists in the second half after piling up 19 before halftime. "You cannot do that during games. Give me guys that have no talent, and you're going to lose the game but go down fighting. We didn't go down fighting tonight."

Notes

  • Sean May (right knee), Othella Harrington (left knee) and Jeff McInnis (right ankle) were inactive for the Bobcats. May has missed 12 consecutive games, Harrington 10 and McInnis two.
  • The Bobcats got their first win in three tries at Target Center.
  • Timberwolves F Mark Madsen had to be helped off the court early in the third quarter after landing awkwardly on his left ankle. The team said X-rays didn't reveal any breaks, and that Madsen was day-to-day with a sprain.
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The Bobcats bench is thrilled by the late heroics of Adam Morrison, who scores 26 in the second half.  (AP)
The Bobcats bench is thrilled by the late heroics of Adam Morrison, who scores 26 in the second half. (AP)

Scoreboard
Charlotte (21-33) «24212926100
Minnesota (25-29) 2434231495
CHA:A. Morrison 26 Pts
CHA:E. Okafor 19 Reb
CHA:R. Felton 7 Ast
MIN:K. Garnett 22 Pts
MIN:K. Garnett 11 Reb
MIN:M. James 5 Ast
Players of the Game
MinnesotaCharlotte

K. Garnett

A. Morrison
PtsRebsAstPtsRebsAst
221122641
Charlotte
E. Okafor, C426-110-2193312
G. Wallace, SF387-153-540218
R. Felton, PG354-142-227110
M. Carroll, SG305-118-870120
P. Brezec, C71-20-03042
D. Anderson, SG291-53-53535
A. Morrison, SG2910-192-441126
B. Knight, PG130-20-01310
J. Voskuhl, C123-41-23037
W. Herrmann, SF50-20-00010
O. Harrington, PFDid Not Play
J. McInnis, PGDid Not Play
S. May, FDid Not Play
R. Hollins, CDid Not Play
Totals 37-8519-28461920100
 43.5%67.9% 
Minnesota
K. Garnett, PF396-1010-10112122
R. Davis, SG304-90-04308
T. Hassell, SF292-44-42228
M. Blount, C256-110-020512
R. Foye, PG243-92-21219
C. Smith, PF263-52-28238
M. James, PG247-142-205317
M. Jaric, PG222-31-26236
R. McCants, SG152-61-20315
M. Madsen, C60-10-01010
T. Hudson, PGDid Not Play
B. Wright, SGDid Not Play
E. Griffin, PFDid Not Play
J. Reed, SFDid Not Play
Totals 35-7222-2435212095
 48.6%91.7% 
Other Games
SA 103 Final
Atl 96
NY 84 Final
Phi 104
Cle 86 Final
Tor 85
Mil 129 Final
Ind 136
Orl 88 Final
Det 110
NO 111 Final
NJ 107
Mia 102 Final
Hou 112
Bos 108 Final
Pho 118
Mem 115 Final
GS 118
Port 112 Final
LAL 108