Minnesota at Memphis

Timberwolves prevail in battle of lottery teams

CBSSports.com wire reports
  •  

MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- In a game pitting two of the NBA's worst teams, the Minnesota Timberwolves came out with confidence and showed more desire than the Memphis Grizzlies.

Kirk Snyder had 22 points and 11 rebounds, Al Jefferson added 21 points and 10 boards, and the Timberwolves beat the Grizzlies 114-105 on Saturday night.

"You've got to find that energy," Snyder said, adding that professionals need to set an example for younger players. "You've got to be able to hold true to some of the things you say to them. Do the right thing and play as hard as you can and leave it all out there."

Ryan Gomes was the third Minnesota player with a double-double, finishing with 11 points and 12 rebounds. Rashad McCants led Minnesota with 23 points and Randy Foye scored 16. Snyder's points, on 9-of-11 shooting, were a season high and the rebounding total was the best of his career.

"I think Kirk was huge for us," Minnesota coach Randy Wittman said. "He got out in the lanes and (Foye) threw the ball ahead. We scored quickly at the start of the game, and it kind of gets you going then."

Mike Conley led Memphis with a career-high 25 points, while Rudy Gay finished with 22. Hakim Warrick scored 16 points, and Andre Brown added career highs of 13 points and 18 rebounds.

With Seattle owning the only worse record than these teams in the Western Conference, this game was mostly about lottery positioning.

The Timberwolves built the lead to as many as 18 early in the game and really were never threatened after a third-quarter rally rebuilt the lead to double digits. Part of the reason was Minnesota's dominance in the middle, as the Timberwolves outrebounded Memphis 62-45 and held a 60-44 advantage in the paint.

The 62 rebounds were a season high for the Timberwolves and the most by a Memphis opponent this season.

"We had some guys out, but I thought the guys who took their place played hard," Memphis coach Marc Iavaroni said. "(The Timberwolves) were just better than us. They shot the ball well. They rebounded and dominated us inside physically."

Memphis, playing its last home game of the season, went deep into its bench early. In the first quarter, little-used players such as Kwame Brown, Brian Cardinal and Casey Jacobsen already had made an appearance, and center Andre Brown started his first game of the season.

The result: The Timberwolves shot 63 percent and built a 43-25 lead, the most first-quarter points ever by Minnesota. The Wolves were getting to the basket because Memphis players weren't getting in the way.

"We were moving the ball well," Foye said. "It's fun to play like that. You push the ball up, swing, swing, dunk. That's so fun, man. I love playing like that."

Memphis whittled away at the lead and trailed 62-55 at halftime.

The Timberwolves regained the double-digit lead after halftime and held it through most of the third before taking an 89-77 advantage into the fourth.

"They had a lot of big guys down low," Conley said. "Al Jefferson's a great player, and he did a great job of getting to the basket and putting his misses back in."

Snyder said the Timberwolves, who won 102-101 at Orlando on Friday night, now need to build on the confidence of back-to-back road wins.

"We have a couple of games left, and we're young," Snyder said. "Guys are going to probably pick up a basketball as soon as we stop playing anyway, so leave it all out there. Go with reckless abandonment and see what you can get out of it. See if you can win some games."

Notes

  • Before the game, three people were injured when a section of the FedExForum stands collapsed. Fans were standing at the rail of the section leaning over asking for autographs from Memphis players as they left the floor following their pregame shooting routines. One man was taken out on a stretcher and medical personnel was attending to at least two others. All three went to the hospital but were conscious and alert.
  • Memphis G Mike Miller missed his second straight game with back spasms.
  • Andre Brown's start was his first in 69 career games. His previous rebounding mark was set Friday night with 11 at Miami, and his 18 rebounds Saturday night matched the Memphis high for a game this season.
  • Jefferson's double-double was his 54th of the season, second in the league to Dwight Howard's 68.
Copyright 2016 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre
Al Jefferson records his 54th double-double of the season, second best in the league.  (Getty Images)
Al Jefferson records his 54th double-double of the season, second best in the league. (Getty Images)
Scoreboard
Minnesota (21-59) «43192725114
Memphis (22-58) 25302228105
MIN:R. McCants 23 Pts
MIN:R. Gomes 12 Reb
MIN:R. Foye 6 Ast
MEM:M. Conley 25 Pts
MEM:A. Brown 18 Reb
MEM:K. Lowry 5 Ast
Players of the Game
MemphisMinnesota

M. Conley

K. Snyder
PtsRebsAstPtsRebsAst
252522112

Related Video

Minnesota
K. Snyder, SG389-114-7112022
R. Foye, PG357-180-036216
A. Jefferson, PF329-173-4102321
R. Gomes, PF305-141-1123211
M. Jaric, SF284-120-02129
C. Richard, PF242-50-08244
R. McCants, SG229-133-431523
C. Brewer, SF223-70-011266
M. Doleac, C91-20-02142
M. Madsen, PF10-00-00000
A. Walker, SFDid Not Play
G. Buckner, SGDid Not Play
S. Telfair, PGDid Not Play
C. Smith, PFDid Not Play
Totals 49-9911-16622028114
 49.5%68.8% 
Memphis
H. Warrick, PF436-164-672316
A. Brown, SF345-133-6181213
M. Conley, PG328-147-725225
R. Gay, SG289-202-471222
J. Navarro, PG232-92-20008
K. Lowry, SG313-84-745110
C. Jacobsen, SG240-20-02110
K. Brown, C142-44-115218
B. Cardinal, PF101-30-00033
A. McKie, SGDid Not Play
M. Miller, SFDid Not Play
J. Collins, CDid Not Play
D. Milicic, PFDid Not Play
J. Crittenton, PGDid Not Play
Totals 36-8926-43451715105
 40.4%60.5% 
Other Games
Bos 99 Final
Atl 89
Char 107 Final
Ind 103
Phi 93 Final
Wash 109
NJ 111 Final
Mil 98
Den 97 Final
Utah 124
Dal 105 Final
Port 108
NO 91 Final
Sac 94
LAC 116 Final
GS 122