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Teague scores 25 to lead Butler-less Wolves past Bulls

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Before his team faced the Chicago Bulls on Saturday night, Minnesota coach Tom Thibodeau stressed the Timberwolves couldn't replace injured star Jimmy Butler with a single player. To overcome his absence, they would need a collective effort.

For at least one game, the Wolves responded.

Jeff Teague scored 25 points, Andrew Wiggins added 23 and Karl-Anthony Towns had 22 points and 13 rebounds for his NBA-leading 53rd double-double of the season in a 122-104 victory over Chicago.

Playing their first game since Butler injured his right knee during Friday night's loss in Houston, the Timberwolves earned a much-needed win after a long day. They arrived home late in the morning, then learned Butler has a meniscus injury that will sideline him indefinitely.

The team is optimistic he will be able to return this season.

''The worst part was getting the news about Jimmy,'' Teague said. ''That's our guy, man. He makes us go. He's our engine and he's our leader, so to see him go down, man, it's always tough. But you know, we've got a lot of talented guys in this locker room. We've just got to step up and play together and still try to collect some wins.''

Taj Gibson had 19 points and 10 rebounds for Minnesota. Jamal Crawford also scored 19 off the bench, including three 3-pointers that keyed a 16-2 spurt to open the fourth quarter and put the Timberwolves comfortably ahead for good.

''We needed everyone and everyone stepped up,'' Thibodeau said.

The Wolves had little trouble on offense without their leading scorer. They certainly missed him early on defense, though. Zach LaVine scored 21 to lead the Bulls in his return to Target Center since the blockbuster offseason trade that sent Butler to Minnesota.

Chicago trailed by as many as 12 early, but LaVine hit some timely buckets and the Bulls' bench outscored Minnesota's reserves 24-7 in the first half. The Bulls looked to be in prime position to sweep the season series after a one-point win in Chicago on Feb. 9.

''That second quarter was a thing of beauty,'' coach Fred Hoiberg said. ''We got stops. We were pushing it down the floor.''

Chicago led by five in the third quarter before Minnesota used an 18-11 run to regain the lead heading into the fourth.

''I think this is the recipe, because like I said, you have guys who have big nights on particular nights,'' Crawford said. ''But overall, something that's sustainable, I think it has to be a collection of guys, and I think this is hopefully a look at what it can look like.''

AGELESS CRAWFORD

A historically streaky shooter, the 37-year-old Crawford went 3 for 5 for 11 points in the fourth quarter alone, bringing the crowd to its feet with his long-range shooting. ''He's still playing like he's 22 years old,'' Hoiberg said. ''He was playing by himself out there for a while. When he gets rolling, he's a hard guy to stop.''

WELCOME BACK

The crowd gave LaVine a warm welcome when he was announced in the starting lineup. LaVine played three seasons in Minnesota, wowing fans with his electrifying dunks. He matched up against his former teammate in Wiggins on Saturday, and also was rejected a couple of times by Towns. ''For sure, that just felt like practice. That's what it was, talking a little bit,'' LaVine said.

TIP-INS

Bulls: Former Wolves draft pick Kris Dunn had 10 points in his return to Minnesota. ... F Paul Zipser sat out with a left foot injury sustained Thursday against Philadelphia. He left that game after only seven minutes and didn't practice on Friday. ... Robin Lopez and Justin Holiday were inactive again in favor of getting more time for younger players. Hoiberg said he does expect to get the two veterans back into the mix. ''They're still active in practice, and right now the big thing for us is getting a look at some of the younger guys that haven't gotten a lot of minutes,'' Hoiberg said.

Timberwolves: Teague has scored at least 15 points in four straight games. ... Towns didn't have a field goal or rebound in the first quarter. ... The Wolves announced their 11th sellout of the season. ... Minnesota wrapped up the 11th of 15 back-to-back sets this season.

UP NEXT

Bulls: Visit the Brooklyn Nets on Monday night.

Timberwolves: At the Sacramento Kings on Monday night.

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Key Players
L. Markkanen
24 PF
K. Towns
32 C
35.1 Min. Per Game 35.1
20.2 Pts. Per Game 20.2
2.4 Ast. Per Game 2.4
12.2 Reb. Per Game 12.2
42.3 Field Goal % 54.1
42.5 Three Point % 54.0
85.1 Free Throw % 85.7
+ 2 Cameron Payne made layup 0:07
+ 2 Marcus Georges-Hunt made jump shot 0:13
  Offensive rebound by Marcus Georges-Hunt 0:14
  Jamal Crawford missed 3-pt. jump shot 0:18
+ 3 Cameron Payne made 3-pt. jump shot 0:37
  Defensive rebound by Cristiano Felicio 0:44
  Cole Aldrich missed hook shot 0:46
+ 1 Cristiano Felicio made 2nd of 2 free throws 1:00
  Team rebound 1:00
  Cristiano Felicio missed 1st of 2 free throws 1:00
  Shooting foul on Marcus Georges-Hunt 1:00
Team Stats
Points 104 122
Field Goals 42-90 (46.7%) 46-94 (48.9%)
3-Pointers 6-23 (26.1%) 11-35 (31.4%)
Free Throws 14-20 (70.0%) 19-26 (73.1%)
Total Rebounds 54 55
Offensive 4 10
Defensive 38 41
Team 12 4
Assists 21 25
Steals 5 6
Blocks 9 4
Turnovers 14 11
Fouls 20 15
Technicals 0 1
21 PTS, 6 REB, 7 AST
25 PTS, 7 REB, 7 AST
1234T
away team logo Bulls 20-39 24382022104
home team logo Timberwolves 37-26 31292636122
Team Stats
away team logo Bulls 20-39 PPG RPG APG
home team logo Timberwolves 37-26 101.6 PPG 45.2 RPG 22.4 APG
Key Players
Z. LaVine PG 16.7 PPG 3.9 RPG 3.0 APG 38.3 FG%
J. Teague PG 14.2 PPG 3.0 RPG 7.0 APG 44.6 FG%
Top Scorers
Z. LaVine PG 21 PTS 6 REB 7 AST
J. Teague PG 25 PTS 7 REB 7 AST
46.7 FG% 48.9
26.1 3PT FG% 31.4
70.0 FT% 73.1
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
Z. LaVine 31 21 6 7 1 1 2 1 7/17 0/4 7/8 0 6 41 -8
D. Nwaba 33 14 9 0 0 0 2 2 6/9 0/1 2/4 2 7 21 -16
C. Felicio 30 11 3 3 0 2 2 2 5/8 0/0 1/2 1 2 20 -11
K. Dunn 28 10 5 2 2 3 4 5 4/12 1/4 1/2 0 5 20 -11
L. Markkanen 31 3 7 0 1 2 2 1 1/8 0/2 1/2 0 7 11 -11
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
Z. LaVine 31 21 6 7 1 1 2 1 7/17 0/4 7/8 0 6 41 -8
D. Nwaba 33 14 9 0 0 0 2 2 6/9 0/1 2/4 2 7 21 -16
C. Felicio 30 11 3 3 0 2 2 2 5/8 0/0 1/2 1 2 20 -11
K. Dunn 28 10 5 2 2 3 4 5 4/12 1/4 1/2 0 5 20 -11
L. Markkanen 31 3 7 0 1 2 2 1 1/8 0/2 1/2 0 7 11 -11
Bench MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
B. Portis 19 15 4 1 0 0 1 3 6/13 1/3 2/2 0 4 20 -7
D. Valentine 28 11 1 4 0 0 1 4 5/9 1/3 0/0 0 1 19 -14
C. Payne 19 11 1 3 0 1 0 2 5/9 1/3 0/0 0 1 19 -7
N. Vonleh 13 8 6 1 1 0 0 0 3/4 2/3 0/0 1 5 17 -7
J. Grant 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0/1 0/0 0/0 0 0 0 +2
J. Holiday - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
O. Asik - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
R. Lopez - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
A. Blakeney - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
P. Zipser - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
R. Arcidiacono - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 234 104 42 21 5 9 14 20 42/90 6/23 14/20 4 38 188 -90
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
J. Teague 33 25 7 7 2 1 2 1 8/17 3/8 6/7 0 7 47 +10
A. Wiggins 34 23 2 2 1 1 2 1 10/18 2/6 1/2 0 2 29 +17
K. Towns 37 22 13 2 0 1 4 4 9/20 0/5 4/6 3 10 36 +23
T. Gibson 36 19 10 3 1 0 0 3 7/11 0/0 5/7 4 6 36 +13
N. Bjelica 32 8 7 4 0 0 1 4 3/9 1/6 1/2 1 6 22 +16
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
J. Teague 33 25 7 7 2 1 2 1 8/17 3/8 6/7 0 7 47 +10
A. Wiggins 34 23 2 2 1 1 2 1 10/18 2/6 1/2 0 2 29 +17
K. Towns 37 22 13 2 0 1 4 4 9/20 0/5 4/6 3 10 36 +23
T. Gibson 36 19 10 3 1 0 0 3 7/11 0/0 5/7 4 6 36 +13
N. Bjelica 32 8 7 4 0 0 1 4 3/9 1/6 1/2 1 6 22 +16
Bench MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
J. Crawford 27 19 1 3 0 0 1 0 6/11 5/8 2/2 0 1 25 +7
G. Dieng 20 2 9 0 0 1 1 0 1/4 0/1 0/0 1 8 11 +8
T. Jones 14 2 1 4 2 0 0 1 1/2 0/1 0/0 0 1 13 +8
M. Georges-Hunt 1 2 1 0 0 0 0 1 1/1 0/0 0/0 1 0 3 -4
A. Brooks 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0/0 0/0 0/0 0 0 0 -4
C. Aldrich 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0/1 0/0 0/0 0 0 0 -4
J. Butler - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
A. Brown - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
A. Jefferson - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
S. Muhammad - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
J. Patton - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 236 122 51 25 6 4 11 15 46/94 11/35 19/26 10 41 222 +90