Wolves coast past Wizards
LAS VEGAS -- The Minnesota Timberwolves (1-2) led for all but 1:16 during its 89-82 victory over the Washington Wizards (1-2) Friday night in the 2009 NBA Summer League presented by EA SPORTS from the COX Pavilion in Las Vegas.
Minnesota led nearly from beginning to end except for two brief moments in the third quarter. The Timberwolves as much as an 11-point advantage in the first quarter and maintained a healthy cushion until an 11-1 run by the Wizards in the third. Washington held brief leads for 25 and 51 seconds before Minnesota took it for good with 11:06 remaining in the game.
Nick Young and his Wizards had an opportunity to knot the score at 85 with 11.9 second left, but his three-point attempt clanked off the rim and into the hands of Garrett Siler, who was immediately fouled. Siler made both of his attempts from the charity stripe to put his squad up four with 10.9 remaining and ultimately end the game.
The Timberwolves began the game with a 5-0 lead and never looked back. Washington cut Minnesota's lead to two on multiple occasions before quickly succumbing to two different 11-point deficits, the last of which came at the end of the first quarter, 27-16. The Timberwolves held shot 43 percent to the Wizards' 29 percent.
The Wizards cut into the Timberwolves lead by four points with a 20-16 performance in the second quarter. Washington pulled within three at 33-30 with 3:43 remaining before watching the lead grow back to seven points, 43-46, at intermission.
Washington kept its offense running strong in the third quarter outscoring Minnesota 21-17 in the third. The Wizards reeled off their 11-1 run in three minutes to erase a nine-point shortfall and claim their first lead of the game at 55-54. The Timberwolves never backed down, as the teams exchanged three more leads before the break. Minnesota claimed a three-point lead at 60-57 heading into the final 10 minutes.