Tuesday, November 7, 2023

Timberwolves 114, Celtics 109 [OT]: Anthony Edwards drops 38 to hand C's first loss of season

The Celtics got their five-game win streak snapped with a 114-109 loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves in overtime Monday night at the Target Center.

Eastern Conference Player of the Week Jayson Tatum scored 32 points on 12-of-22 shooting, while Jaylen Brown -- who missed the potential game-winning 3-pointer in the final seconds of regulation -- added 26 points on 10-of-21 from the field. Kristaps Porzingis also notched 20 points and Jrue Holiday recorded 12 points, 11 rebounds.

The Celtics, who were 5-0 on the season -- their best start since 2009-10 -- played without Derrick White for the second straight game (personal reasons). 
"Very competitive and opponents are always going to bring the best out of us," Boston coach Joe Mazzula said. "I thought we competed at a high level. I thought their defensive toughness outmatched our offensive toughness at times"
While neither team led by more than eight points in this one, the C's were third in the league at 50.1% from the floor heading into Monday night, but Minnesota held them to 39.1% shooting and just 11-of-29 (28.2%) from beyond the 3-point arc to go along with forcing a season-high 18-turnovers.
"Their overall pressure bothered us on the offensive end," Mazzulla said. "So, that's a good learning point for us."
Anthony Edwards led all scorers with 38 points (15-of-25) while grabbing nine rebounds and dishing out seven assists to help the T-Wolves improve to 4-2 overall and remain undefeated at home. Jaden McDaniels finished with 20 points (4-of-9 from 3), as Rudy Gobert (12 rebounds) and Naz Reid each chipped in 14 points respectively.

The Celtics were ahead only 54-52 at the break, before Minnesota outscored the visiting team 27-19 in the third quarter to take a 79-74 advantage into the final frame.

McDaniels game-tying 3-pointer made it 101-101 with 1:41 left in regulation, but both teams combined for five missed shots and four turnovers the rest of the fourth quarter to force overtime.

Boston led 105-103 before Mike Conley hit a go-ahead 25-footer to put the Timberwolves up for good with 3:08 left in the extra session. Minny used a 9-4 spurt in the final minutes, including a pull up jumper by McDaniels with 16 seconds remaining following a Tatum dunk that got the C's within three.

The Celtics will look to bounce back against the Philadelphia 76ers (5-1) when they face their division rivals at the Wells Fargo Center Wednesday night.

Game Notes:

Minnesota hit 51.8% from the field and 13-of-37 (35.1%) from 3-point territory. Both teams grabbed 45 rebounds apiece. The Celtics assisted 20 times on 36 baskets, while the Timberwolves had 26 dimes (24 turnovers) on 44 made shots. Boston was outscored 46-38 in the paint.

Joel Pavón

Photo used courtesy of Getty Images

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