Sports writing, Apr 26 (EFE) .- By the minimum, but the Timberwolves defeated on Monday night again the Utah Jazz, the best team of the NBA regular season, by 105-104, in a game in the one that shined the base of Minnesota, D’Angelo Russell, with 27 points, and in which the Spanish Juancho Hernangómez played a key role for the victory of his team.
The Wolves were victorious after trailing 18 points early in the second quarter. It is the sixth time this season that the Minneapolis team has won a game after losing more than 15 points.
On this occasion, the key to the game was the greater defensive intensity of the Timberwolves that made the best team in triples in the NBA get only 16 of the 57 triples they tried, 28.1%. The Jazz felt the hole left by the injured Donovan Mitchell, the team’s leading scorer.
Only point guard Mike Conley and center Rudy Gobert held the guy while forward Bojan Bogdanovic, who averages 15.7 points per game this season, had to settle for just 7: a triple of 7 attempts and 4 free throws. .
Hernangómez finished the game with 14 points, 1 rebound and 1 steal. But the Spanish power forward’s points kept the Wolves afloat at their worst. The contribution of the Madrilenian was so important that at halftime, Juancho added 12 points, only 2 points less than everything scored up to that moment by the starting quintet.
Juancho, who played 18 minutes, scored 2 of the 3 triples he tried, 4 of the 5 free throws and the 2 shots of two that he made. After the game, Wolves coach Chris Finch again praised the Spaniard’s work and said “he made enough baskets to allow us to hold on. It was important.”
For his part, the Spanish point guard Ricky Rubio had a bad scoring night, he only made 2 points after failing the 2 triples he tried and 3 of his 4 shots of two. But in the second half he imposed a greater defensive rigor on the Wolves that was definitive for the team’s victory as he demonstrated in the last play of the game.
In addition to the 2 points, Rubio had 5 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals.
D’Angelo Russell had 27 points, 2 rebounds, 12 assists and 1 block while his teammate Karl-Anthony Towns (KAT) had 21 points, 11 rebounds, 2 assists and 1 steal.
The best Jazz player was Mike Conley, with 26 points, 9 rebounds, 7 assists and 1 block. His teammate, Rudy Gobert, finished with 18 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal and 3 blocks.
Monday’s victory marks the second time this season that the league’s penultimate team, the Timberwolves, have recorded two consecutive victories. The Wolves haven’t won two games in a row since the start of the season. On Saturday, the Wolves also defeated the Jazz, 96-101, in Utah.
After the unexpected victory of the Timberwolves over the Jazz on Saturday (96-101), one of the incentives of today’s game was to see if the Minnesotans were capable of repeating another victory against those of Salt Lake City.
Obviously, neither on Saturday nor today, the Jazz were playing a lot. Those from Utah have already reached the first round of the playoffs and are waiting to decide who will be their rival between Portland Trail Blazers, Memphis Grizzlies, San Antonio Spurs and Golden State Warriors. And the Wolves of Ricky Rubio and Juancho Hernangómez are out and nothing is at stake.
Maybe Saturday the Jazz relaxed after finishing No. 1 in the Western Conference. The other possibility is that the Wolves have taken the measure of the best team in the NBA so far. Because this season, Jazz has played 30 games at their Vivint Arena home and they have only lost four. But two of them have been against the Wolves.
The game started with the two teams even, in errors, which allowed the Minnesota team to stay close on the scoreboard. But soon the Jazz began to take off thanks to the triples of Joe Ingles and Royce O’Neale.
On the Wolves, rookie Anthony Edwards, who is aiming for the Rookie of the Year title, wasn’t just getting off the ground, and neither was KAT. At the end of the first quarter, the scoreboard for the two was at zero and the Jazz took 17 points from their team, 17-33.
In the second quarter, the situation improved thanks first to the success of Hernangómez and then to Russell’s 3-pointers, which put the Wolves ahead of the score with 49-47 at halftime.
Back from the locker room, KAT and Edwards began to come into play, while Ingles dried off. At the end of the third quarter, the Wolves had advanced 13 points, 83-70.
But in the final 12 minutes, Conley (with 11 points) and George Niang (with 12) once again questioned the Wolves’ victory. With 2.52 remaining, a dunk from Gobert tied the game, 97-97. But this time, the Wolves knew how to keep a cool head and withstand the onslaught of the Jazz to get their second consecutive victory over Utah.
(c) EFE Agency