The Grizzlies take the duel against Minnesota despite a great Edwards

The Timberwolves lost 135-139 at home to the Memphis Grizzlies led by a sublime Ja Morant who scored 37 points and gave 10 assistsAlthough the game’s top scorer was the Minnesota team’s wing, Anthony Edwards, who with 42 points took another step to be the ‘rookie’ of the year.

Edwards, which was number 1 in the 2020 draft and is the Favorite to clinch NBA Rookie of the Year title, signed the best match of his professional career. Besides 42 points, got 7 assists, 6 rebounds, 1 steal and 1 block.

Morant, who was last season’s rookie, had 37 points, 4 rebounds, 10 assists, 2 steals and 1 block, while his teammates Desmond Bane and Kyle Anderson scored respectively, 22 and 20 points.

In the Timberwolves, the pivot Karl-Anthony Towns (KAT) and point guard D’Angelo Russell (Dlo) scored 22 points. The two Spaniards from the Minnesota team had a low-key night. The base Ricky Rubio only played 17:20 minutes and finished the night with 2 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists. For his part, power forward Juancho Hernangómez had 11 points and 3 rebounds.

For the first time since he recovered from a right knee injury in early March, Russell started the game as a starter, which relegated Rubio to the bench. The El Masnou point guard had been part of the starting lineup for the last 51 games, but this time Timberwolves coach Chris Finch decided to seat Rubio.

After the game, Finch justified the decision by need to continue “playing” with the lineups to try to find the ideal formation.

The party had been conceived as a duel between 19-year-old local idol Edwards and 21-year-old Morant and number 2 in the 2019 draft. And no one was disappointed after the exchange of the two young players.

The game started with an advantage for the Memphis who got to put 8 points ahead, 7-15, in the first bars. The entry of the Wolves’ second unit, with Rubio and Juancho, changed the landscape in favor of the Minnesota team.

With 4.10 to go, a free kick by Hernagómez put Wolves ahead 24-23; but the Grizzlies reacted and finished the first quarter ahead, 29-33.

In the second quarter, things got worse for the home team. Morant, Bane, Jonas Valenciunas and Anderson performed better than Edwards, Naz Reid, Jaden McDaniels and Rubio. KAT only played 40 seconds and his locker stayed at 0. And although Reid and Juancho scored 9 and 8 points respectively, the Grizzlies left on the scoreboard.

Arriving at halftime, the Memphis drew 10 points from the Wolves, 63-73. Morant and Edwards had only been warming up, with 16 and 14 points respectively.

Returning from the locker room, the two accelerated their game. Morant had 14 points in the third quarter while Edwards had 16 points. The third period ended with the Wolves hot on the Grizzlies’ heels, 103-107.

In the fourth quarter, Edwards’ effort allowed the Minnesota team to close the gap, first, and take the lead, later, 128-127 with 3.04 remaining in the game.

But Morant showed his class. Two consecutive triples from the point guard they erased the Wolves advantage, leaving the score at 128-132. And two more consecutive 3-pointers by Bane, plus two final free throws, finished off the Timberwoles 135-139.

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