En a tremendous basketball battle with a knife in his mouth, the Minnesota Timberwolves survived this Tuesday Los Angeles Clippers in a convoluted and exciting game of “play-in” (109-104) Y They will face the Memphis Grizzlies in the first round of the playoffs.
The Wolves, seventh in the West and they had only played the ring qualifiers once in the last 17 yearsThey beat some Clippers, eighth and they were very close to suffocating them with their defense.
SlabAngels unhinged Karl Anthony-Towns, who was ejected for fouls and that I only played 24 minutes (11 points with 3 of 11 shots).
However, the Clippers could not contain in the outcome Anthony Edwards (30 points and 5 rebounds) and D’Angelo Russell (29 points, 5 rebounds and 6 assists)excellent in a great run of 26-11 in the last nine minutes to close a fantastic comeback without Towns.
The one who best symbolized the warrior character of the Wolves was Patrick Beverley, incendiary and inexhaustible with each ball, who celebrated the victory in tears and who has become an idol in Minepolis.
The Minnesotans now await the exciting Ja Morant Grizzlies, the revelation of the season as second in the West.
For its part, The Clippers will receive the winner of the game between New Orleans Pelicans and San Antonio Spurs on Friday (9th and 10th in the West) to see who meets the fearsome Phoenix Suns in the first round.
Los Clippers they came to dominate from 10 points in the fourth quarter and Tyronn Lue seemed to have won the tactical battle by holding off a Wolves that were the highest-scoring team in the regular season.
But in the end they deflated despite the great match of Paul George (34 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists).
The Clippers made it clear from the start that this was not a game for the faint-hearted. Lue says two to one constants about Townsfirst defended by a low (Batum almost always) and then receive the help of a high (Zubac).
The meeting had a very tight tone, with numerous protests, countless frictions and physical demands on each play.
Examples of it? an overexcited Beverley had three fouls in the first quarter, Towns closed the opening quarter scoreless after missing all five of his shotsand between the two teams they added 13 turnovers in the first twelve minutes.
This dynamic benefited some Clippers experienced in dogfights and in which Morris and Powell set the pace in attack (20-26 after the first quarter).
Edwards offered some light to some thick and stuck Wolves in the second quarter. The Minnesotans also played with fire: Towns added his fourth foul in the second quarter and Beverley and Edwards had three each before the break.
It seemed that the Clippers, without taking off on the scoreboard, had eaten the morale of the Wolves, but then Russell emerged to wake up the local team. With 14 points in the second quarter, Russell opened the Clippers’ lock and led his team into halftime ahead (53-51) after a 14-6 run to conclude the first half.
The one who enjoyed the most in such a turbulent duel was Beverley. Totally in his element, the former Clippers player He was about to send Morris to the locker room as soon as the third quarter began by forcing a scuffle between the two.
But the referees, who had indicated techniques for Beverley and Morris (the Angeleno already had one from the first quarter), finally retracted in a decision as clumsy as it was controversial.
Oblivious to Beverley’s tricks, George hit the table hard in the third quarter. After a poor 2-for-10 shooting in the first half, the forward returned control of the game to the Clippers with 17 points in the third quarter as the Wolves trembled as Townsvery frustrated and out of the game, added his fifth foul before reaching the last quarter (78-84).
Things got worse when Towns closed out his awful night with a sixth foul at 7.34 in the fourth quarter.
But when things looked worst, the Wolves emerged with rage and pride, Edwards and Russell took it upon themselves to pierce a down-and-out Clippers, and Beverley capped a huge comeback worth a playoff ticket with his sacrifice.