Garnett, Timberwolves Top Bobcats
Minnesota 102, Charlotte 89
MINNEAPOLIS, Nov. 19 (Ticker) -- Kevin Garnett got plenty of help and was rewarded with a fourth quarter off.
Garnett scored 19 points and grabbed 11 rebounds in three quarters as the Minnesota Timberwolves won their fifth home game in six outings with a 102-89 victory over the Charlotte Bobcats.
"I was glad to keep KG's minutes down to 32 and he was still productive with a double-double," Timberwolves coach Dwane Casey said. "But everyone contributed in every way, whether it was rebounding, defense, shooting the ball or sharing the ball, and that was good to see."
Wally Szczerbiak scored five points during a 17-5 second-quarter run, which was capped by Marko Jaric's 3-pointer that gave the Timberwolves a 41-28 advantage.
The Wolves maintained a comfortable margin throughout the third quarter as Garnett scored 11 points to complete his second straight double-double and Troy Hudson added seven for a 74-61 lead entering the final period.
Michael Olowokandi scored 10 of Minnesota's first 13 points in the fourth quarter and Hudson buried a 3-pointer to widen the margin to 90-68 with 6:09 remaining.
"(Olowokandi) is in a nice little flow," Garnett said. "His confidence is really high right now. We're just fueling him, letting him know that, 'Hey, you've got it down there (in the paint). Go to work.'"
Olowokandi scored a season-high 18 points, Szczerbiak added 15 and Hudson 13 for the Timberwolves, who shot 52 percent (40-of-77) from the floor and had a 43-36 rebounding edge. Minnesota finished with 46-18 edge in points in the paint.
"Olowokandi was the reason they got points in the paint," Bobcats coach Bernie Bickerstaff said. "We really didn't have an answer for him tonight. He had a tremendous game tonight."
"We have to take it upon ourselves," Charlotte forward Sean May said. "That should be a slap in the face. For a team like Minnesota, even with Kevin Garnett, and Olowokandi had a big night, but for there to be that big of a discrepancy (points in the paint), it's pretty shocking and insulting."
The game was a competitive reunion for three teammates from last year's NCAA champion North Carolina Tar Heels. Minnesota guard Rashad McCants, playing against May and Raymond Felton, scored 11 points.
"There's nothing different (in facing former teammates)," McCants said. "I get up for every game. Don't matter who it is. It was just about winning tonight."
"It was fun to see (McCants) but at the same time, I was trying to get a win," Felton said. "When we're out there on the court, he knows it's business."
Felton scored 15 points, Kareem Rush added 13 points and Emeka Okafor 11 with 10 rebounds for the Bobcats, who have lost seven of eight.
"We did not play very well," Bickerstaff said. "Early in the basketball game, we settled for easy shots. It set a tone. We were bad tonight. It was that simple."