Garnett’s Block Seals Win for Timberwolves
Minnesota 103, Phoenix 101
PHOENIX. Feb. 6 (Ticker) -- Kevin Garnett waited until the final shot to determine the outcome.
Garnett had 19 points, 12 rebounds and the game-winning block on Shawn Marion's shot in the final seconds as the Minnesota Timberwolves snapped their three-game losing streak with a 103-101 victory over the Phoenix Suns.
After Minnesota rookie Rashad McCants missed, Steve Nash found Boris Diaw for a wide-open 3-pointer to cut Phoenix's deficit to 100-99 with 52 seconds to go. Garnett and Nash traded baskets before Garnett made 1-of-2 free throws to make it 103-101 with 13 seconds remaining.
"Kevin is a great guy to play with and he really found all the openings in the defense and he got the rest of the team the ball," said Minnesota guard Marcus Banks, who scored 19 points.
Nash found Marion on the baseline for the game-tying shot but Garnett was able to get his hand on the ball as the buzzer sounded to seal the victory for Minnesota.
"It was my rotation," Garnett said. I rotated and blocked the shot. It was a good block and as soon as it left his hand, I got it. I'm sitting here with a win."
"I thought it was a clean block at the end," Timberwolves coach Dwane Casey said. "It was a big win, a lot of people counted us for dead. I was glad to see our guys fight back, they met the challenge. Tonight the guys pulled together, responded and executed down the stretch on the fly." Suns coach Mike D'Antoni ran onto the court to protest the play to no avail.
"That was a tough one," D'Antoni said. "We didn't play well and they shot the ball very well. I saw the final replay and it is what it is. We have to win by 10 points to avoid that type of final play."
Ricky Davis scored 18 points and McCants added 14 off the bench for the Timberwolves, who shot 56 percent (41-of-72) from the field to overcome 24 turnovers.
"They (Minnesota) shoot the ball very well from the outside, with a hand in their face they were still knocking down shots," Marion said. "But I think we should have won the game."
"It felt really good to win and it was really a team effort," said Banks, who added two steals. "I hope we can get a couple of wins in a row. The bench has to bring it every night and if the first team's adrenaline isn't rushing the second unit needs to get in there and pick up the slack."
Nash scored 31 points and Marion added 14 and 12 rebounds for Phoenix, which shot 44 percent (34-of-77) overall and made 6-of-16 from the arc.
"We knew that if we came in here and played around or didn't play with the right mind set, we were going to get blown out," said Garnett, who made 8-of-12 shots. "We came in and took some of their 3-pointers away."