Wolves Fall To Heat 103-82

 

Wolves Fall To Heat 103-82









As if going against LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and the two-time defending NBA champions wasn’t enough, the Wolves had to do so without their All-Star forward Kevin Love, who was out due to the death of his grandmother.

Luc Mbah a Moute started in place of Love at the power forward position, and while his defense was effective, the team could have used Love’s offense as the Wolves fell 103-83 at home against the Heat on Saturday night.

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Wolves vs. Heat

“You’re going to have games and you have to respond,” said Wolves coach Rick Adelman. “And realize you know, there’s 20 games into the season and we have two days to get ready for the next game and come together as a team… and play better.”

As always, James and Wade filled seats, as there were 19,888 fans in attendance. It was the team’s first sellout of the season.

The Wolves now sit at 9-11, which as of Saturday night, was good for fourth place in the Northwest Division in the Western Conference.

In the first quarter, the Wolves looked like the might miss Love early, trailing 9-4, but Minnesota would go on a 9-0 run to take a 15-14 lead. That ultimately led to a 25-24 lead at the end of the quarter. The Wolves were helped with the foul trouble of James, that led to the star being taken out at the 2:51 mark. Kevin Martin led the Wolves with 12 points while shooting 4-of-7 from the field. Nikola Pekovic took advantage of his matchup with Chris Bosh early, scoring six points while hauling in six boards.


The defending champions woke up in the second quarter, and they did most of their work without the MVP. The Heat went on a 14-2 run to take a 35-27 lead before James came back into the game. After that, James did exactly what has been him so effective during his time in the NBA, finishing the half with 13 points,10 rebounds and six assists while shooting 5-of-7 from the field, helping Miami take a 55-42 lead.

“I did not like the first half, we gave up too many easy baskets to them again,” Adelman said on his team’s defense.

At the break, Martin led all scorers with 17 points, but as a team the Wolves shot just 30 percent from the field. Wade scored 11 points and Miami shot 56.4 percent from the field.

After a Mbah a Moute jumper, the Wolves were able to pull within five, trailing 59-54 with 8:25 left in the third, but just like that, Miami went on a 10-3 run, to go back up 12. That lead expanded to 76-60 at the end of the quarter, which was more than enough cushion for the Heat to ride out of Minneapolis with a 21-point win.

James led all scorers with 21 points, while adding 14 rebounds and eight assists. The Wolves did cause James to turn the ball over seven times. Wade added 19 points, while hauling in five rebounds. Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis scored 11 and 10 points, respectively on the night. The Heat shot 55.1 percent from the field compared to Minnesota’s mark of 29.3 percent.

“We allowed them, you know, too many easy layups,” Pekovic said. “… Just you know, we can be better of course, like I said, we just let him shoot too many layups.”

Minnesota was led by Martin, who finished with 19 points while going 8-of-10 from the free-throw line. Pekovic finished with 18 points and 12 rebounds. Corey Brewer, despite shooting 3-of-10, had 13 points and six rebounds. Mbah a Moute added 11 points.

Leader of the Pack: Nikola Pekovic

Pek was one of the rare bright spots for the Wolves. He had18 points, which was second on the team to only Martin. He had a team-high 12 rebounds and had his fourth double-double over his last five games and the ninth of the season. He played a game-high 38 minutes.

Highlight of the Night

With 3:19 left in the first quarter, Martin posted up Allen, and while being fouled, Martin threw up a circus shot. Martin added some spin to it and made the shot. He would hit the free-throw, making it a 3-point play, giving the Wolves a 23-19 lead.

The Numbers Game

  • The teams combined to shoot 3-of-17 from the 3-point line in the first half.


  • Rubio had six assists for the Wolves. Besides that, though, no other player had more than two for Minnesota. The Wolves finished with 13 assists compared to Miami’s 23.


  • Out of his nine field goals, James had three dunks and five layups.


  • The 14 rebounds from James are the most he’s had in a game since he grabbed 16 with Cleveland vs. Sacramento on Dec. 23, 2009.


  • Quote of the Night

    “I mean, why would you look at that? It’s pretty much the fact that we just didn’t play well, whatever the reason.” — Minnesota head coach Rick Adelman after being asked if the six-day break had a negative impact on his team.

    Looking Ahead

    The Wolves get a two-day break before traveling to play the Detroit Pistons on Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. Minnesota has another back-to-back, flying to Minnesota that night to play the Philadelphia 76ers at 7p.m. on Wednesday night. Both games will be on Fox Sports North and WCCO 830-AM.


    For more news and notes on the team follow the Minnesota Timberwolves and Mark Remme on Twitter, and join the conversation at WolvesNation.com