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Wolves Come Out Flat In Loss To Grizzlies
Going back to work after a holiday break is tough for everyone, and the Wolves reminded us of that on Sunday.
The Wolves were defeated 115-107 by the Memphis Grizzlies, and to make their return more challenging, their first game after the Thanksgiving break was set for an early 2:30 p.m. matinee. But that wasn’t a valid excuse for the Wolves’ home loss to the 6-13 Grizzlies.
The Grizzlies were on a six-game losing streak coming into Sunday’s game and were without starting point guard Ja Morant (back spasms). Morant is currently leading the Grizzlies in points (18.4), assists (6.4) and steals (1.4) per game, but the Grizzlies managed to make it work without their standout rookie and magnified the Wolves’ weaknesses in doing so.
The Wolves, once again, failed to find an answer for Dillon Brooks who led all scorers with 26 points and hit four of his five 3-point attempts. Brooks recorded a career-high 31 points when the Grizzlies hosted the Wolves on Nov. 6 and is now averaging 28.5 points in games against Minnesota this season. His overall scoring average for the season is 13.4 points per game.
Without Morant, the Grizzlies’ backcourt was led by former Wolf and Minnesota native Tyus Jones. Memphis only recorded 11 turnovers, which is 5.7 fewer turnovers than their season average. Meanwhile, the Wolves turned the ball over 16 times and allowed Memphis to score 19 points off of their turnovers.
The Wolves shot just 38.8% from the field and were led in scoring by Karl-Anthony Towns who recorded 12 of his 21 points in the third quarter. Towns added 12 rebounds and five assists to his stat line, but it was a rare, tough shooting night for Towns who shot 1-for-10 from 3-point range. Mix that with 16 turnovers, and it’s tough to win ball games.
One bright spot for the Wolves was Jarrett Culver’s play. Culver finished with 14 points, seven rebounds and a team-high plus-5 plus-minus rating. Culver has finished with 10 or more points in the Wolves’ last five games, and he appears to be more comfortable playing in the NBA as every game passes.
The Wolves are now 10-9 and will need to come with a lot more than what they presented on Sunday when they face the 13-6 Mavericks in Dallas on Wednesday, Dec. 4. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. CT on Fox Sports North and 830 WCCO.