NBA: Huge fourth quarter lifts Timberwolves past Pistons

Field Level Media/Reuters

Posted at Dec 24 2020 12:23 PM

NBA: Huge fourth quarter lifts Timberwolves past Pistons 1
Minnesota Timberwolves center Karl-Anthony Towns (32) drives past Detroit Pistons forward Mason Plumlee (24) and guard Derrick Rose (25) during the fourth quarter at Target Center. Brace Hemmelgarn, USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

Malik Beasley had 23 points and the Minnesota Timberwolves scored the last 10 points to rally past the Detroit Pistons 111-101 on Wednesday at Minneapolis in the opener for both teams.

Karl-Anthony Towns supplied 22 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists and D'Angelo Russell tossed in 18 points for Minnesota.

Anthony Edwards, the top pick in the draft, contributed 15 points, four rebounds and four assists in his debut. Josh Okogie added 12 points and Jarrett Culver chipped in 10 points and 10 rebounds.

Josh Jackson led Detroit with 19 points and six rebounds. Blake Griffin and Derrick Rose had 15 points apiece and Mason Plumlee added 14 points, eight rebounds and six assists.

The Pistons were outscored 31-16 in the fourth quarter after leading most of the way.

With the score tied 61-all early in the second half, rookie Killian Hayes and Plumlee fueled a 12-0 Pistons run. Hayes, who went scoreless in the first half, scored seven of those points while Plumlee contributed a basket and three assists.

Minnesota soon reeled off a 10-2 run to pull within 78-75. Beasley scored seven points during that stretch.

Detroit carried an 85-80 advantage into the fourth quarter.

Jackson had a layup and a dunk in a 25-second span to push the lead to 91-83 with nine minutes remaining.

The Timberwolves defense erased the deficit. Ricky Rubio made two consecutive steals, leading to fast-break baskets by Culver and Beasley to tie it at 95-apiece.

Towns gave Minnesota a 98-97 edge on a 3-pointer with 3:38 left. Russell hit a 3-pointer with 2:05 remaining to give the Timberwolves a 103-101 lead.

Towns assisted on that basket and did the same on a Beasley 3-pointer with 1:28 left for a five-point advantage. Detroit went scoreless in the last two minutes.

The Pistons led 57-56 at halftime. Detroit had three players in double figures, led by Griffin with 12 points. Towns led the Timberwolves with 15 points.

Minnesota closed the half on a 21-8 run with Beasley scoring all seven of his first-half points during that span.

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