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Timberwolves dominate Rockets in 2nd half for first playoff win since 2004

24 April 2018, 04:14 | Jermaine Blake

Thibs-Towns saga rolls on as the Wolves try to save face in this series and beyond

Thibs-Towns saga rolls on as the Wolves try to save face in this series and beyond

Although, the Rockets have yet to play their best basketball in their first three postseason games. The young star scored 18 points in the Wolves win after scoring just 13 runs in the first two games combined. Houston won the lone playoff series between the teams, taking a 3-0 series win over Minnesota in the first round of the 1997 National Basketball Association playoffs. Minnesota beat the Rockets 121-105 in game 3 to make the series 2-1.

Houston lead the seven-game series 2-1, with game four taking place in Minneapolis tonight. Harden had a disgusting shooting performance in Game 2 (2-of-18 from the floor), but Paul starred with 27 points and eight assists.

But it might have been Rose that got the Target Center most excited, showing burst and athleticism not often seen since his knees started failing him en route to 17 points in just 21 minutes off the bench.

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For two games, the Timberwolves came up short of their first playoff win since 2004. That, along with a resurgence from Karl-Anthony Towns, helped Minnesota get a win and get back in the series.

James Harden bounced back from his terrible Game 2 shooting performance to record 29 points, seven rebounds and seven assists, but it wasn't almost enough. Jeff Teague (23 points, eight assists) and Andrew Wiggins (20 points, five rebounds, five assists) both put in excellent games, while Derrick Rose (17 points) had another massive impact off the bench. In victories this season, they're averaging 115 points on 47 percent shooting, while allowing just 101.8 points.

Game 4 tips off Monday night in Minnesota. The Rockets are 0-5 ATS in their last five road games while the Timberwolves are 3-1-1 ATS in their last five home games and I expect those trends to continue here. Coach Mike D'Antoni stated that he felt that the team hadn't played up to its full potential since the middle of March. Minnesota outscored Houston 35-24 in the third quarter to extend a one-point halftime lead and never looked back. But if the Thunder know what's good for them, they'll do their best to ensure that they don't find themselves in the unenviable predicament of needing to becoming the 12th.

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