EditorsNote: updates to “six assists” and “24 minutes” in fourth graf
Forward Andrew Wiggins poured in 33 points, and the visiting Minnesota Timberwolves spoiled the return of All-Star forward Blake Griffin with a 120-114 win over the Detroit Pistons on Monday.
Wiggins, who surpassed the 8,000-career-point mark in the first half, added six rebounds and five assists.
Karl-Anthony Towns supplied 25 points, eight rebounds and six assists while Jake Layman contributed 16 points off the Minnesota bench. Treveon Graham added 13 points and six rebounds.
Griffin missed the first 10 games of the season due to hamstring and knee injuries. He had 19 points, seven rebounds and six assists in 24 minutes.
Luke Kennard led the Pistons with 25 points and seven rebounds. Langston Galloway tossed in 18 points off the bench while Tony Snell chipped in 16 points and Andre Drummond added 11 points and 12 rebounds.
The Timberwolves, who scored 41 first-quarter points, made 9 of 16 3-point attempts in the first half and raced to a 66-51 halftime lead. The barrage came one day after Minnesota made just 6 of 45 shots from long range in a home loss to Denver.
Layman scored 11 points off the bench and made all three of his 3-point tries before the break. Griffin kept his team from completely losing contact with 16 points in 10 first-half minutes.
The Timberwolves steadily built their lead in the first seven minutes of the second half. Layman made it a 19-point spread, 84-65, with another 3-pointer.
Detroit began to chip away, scoring the next eight points, five by Kennard. The Pistons cut their deficit to nine points before Towns finished the third quarter with a driving dunk.
When Galloway drilled a 3-pointer with 9:34 remaining, the Timberwolves’ lead was down to seven. A Wiggins layup midway through the quarter made it 109-98.
Minnesota’s offense then stalled, and when Snell made a 3-pointer with 2:30 left, the Pistons were within 109-104. Wiggins answered 28 seconds later with another long ball.
Towns made an open 3-pointer with just past a minute left to seal Minnesota’s victory.
—Field Level Media