EditorsNote: Changed FG pct to 54.3 from 53.7 in 5th graf
Andrew Wiggins scored a team-high 21 points as visiting Minnesota finished with six players in double figures as the Timberwolves rolled to a 131-109 victory over the Washington Wizards on Saturday.
Minnesota was missing top scorer Karl-Anthony Towns, suspended by the NBA for two games due to his part in a dust-up with Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid earlier this week. This was the first game Towns sat out, but his team found plenty of offensive punch.
Robert Covington had 20 points in 20 minutes, Jarrett Culver also scored 20 points, followed by Gorgui Dieng (18), Jeff Teague (15) and Jake Layman (14). Teague added 13 assists.
Dieng entered the game averaging 2.0 points but turned in a strong performance at center, helping fill the void created by Towns’ absence.
Minnesota scored 42 points in the first quarter, reached 70 by halftime and had 106 after three quarters because they received so much help from so many players and shot 54.3 percent from the field.
Bradley Beal led Washington with a game-high 30 points, but the Wizards simply could not shoot well enough to stay with Minnesota. Washington shot 38.9 percent in the game, and with the Timberwolves often close to 60 percent, the Wizards could not rally.
Washington’s defense has not been stellar this season. The Wizards gave up 159 points in regulation in their previous game — a 159-158 loss to Houston.
Minnesota never trailed on Saturday, scoring the first four points and 25 in the opening seven minutes, and the Timberwolves never looked back. They were up 42-34 after the first quarter.
Washington sliced the lead to six a few times early in the second quarter before Minnesota took off again and led 70-56 halftime lead. Then, the Timberwolves blew the game open with a 36-16 edge in the third quarter.
The Wizards have allowed at least 124 points in three consecutive games — all losses.
—Field Level Media