Towns Big Night Helps Wolves Defeat Knicks 13 Jan 18

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Karl-Anthony Towns found teammate Nemanja Bjelica cutting for a layup on one trip down the floor in the fourth quarter, and later hit an open Bjelica for a 3-pointer and a double-digit lead.

Towns on the floor with four reserves to start the fourth was the right mix against the New York Knicks on Friday night, and Minnesota continued its impressive homestand.

Towns fell one assist shy of his second career triple-double, scoring 23 points and grabbing 15 rebounds in the Timberwolves‘ 118-108 victory.

“I think we just have a good chemistry right now,” Towns said. “We know where people are going to be. We’re doing a great job of putting ourselves in spots that we know the person dribbling or facilitating the ball is comfortable getting into them.”

Taj Gibson added 17 points and Andrew Wiggins had 16 for Minnesota. The Timberwolves shot 56.7 percent (38 of 67) over the final three quarters to come from behind and win their fourth game in a row and 11th of 14 overall.

Minnesota had eight players score in double figures to win its fourth straight game by at least 10 points, the second-longest streak in team history behind a six-game stretch in 2001.

“I thought the bench at the end of the third, start of the fourth gave us a big lift,” Wolves coach Tom Thibodeau said. “We started the game with not much energy, but we found a way to win in the end. I like this offensively a lot. I thought we made a lot of good plays, unselfish plays. But defensively, we didn’t get going until the fourth quarter.”

Kristaps Porzingis scored 17 points for New York. Porzingis was 3 of 5 from 3-point territory but 3 of 14 from inside the arc. Enes Kanter had his 18th double-double with 16 points and 11 rebounds, but the Knicks lost for the ninth time in 11 games.

“We got to be better in these bad moments like we had in today’s game,” Porzingis said. “We got to fix those. … We’re not too far off. We’re in a bad moment right now, but we’re going to get ourselves out of it.”