After splitting their first two games, the Minnesota
Timberwolves are feeling confident.
That could change when they hit the road for the first time this
One of the NBA’s worst teams away from home last season, the
Timberwolves try for a second straight victory Saturday night
against the Memphis Grizzlies.
Coming off a 15-win season and one-point opening-night loss to
Sacramento, Minnesota beat Milwaukee 96-85 on Friday. Michael
Beasley had 21 points with 10 rebounds while Kevin Love added 17
and 16 for the Timberwolves, who have not started 2-1 since
Rookie Wes Johnson added 12 points off the bench to help the
Timberwolves overcome a 37.6-percent shooting effort.
“We got a lot of contributions from a lot of people,” coach Kurt
Rambis told the Timberwolves’ official website. “That’s what I like
Though Minnesota didn’t record its second victory last season
until its 17th game, this squad appears confident it won’t take
that long this time.
“It’s an attitude and the way we approach the game,” Love said.
“At every position we have guys that can play.”
Love and the Timberwolves need to be at their best during a
daunting three-game trip that also includes stops at Miami and
Orlando. Minnesota allowed 112.4 points per contest while going
5-36 on the road last season with only New Jersey’s 4-37 mark away
from home being worse.
The Timberwolves have lost 12 straight road games since winning
91-88 against Miami – Beasley’s former club – on Feb. 23.
Though Minnesota has dropped two in a row at Memphis, the
Timberwolves won 109-102 in the teams’ most recent meeting Feb. 6.
They also could benefit from the addition of Beasley, who has
recorded 38 points and 17 rebounds in his first two games with the
Beasley also has played well in Memphis, averaging 25.0 points
in two games while with the Heat.
The Grizzlies rebounded from a 119-104 season-opening loss to
Atlanta with a 91-90 upset in Dallas on Friday. Rudy Gay had 21
points, O.J. Mayo added 20 and Marc Gasol had 10 with 15 rebounds
after missing the opener with a sprained ankle.
Memphis won despite shooting 38.8 percent. The Grizzlies shot
51.5 percent while going 3-1 against Minnesota last season.
Gay had 21 points and Mayo 20 as the Grizzlies shot a
season-high 58.5 percent in a 135-110 win over the Timberwolves in
their last meeting at FedEx Forum on Jan. 15.
Gay, who has scored 21 in each of the first two games this
season, has averaged 22.7 points on 58.3 percent shooting in his
last three contests against the Timberwolves.
It’s uncertain if Memphis forward Zach Randolph will miss a
second straight game after he bruised his lower back in the first