Another milestone effort from Kevin Love squandered
Another Kevin Love milestone, another futile effort.
The Timberwolves power forward set the franchise’s single-season scoring record Monday night, scoring 40 points on 11 of 24 shooting at Golden State. His 1,991 points this campaign pushed him past Kevin Garnett’s performance 10 seasons ago.
But the mark came in a 130-120 loss at Golden State, dropping Minnesota back below .500 with one game remaining in the 2013-14 season.
With the way this year’s gone for Love and his team, it was all too fitting.
Love wasted little time in lassoing the record, scoring 10 points in the first two minutes and 22 in the first quarter alone. That helped Minnesota (40-41) build a 19-point second-quarter lead and appear well on its way to a second impressive win in Oakland this season.
But the Warriors (50-31) closed the second quarter on a 30-13 run and outscored the Timberwolves 35-28 in the third quarter and 33-28 in the fourth. Stephen Curry led the way with 32 points — 7 of 13 from 3-point range — as Golden State clinched the Western Conference’s No. 6 seed and amassed a 50th victory for the first time since 1993-94.
Minnesota committed 21 turnovers that led to 32 points for Golden State.
"That was it, I think," said Love, who also had 13 rebounds and eight assists. "I had six (turnovers) tonight, and that was uncharacteristic. It just kind of went throughout the whole team. That was very telling."
Garnett’s 1,987 points in 2003-04 were the organization’s most in a single season until Monday. Non-coincidentally, that was the last time the Timberwolves reached the postseason.
With Love returning from injury this year, it was hoped Minnesota could snap that drought, the league’s active longest one. The All-Star starter has come back strong — averaging 26 points, 12.5 rebounds and 4.3 assists per game — but hasn’t had nearly enough help around him.
Nine times this season, Love has scored 36 or more points. The Timberwolves fell Monday to 2-7 in those games.
Minnesota wraps up the season Wednesday at home against Utah.
Follow Phil Ervin on Twitter