Sunday, January 19, 2020
Karl-Anthony Towns returned to action last night after missing a month due to a knee injury. He recorded 27 points on 42% shooting but the Minnesota Timberwolves still fell to Indiana Pacers, 116-114. Tonight, they will hope to avoid a fifth straight loss as they battle the Toronto Raptors at the Target Center.
The Raptors, on the other hand, just recently defeated the Washington Wizards on Friday, 140-111. They will try to grab a third straight victory tonight. This matchup will mark the first of two times that these ball clubs will play each other this season.
A LITTLE BIT OF HISTORY:
The Minnesota Timberwolves and the Toronto Raptors have met up a grand total of 46 times in the past as the Raptors won 31 games while the Timberwolves were kept to just 15 victories.
-Dewan Hernandez (ankle; 1.0 PPG, 1.8 RPG, 0.0 APG, 20.0 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
-Oshae Brissett (G-League; 2.3 PPG, 1.5 RPG, 0.3 APG, 36.7 FG%, 25.0 3P%)
-Malcolm Miller (1.0 PPG, 0.7 RPG, 0.4 APG, 35.0 FG%, 33.3 3P%)
-Paul Watson (G-League; 0.0 PPG, 1.0 RPG, 1.5 APG, 0.0 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
-Jack Layman (toe; 10.5 PPG, 2.9 RPG, 0.8 APG, 46.2 FG%, 35.2 3P%)
-Noah Vonleh (coach’s decision; 4.3 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 0.9 APG, 54.7 FG%, 14.3 3P%)
-Kelan Martin (G-League; 5.8 PPG, 3.4 RPG, 0.5 APG, 35.8 FG%, 26.3 3P%)
-Allen Crabbe (illness; 5.1 PPG, 2.3 RPG, 1.0 APG, 36.4 FG%, 32.3 3P%)
-Jaylen Nowell (G-League; 4.4 PPG, 0.7 RPG, 0.9 APG, 35.5 FG%, 11.8 3P%)
The game would be held close in the first half as the Raptors shot fifty-one percent from the field while the Timberwolves shot forty-five percent. Fred VanVleet chalked up 16 points while knocking down four three-pointers in the process. He also three defensive rebounds, one assist, and two steals while Kyle Lowry had eleven points, including a three-pointer.
The 2018-2019 Most Improved Player Pascal Siakam helped out 10 points while grabbing two rebounds, giving out two assists, and blocking three shots. Marc Gasol, who returned to action on Wednesday after being out for nearly a month due to a hamstring injury, had four points. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson played the most minutes off the bench but only had four points.
On the other end of the court, Jarrett Culver chalked up 16 points which included four three-pointers. Andrew Wiggins contributed with 15 points while Karl-Anthony Towns dropped 12 points. Robert Convington and Shabazz Napier combined for eight points. Josh Okogie played 15 minutes off the bench but only had four points but the Timberwolves still went into halftime with a 62 to 58 lead.
The Raptors would not give in as they came out of the locker room and sparked a 64-50 second-half run, shooting fifty-two percent. During that run, Lowry dropped 17 points, earning 12 of them from beyond the arc. VanVleet helped out with 13 points while Marc Gasol was kept scoreless. Powell had 13 points as he played the most minutes off the bench.
As for the Minnesota team, Convington scored 16 more points while Towns was kept scoreless. Okogie played 11 minutes off the bench as he had five points but it was the Raptors who came up on top, 122-112. Fred VanVleet finished the game with 29 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, and 4 steals while Jarrett Culver settled for 26 points, 4 rebounds, one assist, one steal, and 2 blocks.
The Toronto Raptors will head down to Georgia to take on Trae Young (29.2 PPG, 4.5 RPG, 8.5 APG, 44.6 FG%, 37.6 3P%) and the Atlanta Hawks (10-32) on Monday at 2:30 p.m. This will mark the second of four times that these two ball clubs will meet up this season. The last time they saw each other was on November 23 when the Raptors snuck away with a 119-116 win. Pascal Siakam finished that game with 34 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists, one steal, and 2 blocks while Young had 30 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists, and one steal.
The Minnesota Timberwolves will host Nikola Jokic (19.2 PPG, 9.9 RPG, 6.4 APG, 51.0 FG%, 33.1 3P%) and the Denver Nuggets (29-12) on Monday at 8:00 p.m. This will be the third of four times that they see each other this season. December 20 was the last time they battled each other as the Timberwolves fell to the Nuggets, 109-100. During that game, Jamal Murray scored 28 points, grabbed 6 boards, dished out 5 assists, and stole the ball 3 times while Andrew Wiggins had 19 points, 3 rebounds, 6 assists, one steal, and one block.