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Hawks crush Timberwolves behind Clint Capela triple-double

Clint Capela recorded his first career triple-double and Trae Young scored a season-high 43 points to pace the visiting Atlanta Hawks to a 116-98 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves in Minneapolis on Friday, January 22 (Saturday, January 23, Philippine time) and extend their winning streak to 3 games.

Capela had 13 points, 19 rebounds and a career-high 10 blocked shots, becoming the first NBA player to have a triple-double with blocks since 2018. Capela joined Dikembe Mutombo (2000) and Tree Rollins (1979, two in 1982 and 1983) as Atlanta Hawks to record a triple-double including blocked shots.

Capela, had swatted 6 shots ion the first half, also became the third Hawks player ever to post 10 or more blocks in a single game, joining Mutombo and Josh Smith.

Young was 14-for-22 from the floor, scored 25 points in the first half – making 6-for-6 field goals in the 2nd quarter – and produced his sixth 30-plus point game of the season. Young matched his career high with 8 three-pointers.

The win was Atlanta's second over Minnesota in 4 days. The Hawks won 108-97 in Atlanta on Monday.

The Hawks got 3 key pieces back from injuries and their presence made a difference. 

De'Andre Hunter returned after missing one game with right knee soreness and scored 11. Cam Reddish was back after missing 3 games with a left knee contusion and had 15 points and 5 rebounds. Danilo Gallinari, back after missing 11 games with a right ankle sprain, scored 10.

Minnesota was still without leading scorer Karl-Anthony Towns and Juancho Hernangomez, who are both in COVID-19 protocol, but did get Ricky Rubio back after a two-game absence. 

The Timberwolves were led by Malik Beasley with 17 points and Jarrett Culver, who came off the bench to score 15.

Minnesota has lost four straight and dropped 11 of its last 12.

Atlanta was never in trouble, taking a 25-19 lead after the 1st quarter. The Hawks led by as many as 23 when Young made a three-pointer with 43.3 seconds left for a 60-37 lead. Atlanta led 62-43 at halftime.

Minnesota completes its three-game homestand on Saturday against New Orleans. The Hawks play again on Sunday night in Milwaukee. – Rappler.com