NBA regular season

Towns clutch as Timberwolves survive Warriors’ comeback attempt

Towns clutch as Timberwolves survive Warriors’ comeback attempt

KEY BUCKET. Karl-Anthony Towns celebrates after a clutch shot for the Timberwolves.

Neville E. Guard/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

Karl-Anthony Towns turns a Draymond Green turnover into a clutch trey for the Timberwolves, who conclude their season series versus the Warriors at 2-2

Kyle Anderson intercepted a Draymond Green pass and Karl-Anthony Towns turned it into a go-ahead three-pointer with 11.1 seconds remaining, delivering the Minnesota Timberwolves a key 99-96 victory over the Golden State Warriors in San Francisco on Sunday, March 26 (Monday, March 27, Manila time).

Naz Reid had a team-high 23 points off the bench and Rudy Gobert chipped in with 10 points and 18 rebounds for the Timberwolves (38-37), who moved into a tie with the Warriors (39-37) in the loss column in the tight Western Conference playoff race while also concluding the season series at 2-2.

Jordan Poole had 27 points for the Warriors, but he failed to connect with Stephen Curry on a pass that bounced out of bounds with 4.1 seconds remaining when Golden State had a chance to tie or take the lead.

The Warriors, who were seeking a 10th straight home win, got one more opportunity to tie after Jaden McDaniels missed one of two free throws with 2.1 seconds left, leaving Minnesota with a 99-96 lead.

But Curry couldn’t hit a desperation three-pointer, completing his 4-for-13 night from deep.

Golden State fought an uphill battle most of the night, but rallied from a 12-point deficit to go up 96-94 on a Poole three-pointer with 1:28 to go.

The Warriors retained a 96-95 advantage after Gobert made just one of two free throws with 27.1 seconds remaining, and had an opportunity to run off most of the clock on their ensuing possession.

But Anderson deflected and then recovered Green’s pass, and when Towns buried his straight-away 27-footer in transition, the visitors had the lead for good.

In just his second game after a 52-game absence due to a strained calf, Towns finished with 14 points for Minnesota, which extended its winning streak to three games as it played the front end of a back-to-back. The Timberwolves will visit Sacramento on Monday night.

Anthony Edwards (13 points), Mike Conley (12) and Anderson (12 to go with 10 rebounds, 7 assists, and 5 steals) also scored in double figures for Minnesota, which outshot Golden State both overall (42.5% to 41.5%) and from beyond the arc (17-for-40 to 15-for-40).

Curry totaled 20 points in an 8-for-23 shooting performance for the Warriors, while Klay Thompson added 15 and Green 12 to complement 7 rebounds and 5 assists. Curry also chipped in 9 assists.

Making his Warriors season debut, Gary Payton II contributed 9 points and 1 block in 15 minutes. –

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