Winning on the second night of a back-to-back is always a difficult task. It becomes even more challenging when the first game of the back-to-back set was an emotional affair, with the Minnesota Timberwolves’ win against the Golden State Warriors on Tuesday night marked by multiple ejections and an iconic chokehold. Thus, on Wednesday night, it wasn’t too surprising when the Timberwolves lost in blowout fashion to the Phoenix Suns, 133-115, in Devin Booker’s first game back from a five-game absence.
The Suns, simply, could not miss; Kevin Durant finished the game with 31 points on 11-15 shooting from the field, while the returning Booker dropped 31 points, four rebounds, and five assists on efficient shooting splits as well. Overall, the Suns shot 60 percent from the field and 54.8 percent from deep (on 31 attempts) compared to the Timberwolves’ 45.7 and 18.5 percent, respectively. And in a make or miss league, that is all she wrote.
Even Anthony Edwards could do nothing but throw his hands up in the air, even hilariously admitting that the only way the Timberwolves could have won is if they tipped the ball out of the basket to prevent it from going in.
“They shot the ball, what like 60 percent from the field? Only way we was beating this team tonight is if we goaltended… if we told Rudy to just goaltend everything,” Edwards said, per Chris Hine of the Star Tribune. “Just an old-fashioned butt whooping.
The whole contest, indeed, was a lopsided one, with the Suns simply looking unstoppable on offense despite the concerning status of Bradley Beal due to a recurring back injury. And this was no mean feat; even with the important caveat of the Timberwolves being on the second night of a back-to-back, manufacturing plenty of easy shots and shooting the ball at this elite of a clip is not an easy thing to do against the team with the best defensive rating in the NBA.
This loss, however, should not affect the Timberwolves’ confidence in the slightest; Anthony Edwards and company will have an opportunity to bounce back on Saturday when they take on the New Orleans Pelicans.