LOS ANGELES – Don’t ask Timberwolves coach Rick Adelman about that 22-game losing streak against the Lakers his team ended Sunday night.
“I have no idea what you’re talking about,” Adelman said. “I really don’t.”
Adelman was in between jobs in Sacramento and Houston and watching Kevin Love play his final year of high school ball in Portland, Ore., the last time the Wolves beat the Lakers.
That was March 6, 2007, when the Wolves, featuring Kevin Garnett, won in double overtime at Target Center. Before Sunday’s 113-90 victory, they hadn’t beaten the Lakers at Staples Center since March 31, 2005.
“I don’t look back at what happened the last 10 years,” Adelman said. “This group is totally different than the group we had two years ago or even last year. I don’t get caught up in that. Every time we played a team two years ago, we were breaking some kind of streak if we won. So I don’t worry about that.”
In the past two years, the Wolves have stopped long losing streaks against the likes of San Antonio, Dallas, Boston, Atlanta and Toronto. The 22-game streak to the Lakers was the last one left.
“Is this it?” Adelman asked before his team’s franchise-record 47-point first quarter. “Well, OK, hopefully we get rid of it.”
Keep on shooting?
Point guard Ricky Rubio shot 20.5 percent — 7-for-34 from the field — in his four previous games before Sunday night, when he shot 5-for-9 and wound up with his second career triple-double (12 points, 14 assists, 10 rebounds).
“Of course, when you’re missing shots you get frustrated,” Rubio said before the game. “But it’s bad for you to be focused and thinking about what’s going. I’ve been working on my shot. It’s going to improve at some point. Now they don’t want to get in. But I’m going to keep improving. I’m going to keep practicing to get that feeling, that mojo back.
“I will keep shooting. I’m not afraid to take a shot. Missing a shot can sometimes be good or bad but not taking a shot is always a bad shot.”
Said Adelman: “He just has to keep playing. Everybody knows that’s the one thing he has to improve on. But’s he playing other aspects of the game and that’s what we’re asking him to do. The thing about Ricky is he plays very hard.”
Wolves forward Derrick Williams went through a long shooting session before Sunday’s game and declared himself “not 100 percent” but good enough to play after he missed Friday’s home victory over Dallas because of back spasms.
Williams said he made a cut in Thursday’s practice and couldn’t move. At age 22, isn’t he too young for back problems?
“I know, tell me,” he said. “I’ve never had back problems before.”
He did not play Sunday until the final 3 minutes, 12 seconds.
• Former Wolves coach Kurt Rambis and former Wolves forward Mark Madsen are both Lakers assistant coaches. Also, former Wolves lottery pick Wes Johnson played 23 minutes off the bench for Los Angeles.
• Lakers guard Steve Nash left in the third quarter because of a bad back.