Healthy Wolves top Suns in Phoenix

  • Article by: JERRY ZGODA , Star Tribune
  • Updated: March 23, 2013 - 9:47 AM

In an ever-changing rotation, having 12 players made a world of difference.

 

– By their modest standards, the Timberwolves had an abundance of riches available for Friday night’s 117-86 runaway victory at Phoenix.

That means 12 healthy players.

Until this quick two-game trip West that ended Friday, the Wolves haven’t had that many with a 15-man roster since the day after Christmas.

So now that Andrei Kirilenko and Nikola Pekovic have returned to the starting lineup and Chase Budinger is back after four months away with perhaps Kevin Love not far behind … do the Wolves have enough time in the season’s remaining three weeks to find a way to play together again?

“I just don’t know,” Wolves coach Rick Adelman said. “We’re trying to work people back in. The rotation’s changed. We’re in situations where we’re just not used to being in.”

That was obvious when the two-game trip opened Thursday night with a 101-98 loss in Sacramento, where Adelman got caught at the end of the game with a defensive lineup on the floor when the Wolves ended up with the ball and the chance to tie the game with a three-pointer but with few shooters on the floor.

Ricky Rubio was left flinging the ball out to Dante Cunningham for a desperation three-pointer that went wide right at the final buzzer.

“I don’t blame him,” Adelman said, referring to his starting point guard. “I blame me. We need to think ahead.”

The Wolves took much of the thinking out of Friday’s game at Phoenix after they led 31-18 at the end of one quarter, 67-39 by halftime and by as many as 35 and never fewer than 19 in the second half.

Their 31-point victory came four days after the Suns beat the Kobe Bryant-less Lakers by 23 points at home on Monday.

A month after they lost an 84-83 overtime game in Phoenix, the Wolves thumped the Suns with Kirilenko looking more comfortable in his fourth game back after he had missed nine because of a strained calf.

He led the Wolves in scoring with 20 points and grabbed seven rebounds before he sat for most of the fourth quarter.

“I think it’s better,” Adelman said before the game. “It doesn’t bother him as much, but I don’t think he plays with the same freedom he was playing with before. That’s going to take some time for him to get used to it. I have to be careful and not push him minutes-wise. With Chase and Gelly [Mickael Gelabale], I don’t have to push him that many minutes.”

The Wolves also did so with Budinger playing through the soreness following Thursday’s return performance with a 16-minute, 11-point performance that helped the Wolves build their big early lead.

“I’m just going to watch him,” said Adelman, who kept Budinger within a 15-20 minute limit. “You don’t want to do anything where it flares up or anything like that.”

The Wolves’ bench outscored the Suns’ 58-31, thanks in good part to Cunningham’s 18-point night on 8-for-11 shooting.

Etc.

  • related content

  • Wolves-Phoenix game recap

    Saturday March 23, 2013

    GAME RECAPImpact playerAndrei KirilenkoThe small forward scored 20 points and grabbed seven rebounds in the rout.By the NUMBERS18 Points off...

  • Minnesota Timberwolves' Nikola Pekoic

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Detroit 6:00 PM
Washington
Atlanta 6:30 PM
Miami
Toronto 6:30 PM
New York
Memphis 7:00 PM
Minnesota
Brooklyn 7:30 PM
Dallas
Milwaukee 8:00 PM
Utah
San Antonio 8:00 PM
Phoenix
Buffalo 2:00 PM
Florida
Detroit 2:00 PM
Nashville
Carolina 4:00 PM
NY Islanders
New Jersey 4:00 PM
Columbus
Arizona 4:30 PM
Boston
Toronto 6:00 PM
Montreal
NY Rangers 7:00 PM
Philadelphia
Minnesota 9:00 PM
Colorado
St. Louis 9:00 PM
Edmonton
Ottawa 9:00 PM
San Jose
Kennesaw St 10:00 AM
Lipscomb
Navy 10:00 AM
Loyola-Maryland
Bucknell 11:00 AM
American Univ
NC State 11:00 AM
Boston College
East Carolina 11:00 AM
UCF
Georgia Tech 11:00 AM
Clemson
Lehigh 11:00 AM
Colgate
Louisville 11:00 AM
Florida State
Missouri 11:00 AM
Georgia
Army 11:00 AM
Lafayette
Michigan 11:00 AM
Maryland
Georgetown 11:00 AM
St Johns
Rhode Island 11:30 AM
La Salle
Western Carolina 12:00 PM
Citadel
Nebraska Omaha 12:00 PM
IUPUI
Maine 12:00 PM
New Hampshire
Samford 12:00 PM
Va Military
Presbyterian 12:00 PM
Winthrop
Utah State 1:00 PM
Air Force
Vermont 1:00 PM
Albany
UMBC 1:00 PM
Binghamton
Indiana State 1:00 PM
Bradley
Butler 1:00 PM
DePaul
Illinois State 1:00 PM
Evansville
Wright State 1:00 PM
Ill-Chicago
Fla Gulf Coast 1:00 PM
Jacksonville
Ole Miss 1:00 PM
LSU
North Carolina 1:00 PM
Miami-Florida
Wagner 1:00 PM
Mount St Marys
TCU 1:00 PM
Oklahoma
Delaware 1:00 PM
Towson
Cincinnati 1:00 PM
Tulane
Dayton 1:00 PM
VA Commonwealth
Northern Iowa 1:00 PM
Wichita State
Drexel 1:00 PM
William & Mary
Oakland 1:00 PM
Green Bay
Villanova 1:00 PM
Xavier
Campbell 1:00 PM
Longwood
Sarah Lawrence 1:30 PM
NJIT
Middle Tennessee 2:00 PM
UAB
UNC-Asheville 2:00 PM
Liberty
Southern Utah 2:00 PM
North Dakota
Utah Valley U 2:05 PM
Chicago State
ULM 2:30 PM
Appalachian St
Bowling Green 2:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
Long Island 2:30 PM
Sacred Heart
West Virginia 3:00 PM
Baylor
Holy Cross 3:00 PM
Boston Univ
MD-Eastern Shore 3:00 PM
Delaware State
Wofford 3:00 PM
Furman
Montana State 3:00 PM
Idaho
Hofstra 3:00 PM
James Madison
Iowa State 3:00 PM
Kansas State
Arkansas 3:00 PM
Kentucky
Missouri State 3:00 PM
Loyola-Chicago
Fordham 3:00 PM
Massachusetts
Nicholls 3:00 PM
McNeese State
East Tenn St 3:00 PM
Mercer
Coppin State 3:00 PM
Morgan State
San Diego 3:00 PM
Portland
Gardner-Webb 3:00 PM
Radford
St Francis-PA 3:00 PM
Robert Morris
Duquesne 3:00 PM
St Bonaventure
Creighton 3:00 PM
Seton Hall
Oklahoma State 3:00 PM
Texas Tech
Alabama 3:00 PM
Vanderbilt
Virginia Tech 3:00 PM
Virginia
Bethune-Cookman 3:00 PM
NC Central
St Francis-NY 3:00 PM
Bryant
Drake 3:05 PM
Southern Ill
High Point 3:30 PM
Char Southern
Central Conn St 3:30 PM
Fair-Dickinson
Eastern Mich 3:30 PM
Western Mich
Texas 4:00 PM
Kansas
Chattanooga 4:00 PM
UNC Greensboro
SE Louisiana 4:00 PM
Central Arkansas
South Dakota St 4:00 PM
South Dakota
Montana 4:05 PM
Eastern Wash
Georgia State 4:15 PM
Troy
Old Dominion 4:30 PM
North Texas
Arkansas State 4:30 PM
Texas State
Texas Southern 5:00 PM
Alabama State
Tennessee St 5:00 PM
Belmont
Princeton 5:00 PM
Brown
Dartmouth 5:00 PM
Cornell
Tennessee 5:00 PM
Florida
Jacksonville St 5:00 PM
Morehead State
San Jose St 5:00 PM
Nevada
Florida A&M 5:00 PM
NC A&T
Iowa 5:00 PM
Penn State
Loyola Marymount 5:00 PM
Pepperdine
Miss State 5:00 PM
South Carolina
Savannah State 5:00 PM
SC State
Miss Valley St 5:30 PM
Jackson State
Alcorn State 5:30 PM
Southern U
Prairie View 6:00 PM
Alabama A&M
Harvard 6:00 PM
Columbia
George Washington 6:00 PM
Davidson
Syracuse 6:00 PM
Duke
Tenn Tech 6:00 PM
Eastern Ky
UNC-Wilmington 6:00 PM
Elon
Stony Brook 6:00 PM
Hartford
Hampton 6:00 PM
Howard
Northwestern 6:00 PM
Illinois
Western Ill 6:00 PM
IUPU-Ft Wayne
Buffalo 6:00 PM
Kent State
Incarnate Word 6:00 PM
Lamar
Cal State Fullerton 6:00 PM
Long Beach State
TX-San Antonio 6:00 PM
Louisiana Tech
Fla Atlantic 6:00 PM
Marshall
Richmond 6:00 PM
Saint Josephs
George Mason 6:00 PM
Saint Louis
Austin Peay 6:00 PM
SE Missouri St
Murray State 6:00 PM
UT Martin
Ball State 6:00 PM
Toledo
Penn 6:00 PM
Yale
Milwaukee 6:00 PM
Youngstown St
Stetson 6:00 PM
North Florida
USC Upstate 6:00 PM
Northern Ky
Grand Canyon 6:05 PM
UMKC
Abilene Christian 6:15 PM
New Orleans
Northeastern 7:00 PM
Coll of Charleston
Tulsa 7:00 PM
Memphis
Wyoming 7:00 PM
UNLV
Central Mich 7:00 PM
Northern Ill
Denver 7:00 PM
Oral Roberts
Charlotte 7:00 PM
Rice
Boise State 7:00 PM
San Diego St
St Marys-CA 7:00 PM
Santa Clara
Texas-El Paso 7:00 PM
Southern Miss
Sam Houston St 7:00 PM
TX A&M-CC
New Mexico St 7:00 PM
TX-Pan American
FIU 7:00 PM
Western Ky
Stephen F Austin 7:00 PM
Houston Baptist
Ga Southern 7:15 PM
Louisiana
Ark-Little Rock 7:15 PM
Texas-Arlington
Grambling St 7:30 PM
Ark-Pine Bluff
Auburn 7:30 PM
Texas A&M
Arizona 8:00 PM
Utah
Northern Ariz 8:00 PM
Northern Colorado
UC Davis 9:00 PM
Cal Poly
New Mexico 9:00 PM
Fresno State
BYU 9:00 PM
Gonzaga
Pacific 9:00 PM
San Francisco
Idaho State 9:00 PM
Weber State
Sacramento St 9:05 PM
Portland State
UC Riverside 9:30 PM
CS-Northridge
Washington 9:30 PM
USC
CS-Bakersfield 9:30 PM
Seattle
UC Irvine 10:59 PM
UC Santa Barbara
Michigan 11:00 AM
Illinois
Lipscomb 11:00 AM
Kennesaw St
North Florida 12:00 PM
Stetson
Samford 12:00 PM
Mercer
Liberty 12:00 PM
Campbell
North Texas 12:00 PM
Old Dominion
St Francis-NY 12:00 PM
Bryant
St Francis-PA 12:00 PM
Robert Morris
Long Island 12:00 PM
Sacred Heart
Sam Houston St 12:00 PM
TX A&M-CC
Kent State 12:00 PM
Miami-Ohio
ULM 12:00 PM
Appalachian St
Boston U 12:05 PM
Holy Cross
Nicholls 12:15 PM
McNeese State
Akron 1:00 PM
Buffalo
Ball State 1:00 PM
Western Mich
MD-Eastern Shore 1:00 PM
Delaware State
Northern Ill 1:00 PM
Eastern Michigan
Bowling Green 1:00 PM
Ohio U
Central Michigan 1:00 PM
Toledo
Coppin State 1:00 PM
Morgan State
Bethune-Cookman 1:00 PM
NC Central
Central Conn St 1:00 PM
Fairleigh Dickinson
Memphis 1:00 PM
(1) Connecticut
Georgia Tech 1:00 PM
Wake Forest
East Carolina 1:00 PM
Temple
Marist 1:00 PM
Rider
Michigan State 1:00 PM
Purdue
Fairfield 1:00 PM
Manhattan
Niagara 1:00 PM
Iona
East Tenn St 1:00 PM
(18) Chattanooga
Furman 1:00 PM
Wofford
Longwood 1:00 PM
Charleston Southern
UNC-Asheville 1:00 PM
Coastal Carolina
Northern Ky 1:00 PM
USC Upstate
Winthrop 1:00 PM
Presbyterian
Western Ill 1:30 PM
South Dakota
Detroit 1:35 PM
Valparaiso
Cleveland State 2:00 PM
Milwaukee
Lafayette 2:00 PM
Army
Arkansas State 2:00 PM
Texas State
Georgia State 2:00 PM
Troy
Portland State 2:00 PM
Sacramento St
IUPUI 2:00 PM
South Dakota St
Tennessee St 2:00 PM
Belmont
Eastern Illinois 2:00 PM
SIU-Edwardsville
Jacksonville St 2:00 PM
Morehead St
Kansas State 2:00 PM
TCU
Cincinnati 2:00 PM
SMU
SE Louisiana 2:00 PM
Central Arkansas
Denver 2:00 PM
Nebraska Omaha
Tulane 2:00 PM
Tulsa
IUPU-Ft Wayne 2:00 PM
Oral Roberts
Air Force 3:00 PM
Utah State
San Diego State 3:00 PM
Boise State
Fresno State 3:00 PM
New Mexico
Florida A&M 3:00 PM
NC A&T
Gonzaga 3:00 PM
BYU
South Florida 3:00 PM
UCF
UCLA 3:00 PM
Washington
(3) Baylor 3:00 PM
Iowa State
Miss Valley St 3:00 PM
Jackson State
Tenn Tech 3:00 PM
Eastern Kentucky
UMKC 3:00 PM
Grand Canyon
Seattle 3:00 PM
CS-Bakersfield
Texas Southern 3:00 PM
Alabama State
Santa Clara 3:00 PM
St Marys-CA
UNLV 3:00 PM
Wyoming
Savannah State 3:00 PM
SC State
Alcorn State 3:00 PM
Southern U
Bucknell 3:00 PM
American Univ
Oakland 3:00 PM
Illinois-Chicago
Eastern Washington 3:00 PM
Montana
Idaho 3:00 PM
Montana State
Weber State 3:00 PM
Idaho State
Radford 3:00 PM
High Point
Green Bay 3:30 PM
Youngstown St
Austin Peay 3:30 PM
SE Missouri St
Wagner 3:30 PM
Mount St Marys
Portland 4:00 PM
San Diego
Nevada 4:00 PM
San Jose St
Stephen F Austin 4:00 PM
Houston Baptist
Incarnate Word 4:00 PM
Lamar
Abilene Christian 4:00 PM
New Orleans
Pepperdine 4:00 PM
Loyola Marymount
San Francisco 4:00 PM
Pacific
Prairie View 4:00 PM
Alabama A&M
Hampton 4:00 PM
Howard
Chicago State 4:00 PM
Utah Valley U
Murray State 4:00 PM
UT Martin
Cal Poly 4:00 PM
Cal-Irvine
UC Santa Barbara 4:00 PM
UC Davis
Marshall 4:00 PM
Florida Atlantic
UAB 5:00 PM
Middle Tennessee
Western Ky 5:00 PM
FIU
Georgia Southern 5:00 PM
Louisiana
Grambling 5:00 PM
Ark-Pine Bluff
Ark-Little Rock 5:00 PM
TX-Arlington
Cornell 5:00 PM
Dartmouth
Columbia 5:00 PM
Harvard
Brown 5:00 PM
(14) Princeton
USC 5:00 PM
Washington St
(24) California 5:00 PM
(7) Oregon State
Yale 6:00 PM
Penn
Loyola-Maryland 6:00 PM
Navy
Jacksonville 6:00 PM
(21) Fla Gulf Coast
Long Beach St 6:00 PM
Cal State Fullerton
Rice 6:00 PM
Charlotte
Colgate 6:30 PM
Lehigh
CS-Northridge 7:00 PM
UC-Riverside
Kansas 7:00 PM
Oklahoma
Oklahoma St 7:00 PM
Texas Tech
TX-Pan American 8:00 PM
New Mexico St
North Dakota 8:00 PM
Southern Utah
Northern Colorado 9:00 PM
Northern Ariz

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: With Adrian Peterson's suspension overturned, what should the Vikings do?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close