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On the Wolves

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Rubio ready to play tonight at Phoenix

Ricky Rubio participated in shootaround wearing the starter's practice jersey this morning in Phoenix and called himself ready to play tonight against the Suns.

He said he has recovered from both that tightness in his hip that caused him to miss Thursday's second half in Los Angeles against the Clippers and a trans-Atlantic weekend trip to be with his family after his grandmother died.

"Of course, there are a lot of games during the season and you don't feel 100 percent all the time, but you just go out there and play with your heart," he said.

Wolves coach Tom Thibodeau started rookie Kris Dunn in Sunday's home victory over Denver and played Dunn and Tyus Jones together with the game on the line.

Also from morning shoot...

* Zach LaVine is shooting 5-for-21 and has scored in single digits each of the last two games, but he says it's not because that hip contusion still hurts him.

"Everything's fine," he said. "Just not making shots."

* NBA coaches' voting for All-Star Game reserves is due tonight and the rest of the East and West teams will be announced Thursday night on TNT's coverage.

When asked if Karl-Anthony Towns should make the West team, Thibodeau said, "I'm just more concerned about winning. If we win, he'll be recognized."

* Thibodeau would prefer the Wolves' new D-League team be right in town or very nearby -- like nine NBA teams will have next season -- but said he's glad they will have one, the Iowa Energy starting next season. "We'll figure it out," he said.

* Don't look now, but the Wolves are just 2.5 games out of the West's eighth and final playoff after they went 5-2 in their last seven games.

One little thing, though: There are four teams between them and it.

"We can do it," forward Andrew Wiggins said. "We just have to keep playing together."

* Tonight's game reunites former Kentucky teammates Towns and Suns guard Devin Booker, who has scored at least 20 points in a career-best nine consecutive games.

"Those bonds you build there, they're something that can't be broken," Towns said, referring to a pair he calls UK "brothers."

Postgame: Wolves win in crunch time again

Don’t look now, but the Timberwolves are on something of a hot streak.

They’ve won two straight and five of their last seven games overall and for the fourth straight at home. For the second straight game the Wolves won a game decided by four or fewer points. This after going 0-for-10 to start the season in that category.

“We’re trying to establish a home court,’’ Wolves coach Tom Thibodeau said. “We want to make it tough for people to come in here. We have to understand, you don’t win because you’re at home, but because of what you put into winning.’’

They did tonight. Denver shot 51.2 percent for the game, but 45.5 percent in the second half, 40.0 percent in the fourth quarter, and just 3-for-12 after taking a nine-point lead with 6:06 left in the game.

The Wolves responded with a 20-8 run.

The Wolves have now won four straight home games since the fall of 2012.

Here are some thoughts on the game:

--Starting in place of Ricky Rubio, who was away because of personal reasons, rookie Kris Dunn had 10 points on 3-for-8 shooting, nine assists, eight rebounds, three steals and a block. He was very effective defensively after Thibodeau put he and Tyus Jones together in the backcourt down the stretch for a second straight game.

-Jones, too, was effective. Certainly more late than early. He finished with nine points and four assists off the bench in 19:20 of playing time. He played all 12 minutes in the fourth quarter, was a plus-3 and scored six of those points, one a very big three-pointer.

--Towns seemed to really get motivated by his matchup with Nikola Jokic, another young center with a myriad of skills. Towns had 32 points, 12 rebounds, seven assists and four blocks to 18 points and eight rebounds for Jokic.

--Andrew Wiggins was again big down the stretch, scoring 10 of his 24 points in the fourth quarter, with three rebounds and a steal.

--Zach LaVine continues to struggle since returning from a hip injury that kept him out of two games. He had four points on 2-for-8 shooting missed all three three-pointers and watched the final 5:40 from the bench when Thibodeau put Dunn in for him.

TV Listings

Local Schedule

< >
  • Wild at Dallas

    7:30 pm on FSN, 100.3-FM

  • Timberwolves at Phoenix

    8 pm on FSN PLUS, 830-AM

  • Gophers men's basketball at Ohio State

    6 pm on BTN, 1500-AM

  • Ohio State at Gophers women's basketball

    7 pm on 1500-AM

  • Indiana at Timberwolves

    7 pm on FSN, 830-AM

  • St. Louis at Wild

    7 pm on NBCSN, 100.3-FM

  • Minnesota Duluth at Gophers men's hockey

    7 pm on FSN, 1500-AM

  • St. Cloud State at Gophers women's hockey

    7:07 pm

  • Maryland at Gophers men's basketball

    1 pm on BTN, 1500-AM

  • St. Cloud State at Gophers women's hockey

    3:07 pm

  • Brooklyn at Timberwolves

    8 pm on FSN, 830-AM

  • Orlando at Timberwolves

    7 pm on FSN, 830-AM

  • Michigan State at Gophers women's basketball

    7 pm on BTN, 88.5-FM

Today's Scoreboard

No MLB games today

No NFL games today

  • Boston



    - 4th, 8:01



  • Chicago



    - 4th, 5:49



  • LA Clippers



    - 4th, 8:45



  • San Antonio



    - 4th, 7:12



  • Utah


    8:00 PM

  • Minnesota


    8:00 PM

  • Detroit



    - End 2nd



  • Los Angeles

    New Jersey


    - 3rd, 19:10



  • Columbus

    NY Islanders


    - 3rd, 19:25



  • St. Louis



    - 3rd, 18:10



  • Calgary



    - 2nd, 4:34



  • Washington



    - 2nd, 10:10



  • Buffalo



    - End 1st



  • San Jose



    - End 1st



  • Tampa Bay



    - 1st, 5:37



  • Minnesota



    - 1st, 3:40



No MLS games today