Winning eases Love's frustration

  • Article by: JERRY ZGODA , Star Tribune
  • Updated: February 28, 2011 - 1:35 AM

Kevin Love had 37 points and 23 rebounds for his fourth 30/20 game of the season.

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Kevin Love drove past Golden State's Ekpe Udoh in the second half Sunday at Target Center.

Photo: David Brewster, Star Tribune

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Timberwolves forward Kevin Love didn't turn toward his teammates during Sunday's victory over Golden State and predict a 40/30 game, like he did in November when he went for 30 points and 30 rebounds against Knicks.

But he did tie franchise records for free throws attempted (23) and free throws made (18) on an afternoon when he had 37 points and 23 rebounds, his fourth 30/20 game this season. It also stretched his franchise-record double-double streak to 46 games.

"I was very, very frustrated last game," Love said, referring to Friday's home loss to New Orleans. "I think everybody saw that. I just wanted to come out and play well. This was a must-win for us. We haven't been playing well the last five, six games and we had to come and win this one."

Love tied Tony Campbell's 23 free throws attempted in a game in March 1990 against the Los Angeles Clippers and tied Christian Laettner's 18 free throws made in a February 1993 game against Sacramento. He attempted three field goals after halftime but made 14 of 16 free throws in the second half.

"If we had kept going, it would have been free throws missed, too," he said, referring to franchise records. "I was hoping for the 40 ball [40 points], I just missed my free throws. I missed five of them. I was upset about that."

Talking and walking

So did the Wolves' lengthy meeting before Saturday's practice help deliver Sunday's victory, the Wolves' first at home in a month?

"I felt like everybody took that talk the right way," said Wolves forward Michael Beasley, who scored 25 points for the first time in a month and teamed with Wes Johnson on a defensive play that ended the game. "Nobody took it hard. It was kind of what we need. I felt everybody took it to heart and didn't want it to be all talk today."

Or as Love said: "We didn't just want to talk about it, we wanted to be about it. Our defense was terrible in the first half, but we kept fighting."

The Wolves allowed 41 points in the first quarter, 73 in the first half, but outscored the Warriors 35-16 in the third quarter.

Etc.

• Guard Martell Webster did not play for the third consecutive game because of a bad back that has bothered him since October surgery.

• Guard Wayne Ellington returned to the team after missing Friday's loss to New Orleans to attend to a personal matter. He did not play.

• Newly acquired Wolves forward Anthony Randolph played 4 1/2 minutes against his former team.

• Love's free throw late in the third quarter was the 3,000th point of his career.

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