Love ditches protective glove, records a 20/20 in Wolves win

  • Article by: JERRY ZGODA , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 28, 2012 - 11:24 AM

Kevin Love appeared back in top form by scoring 23 points and grabbing 24 rebounds after discarding protection on his hand.

SACRAMENTO, CALIF. - The Timberwolves waved farewell both to Kevin Love's blasted padded glove and their five-game losing streak with Tuesday night's 97-89 victory at Sacramento.

Love kept off that protective, fingerless glove he ripped off during Saturday's fourth quarter at Golden State because he said it was restricting him from being the real Kevin Love.

Without it, he delivered the kind of 23-point, 24-rebound, 44-minute performance to which Wolves fans have become accustomed ever since his 30-point, 30-rebound game in Nov. 2011, the first such game in the NBA since 1982.

On Tuesday, it looked for awhile as if he were aiming to do it all over again, if only a few more of his three-pointers had gone in on a night when he made just two and missed six of them.

The real Kevin Love?

"Yeah, he did, he did look like it," Wolves coach Rick Adelman said. "That was one of the more complete games he has played. He let the game come to him. He passed the ball. He set screens. He made shots. He rebounded it. It was just a complete all-around game. He told me he felt good all along, and we sure needed it."

 

Love’s 24 rebounds were the most in an NBA game this season, one more than Cleveland’s Anderson Varejao’s 23 on Oct. 30. Twenty-one of those were on the defensive end, a career high for him. It was the 16th time he has had a 20/20 game in his career and it was his fourth career game of 24 or more rebounds.

 

While teammate Ricky Rubio was away Tuesday in Vail, Colo., getting what he hopes is a final checkup that will allow him to return to practice by week's end, the Wolves won for the first time in more than two weeks, since a Nov. 12 game at Dallas.

Three of the Wolves' starters played 36 minutes or more and all but Malcolm Lee played 30 or more on a night when Adelman shortened his bench and again left Derrick Williams on the bench all game in a focused attempt to win.

Love played those 44 minutes while starting small forward Andrei Kirilenko played more than 41, including the final seven when he looked to Adelman for a breather and the coach asked if he had 7 more minutes in him.

"I can't remember the last time I asked to come out of a game," Love said. "In the fourth quarter, I waved at Coach and said, 'You've got to get me a couple minute break.' I'm still a ways away [from being himself]. I came back and played three games in four nights with no practice. I had one practice yesterday and then right into another back-to-back. I kind of threw myself into the gauntlet a little bit.

"But it's not about me. It's about us getting a win and we needed this win. It was just a great effort all around."

The Wolves led by 13 points in the third quarter, by nine with as little as 7 minutes left before the Kings got to within three with 3 minutes, 10 seconds left, then within two points with 1 minute, 17 seconds remaining.

But that's as close as Sacramento came, thanks to Kirilenko once again earning his money at both ends of the court.

After the Kings pulled within 91-89, he accepted Love's pass to the left of the basket, held it for just an instant and then shoveled a pass through traffic across the lane to Nikola Pekovic for a layup and a four-point lead with a minute left.

Eleven seconds later, he blocked DeMarcus Cousins at the other end, and then Love put the Kings away for good with a ridiculous, desperate turnaround from 15 feet away that banged off the rim and somehow went through.

Love grinned at his coach and his teammates as he ran back down the court.

"That's just how I drew it up," Adelman deadpanned.

That shot guaranteed a victory the Wolves felt they so desperately needed after they followed a 5-2 season start with that five-game losing streak that ended Tuesday night.

  • related content

  • Postgame: Love's 23/24 game helps Wolves end losing streak

    Wednesday November 28, 2012

    Wolves win first game since Nov. 12 at Dallas

  • Preview: Wolves at LA Clippers

    Tuesday November 27, 2012

    Preview: The 8-6 Clippers have lost consecutive games after winning six in a row before that. They lost at Oklahoma City, Brooklyn and Atlanta after starting a four-game trip with...

  • Ridnour sure his shot will come

    Tuesday November 27, 2012

  • Wolves-Sacramento game recap

    Wednesday November 28, 2012

    The gloveless Love scored 23 points and grabbed a whopping 24 rebounds. His desperation turnaround heave with the shot clock running down gave the Wolves a 95-89 lead with 26...

  • Kevin Love (42) of the Minnesota Timberwolves hits a 3-pointer over Ja...

  • WOLVES 97, SACRAMENTO 89

    Up next: 9:30 tonight at Los Angeles Clippers • Staples Center • TV: FSN (830-AM)

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Kansas City - WP: J. Guthrie 3 FINAL
San Francisco - LP: T. Hudson 2
Detroit 10/26/14 8:30 AM
Atlanta
Buffalo 10/26/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
St. Louis 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
Houston 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Minnesota 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Seattle 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Carolina
Baltimore 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
Miami 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Chicago 10/26/14 12:00 PM
New England
Philadelphia 10/26/14 3:05 PM
Arizona
Oakland 10/26/14 3:25 PM
Cleveland
Indianapolis 10/26/14 3:25 PM
Pittsburgh
Green Bay 10/26/14 7:30 PM
New Orleans
Washington 10/27/14 7:30 PM
Dallas
New Orleans 10/30/14 7:25 PM
Carolina
Dallas 117 FINAL
Orlando 92
New York 80 FINAL
Toronto 83
San Antonio 87 FINAL
Houston 96
Miami 104 FINAL
Memphis 98
Minnesota 113 FINAL
Chicago 112
Phoenix 105 FINAL
Utah 100
Sacramento 93 FINAL
LA Lakers 92
Denver 112 FINAL
Golden State 119
Portland 99 FINAL
LA Clippers 89
Dallas 3 FINAL(SO)
New Jersey 2
Tampa Bay 4 FINAL
Winnipeg 2
Vancouver 3 FINAL
Colorado 7
Carolina 3 FINAL
Edmonton 6
Columbus 1 FINAL
Anaheim 4
Connecticut 21 FINAL
(18) East Carolina 31
Miami-Florida 30 FINAL
Virginia Tech 6
So Florida 17 FINAL
Cincinnati 34
Troy 13 FINAL
South Alabama 27
BYU 30 FINAL
Boise State 55
(6) Oregon 59 FINAL
California 41
North Texas 11:00 AM
Rice
UAB 11:00 AM
Arkansas
Rutgers 11:00 AM
(16) Nebraska
Maryland 11:00 AM
Wisconsin
Texas 11:00 AM
(11) Kansas State
Minnesota 11:00 AM
Illinois
Memphis 11:00 AM
SMU
North Carolina 11:30 AM
Virginia
San Jose St 12:00 PM
Navy
Northern Ill 12:00 PM
Eastern Mich
(25) UCLA 1:00 PM
Colorado
Akron 1:00 PM
Ball State
Massachusetts 1:00 PM
Toledo
Ohio U 1:00 PM
Western Mich
Ga Southern 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Kent State 1:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
Oregon State 2:30 PM
Stanford
Fla Atlantic 2:30 PM
(23) Marshall
Louisiana Tech 2:30 PM
Southern Miss
(1) Miss State 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Georgia Tech 2:30 PM
Pittsburgh
(22) West Virginia 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Texas Tech 2:30 PM
(10) TCU
Michigan 2:30 PM
(8) Michigan State
Boston College 2:30 PM
Wake Forest
Central Mich 2:30 PM
Buffalo
Vanderbilt 3:00 PM
Missouri
Old Dominion 3:00 PM
Western Ky
UNLV 3:00 PM
Utah State
Temple 4:00 PM
UCF
(15) Arizona 5:00 PM
Washington St
Texas-El Paso 6:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Wyoming 6:00 PM
Colorado State
Syracuse 6:00 PM
(21) Clemson
Texas State 6:00 PM
ULM
(3) Ole Miss 6:15 PM
(24) LSU
(4) Alabama 6:30 PM
Tennessee
So Carolina 6:30 PM
(5) Auburn
(13) Ohio State 7:00 PM
Penn State
(20) USC 9:00 PM
(19) Utah
(14) Arizona State 9:45 PM
Washington
Nevada 10:59 PM
Hawaii
(2) Florida State 10/30/14 6:30 PM
Louisville
Troy 10/30/14 6:30 PM
Ga Southern
Cincinnati 10/31/14 7:00 PM
Tulane
Tulsa 10/31/14 7:00 PM
Memphis
Purdue 11/1/14 2:00 AM
(16) Nebraska
(17) Oklahoma 11/1/14 2:00 AM
Iowa State
Oklahoma State 11/1/14 2:00 AM
(11) Kansas State
(10) TCU 11/1/14 2:00 AM
(22) West Virginia
Texas 11/1/14 2:00 AM
Texas Tech
Northwestern 11/1/14 2:00 AM
Iowa
Maryland 11/1/14 2:00 AM
Penn State
Houston 1 FINAL
Chicago 2
Montreal 23 FINAL
Ottawa 17
Saskatchewan 27 FINAL
Calgary 40
Hamilton 3:00 PM
Toronto
Brt Columbia 6:00 PM
Winnipeg
Hamilton 10/31/14 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Winnipeg 11/1/14 3:00 PM
Calgary
Brt Columbia 11/1/14 6:00 PM
Edmonton
Toronto 11/2/14 11:00 AM
Montreal
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Which local team are you currently most excited about?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close