Jerry Zgoda missed the entire Kevin Garnett era, but he's back covering the Timberwolves after working the beat for their first four seasons two decades ago. In between, he covered a bit of everything: Gopher men's and women's basketball and NCAA athletics, golf, outdoor recreation, sports media and a little Vikings and Twins.

Wolves lose another lead, and game 87-84 to Houston

Posted by: Jerry Zgoda under Wolves postgame, Wolves news Updated: December 27, 2012 - 12:48 AM

Have you seen this before?

Yes, seven times now.

That's how many times the Wolves have held a double-digit lead this season, and still lost the game.

No. 7 came Wednesday night, when they had a 14-point advantage in the third quarter and still came undone in a fourth quarter when James Harden scored 17 of his 30 points.

Here's the game story from tonight focusing on Harden's night juxtaposed against Kevin Love's lousy shooting night.

And here's Pat Reusse column on Kevin McHale's return to Target Center with a remade Houston team that now has won five consecutive and seven of its last eight.

And here's a bunch of scattershot stuff from this evening:

* Love missed his final seven shots, made just 3 of 14 field-goal attempts for the night and didn't score in the game's final 40 minutes -- that's right, not since he scored with 3:54 left in the first quarter -- on a night when Harden was unstoppable in the fourth after being relatively quiet for three quarters.

Included for Love: Two missed open threes in the final three minutes, including one with 47 seconds left that would have put the Wolves up by four. Or "the dagger," as Andrei Kirilenko suggested it would have been afterward.

* Love's troubles were magnified because Nikola Pekovic struggled with his illness beside him.

Big Pek left the game in the second quarter, returned near the end of the third and played just 23 minutes, makign one of seven shots and scoring two points with seven rebounds along the way.

* The Wolves sold nearly 1,000 standing-room only seats before the game and the announced crowd of 20,340 was the third-largest in Target Center history. It also was the second sellout of the season.

* The Rockets had scored 120 points in each of their last three games and might have needed almost another half to get there on Wednesday, but it didn't matter. They won anyway, winning a game they probably had little business winning.

* The Wolves continue their auditions to replace injured/waived Josh Howard, but don't be surprised if they don't sign anyone until NBA teams can start signing players to 10-day contracts on Jan. 7.

They had former Spurs forward and former Toronto/Denver/Cleveland swingman Joey Graham in Wednesday for workouts. They've also looked at former Wolves forward Lazar Hayward, but the guy they just might end up targeting is European small forward Mickael Gelabale, a versatile defender who played for France in the London Olympics and has an NBA -opt out with his Spanish team through Jan. 30.

That's all I've got from Target Center.

There should be video up on our main Wolves page here by more with locker-room interviews with Rick Adelman, Love, JJ Barea and Andrei Kirilenko there.

The Wolves practice Thursday and Friday, but don't play again until Saturday against Phoenix at home.



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