Love scores 26 and Pekovic 17, but Toronto defeats Wolves

  • Article by: JERRY ZGODA , Star Tribune
  • Updated: March 10, 2014 - 4:15 AM

Their loss to surging Toronto left them 1-2 on their homestand against beatable Eastern Conference foes.

The way things are going, Timberwolves coach Rick Adelman and his players won’t have to wait 20 games until the season’s conclusion to know whether they are anything more than a team that loses one for every game that it wins.

That answer it being determined nightly. The latest answer, Sunday night’s 111-104 loss to Toronto, silenced the team’s dressing room afterward.

The Wolves have lost two of their past three games at home to Eastern Conference opponents, after returning to Target Center from the season’s longest road trip having won six of seven games.

On Sunday, the Wolves fell back to .500, at 31-31. They remain five games out of the Western Conference’s eighth and final playoff spot with 20 games to play.

“There’s 20 games left, anything can happen,” Wolves star Kevin Love said. “We obviously have to go on some sort of run. If those other teams keep winning and keep pulling games out of their you-know-what, we’re in trouble. We need to have a little bit of luck, too.”

On Wednesday, after the Wolves lost at home to a New York team that had lost seven consecutive games and 10 of its previous 11, Love and others in their locker room mentioned lingering road-trip fatigue as a probable reason why.

On Sunday, they lost to a Raptors team that is 28-13 and holding off the surging Chicago Bulls for third place in the East, on the heels of a December trade that dealt star Rudy Gay to Sacramento for four role players who have transformed the team’s bench.

One of those players — power forward Patrick Patterson — didn’t play Sunday because of an elbow injury, so Toronto simply plugged in veteran Steve Novak, who made five of his team’s 14 three-pointers and scored 15 points in 20 minutes off the bench after he had played only 27 seconds in the two games before that.

This time, the Wolves simply were beaten by an opponent that has a better backcourt, plays better defense, has better depth … is just plain better.

“It’s a game we just didn’t do enough to win,” Adelman said.

Love set a franchise record for three-pointers made in a season by making four Sunday, surpassing by one Rashad McCants’ previous mark of 142, set during the 2007-08 season. Love also approached his second career triple-double before third quarter’s end, but he never got that 10th assist in the fourth quarter and finished with 26 points, 11 rebounds and nine assists, numbers that didn’t counter Toronto point guard Kyle Lowry’s 20-point, 12-rebound, 11-assist triple-double.

Nor was it enough to offset Toronto shooting guard DeMar DeRozan’s 25 points, which included 10 fourth-quarter points and the closing punctuation on a three-pointer with 69 seconds left. He turned and taunted the Wolves bench after he made the shot that ended a 10-3 run and restored the visitors’ advantage to double digits.

The Wolves had pulled within a basket with five minutes left.

“This is their team,” Toronto coach Dwane Casey said of his starting backcourt. “Down the stretch they really turned it on.”

Down the stretch, the Wolves couldn’t convert enough around the rim, as they hadn’t all night, while the Raptors continued to make three-pointers. Four of their 14 threes came in the final quarter.

The Wolves end their four-game homestand against Eastern Conference opponents by playing NBA-worst Milwaukee on Tuesday, with the season and any distant playoff hopes disappearing from sight.

“We just have to do it better,” Adelman said. “We can’t hang our heads. It’s a good team that we played … We got beat. We’ve got to turn it around and come back Tuesday and get a win.”

  • related content

  • BOXSCORE: Toronto 111, Wolves 104

    Monday March 10, 2014

  • Pekovic pushes himself over longer stretches

    Monday March 10, 2014

    Timberwolves center Nikola Pekovic well exceeded his playing-time limit by playing 33 minutes in Sunday’s 111-104 loss to Toronto, which is fine as long as you understand it’s more of...

  • Video: From the Locker Room: A 111-104 loss to Toronto

    Monday March 10, 2014

    Rick Adelman, Kevin Love and Nikola Pekovic discuss the team 's second loss in the last three home games

  • Wolves-Toronto game recap

    Sunday March 9, 2014

    GAME RECAPImpact playerKyle Lowry, TorontoThe plucky point guard, whom Rick Adelman coached in Houston, reached the triple-double — 20 points,...

  • Farmington legislator's NBA tweet causes stir, called racist

    Monday March 10, 2014

    Rep. Pat Garofalo's tweet about the NBA and street crime nets a strong reaction

  • Wolves guard Kevin Martin tried to strip the ball from Toronto's Terrence Ross.

  • Kevin Love (42) had no chance shooting against a physical Raptors double-team, with Terrence Ross guarding him hard in front.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

NY Yankees - LP: B. McCarthy 3 FINAL
Toronto - WP: J. Happ 4
Philadelphia - LP: A. Burnett 5 FINAL
NY Mets - WP: D. Gee 6
Cincinnati - WP: J. Cueto 3 FINAL
Pittsburgh - LP: J. Hughes 2
Minnesota - LP: R. Nolasco 8 FINAL
Baltimore - WP: W. Chen 12
Boston - WP: C. Buchholz 3 FINAL
Tampa Bay - LP: A. Cobb 0
Detroit - LP: R. Porcello 2 FINAL
Chicago WSox - WP: J. Quintana 6
Texas - LP: N. Cotts 2 FINAL
Houston - WP: J. Veras 3
Chicago Cubs - LP: C. Villanueva 6 FINAL
St. Louis - WP: P. Neshek 9
Oakland - LP: S. Kazmir 1 FINAL
LA Angels - WP: M. Shoemaker 8
Milwaukee - LP: K. Lohse 5 FINAL
San Francisco - WP: M. Bumgarner 15
Los Angeles - WP: H. Ryu 7 FINAL
San Diego - LP: E. Stults 1
Washington - LP: T. Roark 3 FINAL
Seattle - WP: H. Iwakuma 5
Colorado - LP: J. De La Rosa 2 FINAL
Arizona - WP: C. Anderson 6
Miami - LP: N. Eovaldi 0 FINAL
Atlanta - WP: A. Wood 1
Cleveland 4 Suspended
Kansas City 2
Green Bay 9/4/14 7:30 PM
Seattle
Troy 10 FINAL
UAB 48
(7) UCLA 28 FINAL
Virginia 20
Western Mich 34 FINAL
Purdue 43
(5) Ohio State 34 FINAL
Navy 17
Appalachian St 14 FINAL
Michigan 52
Ga Southern 23 FINAL
NC State 24
Boston College 30 FINAL
Massachusetts 7
West Virginia 23 FINAL
(2) Alabama 33
Rice 17 FINAL
(17) Notre Dame 48
(10) South Dakota St 18 FINAL
(24) Missouri 38
Fla Atlantic 7 FINAL
(22) Nebraska 55
California 31 FINAL
Northwestern 24
Marshall 42 FINAL
Miami-Ohio 27
UC Davis 0 FINAL
(11) Stanford 45
Arkansas 21 FINAL
(6) Auburn 45
(16) Clemson 21 FINAL
(12) Georgia 45
Liberty 29 FINAL
(23) North Carolina 56
Ohio U 17 FINAL
Kent State 14
Louisiana Tech 16 FINAL
(4) Oklahoma 48
Stephen F Austin 16 FINAL
(20) Kansas State 55
Fresno State 13 FINAL
(15) USC 52
Southern Miss 0 FINAL
Miss State 49
Texas-El Paso 31 FINAL
New Mexico 24
North Texas 7 FINAL
Texas 38
(1) Florida State 37 FINAL
Oklahoma State 31
(14) Wisconsin 24 FINAL
(13) LSU 28
Idaho 0 Postponed
Florida 0
South Dakota 13 FINAL
(3) Oregon 62
(25) Washington 17 FINAL
Hawaii 16
Utah State 7 FINAL
Tennessee 38
SMU 0 FINAL
(10) Baylor 45
Miami-Florida 7:00 PM
Louisville
Arizona 9/4/14 7:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Pittsburgh 9/5/14 6:00 PM
Boston College
Washington St 9/5/14 9:30 PM
Nevada
SMU 9/6/14 11:00 AM
North Texas
Fla Atlantic 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(2) Alabama
Buffalo 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Army
(24) Missouri 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Toledo
Arkansas State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Tennessee
(8) McNeese State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(22) Nebraska
Central Mich 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Purdue
Akron 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Penn State
Western Ill 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(14) Wisconsin
(20) Kansas State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Iowa State
(4) Oklahoma 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Tulsa
Western Ky 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
SC State 9/6/14 11:30 AM
(16) Clemson
Navy 9/6/14 12:00 PM
Temple
UAB 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Miss State
South Alabama 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Kent State
New Mexico St 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Colorado 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
Fresno State 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Utah
(1) Eastern Wash 9/6/14 2:00 PM
(25) Washington
(15) USC 9/6/14 2:30 PM
(11) Stanford
Ohio U 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Middle Tennessee 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Minnesota
Northern Ill 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Northwestern
Missouri State 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Ball State 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Iowa
Maryland 9/6/14 2:30 PM
So Florida
Eastern Mich 9/6/14 3:00 PM
Florida
Georgia Tech 9/6/14 3:00 PM
Tulane
(18) Ole Miss 9/6/14 3:30 PM
Vanderbilt
Old Dominion 9/6/14 5:00 PM
NC State
(8) Michigan State 9/6/14 5:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(19) Arizona State 9/6/14 6:00 PM
New Mexico
Louisiana Tech 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Louisiana
San Jose St 9/6/14 6:00 PM
(6) Auburn
East Carolina 9/6/14 6:00 PM
(9) So Carolina
Duke 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Troy
Idaho 9/6/14 6:00 PM
ULM
(17) Sam Houston St 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(13) LSU
Michigan 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(17) Notre Dame
Lamar 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(21) Texas A&M
Northwestern St 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(10) Baylor
BYU 9/6/14 6:30 PM
Texas
Citadel 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(1) Florida State
San Diego St 9/6/14 7:00 PM
(23) North Carolina
Virginia Tech 9/6/14 7:00 PM
(5) Ohio State
Memphis 9/6/14 9:00 PM
(7) UCLA
Colorado State 9/6/14 9:15 PM
Boise State
Air Force 9/6/14 9:15 PM
Wyoming
Oregon State 9/6/14 9:30 PM
Hawaii
Texas Tech 9/6/14 10:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
Red Bull New York 0 FINAL
D.C. 2
Los Angeles 3 FINAL
Chivas USA 0
Ottawa 10 FINAL
Montreal 20
Winnipeg 30 FINAL
Saskatchewan 35
Toronto 12:00 PM
Hamilton
Edmonton 3:30 PM
Calgary
Phoenix 77 FINAL
Minnesota 82
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: How many games will the Timberwolves win this season?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close