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

St. Louis - LP: A. Wainwright 1 FINAL
Pittsburgh - WP: J. Locke 3
Texas - WP: C. Lewis 12 FINAL
Seattle - LP: E. Ramirez 4
Washington - LP: D. Fister 4 FINAL
Philadelphia - WP: K. Kendrick 8
Tampa Bay - WP: D. Smyly 3 FINAL
Baltimore - LP: K. Gausman 1
Boston - LP: T. Layne 2 FINAL
Toronto - WP: M. Stroman 5
NY Yankees - WP: S. Greene 8 FINAL
Detroit - LP: D. Price 4
Atlanta - WP: J. Teheran 3 FINAL
NY Mets - LP: Z. Wheeler 2
Chicago Cubs - LP: J. Turner 5 FINAL
Cincinnati - WP: M. Latos 7
Cleveland - LP: C. Kluber 2 FINAL
Chicago WSox - WP: H. Noesi 3
Minnesota - LP: P. Hughes 1 FINAL
Kansas City - WP: W. Davis 6
Oakland - WP: D. Otero 5 FINAL
Houston - LP: C. Qualls 4
Milwaukee - LP: Z. Duke 2 FINAL
San Diego - WP: D. Thayer 3
Los Angeles - WP: C. Kershaw 3 FINAL
Arizona - LP: W. Miley 1
Miami - LP: H. Alvarez 1 FINAL
LA Angels - WP: H. Santiago 6
Colorado - LP: J. Nicasio 2 FINAL
San Francisco - WP: S. Casilla 4
Atlanta 5:00 PM
Jacksonville
Detroit 6:00 PM
Buffalo
Indianapolis 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Kansas City 6:00 PM
Green Bay
NY Jets 6:00 PM
Philadelphia
St. Louis 6:00 PM
Miami
Carolina 6:30 PM
Pittsburgh
New England 6:30 PM
NY Giants
Washington 6:30 PM
Tampa Bay
Baltimore 7:00 PM
New Orleans
Chicago 7:00 PM
Cleveland
Denver 7:00 PM
Dallas
Minnesota 7:00 PM
Tennessee
San Francisco 7:00 PM
Houston
Arizona 9:00 PM
San Diego
Seattle 9:00 PM
Oakland
(21) Texas A&M 5:00 PM
(9) So Carolina
Wake Forest 6:02 PM
ULM
Boise State 7:00 PM
(18) Ole Miss
Tulane 7:00 PM
Tulsa
Temple 8:15 PM
Vanderbilt
Rutgers 9:00 PM
Washington St
Weber State 9:30 PM
(19) Arizona State
BYU 8/29/14 6:00 PM
Connecticut
(6) Jacksonville St 8/29/14 6:30 PM
(8) Michigan State
Bowling Green 8/29/14 6:30 PM
Western Ky
TX-San Antonio 8/29/14 8:00 PM
Houston
Colorado State 8/29/14 8:00 PM
Colorado
UNLV 8/29/14 9:30 PM
Arizona
Penn State 8/30/14 7:30 AM
UCF
Troy 8/30/14 11:00 AM
UAB
(7) UCLA 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Virginia
Western Mich 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Purdue
(5) Ohio State 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Navy
Appalachian St 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Michigan
Ga Southern 8/30/14 11:30 AM
NC State
Boston College 8/30/14 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
West Virginia 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(2) Alabama
Rice 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(17) Notre Dame
(10) South Dakota St 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(24) Missouri
Fla Atlantic 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(22) Nebraska
California 8/30/14 2:30 PM
Northwestern
Marshall 8/30/14 2:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
UC Davis 8/30/14 3:00 PM
(11) Stanford
Arkansas 8/30/14 3:00 PM
(6) Auburn
(16) Clemson 8/30/14 4:30 PM
(12) Georgia
Liberty 8/30/14 5:00 PM
(23) North Carolina
Ohio U 8/30/14 5:00 PM
Kent State
Louisiana Tech 8/30/14 6:00 PM
(4) Oklahoma
Idaho 8/30/14 6:00 PM
Florida
Stephen F Austin 8/30/14 6:10 PM
(20) Kansas State
Fresno State 8/30/14 6:30 PM
(15) USC
Southern Miss 8/30/14 6:30 PM
Miss State
Texas-El Paso 8/30/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico
North Texas 8/30/14 7:00 PM
Texas
(1) Florida State 8/30/14 7:00 PM
Oklahoma State
(14) Wisconsin 8/30/14 8:00 PM
(13) LSU
South Dakota 8/30/14 9:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(25) Washington 8/30/14 9:30 PM
Hawaii
Utah State 8/31/14 6:00 PM
Tennessee
SMU 8/31/14 6:30 PM
(10) Baylor
Miami-Florida 9/1/14 7:00 PM
Louisville
D.C. 1 FINAL
Los Angeles 4
Ottawa 8/29/14 6:30 PM
Montreal
Winnipeg 8/31/14 3:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Toronto 9/1/14 12:00 PM
Hamilton
Edmonton 9/1/14 3:30 PM
Calgary
Brt Columbia 9/5/14 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Calgary 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Edmonton
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