7 p.m. vs. Golden State • Target Center• FSN, NBA TV • 830-AM
Improvement will get a test
Preview: Coming off an impressive victory over the Los Angeles Clippers on Wednesday night, and winners of seven of their past 11 games, the Timberwolves take on the Western Conference-leading Warriors. In six games since the All-Star Game break, the Wolves are first in net rating (plus-10.7), defensive rating (97.3) and field goal percentage (42.4). Golden State has struggled a bit in five games without injured Kevin Durant, who is out indefinitely with a knee injury. The Warriors have gone 2-3 and have seen their lead in the West over San Antonio dwindle. The Wolves have lost both games vs. the Warriors this season, by 13 in Oakland on Nov. 26 and by eight in Minneapolis on Dec. 11. Minnesota has lost 10 straight games to the Warriors at home.
Players to watch: Wolves F Shabazz Muhammad scored 17 points in his first start since January 2015. PG Ricky Rubio has averaged 12.6 points and 10.2 assists his past 16 starts, shooting 38 percent in that time. C Karl-Anthony Towns had his 100th career double-double Wednesday. He has 20 or more points in 18 straight games. Warriors F Draymond Green leads the Warriors in assists (7.1) and steals (2.2) and is second in rebounding (8.1). After a brief three-point shooting slump, G Stephen Curry is 14-for-28 on threes his past two games.
Injuries: Wolves F Adreian Payne (illness) is questionable. Brandon Rush (illness) returned to practice Thursday and is probable. Warriors F Kevin Durant (knee) is out.