“Don’t be afraid. Naz Reid.

That’s what Kyle Anderson yelled in the back of the locker room as Reid spoke to the media after his late-game play led the way. minnesota timber wolves about him warriors of the golden state 119-114 in overtime.

The beloved underdog big man perfectly embodied his team’s spirit in a 14-point comeback win over the defending champions. After missing a jumper, he got his own rebound and launched a monster dunk to put the exclamation point on the grittest victory of the season.

“It was great, electrifying. Everybody was on their feet, and that’s something we need from the fans, man. Just keep up the momentum they give us,” Reid said in the postgame locker room. “We are all fighting, we are all in the same boat. We are all on the same team. Keep it up.

It felt like Minnesota couldn’t hit a big shot all night. Earlier in the game, things went back and forth in large part because both teams laughably coughed up the ball to fuel the easy transition offense, and each side struggled to score efficiently at half court. After a slow start for his young center playing in place of Rudy Gobert (right groin soreness), Reid let some open shots slip by. Wolves head coach Chris Finch made sure Reid knew at half time to let him through.

“Halfway through, the coach told me I needed to make sure. He told me to go to work. That’s exactly what he said, ‘go to work,’” Reid said. “I felt like I had the green light from there, so I did what I do best. And it’s a side that most people haven’t seen yet. So I got a lot more.”

And when the big moments came, Reid wasn’t shy.

The fourth-year dynamo hit nine shots in the fourth quarter, starting the way the game ended: He didn’t let one bad shot stop him from getting off the mat and coming back with a hay. Even with one of the greatest defenders of all time in his sights, Reid didn’t blink.

“If I see somebody, I’m not going to back down,” Reid said. “As I told you before, the confidence in my team and coaches, man. If I see you, I’m going for you. That’s just what it is.

I wanted to send a message to Draymond Green and Kevon Looney.

“That is a team that is not going to back down. They are used to winning,” Reid explained to Canis Hoopus in the locker room. “When we take it to him early, man, that just shows we’re not here to back down, we’re really here to fight.”

That mentality carried him all the time. Reid went on to alternate between missed and made shots until he delivered the biggest of the night with just under two minutes left.

Reid then missed two 3-pointers in the final minute of the game, both great plays. And once the game progressed to overtime, he had to leave the game for a few possessions after getting elbowed by a Warriors defender before coming back to seal a win and cap a night with 24 points, 13 rebounds and four assists. .

Reid is not only a game-changer for this team, but he is also the core of the culture that Wolves are cultivating: a brave guy who loves the little things, is extremely selfless and leaves it all behind. . That’s why his teammates love him, the roof of the Target Center nearly blew off, and the Timberwolves woke up ranked No. 8 this morning after four wins in eight nights against Western Conference playoff teams.

Golden State Warriors v Minnesota Timberwolves
Photo by David Berding/Getty Images

Fully charged

There isn’t a guard in the league who has thrown the ball better than D’Angelo Russell in his volume since Dec. 1. When he finds a rhythm, he engulfs a defense in the flames of a five-alarm fire ready to explode. a building with a dangerous and unpredictable energy. And when opponents start to feel the heat at the most important moments, Russell feels right at home with ice water coursing through his veins.

As he has so many times this season, Russell came alive in the fourth after struggling in the third. He started the final frame alongside Austin Rivers, Jaden McDaniels, Anderson and Reid, and was back to normal almost instantly. D’Lo drilled five of his first six shots, including four massive 3-pointers, to erase a 14-point Warriors lead in the first 5:28 of the quarter.

Video courtesy of @timberwolves On twitter

Anderson, Rivers and Reid handled it well, helping Russell attack a spread floor and find a rhythm that blended his reps on the ball with the time he spent off of it.

“It’s huge for me because when I first came into the league I struggled to find a balance between passing and scoring. Knowing that I can score the ball at the rate that I can score and knowing that I can also control the game at a rate, I’m trying to balance being in that position and just dominating the ball,” Russell told Canis Hoopus after the game. “I always tried to calculate that balance between my game. Having Kyle Anderson and Austin and the way our system flows allows me to play and make high IQ plays off the ball. I really enjoy the game like that.”

He’s shooting more catch-and-shoot 3s than ever before, and he’s thriving in a newfound role as a deadly deep shooter because of time spent off the ball alongside capable, ball-moving drivers.

“It’s great for guys who also know how to catch and shoot,” Russell added. “Finding looks like this throughout the game is key for us. I’m not doing anything special. I’m just getting there and hoping the ball finds me. We have some key guys around here that you ask for a lot of attention to try to stop them. He forces them to help and we haome marksmen who can take him down as well. He complements our team

Scoring 14 of his team-high 29 points, Russell certainly complemented his co-stars in Reid and Anthony Edwards. We’ll weigh in on what was a tough defensive night for him another time, but his long-range shooting energized an offense that shot just 7/33 (21%) from deep on its 7/17 effort, and his unflappable demeanor gave his teammates belief in their chance to complete a disappointing comeback against the defending champions.

Golden State Warriors v Minnesota Timberwolves
Photo by David Sherman/NBAE via Getty Imagesa familiar face

There aren’t many players on the planet who understand what it takes to stop Stephen Curry better than Austin Rivers. Between his stops with the Los Angeles Clippers, houston rockets Y denver nuggetsThe veteran stopper has closely watched the rise and dominance of the two-time MVP for the better part of the last decade.

After watching the 2022 Finals MVP drop 21 points on 5/7 shooting for 3 in the first half, a determined Rivers played a key role in Wolves’ defense for the rest of the game. After McDaniels held Curry to two points in the first leg of the eight-time All-Star, Rivers replaced the All-Defensive candidate, who battled illness all night to bother Curry.

From there, Rivers guarded Curry for approximately 13 of the final 17 minutes of the game (including overtime). Steph scored six points on 11 shots (including 0/5 from deep) in that frame and posted a -16.

“The defense in the second half was incredible. We felt like we were doing things in the first half that we talked about, we were good, then we got lazy and sloppy with some of the coverage sometimes,” Finch said, applauding his team for allowing just 43 points on 32.7% shooting ( including 2/17 — 11.8% — on 3s) to a high-powered offense after halftime.

“Both sides of the ball too. Coming to the painting. Making shots. Good defense. He has a lot of experience playing against those guys from being in Houston, being in Denver, being with the Clippers,” Finch said of Rivers. “He knows exactly what those guys are all about and how to stay focused every moment of every possession.”

As Rivers addressed the media in the locker room, he was clutching Curry’s jersey. I asked Rivers why he takes so much pride in going into battle with the No. 30.

“He is one of the greatest of all time. And he’s probably on Mount Rushmore by then,” Rivers told Canis Hoopus. “I sleep well the night before when I’m playing because of the number of screens he does, the number of runs you do. The shape of him, incredible shape. You have to feel proud.

“It’s a team effort, I have guys talk to me, but it’s almost like you’re not defending the team. Half the time I don’t look at what’s behind him. I stare at him because that’s how important it is to his offense. This is my guy and he was cool enough to give me his jersey.”

Beyond his work on Curry, Rivers hit a big 3-pointer to open the scoring for Wolves in the final frame, grabbed a pair of rebounds, blocked a shot from Andrew Wiggins and stole a pass from Klay Thompson throughout the fourth quarter. He is a crucial piece of this team and he showed exactly why in one of the biggest wins of the season.


Wolves will host first overall pick Paolo Banchero and wrestler orlando magic on Friday night at Target Center, the fifth of a six-game homestand. Fans can watch the 7:10 p.m. CT forecast on Bally Sports North.

Game Highlights

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