PHOENIX SUNS

Anthony Edwards’ dominance continues as T-Wolves take Game 1 from Nuggets

May 4, 2024, 7:43 PM

Minnesota Timberwolves guard Anthony Edwards reacts after hitting a basket in the first half of Gam...

Minnesota Timberwolves guard Anthony Edwards reacts after hitting a basket in the first half of Game 1 of an NBA basketball second-round playoff series against the Denver Nuggets, Saturday, May 4, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

(AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

DENVER (AP) — Anthony Edwards scored a playoff career-high 43 points, Naz Reid had 14 of his 16 points in the fourth quarter and the Minnesota Timberwolves beat the defending NBA champion Denver Nuggets 106-99 in Game 1 of the second-round series Saturday night.

Edwards was unstoppable in the first half, scoring 25 points, and Reid took over in the fourth quarter. Karl-Anthony Towns had 20 points despite dealing with foul trouble.

Game 2 is Monday night in Denver.

Three days after undergoing knee surgery, Timberwolves coach Chris Finch was on the bench in the second row, next to the scorer’s table and behind assistant coach Micah Nori, who did the instructing, roaming and switching.

Two-time NBA MVP Nikola Jokic had 32 points, eight rebounds and nine assists for Denver, but also had seven turnovers. Jamal Murray scored 17 points after being held scoreless in the first half.

Tied at 84, the Timberwolves went on an 18-7 run to break it open. Reid had 10 straight points for the Timberwolves at one point during the pivotal stretch.

Last year, the Wolves were a tough first-round opponent for Denver despite being without Reid (broken wrist) and Jaden McDaniels (broken hand) and with Karl-Anthony Towns coming off a severe calf strain that had cost him 52 games. This time, not a single Timberwolves player was listed on the injury report.

Aside from being healthier, the Timberwolves were much better thanks to the dramatic improvement in Edwards’ game, Denver coach Michael Malone suggested.

“There’s no weaknesses in his game,” Malone said. “And it’s going to be a hell of a challenge trying to slow him down.”

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