Cold Night in Minnesota: Wolves Collapse In Late Loss to Hornets

Thursday, December 10th, 2009 at 5:49 am

Minneapolis, MN (AHN) – The Timberwolves are like seasons in Minnesota, they can change from hot to cold in an instant.

The T’wolves fell 97-96 to New Orleans Wednesday after leading by as many as 16 in the second half.  Chris Paul hit a layup with 1.4 seconds to play to give the Hornets their second win over Minnesota in less than a week.

“In late game situations we made some errors in judgement in how we were supposed to defend their last couple of out of bounds plays and it costs us dearly,” said first year head coach Kurt Rambis.

On the game winner, Paul inbounded the ball to David West, snuck behind rookie Johnny Flynn on a back door cut, and finished the open layup.

Paul ended the night with 15 points and 14 assists, his third straight double-double.

Minnesota looked in complete control after the first two quarters.

It took a 64-53 lead into halftime and it seemed like they were getting any shot they wanted.  Minnesota shot over 64-percent in the first half, including 36 points in the paint.

Al Jefferson led Minnesota with 17-points and 16-rebounds.

“I thought our guys did a really good job in the first half,” said Rambis.  “They played the style of ball I’d be proud to coach. They did a really good job of adhering to our game plan at both ends of the floor.”

The problem for Minnesota was that there was still two quarters to play.

The Timberwolves double-digit lead evaporated to just five after the end of the third quarter.  New Orleans’ turnaround was sparked by deadly three point shooting (13-25) and 11 Minnesota turnovers in the second half.

“It was on us.  We didn’t match their intensity. We didn’t contain their run,” said forward Kevin Love.

Love (12 points, 11 rebounds) recorded his third double-double in four games since returning from a broken hand that sidelined him for the first month of the season.

“I don’t know what it was but we just came out in quicksand in the second half.  It was like we were in cement.  We were just slow,” said Love.  “We have no excuse.”

Minnesota (3-19) hopes to navigate its way to more stable ground quickly because the Wolves start a three game road swing Friday against the defending champion Lakers.

New Orleans (10-11) heads back home Friday to take on the Knicks.

(From All Headline News)

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