Minnesota Timberwolves Hand Boston Celtics First Loss of the Season in Overtime Thriller
MINNEAPOLIS — In a thrilling matchup on Monday night, the Minnesota Timberwolves emerged victorious over the Boston Celtics with a 114-109 win in overtime. Anthony Edwards led the charge for the Timberwolves, scoring eight of his 38 points in the extra period.
Edwards Shines in Overtime
Anthony Edwards showcased his scoring prowess, delivering a standout performance with 38 points, nine rebounds, and seven assists. His clutch plays in overtime proved to be the difference-maker for the Timberwolves, securing their fourth consecutive home victory and handing the Celtics their first loss of the season.
Jaden McDaniels and Rudy Gobert also made significant contributions to Minnesota’s triumph. McDaniels added 20 points, while Gobert recorded 14 points and 12 rebounds. Naz Reid provided a boost in the first quarter, scoring 10 of his 14 points to help the Timberwolves overcome foul trouble for Karl-Anthony Towns.
“They’re a championship-level team,” Gobert praised the Celtics. “They find ways to always stay in the game, always never giving up. We did the same. A lot of things didn’t go our way, but whoever came on the floor was ready to do what we do, was ready to bring us something.”
Celtics’ Strong Start Comes to an End
Despite a valiant effort from Jayson Tatum, who scored 32 points, and Jaylen Brown, who added 26 points, the Celtics couldn’t maintain their unbeaten record. Boston’s 6-0 start to the season was their best since the 2009-10 campaign.
Kristaps Porzingis, who was questionable before the game due to a stye, managed to contribute 20 points for the Celtics. However, the absence of starting guard Derrick White for personal reasons hindered Boston’s performance.
“Very competitive, and opponents are always going to bring the best out of us,” commented Boston coach Joe Mazzula. “I thought we competed at a high level. I thought their defensive toughness outmatched our offensive toughness at times.”
Defensive Prowess and Offensive Struggles
The matchup between the Timberwolves and the Celtics showcased the best offensive and defensive ratings early in the season. However, it was Minnesota’s defensive prowess that prevailed, limiting Boston to a season-low 39.1% shooting from the field and forcing them into 18 turnovers.
The Celtics, who ranked third in the NBA with a 50.1% shooting percentage, struggled to find their rhythm against the relentless pressure applied by the Timberwolves. Mazzula acknowledged the impact of Minnesota’s defensive strategy, stating, “Their overall pressure bothered us on the offensive end. So, that’s a good learning point for us.”
Overtime Drama and Edwards’ Heroics
The game remained deadlocked late in regulation, with Jaden McDaniels hitting a crucial 3-pointer to tie the score at 101-101 with 1:41 remaining. Both teams struggled to convert their opportunities in the final minutes, resulting in missed shots and turnovers.
In overtime, Mike Conley’s 3-pointer put the Timberwolves ahead for good at 106-105 with 3:08 left on the clock. Anthony Edwards then took over, sinking three consecutive jumpers to complete a decisive 9-0 run. McDaniels sealed the victory with a jumper, securing a three-point lead after Jayson Tatum’s late attempt to bring the Celtics back into contention.
“He loves the moment,” praised Wolves coach Chris Finch of Edwards. “We know we still have to get better at closing out games in regulation, but guys who like the moment are oftentimes few and far between. We’re lucky we have one on our team.”
The Boston Celtics will look to bounce back from their first loss of the season as they face the Philadelphia 76ers on Wednesday. Meanwhile, the Minnesota Timberwolves will aim to continue their winning streak at home against the New Orleans Pelicans on the same day.