The Los Angeles Lakers came away with another huge victory on the road on Friday night, beating the Minnesota Timberwolves, 123-111.
The Lakers’ defense was slow out of the gate, allowing the Timberwolves to get to their preferred spots which put them down 9-4. Offensively, Los Angeles picked things up behind their pick and roll attack but Minnesota was able to respond with outside shooting on the other end to keep a seven-point lead.
Malik Beasley got off to one of his best starts off the bench in a while, nailing his first two 3-point attempts to get the Lakers within two points. Los Angeles played much better on both ends of the floor to close the quarter, but went into the second trailing 29-27.
Los Angeles’ offense kicked it into high gear at the top of the period, reeling off an 8-0 run before Karl-Anthony Towns ended it with his own personal 8-0 spurt. The starters for the Lakers were able to resettle things, though Rudy Gobert’s activity near the rim had them trailing 48-45.
Anthony Davis tried to shoulder the scoring load and did well to get baskets, but Gobert continued to take advantage on the other end to keep the Lakers at bay. Unfortunately, Los Angeles experienced breakdowns defensively and they would go into the locker room down 65-55.
Much like the first half, all the loose balls seemed to go in favor of the Timberwolves, who capitalized and were able to extend their lead to 12. Although the Lakers started to mount a comeback, disaster nearly struck when Davis appeared to roll his ankle after stepping on Wenyen Gabriel’s foot. By some miracle, though, Davis remained in the game.
Los Angeles’ defense finally came to life as they caused several turnovers that ignited their offense and they managed to retake a 79-78 lead. The purple and gold completely took over the momentum near the end of the quarter as the Timberwolves couldn’t hit shots, and they would walk into the fourth with a 90-83 lead.
Dennis Schroder gave the Lakers a jolt of energy defensively, drawing a charge and getting deflections to muck up the Timberwolves’ offense. Los Angeles applied even more pressure by getting in the bonus and fortunately were able to knock down free throws to extend their lead.
Davis went to work against Towns in the post, scoring on him on multiple possessions to keep Los Angeles well in front midway through the period. Without Gobert on the floor, the Lakers had little issues scoring and they would pick up perhaps their most important win of the season.
Have you subscribed to our YouTube channel? It’s the best way to watch player interviews, exclusive coverage from events, participate in live shows, and more!