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Timberwolves star Anthony Edwards says Clippers were ‘scared to guard me’ late in play-in game win

Jason Burgos

Anthony Edwards had a big game in the Minnesota Timberwolves NBA play-in victory over the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday night, and he says it was all possible because of LA’s fear of guarding him late.

The Timberwolves earned their first playoff birth since 2018 with an incredible 21-5 run late in their 109-104 victory against the Clippers. The win was a crowning moment in a surprise season where the Timberwolves finished 10 games over .500 and ended a string of three straight seasons with 45 or more losses.

Related: Check out the next set of NBA play-in matchups on the NBA games today schedule

Several key three-point buckets from D’Angelo Russell and a steal from former Clippers player Patrick Beverly late sealed the game for Minnesota, but that all wouldn’t have been possible without Edwards’ game-high 30-points. This was huge considering the team’s incumbent lead scorer Karl-Anthony Towns was only able to muster up 11 points in 24 minutes of action.

Anthony Edwards says Los Angeles Clippers played scared late in play-in loss

anthony edwards, clippers, timberwolves
Credit: Nick Wosika-USA TODAY Sports

Edwards was the heart of the offense throughout the game and pivotal in the team’s 31-point fourth quarter. The second-year player’s hot hand became so problematic for the Clippers, that Edwards claimed after the game — that while he took what the defense offered — he believes Los Angeles was scared to D him up late in their win or go home play-in matchup.

“I took what the game gave me,” said Edwards. “And that is what they gave me. ‘They were scared to guard me, and I took advantage of that.”

  • Anthony Edwards stats (2021-2022): 21.3 PPG, 4.8 REB, 3.8 AST

Coming up big in the franchise’s most important game in several years was something Edwards had dreamed about in the days leading up to the matchup. So much so that he ever fantasized about hitting the game-winner, and mirroring Minnesota legend Kevin Garnett’s classic celebration from the team’s playoff years in the early 2000s.

“I ain’t going to lie, that’s been on my mind since I figured we were playing them,” Edwards said of standing on the scoring table like Garnett once did. “I’ve been going to sleep [and] saying I’m going to hit the game-winning shot and I’m going to go jump on the table.”

Edwards will get the chance to make some more memorable moments when the Timberwolves begin their Western Conference first-round playoff series against the second-seeded Memphis Grizzlies on Saturday.