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Reserves power Timberwolves past Cavs

Jan 14, 2023; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves center Rudy Gobert (27) and Cleveland Cavaliers forward Isaac Okoro (35) battle for a loose ball during the first quarter at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Anthony Edwards scored 26 points, dished seven assists and grabbed six rebounds, and the Minnesota Timberwolves’ bench contributed 56 points en route to a 110-102 win over the visiting Cleveland Cavaliers on Saturday in Minneapolis.

Naz Reid’s 17 points and Jaylen Nowell’s 16 points paced the Minnesota reserves, who combined to outscore the Cleveland bench by a 29-point margin. Reid also grabbed a team-high seven rebounds in 28:09 of action.

In total, five Timberwolves off the bench scored at least seven points, with Austin Rivers and Taurean Prince each chipping in seven and Luka Garza adding nine on 4-of-5 shooting from the floor.

Garza’s efforts sparked Minnesota early in the fourth quarter after trailing the entire third period. He scored seven of the Timberwolves’ first nine points to open the stanza, jump-starting a 24-10 surge spanning 6:47.

Minnesota’s backups helped carrying much of the offensive load on a night when Edwards was the sole Timberwolves starter to score in double figures. Edwards shot 10 of 18 from the floor en route to his game-high scoring, including 3 of 6 from 3-point range.

Jaden McDaniels and D’Angelo Russell each scored nine points for the Wolves. Kyle Anderson finished with four points, five rebounds, four assists, three blocks and two steals.

Rudy Gobert was limited to six points and four rebounds in 13:25, the result of a groin injury. Gobert’s former Utah Jazz teammate and current Cleveland leading scorer, Donovan Mitchell, came into Saturday’s matchup averaging 29.2 points per game.

Minnesota held him to less than half that, with 14 points on 5-of-16 shooting from the floor. Jarrett Allen and Evan Mobley led the Cavaliers with 19 points each, and both grabbed game-highs of eight rebounds.

Darius Garland scored 15 points and Caris LeVert added 12. Garland committed four turnovers, the most for Cleveland on a night that it coughed up possession 18 times as a team.

–Field Level Media