Tuesday, March 04, 2014
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Timberwolves 132, Nuggets 128

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[March 04, 2014]  DENVER — Timberwolves 132, Nuggets 128: Kevin Love had 33 points and 19 rebounds as Minnesota held on for the victory to tie a franchise record with its fourth win on the five-game road trip.

Kevin Martin added 22 points, sinking six free throws in the final 16 seconds, for the Timberwolves, who climbed above .500 for the first time since Jan. 29. Corey Brewer, Nikola Pekovic and J.J. Barea added 16 points apiece for Minnesota.

Ty Lawson finished with a season-high 31 points, 11 assists and four steals for Denver in his first game back after missing the last nine with a fractured rib. Wilson Chandler added 25 points and 10 rebounds, Randy Foye scored 22 points and Kenneth Faried finished with 21 for the Nuggets, who have lost six straight and 11 of 12.

Even with Lawson back in the starting lineup, the Nuggets faced an uphill climb right from the start, as starting center Timofey Mozgov collected two fouls in the first 94 seconds and the Timberwolves sprinted to a 40-25 lead after the opening quarter. Foye kept Minnesota from running away with an early victory by scoring 10 points in the second quarter, keeping the Nuggets within 17 at the half.

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Five quick points by Pekovic to start the third quarter and a 3-pointer by Love gave the Timberwolves their biggest lead at 74-51 and Minnesota eventually took a 15-point advantage into the fourth. The Timberwolves left the door open by missing five free throws in the final 1:23 while the Nuggets sank four 3s in the final 23 seconds, trimming the deficit to single digits before Martin finally closed them out at the line to finish the road trip with a 4-1 mark.

GAME NOTEBOOK: Barea shot 25-for-37 in the four games against Denver this season. … Denver’s bench combined to outscore Minnesota’s by 27 points in the first three meetings, but was outscored 40-25 in the series finale. … The Timberwolves shot 64 free throws — making 52 — compared to 25 for Denver while Love's double-double was his 50th of the season.

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