Edwards Scores Season-High 44, Leads Timberwolves Victory Over Luka-Less Mavs

Anthony Edwards, Tim Hardaway Jr., Dallas Mavericks, Minnesota Timberwolves, NBA News
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Anthony Edwards delivered a remarkable performance with a season-high 44 points, and Rudy Gobert contributed 20 points and 11 rebounds, leading the Minnesota Timberwolves to a 118-110 victory over the Dallas Mavericks. The game was played without reigning NBA All-Stars Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving.

The Timberwolves showcased their strength at home, improving their record to 13-1 in their own arena. They haven’t lost two consecutive games this season. Despite trailing by a point in the third quarter, Minnesota surged ahead with a decisive 15-3 run, maintaining the lead for the remainder of the game.

“We’ve got so many weapons, so many guys that draw a lot of attention,” Gobert said. “If we just execute and make the game easy, we’re hard to guard. When the ball gets a little stagnant, we make it harder on ourselves. Tonight, we saw both faces.”

Doncic was absent due to left quadriceps soreness, missing his third game of the season. Irving missed his 11th game with a right heel contusion. Dallas coach Jason Kidd noted Doncic’s injury was aggravated during their Christmas Day game against Phoenix.

“We’re never satisfied with losing, but there are a lot of good things that we can take from this,” Kidd said. “I thought the energy and effort, guys competed. The bench was really good tonight.”

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In the absence of their leading scorers, Tim Hardaway Jr. stepped up for Dallas, scoring 32 points off the bench, while Jaden Hardy added 17 points. The Mavericks, however, have struggled recently, losing five of their last seven games.

The Timberwolves initially took a commanding lead in the first quarter, with Edwards aggressively targeting the Mavericks’ defense. Edwards, reflecting on his mindset, expressed his determination to be more assertive compared to the previous game.

“I put it in my mind before the game, like, I’m probably going to shoot it every time I touch it,” Edwards said. “I feel like last game I left bullets in the chamber. So, I ain’t want to do that this game.”

NBA NEWS & SCORES: Anthony Edwards, Minnesota Timberwolves, Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks Updates

Dallas remained competitive, thanks largely to Hardaway’s shooting and Minnesota’s turnovers, which led to 29 points for the Mavericks. Timberwolves coach Chris Finch emphasized the need for his team to mature offensively, despite their overall maturity this season.

“I thought at the end of the second quarter, in particular, we all were having a pity party for ourselves offensively,” Finch said. “There’s a lot of ways to be immature. And generally, this team has been very mature. But we gotta grow up offensively. It’s time.”

NBA NEWS & SCORES: Anthony Edwards, Minnesota Timberwolves, Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks Updates

Hardaway, excelling in his role coming off the bench, played a key role in the second half, particularly with his three-point shooting. Edwards’ performance in the third quarter was pivotal in Minnesota’s rally, and Kyle Anderson’s consecutive three-pointers in the fourth quarter helped secure the Timberwolves’ victory.

“Coming off the bench, he’s back into his role,” Kidd said. “I thought the group did a really great job of setting screens for him, and I thought he did a really good job of reading the defense, being able to pull up or race the big for a layup.”

Looking forward, the Mavericks will face the Golden State Warriors, while the Timberwolves are set to host the Los Angeles Lakers in their upcoming games.

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