Anthony Edwards Powers Timberwolves To Decisive Game 1 Win Over Suns

Anthony Edwards, Timberwolves, NBA Playoffs
NBA Analysis Network

Anthony Edwards dominated the third quarter, scoring 18 of his total 33 points to lead the Minnesota Timberwolves to a resounding 120-95 victory against the Phoenix Suns as the NBA playoffs kicked off on Saturday. This victory marked the Timberwolves’ first Game 1 win at home in two decades.

Alongside Edwards, Karl-Anthony Towns contributed 19 points, while Nickeil Alexander-Walker added 18 points on efficient 7-for-12 shooting. Rudy Gobert was a formidable presence in the paint, scoring 14 points, grabbing 16 rebounds, and altering shots, which was crucial for the Timberwolves’ defensive strategy.

Despite winning all their regular-season encounters against Minnesota, the sixth-seeded Suns were overwhelmed by the third-seeded Timberwolves, who were spurred on by a desire to overturn their previous outcomes.

“We just wanted to show we were the desperate team,” Edwards remarked.

NBA NEWS & PLAYOFFS: Anthony Edwards, Minnesota Timberwolves, Kevin Durant, Phoenix Suns Updates

Kevin Durant led the Suns in scoring with 31 points, efficiently making 11 of 17 shots. Devin Booker and Bradley Beal struggled, scoring 18 and 15 points, respectively, as the team suffered a significant disadvantage in rebounds and points in the paint.

The Timberwolves’ energy was palpable, particularly from Edwards, whose third-quarter performance included a 19-4 run and an emphatic dunk off a steal from Durant, sparking excitement and engagement from the home crowd. His vibrant spirit was evident even when off the court, as he energetically supported his teammates from the bench.

“It’s going to be hard to beat these guys,” Edwards said. “It’s just one game. They’re going to be ready to go the next time we play them.”

Despite Durant’s high performance, the Suns’ other key players, particularly Booker, found it challenging to penetrate Minnesota’s stout perimeter defense. Suns coach Frank Vogel acknowledged the need for more inventive strategies to free up Booker for better scoring opportunities.

“They’ve got some great perimeter defenders on that team, so we can do a more creative job of getting him open,” Vogel said.

NBA NEWS & PLAYOFFS: Anthony Edwards, Minnesota Timberwolves, Kevin Durant, Phoenix Suns Updates

Minnesota’s bench played a significant role, outscoring Phoenix’s reserves 41-18, with Alexander-Walker being a notable contributor. His defensive play at the end of the second quarter led to a fast-break layup, and his three-pointer just before the third-quarter buzzer extended the lead to 20 points.

Durant summed up the game succinctly, “It’s a make-or-miss league. You’ve got to knock down shots if you want to win.”

As the series prepares for Game 2 in Minneapolis before shifting to Phoenix, the Timberwolves have set a strong precedent, bolstered by a season of sellouts and a crowd that brought playoff intensity to the Target Center.

NBA NEWS & PLAYOFFS: Anthony Edwards, Minnesota Timberwolves, Kevin Durant, Phoenix Suns Updates

With high free-throw accuracy, including perfect performances from Towns and nearly perfect from Gobert, Minnesota looks well-prepared to contend for a deeper playoff run.

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