Wolves overpower Suns for 2-0 series lead

Agence France-Presse
Wolves overpower Suns for 2-0 series lead
Jaden McDaniels of the Minnesota Timberwolves reacts after his 3-point basket against the Phoenix Suns in the fourth quarter of Game 2 of the Western Conference First Round Playoffs at the Target Center on April 23, 2024 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Timberwolves defeated the Suns, 105-93.
David Berding / Getty Images / AFP

LOS ANGELES – Jaden McDaniels scored 25 points as the Minnesota Timberwolves dominated the Phoenix Suns, 105-93, to take a 2-0 lead in their best-of-seven NBA Western Conference playoff series on Tuesday (Wednesday Manila time).

McDaniels led a balanced Minnesota offensive effort that saw all five starters finish in double digits as the third seeds moved to within two wins of a series victory.

But it was the Timberwolves defense that turned the game in the home side's favor, shutting down Phoenix in the second half to frustrate Suns stars Kevin Durant and Devin Booker.

A torrid night for Phoenix ended with Booker fouling out in the fourth quarter while the Suns also were handed an injury scare, with Grayson Allen hobbling off in the third quarter after rolling an ankle.

It means Suns coach Frank Vogel will have his work cut out for him when the series heads to Arizona for game three on Friday.

The Timberwolves will go into that fixture brimming with confidence after restricting Phoenix's offense to 42 second half points.

Minnesota scored 31 points off 20 Phoenix turnovers while the Suns took just two points from the Wolves 14 turnovers throughout the game.

"We've had issues with that throughout the course of the year, taking care of the basketball and it reared its head again tonight," Vogel said.

"They're an elite defensive team, probably the best defensive team in the league that we're playing against."

McDaniels led the home side's scoring with 25 points, eight rebounds and three assists while Rudy Gobert and Mike Conley added 18 apiece.

Anthony Edwards finished with 15 points, eight assists and three rebounds and Karl-Anthony Towns finished with 12 points.

"We got a lot of guys who can put the ball in the basket," Minnesota coach Chris Finch said. "We're really making the right plays right now."

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