Timberwolves 105, Magic 104, OT
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP)—When it counted, Ricky Davis couldn’t miss.
The guard scored a season-high 36 points—including the Timberwolves’ last 13—and Minnesota beat the Orlando Magic 105-104 in overtime Sunday night.
“It was a great night,” Davis said. “(Coach Randy Wittman) kept calling my number, kept giving me the ball in scoring positions.”
“The play is designed—it depends on what the defense does as to who ends up with a particular shot,” Magic coach Brian Hill said. “Obviously there wasn’t a shot in the lane there.”
Davis scored the last six points in regulation and Minnesota’s only buckets in overtime. The fourth-quarter points happened in the last 1:30—a 3-pointer with 1:23 left and three free throws after getting Trevor Ariza in the air with 21 seconds left.
Nelson missed a jumper for the win at the regulation buzzer.
The victory broke a three-game skid for the Timberwolves and cut Orlando’s cushion over the Indiana Pacers to 1 1/2 games for the final Eastern Conference playoff spot.
“You’ve got to give them credit; they hit two, three, four big shots,” Nelson said.
Davis and the Timberwolves burned Orlando all game from behind the arc, going 8-of-16 while Orlando was just 1-of-11. Orlando’s only 3-pointer was a 37-foot runner from J.J. Redick just before halftime that drew the Magic to 54-53.
Aside from the late foul against Davis, Ariza came up big for the second straight game. He fueled several runs with driving layups—one a dazzling reverse to tie the game at 89 with 5:31 left—and shut down Garnett when Orlando’s big men rested.
“I was just trying to keep him from getting easy stuff, because he’s long,” Ariza said. “And trying to make it as tough as possible for him to get the ball where he wanted.”
The Magic outrebounded Minnesota 50-38, finally catching up when the Timberwolves blew a six-point lead in the fourth quarter.
Dwight Howard, facing double- and triple-teams all night, wasn’t a factor on offense, but had 19 rebounds. He got into early foul trouble and missed the entire second quarter, finishing with eight points on 3-of-5 shooting.
“They took Dwight out of the game, trapping him every time he touched it,” Grant Hill said. “He had a great game, a big game last time we played them up in Minnesota. (Former Magic assistant) Coach Wittman knows our team, knows Dwight, so he wasn’t going to let him get off.”
Randy Foye scored nine points—six of them on two pivotal 3-pointers that slowed Orlando’s momentum. But the rookie also stepped out of bounds driving the baseline on a key possession with less than 2 minutes left in the fourth quarter.
Orlando took its first lead since the opening minutes—70-69—with about 4 minutes left in the third quarter on two layups from Ariza. But Minnesota came right back, getting three points from Garnett in an 8-2 run that put the Timberwolves up 79-74 to start the fourth.
Orlando is 0-3 in overtime this season; Minnesota is 6-4. … Both teams entered the NBA in the 1989-90 expansion season. Orlando is 13-5 against Minnesota at home. … Several fans got trick April 1 pies in the face out of a pizza box from league mascots during a break.