MINNEAPOLIS - Less than 48 hours after they came back to beat streaking San Antonio in overtime at home, the Golden State Warriors did it again on Sunday in Minneapolis, overcoming a double-digit deficit to claim a 100-99 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Timberwolves guard Luke Ridnour's short floating runner at the final buzzer just missed, ending a game in which the Warriors trailed by 16 points in the first half and still persevered, thanks to Jarrett Jack's 23-point performance and David Lee's 22-point, 13-rebound game.
The Warriors trailed by nine points early in the final quarter, and by six points midway through the fourth. They were still behind 97-96 with 1:27 left before they scored four of the game's final six points.
Steph Curry's right-wing jumper gave them the lead for good - 98-97 - with 1:09 left on an afternoon when the Warriors got thumped 62-36 on points in the paint. But the Warriors' bench outscored the Wolves' bench 43-11.
Carl Landry's supplemented Jack's 23 points off the bench by scoring 19 himself.
Wolves guard Ricky Rubio came within two rebounds of his first career triple-double (16 points, 11 assists, eight rebounds, six steals).
The Wolves led 8-2, 16-6 and 32-16 before first quarter's end two days after the Warriors had stopped San Antonio's five-game road winning streak with an overtime victory at home on Friday night.
The Warriors recovered from a double-digit deficit in Friday's game against an opponent Golden State coach Mark Jackson called "the best team in basketball" with an "all-time great coach, a couple all-time great players and they execute."
"We found a way to execute, defend and get back in the ballgame," Jackson said. "It was a very impressive win for us."
It took his Warriors nearly a half Sunday to recover from that victory, but they got back in the game - and then some - thanks mostly to Jack, who made his first three three-pointers and had four threes and 16 points by halftime.
"I've said all along, he's my vote for Sixth Man of the Year," Jackson said before the game. "He competes. He defends. He gets after it. He's not afraid of the moment. He's a voice and when he's applying like that, he's off the chart. I think more and more people are understanding what he means to this basketball team."
By halftime, the Warriors had pulled within 55-52, a comeback they continued by starting the third quarter with a 13-6 run that got them their first lead. Curry's three-pointer gave them a 63-61 lead three minutes into the second half.
Golden State led by as many as four points before the Wolves used a 20-11 run featuring Derrick Williams and Nikola Pekovic that ended the third quarter and carried them to an 85-76 lead in the fourth quarter's opening seconds.
The Warriors came back again, tying the game at 93 with 3:32 left and then taking a 96-95 lead on Jack's fifth three-pointer of the afternoon with 1:48 left.
Rubio's falling layup put the Wolves back ahead by a point until Curry's right-wing jump made it 98-97 Golden State with 1:09 left.
NOTES: Wolves forward Kevin Love will have a checkup early next month with the New York City surgeon who repaired his broken right shooting hand and said he intends to still play the season's remaining 15 to 20 games. That would require a return by mid- to late March. He broke his hand for the second time this season on Jan. 3 at Denver and says now he probably should have had surgery when he broke it the first time in October doing knuckle pushups. "In hindsight, yes," he said. "But the doctor said I didn't necessarily need it." He will have that check late in the first week of March or early in the second week. ... Warriors center Andrew Bogut missed his second game while he continues to rehab a troublesome sprained ankle that has caused him to miss 38 games before he returned Jan. 28. Jackson urged patience and said there's no date for his return. ... Wolves forward Chase Budinger will return to Florida on Monday to see surgeon Dr. James Andrew for a checkup on his surgically repaired knee. He's hoping he'll get approval to do more running, jumping and cutting so that he can begin practice within the next two weeks. He had surgery in November to repair a torn lateral meniscus. "It's still a struggle to run and to jump off that leg," he said.