After the Timberwolves defeat to the Nuggets in Game 3, Minnesota’s Anthony Edwards was seen staring intently into his locker as he reflected on the team’s impending elimination from the playoffs.
Edwards encouraged his squad by informing them that the Nuggets still had a chance to make the playoffs and needed to win one more game. The young star, which is just 21 years old, ensured that Minnesota’s season would continue and the series would continue in Denver.
On Sunday night, Edwards led the Timberwolves in scoring with 34 points. In comparison, Karl-Anthony Towns led the Nuggets in scoring with 17 points and 11 rebounds as the Timberwolves won Game 4 against the Nuggets 114-108 in overtime to escape elimination.
“I take pride. I didn’t want to say I was swept,” Edwards remarked. “I don’t ever want to claim that I let my career be washed away from me. Thus, I took what you said about me tonight.”
In addition to scoring 43 points, 11 rebounds, and six assists for the Nuggets, Nikola Jokic matched a postseason career best with this performance.
Jokic said that the team could finish out a series. “We simply didn’t. They were engaged in combat. They were in a hopeless situation. Nonetheless, things are what they are.
In addition, Rudy Gobert contributed 14 points and 15 rebounds for Minnesota, which maintained its lead even after Denver scored the game’s last 12 points to force overtime.
Tuesday marks the beginning of Game 5 in Denver.
“We’ve got some grit,” remarked Towns. It’s strange, but whenever the odds are stacked against us, we always find a way to come out on top. It’s wonderful that we got it tonight, but we must do it thrice.
Jamal Murray ended with 19 points, and Aaron Gordon scored 14 points for Denver, which seemed poised to have an opportunity to relax before the second round, in which it would play the winner of the series between the Suns and the Clippers, which the Suns now lead 3-1.
The fact that the Nuggets were trying to become the first team in their franchise’s history to win a series in four straight games did not go unnoticed by this year’s squad.
Murray said that “there’s a wasted chance, but we’re still in the lead, and we’ve still got a commanding advantage,” and that they will return to their location to “accomplish what we need to do.”
Although Towns was out for the whole season with a calf ailment, Edwards made significant strides in his development. He took over the scoring for the Timberwolves and delivered some thrilling moments for his squad. His experienced teammates backed him up and encouraged the athletic teenager to take charge of the games.
I am familiar with my squad. Edwards said, “I know they rely on me to pick us up.” “That is just what I am going to do. My experience has been that it is at times like those that I feel the most alive.
In the third quarter, Edwards sparked Minnesota’s comeback, which resulted in a 23-9 run for the squad. In the third period alone, he scored 16 of his team’s total points, and the Timberwolves took a 12-point lead in the middle of the fourth.
Chris Finch, the head coach of Minnesota, said of the player, “He’s got a specific attribute we spoke about.” At this juncture in time, he does not feel fear about those situations. You can see the material that they are made of. They can avoid them. That’s for sure not the case.
In the previous year’s tournament, Memphis eliminated Minnesota in the first round after blowing three double-digit fourth-quarter leads.
This time, Jokic was the one who stole another lead for the Wolves, but the Wolves were able to come back and win with 18 points in overtime.
Mike Malone, the head coach of Denver, predicted that his team would not remain unbeaten in the playoffs. “So, yes, we lost a game, we had our opportunities, but we have to go home and recover and not feel sorry for ourselves and get ready to play against a team that still has some life in them,” the coach said. “So, sure, we lost a game, we had our chances.”
The Wolves had their highest lead of the game when Edwards made a step-back jumper with 2:52 remaining in regulation, and it put them up 96-84, but the Nuggets responded with three consecutive 3-pointers to cut the Wolves lead to 96-84. In the last 49 seconds of the game, Jokic made a jump shot to trim the margin to one. At the opposite end of the court, Towns fouled him, and with twelve seconds left in the game, he hit one of two free throws to tie the game.
Edwards had possession of the ball with a chance to win the game in the final seconds, but Kentavious Caldwell-Pope stole it from him before he could take the shot.
His teammates commended Nickeil Alexander-Walker for his effort on defense against Murray, who scored an average of 27.3 points in the first three games. In overtime, Alexander-Walker scored six of his eight points, bringing his total for the game to 8.
Edwards said that “he was the most valuable player tonight.”
The Nuggets were the greatest shooting squad in the league during the regular season, but in the playoffs, they had the worst shooting percentages of any team in the series, shooting only 44.2% from the field and 12 of 35 from 3-point range. The Nuggets capitalized on 12 mistakes committed by the Timberwolves to score 22 points.
After getting an accidental hand to the face from Edwards in the fourth quarter, the Timberwolves Kyle Anderson, who had 11 points off the bench, was ruled out with a left eye/facial contusion and was taken out of the game. According to Finch, Anderson will consult with an ophthalmologist.