Towns stuffs the stat-sheet in Wolves victory over Knicks

Saturday, 13 Jan, 2018

The loss was the Knicks' 10th in their last 13 games.

Karl-Anthony Towns finished an assist shy of a triple-double for Minnesota.

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Centre Karl-Anthony Towns tallied 18 points and 12 assists for his 35th double-double this season for the Timberwolves, who are playing some of their best basketball of the season and have three straight resounding home wins in a row.

Towns finished with 23 points, 15 rebounds and nine assists. Jimmy Butler scored 13 points to go with three steals. Taj Gibson added 17 points and six rebounds. In his return from a leg injury, Tim Hardaway Jr. led the bench with 16 points.

Tim Hardaway Jr., returning from a stress fracture in his leg, chipped in with 16 points, while Kristaps Porzingis had 17, Enes Kanter 16, Courtney Lee 14, Michael Beasley 13 and Kyle O'Quinn 12 for NY.

Jarrett Jack led NY with 18 points and eight assists. Nemanja Bjelica provided a huge lift by knocking down a pair of three-pointers with Beasley providing little resistance.

The Wolves move to 28-16, fourth in the West and a half-game behind the Spurs for third. Porzingis also grabbed 10 rebounds as the Knicks fell to 19-23.

With five seconds left in the second quarter, Towns hit Butler with an over-the-head pass which gave Butler an easy layup.

Minnesota is on the rise having beaten New Orleans, Cleveland and Oklahoma City in recent home games thanks to their improving defence and consistently solid offence.

Neither team had much of an edge defensively in the first half as the Wolves attempted three free throws while the Knicks failed to take a first-half free throw for the first time since 2003. It's their longest home winning streak since winning 14 in a row from December 16, 2003 to February 6, 2004.

The Wolves shot 54.5 percent from the floor and the 3-point line in the final quarter while outscoring the road team 31-22. His double-double was his 36th of the season.