Timberwolves howl, beat Nuggets in OT to reach playoffs

Jimmy Butler adjusted his mouth guard in the first quarter

With a 112-106 victory over the Denver Nuggets in overtime Wednesday, the Timberwolves are now looking at their first postseason since 2004, ending the NBA's longest-running playoff drought in the process.

Former Duquesne guard Aaron Jackson, who has played professionally overseas since graduating from DU in 2009, made his National Basketball Association debut last night as a member of the Houston Rockets. They lost twice at Dallas, including a March 6 defeat in which Jokic and Murray were benched for the entire fourth quarter.

NEW ORLEANS - Anthony Davis had 22 points, 15 rebounds, four blocks and three steals, and New Orleans assured itself no worse than the sixth seed in the Western Conference.

On the last possession of regulation, Wolves guard Jamal Crawford shot a 32-foot, 3-point jumper that would have won the game, but fell well short of the basket sending the game into overtime. But after looking like he had regained some rhythm during this six-game winning streak, Millsap finished the season with two stinkers. The Rockets won all four regular season meetings between the two teams. Denver Nuggets broadcast Wednesday night on FOX Sports North PLUS was the highest-rated Wolves game ever on the regional sports network.

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This means that in the four meetings with Minnesota, the Rockets have scored almost 18 more points per 100 possessions than their yearly average while posting a 4-0 record in the process. Minnesota outscored Denver 11-5, taking the lead for good when Jeff Teague hit a floater just before the shot-clock buzzer to put his team up 107-106 with 1:19 to play. He also had six points and 19 assists against the Grizzlies to finish the season with averages of 25.4 and 10.3, respectively, in those categories. He intended on playing until he reached double figures, and James reached 10 points with about two minutes left in the first quarter before checking out for the rest of the game with 87 seconds left in the period.

Gibson played through a sore neck that forced him out of the last game in the first quarter, finishing with eight points in 35 minutes.

Star swingman Jimmy Butler led the way, scoring 29 points, while racking up five assists and five rebounds. Boston finished second in the Eastern Conference. Anthony Tolliver had 18 points, and Henry Ellenson contributed 14 points with 10 rebounds for Detroit. Nuggets coach Michael Malone dropped an Apollo Creed reference before the game, saying that he'd play Harris 30 minutes if necessary because "there's no tomorrow". Rookie Lauri Markkanen had 20 points for Chicago.

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