Timberwolves maintain balance, blast Blazers

Minnesota Timberwolves center Karl-Anthony Towns (32) shoots the ball over Portland Trail Blazers forward Al-Farouq Aminu (8) in the first half at Target Center on Friday, Nov. 16.

MINNEAPOLIS — Andrew Wiggins led six Minnesota Timberwolves in double figures with 23 points in a 112-96 romp past the visiting Portland Trail Blazers on Friday night, Nov. 16.

Derrick Rose scored 17 points, Robert Covington and Karl-Anthony Towns added 14 each, Jeff Teague had 13 and Taj Gibson contributed 12 for the Timberwolves, who won their third straight game and avenged a 111-81 defeat at Portland on Nov. 4.

Minnesota shot .500 from the field, including 12 for 28 (.429) on 3-point attempts.

CJ McCollum scored 18 points, Damian Lillard added 16 and Jusuf Nurkic contributed 13 points and 11 rebounds for the Blazers, who have lost two in a row. Portland made only 8 of 29 shots from 3-point range and had 18 turnovers.

Covington scored 11 points to help Minnesota to a 55-43 halftime edge. Nurkic had 13 points for the Blazers, who were 3-for-13 from 3-point range and committed 13 turnovers in the first half.

McCollum scored on consecutive driving layups to get Portland within 62-56 early in the third quarter. The Timberwolves answered with a 9-2 spurt to increase the lead to 71-58. They hiked it to 79-62 late in the quarter and settled for an 83-67 advantage heading into the final quarter.

The Wolves put it away with a 9-0 run to go ahead 102-78 with six minutes remaining. The Blazers got no closer than 16 points the rest of the way.

Minnesota jumped to a 14-7 lead, increasing it to 29-21 after one quarter.

It was 51-37 after a Covington 3-pointer late in the second quarter. Minnesota's advantage was 12 points at the half.