Paul Millsap had 25 points, Jamal Murray added 18 and the Denver Nuggets used a 35-point third quarter to beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 103-101 on Wednesday night.
Karl-Anthony Towns led Minnesota with 22 points, and Derrick Rose added 20 off the bench.
Minnesota trailed 89-76 early in the fourth quarter when its bench triggered a 12-0 run to make it a game again. Rose hit four free throws and a 3-pointer and Dario Saric added five points in the run.
Gary Harris ended the run with a 3-pointer and added two more driving baskets to help Denver maintain its lead. Nikola Jokic, who was 2-for-11 from the field and had missed all four of his 3-point attempts, drained a 3 to push Denver’s lead to 101-95 with 3:07 to play.
Towns picked up two quick fouls and sat for much of the first quarter. But he came back strong in the second, scoring nine straight points for the Wolves as they built a six-point halftime lead.
Millsap started the pivotal third quarter with five points in a quick 7-0 run that put Denver on top 57-56. He then scored on a fast break, connected on a jumper and hit a 3-pointer to push his shooting totals to 10-for-11 on the night.
But Millsap’s scoring binge was interrupted when he hit the floor hard in a collision with Towns midway through the third quarter. He went to the locker room holding a towel to his head and received stitches for a facial laceration. He returned with 7:02 to play in the fourth quarter.
But Murray picked up where Millsap left off, hitting his second and third 3-pointers of the quarter and dropping in a floater to push Denver’s lead to 80-67.
Nuggets: After starting the season 9-1, Denver has lost six of its last eight. . Jokic and LeBron James are the only two NBA players to lead his team in points, rebounds, assists and steals. Jokic ended the night with seven points, 12 rebounds, 10 assists and one steal.
Timberwolves: Towns entered the game as one of nine players to have made at least one 3-pointer in every game he’s played in this year. He extended the streak with a 3-pointer in the third quarter and finished the game 1-for-5 from behind the arc. . The Wolves assigned F Keita Bates-Diop to their G-League team in Iowa. . Minnesota wrapped up a five-game homestand with a 3-2 record. The Wolves are 7-3 at home but are winless in eight road games
Nuggets: Host Orlando Friday night.
Timberwolves: At Brooklyn on Friday.
Source: The Associated Press