Anthony Edwards scores 34 to lead Timberwolves past Grizzlies 110-101

Anthony Edwards #5 of the Minnesota Timberwolves dunks the ball in the fourth quarter against the Memphis Grizzlies at Target Center on February 28, 2024 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. ((Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images))

There wasn’t anything easy about it, but the Minnesota Timberwolves improved to 3-1 after the All-Star break and 42-17 on the season after a 110-101 win over the Memphis Grizzlies Wednesday night at Target Center.

Anthony Edwards had a game-high 34 points, including 17 in the third quarter, as the Timberwolves fought back from double-digit deficits multiple times. They trailed 14-0 to start, were down 53-50 at half and trailed by as many as 11 in the third quarter before using a 14-3 run to tie the game 81-81.

On the second night of a back-to-back, it took Minnesota a half to figure itself out.

"You can say we didn’t have a ton of juice. The way that they were going to guard us, they were going to force us to put the work in offensively. I wasn’t losing my mind," Timberwolves coach Chris Finch said after the win. "Guys found a way, back-to-back, a lot of guys played heavy minutes last night. It was a really good win for us."

Edwards might have been the top scorer, but Naz Reid was the difference-maker for the second straight night. He had 19 points off the bench, after scoring 22 in a reserve role in Tuesday night’s win over the Spurs. Karl-Anthony Towns had 13 points and eight rebounds, and Nickeil Alexander-Walker added 12 points and five assists off the bench. Jaden McDaniels had 12 points as the Timberwolves had five players in double figures, and put the game away with a dunk to give Minnesota a 110-101 lead with 1:09 to play.

"We started to look more like a desperate team, like the one that wanted to win more. Started making plays that were going to help us win the game. A lot of times in the earlier stages of this season we would’ve lost a game like that," Alexander-Walker told FOX 9's Pierre Noujaim after the game. "We came together and we were able to grind it out and find a way."

Jaren Jackson Jr. led the Grizzlies with 33 points, but had just six after Edwards started guarding him in the third quarter. Edwards also scored 19 points during that stretch.

"He took the Jackson match-up, basically shut his water off and did a great job turning the game around on both ends of the floor in the third. His effort on defense set the tone," Finch said. "He asked for it earlier in the game, but I wanted to throw as many bodies at him as we could.:

The Timberwolves improved to 22-6 at Target Center this season, even if it wasn’t the prettiest at times. The Grizzlies made it a game despite being without Ja Morant, Desmond Bane, Brandon Clarke, Luke Kennard, Scottie Pippen Jr. and Marcus Smart. 

The Timberwolves won 42 regular season games last year. They won their 42nd this season Wednesday night, and still have 23 games to play. They have a half-game lead over the Oklahoma City Thunder for the No. 1 spot in the Western Conference.

Minnesota is now 2-1 on its seven-game home stand out of the All-Star break, with the Sacramento Kings up next Friday night.