Minnesota Timberwolves beat Charlotte Hornets in overtime 126-120

Karl-Anthony Towns #32 talks to D'Angelo Russell #0 of the Minnesota Timberwolves in the fourth quarter of the game against the Charlotte Hornets at Target Center on February 15, 2022 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Timberwolves defeated the Hornets 1

On a night where an extra 250 fans filled Target Center thanks to D’Angelo Russell buying seats for them as long as they would stay standing until the team scored its first points, they were given plenty to stand and cheer about as the Minnesota Timberwolves beat the Charlotte Hornets 126-120 in overtime.

Minnesota’s newly announced All-Star Karl-Anthony Towns led the team with a performance that could be described as exactly that – finishing with 39 points and 15 rebounds. Russell finished with 18 points and 11 assists, while Rising Star Jaden McDaniels finished with 18 points and six rebounds. 

After a hot start that saw the Timberwolves lead grow by as much as 12 points, the Hornets rallied behind last year’s Rookie of the Year LaMelo Ball to lead 58-52 at the half. The Timberwolves went cold down the stretch, missing their last 10 shots of the half.

McDaniels started the second half in place of Anthony Edwards, who was in discomfort warming up before the start of the third quarter before being ruled out for the game with an ankle injury.

With the offense still struggling to shoot the ball efficiently – going 9-for-43 from the perimeter at one point – the Timberwolves trailed the Hornets 87-78 after three. 

But Minnesota found its rhythm in the fourth. Towns nailed a 3-pointer with 90 seconds left to give the Timberwolves a 105-104 lead. A foul by Pat Beverley on Miles Bridges would tie the game 108-108 after a missed free throw, and send it into overtime.  

An alley-oop from Russell to McDaniels at the beginning of overtime opened the doors for more free-flowing scoring from the Timberwolves. Beverley was able to bait Ball into his final foul with 2:03 remaining, and the Timberwolves were able to close the game with a win.

The Timberwolves will play the second game of its back-to-back against the Toronto Raptors Wednesday at Target Center. At 31-27, they are firmly in the playoff hunt and currently hold the No. 7 spot in the Western Conference behind the Denver Nuggets.