MINNEAPOLIS (KMSP) - It was the Timberwolves' biggest game in nearly a decade and a half, a winner-take-all affair that had the potential to propel Minnesota into the playoffs or send them home in despair—and it did not disappoint.
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.
Jimmy Butler scored 31 points and Karl-Anthony Towns had 26 in a gritty game that came down to a pair of foul shots from Andrew Wiggins with just under 15 seconds remaining in overtime.
With the Timberwolves coming out of halftime with an eight-point lead, Denver certainly didn't make it easy down the stretch, tying the game within the last two minutes of regulation and holding the line to force an overtime period.
The Timberwolves ultimately held on for the victory, with the capacity and white-towel-waving crowd at Target Center standing to soak in the moment as the final horn sounded. Butler flashed a smile of relief as he hugged his teammates and confetti fluttered above the floor. The fans even chanted "MVP! "MVP!" as Butler conducted a postgame interview.
Now, the Timberwolves move on to play the NBA-best Houston Rockets in the first round.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.