Timberwolves hit new low in lopsided loss to lousy Sacramento
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The Minnesota Timberwolves did something most thought wasn't possible as their season continues to limp the barn.
They managed to hit a new a low.
The Wolves allowed the 17-win Sacramento Kings to go on a 21-0 second-half run on their way to a 127-95 loss which sets the mark for the second worse home loss in the history of the franchise.
Thankfully for the Wolves there are a number of excuses they can use for the worst loss of the season. Kevin Love left the game with a groin injury and did not return, Michael Beasley struggled to get loose with a hip injury and they just got back from a West coast road trip
"Needless to say that was a disappointment," coach Kurt Rambis said aafter the game. " We did not have the sort of effort and energy that is need to win a ball game."
The 32 point loss wasn't the biggest of the season, but make no mistake, the blowout loss to a Kings team that has lost eight of their past nine games is the latest indictment for a team that could very easily go winless their final 10 games of the season
The benefit of the loss for the Wolves is they are now level with the Kings in the win column for the worst record in the Western Conference. They trail only the Washington Wizards and the Cleveland Cavaliers for the worst record in the league and the race for the top spot in the annual Draft Lottery.
Love finished scoreless but added three rebounds and four assists before he left the game in the second quarter with a groin injury. He is day-to-day going forward but him missing games wouldn't be the worst thing for a Wolves team with nothing left to play for but draft status.
Beasley managed just 15 minutes while he continued to shake off a hip injury from a flagrant foul that landed Andrew Bynum a two game suspension Friday night against the Los Angeles Lakers. He finished with 13 points and a board.
"Obviously Michael wasn't 100 percent and Kevin going down obviously hurt us rebounding wise," Rambis said. "However even with Kevin out if weren't going to play the right way, I don't know if it would have made much of a difference."
The lone bright spot in the Wolves' starting five was Luke Ridnour's 22 points on 8-of-13 shooting including a perfect 3-of-3 from behind the arc. But even Ridnour shouldn't avoid criticism, finishing with four of the Wolves 25 turnovers.
Frustration boiled over for Ridnour when he got in a brief shoving match with Kings' center DeMarcus Cousins which led to the troubled rookie to be ejected.
"I'm just setting a screen and the next minute I'm getting pushed. They dealt with it the way they felt they should have dealt with it, and can't do nothing about that," Cousins said after the game.
With Ridnour flourishing offensively, backup Jonny Flynn continued to sit, getting just 13 minutes of run but found time to turn the ball over three times.
After the game, the Wolves players tossed out the usual clichés as their season winds to a close.
"It's very hard to keep losing. We just have to stay positive as much as possible," rookie Wesley Johnson said. He finished with just two points in 22 minutes as a starter.
"No question (this was a low point of the season)," Wayne Ellington said. "We didn't play anywhere near as well as we can, anywhere near our capabilities. We've got to get better and make a push to the end of the season."
The Wolves have Monday off and practice Tuesday as they continue to search for the answer to the countless question marks facing the team before hitting the road this weekend to face the playoff contending Dallas Mavericks and Oklahoma City Thunder.