WASHINGTON – Power forward Bobby Portis scored a double-double of 26 points and 12 rebounds to lead the Washington Wizards to a 135-121 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves at the Capital One Arena on Sunday night.
Along with Portis, six other Wizards players posted double-digit totals, including shooting guard Bradley Beal and power forward Jabari Parker, who scored 22 points each.
“Coming out of the all star break, I hadn’t really had a good shooting night like I wanted,” Portis told reporters in the locker room after the game. “I was due for one, and tonight it happened for me.”
Jabari Parker praised the Wizards starting quintet for setting the team on the road to an ultimately comfortable win, particularly after a lopsided third quarter, in which Washington outscored the visitors by 12.
“I think we got off to a good start,” Parker said. “The starting five did a got job, giving us good energy.”
Minnesota had led by 14 points at the half time break thanks after dominating inside the paint.
Fifty-two of their 64 first half points came from inside the three-point line, and the Wizards second half turnaround began by limiting the damage the Timberwolves were inflicting inside the perimeter.
“We talked about it (at half time),” coach Scott Brooks. “They had 52, they were on pace for, I’m assuming, an NBA record of 104 for the game. They stepped it up in that third quarter and guarded the paint, and played much better defensively.”
Small forward Trevor Ariza scored 16 points to emerge as the fourth highest scorer for the Wizards (26-37), who won their second game in three after losing four in a row.
In a match between teams with losing records who are out of playoff contention, center Karl-Anthony Towns was, once again, the leading scorer of the Timberwolves with a double-double of 28 points and 10 rebounds.
He also made seven assists, but he was unable to maintain the three-match streak of scoring at least 30 points.
Veteran point guard Derrick Rose scored 18 points from the bench and was the second-highest scorer of the Timberwolves (29-34), who have lost four of their last five games played.
Power forward Taj Gibson also scored double-double of 14 points and 10 rebounds, while small forward Andrew Wiggins matched his tally of 14 points.