Timberwolves earn first playoff berth since 2004 with win over Denver

Karl-Anthony Towns

Timberwolves earn first playoff berth since 2004 with win over Denver

But so much has happened for both teams since then that Minnesota vs. Denver on Wednesday night isn't even a regular-season game anymore.

It all comes down to Wednesday night for the final postseason spot in a wild Western Conference playoff race: two risky teams in the Minnesota Timberwolves and Denver Nuggets will duke it out in the Mile High City to determine who plays on and who goes home for the summer.

The Timberwolves are moving on to play, gulp, the NBA-best Houston Rockets in the first round.

Utah's game at Portland will decide the No. 3 seed in the Western Conference.

Turnovers: Denver had 15 for 24 points, a problem all season that popped up in the final game. Butler suffered a torn meniscus against the Rockets February 23: he underwent surgery on the 25 and returned April 6 against the Lakers The Timberwolves are 5 in the league in field goal percentage as the team shoots 47.6 percent from the floor. But after the first quarter, Minnesota held a small lead, 29-26.

If the Timberwolves win, the Hawks would have three picks in the first round of the 2018 NBA Draft.

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Among those in attendance, State Police-Mt Pleasant Post Lt. Strong communities help strengthen families, Floyd said. It's a message children's advocates share every day.

Rarely has the final game of the regular season been so clear cut in terms of playoff chances. Expect a big night out of Butler as he lives for these kind of games, while Towns is a super reliable double-double machine and is fully capable of winning a battle against a top-notch center such as Jokic. Karl-Anthony Towns continues to be a force, averaging 21.3 points, 12.3 rebounds and 1.4 blocks per game.

Casey says the Raptors have been mindful of minutes all season for the team's "high-usage" players like Lowry and DeRozan. Winners of eight in a row, the Nuggets struggled through their last game. Their reward for finally getting back to the postseason, of course, is taking on a Rockets juggernaut led by the two-headed point guard monster of Harden and Chris Paul, a crew that has been demolishing the competition all season. Denver's victory over Portland ended about an hour after Minnesota's, but the players expressed nonchalance about following along as they left the arena. Denver performed quite well in the road game at Minnesota back on December 27, falling 128-125 in overtime. This was one of his best games of the year and another game is needed like this tonight. This team is very solid and with the return of Butler, they should easily run through this team. They met in the opening round of the 1997 playoffs with the Rockets sweeping that best-of-five series.

The Timberwolves' win secured the eighth place in the Western Conference, setting up a nightmare first-round series with the first-place Houston Rockets.

The last time there was a winner-take-all game played in Minneapolis (1997) some of the current Timberwolves players couldn't say "basketball" let alone dribble one.

Anthony Davis' haul of 22 points and 15 rebounds ensured the New Orleans Pelicans beat the San Antonio Spurs 122-98.

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