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Timberwolves Defeat 76ers 125-102

In a game that fairly screamed for the regular season to start, the Wolves won a summer-league style contest against a team that is perfecting its tanking style even in preseason.

Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

In a game in which none of the Wolves projected starters played more than 18 minutes, and only Kevin Martin appeared in the 2nd half, the Wolves won a game that resembled an extended summer league run in Philadelphia tonight, 125-122.

The Wolves went with their normal four starters plus Robbie Hummel at the small forward spot to start the game, and it got off to a fairly brisk start.  Both teams were scoring early, and in particular Kevin Love was on his offensive game in the first quarter, making three 3 pointers and running the floor effectively.  Love finished with 19 points in 16 minutes, going 4-6 from three.  He did not appear in the 2nd half.

Nor did Ricky Rubio, who didn't make a basket but still had a triple nickel (steals, assists, rebounds) in his first half stint.

J.J. Barea led an effective 2nd unit that built a second quarter lead with contributions from Alexey Shved and Ronny Turiaf, who was impressive on the glass all night.  Barea managed 22 points in 17 minutes on 7-11 shooting.  It was good J.J. tonight, and by the time he was done midway through the third quarter, so was the game.

The story of the game for the Wolves was their lights out 3 point shooting.  They finished the game 15-29 from behind the arc, and five players made multiple 3s (Love, Barea, Martin, Shved, and Price).

The Wolves also went to the line 38 times, while Philly got there for 34 attempts.

Not a ton to take away from this one.  It was ragged throughout, especially in the 2nd half, and the Wolves sent 16 guys out there.  Among the guys competing for minutes and/or roster spots, everyone had their moments, both good and bad.

Hummel couldn't buy a jumper, which can't be good for him.  Shabazz Muhammad had a couple of nice plays around the paint, but his shooting is horrendous. Gorgui Dieng had a couple of plays offensively but also tried to do too much at times. A.J. Price looked comfortable running garbage time.

Adelman suggested we might see more from the starters in tomorrow night's game in Detroit.  One more exhibition before the real games start next week.

What did you notice?