NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Monday, February 4th (All times Eastern)
Portland Trail Blazers (24-23) at Minnesota Timberwolves (18-26), 8 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Minnesota Timberwolves target a rare winning streak when they resume a six-game homestand Monday night versus the Portland Trail Blazers.
The Timberwolves ended a six-game slide with a convincing 115-86 victory Saturday versus the New Orleans Hornets as Dante Cunningham scored 18 points and Nikola Pekovic added 14 points and seven rebounds in the winning cause.
Andrei Kirilenko and Alexey Shved netted 12 points apiece for the Timberwolves, who won for just the second time in their last 13 tries and improved to 12-9 in the Twin Cities. Minnesota also ended a three-game losing streak at home.
"Both sides thought it was a winnable game," Wolves forward Derrick Williams said. "D.C. (Cunningham) shot the ball well tonight and that helped. We all just felt good."
Minnesota still has San Antonio and New York scheduled to visit the Target Center and hasn't won two in a row since a four-game run from Dec. 7-15.
Portland is coming off a split of a home-and-home series with the Utah Jazz and recorded a 105-99 triumph Saturday in the Rose City.
Rookie Damian Lillard scored 23 points and Nicolas Batum fell just shy of a triple-double with 12 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists.
"I get points and assists very easily. It's rebounds that are really tough to get," Batum said. "For me, to get a triple-double, the hardest part is rebounds."
J.J. Hickson tallied 21 points with 11 rebounds and LaMarcus Aldridge totaled 18 points to go along with 11 boards for the Blazers, winners in four of their last six games.
The Blazers look to stop a four-game road losing streak and will commence a six-game excursion Monday night. They are 7-15 away from the Rose Garden this season.
In injury news for Portland, guard Wesley Matthews (sprained right ankle) is questionable against the Timberwolves and did not play in the last meeting with Utah. Matthews is averaging 15.0 ppg this season.
Portland is 2-0 against the Timberwolves this season and will host them March 2. The Trail Blazers are 19-2 in the past 21 meetings with the Wolves and 10-3 in the previous 13 encounters at the Target Center.
02/04 10:26:59 ET