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NBA FINAL IN OT 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH OT TOTAL --- --- --- --- --- ----- MINNESOTA 23 10 20 35 17 105 DENVER 26 20 24 18 9 97 FINAL IN 1ST OT

HIGH SCORERS: MIN - KEVIN GARNETT 30, BOBBY JACKSON 20, ANTHONY PEELER 17 DEN - JAMES POSEY 23, ANTONIO MCDYESS 20, RAEF LAFRENTZ 13

HIGH REBOUND: MIN - KEVIN GARNETT 14, JOE SMITH 9 DEN - RAEF LAFRENTZ 13, GEORGE MCCLOUD 10

HIGH ASSISTS: MIN - BOBBY JACKSON 5, TWO PLAYERS WITH 3 DEN - CORY ALEXANDER 7, JAMES POSEY 4

ATT: 19,099


Extended Box

MINNESOTA (105) AT DENVER (97) - FINAL IN OT

MINNESOTA REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

K GARNETT F 43 10-22 10-15 0 14 14 3 4 2 2 30 MITCHELL F 25 3-7 0-0 1 4 5 2 1 0 0 6 NESTEROVIC C 21 0-8 0-0 2 0 2 1 2 0 0 0 JACKSON G 37 7-14 6-7 1 1 2 5 3 3 0 20 SEALY G 22 1-6 6-8 1 4 5 1 2 1 1 8 SZCZERBIAK 30 4-7 3-4 1 1 2 3 5 0 1 12 SMITH 31 0-7 2-4 4 5 9 2 4 1 0 2 AVERY 16 2-6 5-5 0 1 1 1 3 0 1 10 PEELER 33 5-10 5-6 1 1 2 2 5 3 2 17 HAMMONDS 7 0-1 0-0 2 4 6 0 1 0 1 0 BRANDON DNP - SPRAINED LEFT ANKLE D GARRETT DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 265 32-88 37-49 13 35 48 20 30 10 8 105 (.364) (.755) TEAM REBS: 11 TOTAL TO: 9(13 PTS)

DENVER REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

MCDYESS F 33 9-21 2-4 1 8 9 3 6 0 2 20 POSEY F 40 6-15 8-8 0 6 6 4 0 2 2 23 LAFRENTZ C 33 4-9 3-8 2 11 13 0 6 0 2 13 ALEXANDER G 35 3-9 4-8 1 4 5 7 5 0 4 11 STITH G 30 1-3 3-3 4 2 6 2 3 1 2 5 CLARK 13 1-3 0-1 0 4 4 1 3 0 0 2 ABDUL-WAHAD 24 1-6 3-4 2 1 3 1 1 0 2 5 GATLING 24 4-13 0-0 2 5 7 0 3 0 2 8 MCCLOUD 30 1-5 8-10 4 6 10 2 6 0 3 10 JONES 2 0-0 0-0 1 0 1 0 2 0 0 0 ROGERS 1 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 VAN EXEL DNP - RIGHT GROIN STRAIN

TOTALS 265 30-84 31-46 17 47 64 20 35 3 19 97 (.357) (.674) TEAM REBS: 14 TOTAL TO: 19(21 PTS)

MINNESOTA 23 10 20 35 17 - 105 DENVER 26 20 24 18 9 - 97

BLOCKED SHOTS: MINNESOTA - SMITH 4, K GARNETT 3, PEELER, NESTEROVIC, SEALY, AVERY. DENVER - POSEY 3, LAFRENTZ 3, MCCLOUD 2, CLARK, ABDUL-WAHAD, GATLING, STITH. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: MINNESOTA 4-10 (.400), K GARNETT 0-1, JACKSON 0-2, SZCZERBIAK 1-1, AVERY 1-3, PEELER 2-3. DENVER 6-13 (.462), POSEY 3-5, LAFRENTZ 2-3, ALEXANDER 1-2, STITH 0-2, GATLING 0-1. TECHNICALS: MINNESOTA - PEELER, SMITH, DENVER - POSEY. OFFICIALS: STEVE JAVIE, TOMMY NUNEZ, TOMMIE WOOD. A - 19,099. T - 2:41.


Box Score

MINNESOTA (105) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp K Garnett 43 10-22 10-15 0-14 3 4 30 Mitchell 25 3-7 0-0 1-5 2 1 6 Nesterovic 21 0-8 0-0 2-2 1 2 0 Jackson 37 7-14 6-7 1-2 5 3 20 Sealy 22 1-6 6-8 1-5 1 2 8 Szczerbiak 30 4-7 3-4 1-2 3 5 12 Smith 31 0-7 2-4 4-9 2 4 2 Avery 16 2-6 5-5 0-1 1 3 10 Peeler 33 5-10 5-6 1-2 2 5 17 Hammonds 7 0-1 0-0 2-6 0 1 0 Brandon DNP - sprained left ankle D Garrett DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 265 32-88 37-49 13-48 20 30 105 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.364, FT-.755. 3-Point Goals: 4-10, .400 (K Garnett 0-1, Jackson 0-2, Szczerbiak 1-1, Avery 1-3, Peeler 2-3). Team rebounds: 11. Blocked shots: 11 (Smith 4, K Garnett 3, Peeler, Nesterovic, Sealy, Avery). Turnovers: 9 (K Garnett 2, Peeler 2, Avery, Hammonds, Sealy, Szczerbiak). Steals: 10 (Jackson 3, Peeler 3, K Garnett 2, Sealy, Smith).

DENVER (97) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Mcdyess 33 9-21 2-4 1-9 3 6 20 Posey 40 6-15 8-8 0-6 4 0 23 Lafrentz 33 4-9 3-8 2-13 0 6 13 Alexander 35 3-9 4-8 1-5 7 5 11 Stith 30 1-3 3-3 4-6 2 3 5 Clark 13 1-3 0-1 0-4 1 3 2 Abdul-wahad 24 1-6 3-4 2-3 1 1 5 Gatling 24 4-13 0-0 2-7 0 3 8 Mccloud 30 1-5 8-10 4-10 2 6 10 Jones 2 0-0 0-0 1-1 0 2 0 Rogers 1 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 Van Exel DNP - right groin strain _______________________________________________ TOTALS 265 30-84 31-46 17-64 20 35 97 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.357, FT-.674. 3-Point Goals: 6-13, .462 (Posey 3-5, Lafrentz 2-3, Alexander 1-2, Stith 0-2, Gatling 0-1). Team rebounds: 14. Blocked shots: 12 (Posey 3, Lafrentz 3, Mccloud 2, Clark, Abdul-wahad, Gatling, Stith). Turnovers: 19 (Alexander 4, Mccloud 3, Abdul-wahad 2, Gatling 2, Lafrentz 2, Mcdyess 2, Posey 2, Stith 2). Steals: 3 (Posey 2, Stith). _________________________________________________ Minnesota 23 10 20 35 17 - 105 Denver 26 20 24 18 9 - 97 _________________________________________________ Technical fouls: Minnesota 2 (Peeler, 9:54 2nd; Smith, 1:21 3rd). Denver 1 (Posey, 1:21 3rd). Flagrant fouls: None. A: 19,099. T: 2:41. Officials: Steve Javie, Tommy Nunez, Tommie Wood.


Game Story

DENVER (Ticker) -- Denver Nuggets point guard Nick Van Exel missed his first game of the season tonight and had to watch helplessly as Kevin Garnett and the Minnesota Timberwolves stole a sure victory from his team.

While Van Exel nursed an injured groin, the Nuggets blew a 17-point fourth-quarter lead and folded in overtime, 105-97 to the relentless Timberwolves as Garnett scored 16 of his 30 points in the fourth quarter and overtime.

Trailing 70-53 entering the final period and 84-71 with 3:06 to play, Garnett and the Timberwolves came roaring back with a 17-4 run to close the contest. Garnett shot Minnesota into its first overtime of the season by burying a 12-foot jumper from the left side with 1.1 seconds left, forging an 88-88 tie.

"Looks can be deceving," Garnett said. "As long as the clock is ticking, you have a chance to win. I saw them raising the roof in the third quarter. That's disrespect to us and they woke the sleeping giant. I'm happy we got the win. It's all about the Minnesota Timberwolves and not Kevin Garnett."

The 7-foot superstar had a dunk, two free throws and buried a 22-footer to give Minnesota a 97-92 lead with 91 seconds to play. Garnett was 10-of-22 from the floor, 10-of-15 at the line and grabbed 14 boards for the Timberwolves, who have won 20 of 25 games since a season-high eight-game skid in December.

The fourth-quarter collapse was the worst in franchise history for the Nuggets, who squandered a 15-point advantage after three quarters against the Dallas Mavericks on March 20, 1981.

"We had the game under control until they started putting pressure on us," Nuggets coach Dan Issel said. "That's what started all the turnovers. It's disappointing but we had no ball handlers and we just let the game slip away. It's not fun to go through. We just have to grow up and get tougher."

"That's a game that we were probably written off," Minnesota coach Flip Saunders said. "That's one of the more exciting games down the stretch. I told our guys if we get it to 10 points with six minutes left, we'd have a chance. Kevin Garnett made some huge plays down the stretch and got (Antonio McDyess) out of the game with fouls."

Bobby Jackson scored 20 points in place of injured playmaker Terrell Brandon and Anthony Peeler added 17 off the bench for Minnesota, which won for the seventh time in nine road contests. The Wolves have taken 12 of the last 14 meetings from Denver.

The fiery Van Exel did not take his team's collapse well and actually earned an ejection from the Nuggets' bench with three seconds left when he began hurling insults at referee Tommy Nunez.

"They called a `T' on Nick and he went up to talk to them after the game," Issel said. "I just went up there to get everyone away. At that point, there's no sense in talking to anyone."

Rookie James Posey scored a season-high 23 points and Antonio McDyess added 20 for the Nuggets before fouling out down the stretch in regulation. Denver had its four-game home winning streak snapped, slipping to 18-9 at the Pepsi Center.

"It hurts," Posey said. "I think it started on the defensive end. I let my man go to the basket and from that point on the momentum shifted. We have to get better as a team, especially when Van Exel's out. We have to put things behind us."

Rookies Wally Szczerbiak and William Avery combined for 22 points off the bench for the Wolves, who shot 36 percent (32-of-88).

"The (Sacramento) Kings have the `Bench Mob' and we have the `Zoo Crew'," Garnett said of his team's reserves, who outscored the Nuggets' backups, 41-25.

Minnesota was a dreadful 29 percent from the field over the first three quarters before recovering to make 14-of-25 shots in crunch time. The Wolves also made up for their poor shooting by making 37-of-49 at the line.

Raef LaFrentz had 13 points and 13 rebounds for Denver, which shot 36 percent (30-of-84) and held a whopping 64-48 advantage on the boards.

The Nuggets appeared to have things under control when George McCloud made a pair of free throws to make it 84-71 with just over three minutes left in regulation.

But Peeler made a 3-pointer and a runner, Szczerbiak hit two from the line, Garnett sank a seven-footer and Jackson buried two free throws to pull Minnesota within 84-82 with 48 seconds left.

Cory Alexander gave Denver some breathing room with two from the stripe but Joe Smith made a free throw and Garnett came throught with a three-point play off a clutch seven-footer in the lane to make it 86-86 with 32 seconds to go.

Alexander drew a foul and knocked down two from the line with nine seconds left but Garnett would not be denied, making up for a missed six footer with five seconds left by draining the tying shot with just over one tick remaining.

"It's a tough pill to swallow," Alexander said. "But we've got to learn from it and get better. They turned up their defensive pressure and we didn't respond to it. We had too many turnovers (19)."

The late collapse was the second in as many nights for the Nuggets, who allowed Golden State to score the final eight points during Friday's 103-101 setback in Oakland.

The Nuggets fell to 1-1 in overtime this season. They posted a season-opening 107-102 overtime triumph at Phoenix.

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