Boston at Minnesota
When: 8:00 PM ET, Monday, November 21, 2016
Where: Target Center, Minneapolis
MINNEAPOLIS – (Wire Service Preview) – Boston Celtics point guard Isaiah Thomas suggested his team “gave up” in a home loss to the Golden State Warriors on Friday but was singing a different tune with Al Horford and Jae Crowder back in the lineup the next night. The Celtics will try to ride their healthy lineup to a second straight win when they visit the Minnesota Timberwolves on Monday.
Horford (concussion) and Crowder (ankle) missed a combined 17 games and were in the lineup together for the first time since Oct. 29 at Detroit on Saturday, and Horford made the game-winning tip to finish off an 18-point, 11-rebound effort. “We needed it,” Thomas told reporters. “We needed both of those guys bad. Not just on the defensive end but on the offensive end, too. It’s great to have those guys back. They’re a little rusty because they’ve been out for a little bit, but I don’t think anybody could tell.” The Timberwolves put up their lowest point total of the season in a 93-71 setback against Memphis on Saturday and traded wins and losses in the last six games. “You can still play well without shooting well,” Minnesota coach Tom Thibodeau told reporters. “If you miss some shots, you can’t allow that to take away from the other things you do to help the team win.”
Highlights from Last Game
TV: 8 p.m. ET, CSN New England (Boston), FSN North (Minnesota)
ABOUT THE CELTICS (7-6): Horford, who signed a four-year, $113 million free-agent deal with Boston in the offseason, spent three weeks in the concussion protocol but showed little rust while playing 34 minutes on Saturday. “I felt really good,” Horford told reporters. “(It was) very frustrating these last few weeks dealing with a lot of different things, but finally I was at the point that I felt good enough today that I was ready to play.” Horford knocked down a pair of 3-pointers and added five assists, three blocks and two steals in his most productive game since joining the team.
ABOUT THE TIMBERWOLVES (4-8): Horford will battle with reigning NBA Rookie of the Year Karl-Anthony Towns, who is not happy with Minnesota losing and admonished his teammates for laughing and making noise in the showers after Saturday’s loss, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Towns, who was one of two Timberwolves players to score in double figures with 17 points on Saturday, was limited to a season-low 28 minutes while battling foul trouble. “I just didn’t like the way we played from a discipline standpoint,” Thibodeau told reporters. “The fouling crushed us. It’s hard to win like that.”
1. Thomas is 11-of-34 from the field in the last two games.
2. Minnesota SG Brandon Rush (toe) sat out the last seven games and remains day-to-day.
3. The home team took each of the last eight in the series.