Portis leads Wizards to 135-121 win over Timberwolves
WASHINGTON (AP) — Bobby Portis’ shooting touch returned Sunday and the Washington Wizards picked up a win.
Portis had 26 points and 12 rebounds and the Wizards beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 135-121.
“Coming out after the All-Star break, really haven’t had a good shooting night,” said Portis, who had made 35.7 percent from the field over his last four games. “Been rebounding the ball pretty well, but haven’t had that good shooting night like I wanted. So, I was due for one and tonight it happened.”
Portis was 10 for 18 from the field, including 3 of 6 from 3-point range.
“Bobby’s a good spacer and a good filler behind the screen and he can roll, and he has a nice floater,” coach Scott Brooks said. “I mean, his floater hasn’t been falling for him, but that’s his shot and it fell tonight.”
Bradley Beal and reserve Jabari Parker each scored 22 points for Washington, which had lost five of six and trail eighth-place Orlando by three games. Beal added eight assists.
Karl-Anthony Towns led the Timberwolves with 28 points — on 12-of-18 shooting — 10 rebounds and seven assists. He had scored over 30 points in each of his last three games.
Towns started slowly and went 1 for 4 with four points in the fourth quarter.
Derrick Rose scored 18 points off the bench for the Timberwolves, who have lost three straight, all on the road. Taj Gibson had 14 points and 10 rebounds, and Andrew Wiggins had 14 points.
“We missed a lot of coverages, especially in the second half,” Timberwolves coach Ryan Saunders said. “It’s harder to win on the road in the NBA when your defensive intensity is not there, and it hasn’t been there for these three games here.”
Minnesota, which scored 84 points in the paint, converted just 4 of 27 attempts from beyond the arc.
The Wizards, meanwhile, had been averaging 18 turnovers per game since the All-Star break, but committed just nine. They made 11 of 33 from 3-point range while scoring 72 points inside.
Parker scored on a dunk and followed with a 3-pointer to give the Wizards a 93-82 lead late in the third quarter. He finished with 11 points in the quarter and Washington led 97-87 at the start of the fourth.
“Just trying to get downhill,” Parker said. “My game is looking for others, but if I don’t look out for myself, then I can’t create for others, so I just try to keep that in mind and that kind of helped.”
Minnesota got within 110-105 on a dunk by Towns before Sam Dekker (11 points, three assists) scored six straight points that started a 10-0 run, and the Wizards led by as many as 16 in the final minutes.
″(Portis and Parker) played with energy,” Towns said. “They hit some timely shots, tough shots. They’re good players. The X-factor was Dekker coming in and playing the way he did.
Timberwolves: F Luol Deng (sore left Achilles) missed his second straight game. . Interim coach Ryan Saunders was an assistant with the Wizards from the 2009-10 season through 2013-14. . Minnesota is 4-24 when trailing after three quarters.
Wizards: It was Portis’ eighth double-double of the season and fourth with the Wizards. . Beal recorded his 53rd 20-plus point game of the season, tying his career high, set last season. . Washington is 19-2 when leading after three quarters.
Timberwolves: Host the Thunder on Tuesday night.
Wizards: Host the Mavericks on Wednesday night.