Yet another chapter of the saga of “Lin-derella” took place Saturday night as the New York Knicks traveled to Minnesota to face the Timberwolves at the Target Center and once again the story ended with a happy ending for Knicks fans as the club came back from a six point deficit with just three minutes to go in the game to defeat the T-Wolves 100-98. Jeremy Lin who is 4-0 when starting at point guard in the Association and has led the Knicks to five straight wins; scored the point to put his team ahead to stay as he split a pair at the line with four seconds to play.
Lin and rookie Iman Shumpert led the way for New York as each scored 20 points in the contest. The club would get the victory despite an extraordinary performance by Minnesota All-Star forward Kevin Love who racked up a double-double with a game high 32 points and 21 boards while center Nikola Pekovic would also record a double-double including 21 points in the contest. The T-Wolves would fall apart down the stretch as they could not stop their opponents from scoring while their shots fell short.
Both teams would have their offenses clicking during the first 12 minutes of play. Love drove the lane putting the ball through the cylinder with one second left and the T-Wolves held the upper hand at 33-30 as the period came to an end. Minnesota looked like they were ready to run away with the game with 3:42 remaining in the second when rookie forward Derrick Williams hit a shot one foot from the hoop giving his team a 52-42 advantage. New York then went on a 12-4 run and cut their deficit to 56-54 as Lin drove the lane putting the rock through the hole with 53 seconds in the quarter. T-Wolves rookie guard Ricky Rubio would return the favor with one second to play giving his team a 62-54 lead at the half.
Minnesota kept pulling ahead throughout the third; however before they knew it they could feel their opponents breath on the backs of their necks. The Timberwolves would go ahead by as many as seven points yet with 1:27 to play Shumpert nailed a 25 foot trey to cut the Knicks deficit to 82-80. Pekovic would tip in a shot with 45 seconds left and Minnesota would end the quarter on top 87-82.
The home team would hold the upper hand for most of the final quarter and appeared to have the game in hand as they led 94-88 with just over three minutes left in the game when once again the short-handed team from New York refused to die. The Knicks would end the contest on a 12-4 run and fittingly enough Lin would knock down his shot at the line which would give his team the lead for good.
Lin scored 20 points, 8 assists, 6 rebounds and 3 steals while Shumpert came off the bench with 20 points, 4 steals, 2 assists and 1 rebound. Landry Fields had 19 points, 4 assists and 4 rebounds while Steve Novak had another strong night off the bench with 15 points and 6 rebounds. Tyson Chandler added 12 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals and 1 block.
Love knocked down 32 points, grabbed 21 boards, 1 block and 1 steal while Pekovic added 21 points, 13 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 block and 1 steal. Rubio had 12 points, 8 assists, 3 steals, 2 rebounds and 1 block while Jose Juan Barea came off the bench with 11 points, 5 assists, 3 rebounds and 2 steals. New York now stands at 13-15 and they will be in Toronto on Tuesday to face the Raptors while Minnesota also has a 13-15 record and they travel to Orlando as they will take on the Magic on Monday.