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Blazers recover from woeful fourth to win in OT

12/15/2002

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- The Portland Trail Blazers made only one
field goal in the fourth quarter and still managed to win.

Derek Anderson scored 24 points and Rasheed Wallace added 18 points and 11 rebounds as Portland bounced back from a blowout loss at Milwaukee the previous night and held off the Minnesota Timberwolves 98-92 in overtime Saturday night.

The Trail Blazers, who snapped a two-game losing streak, overcame a dreadful 1-for-20 shooting performance in the fourth quarter and outscored the Wolves 13-7 in overtime.

"Tonight, we came together for a strong win,'' Anderson said. "We're learning and growing as a team.''

Kevin Garnett hit a fadeaway to pull Minnesota to 89-88 with 3:45 left in the extra period. But Bonzi Wells hit a free throw and a layup off a steal before Anderson made a 3-pointer to give the Blazers a 95-88 lead with 1:48 remaining.

Minnesota had a chance when Anthony Peeler answered with a
21-foot jumper and Wells was called for charging on the next play.
But Peeler turned the ball over and Dale Davis sealed the win with
a powerful dunk with 32.7 seconds left.

"To come back and get this game tonight was big for our team,'' coach Maurice Cheeks said. "It was a great, gutsy win.''

Wells and Davis, who had 14 rebounds, each had 15 points for Portland, who played the last of a five-game road trip that included a one-point loss to New Jersey and a 101-79 defeat at Milwaukee.

Cheeks chewed out the team during Saturday morning's shootaround.

"Sometimes those conversations work, sometimes they don't,'' Cheeks said. I guess it depends on the tone of the conversation.''

Wells put it simpler: "Coach put a fire behind us this morning. He doesn't raise his voice too often, so when he does, you definitely listen.''

Garnett led the Wolves with 21 points, but shot 9-of-27 from the
floor. Troy Hudson scored 14 for Minnesota, but only had two after
halftime.

"The shots that I was making in the first half, I rushed a couple in the second,'' Hudson said. "The shots were there. I just missed them.''

Portland clung to a two-point fourth quarter lead after Joe Smith hit a pair of free throws to make it 85-83 with 55.7 seconds left. But Scottie Pippen turned the ball over on the ensuing possession and Garnett nailed a baseline fadeaway to tie the game with 28.7 seconds left.

Smith tied up Davis underneath the basket on the next play, and
Davis won the jump ball with 7.1 seconds left to give the Blazers
one more chance. But Wallace's jumper from the top of the key
missed as time expired.

The Blazers outworked the Wolves in the paint, outrebounding
their opponents 59-47, including 21-18 on the offensive glass.
Portland outscored Minnesota 40-24 in the paint.

"They're a big team,'' Garnett said. "We knew it was going to be a physical game.''

Minnesota trailed 76-68 after the third quarter, but got a couple of buckets from Garnett and a free throw by Strickland to close the gap. The Wolves also took advantage of poor shooting by the Blazers, who had only nine points in the fourth and whose only field goal was a dunk by Pippen with 1:13 left.

But the Wolves didn't fare much better, going 6-of-20 from the floor for 17 points.

"I think everyone's a little upset with this loss,'' Garnett said. "If they're not, they should be.''

Neither team shot well in the first half. The Wolves missed their first six shots and Garnett went 0-for-5 before hitting his first field goal at the 7:26 mark of the second quarter to pull the Wolves to 33-31.

His second field goal came with just over a minute to go in the
half, and was followed by a jumper by Kendall Gill to give the
Wolves a 47-45 halftime lead.

Game notes
Minnesota has won seven of its last 11 games against the
Blazers. ... Wells was given a technical early in the second
quarter after dunking over Marc Jackson to give the Blazers a 25-22
lead. The referee got Wells for mouthing off to Jackson after the
dunk. Wells barely avoided a second technical in the fourth quarter
when he tussled with Gill. Gill was hit with the technical instead.
... Blazers G Damon Stoudamire sat out the second half with a head
cold.