Cassell scored 25 points on 10-of-14 shooting to lead the
Timberwolves to a 102-98 victory Friday night over the Memphis
The Timberwolves led by as many as 15 points in the third period
but Memphis made a push to close Minnesota's lead to 83-80 with
6:21 left to play.
Cassell then scored seven straight points to set the Grizzlies
back. He scored 13 points in the final quarter.
Cassell had begun the final period on the bench, but rejoined
the game with nine minutes to play. The rest paid off.
"He had more energy down the stretch," Minnesota coach Flip
Saunders said. "He made some big plays."
Cassell said he trusts Saunders to monitor his time on the
"Sometimes I get upset about it, but when I sit down, I realize
what he's doing," Cassell said. "He tells me, 'I didn't take you
out for anything particular. I just need you to finish the game. I
need you fresh."
Though trailing by as many as 15 points twice in the third
quarter, Memphis got to 85-83 on a 3-pointer by Mike Miller with
4:51 left in the game.
The Timberwolves responded with a 7-0 run. It was their 10th
straight victory over the Grizzlies and their fifth in Memphis.
Memphis' Shane Battier, who finished the night with 7 points,
said the Grizzlies are having trouble finding their rhythm. They
returned to Memphis to play the Timberwolves after losing 109-89 at
Sacramento and 121-89 at Los Angeles.
"It just seems like we're a broken record," Battier said. "We
come out and don't have the punch to get to the gear we're used to
On the Minnesota bench was assistant Sidney Lowe, the former
head coach of the Grizzlies who left Memphis last November after
they started 0-8.
Lowe was replaced by Hubie Brown, and the Grizzlies went to
0-13 before Brown got his first victory. ... Lowe's 46-126 record
with the Grizzlies makes him their winningest coach. ... The
Timberwolves lead the Grizzlies 29-4 in their series. ... Grizzlies
C Lorenzen Wright was out with a sprained right ankle. ...
Minnesota C Mark Madsen was sidelined with strained back muscles.
... On Saturday, the Timberwolves play in Dallas, while the
Grizzlies play at Cleveland.