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Suns strong defensive display shuts down Timberwolves, win 97-87

© Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Grayson Allen scored 23 points and Kevin Durant notched 22 as the Phoenix Suns cruised to an 97-87 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Friday night.

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Bradley Beal added 14 points while Devin Booker had 13 for the Suns (45-31). Jusuf Nurkić collected 15 rebounds and three steals in Phoenix’s third straight victory.

Timberwolves (53-23) young phenom Anthony Edwards dropped 17 points as the No. 1 team in the Western Conference lost. Off the bench, Nickeil Alexander-Walker posted 13 points and Naz Reid had 11 rebounds.

Capitalizing on multiple T’Wolves turnovers and playing compact defense, the Suns constructed a 15-0 run to begin the game. Beal and Durant both had nine points each as Phoenix led 32-20.

“We closed out the paint, helping guys in the pick-and-rolls and on their drives,” Durant said. “We started hot but nobody scored 30 points. I am sure we are going to see these types of scores in the playoffs.”

Phoenix’s stranglehold of the game continued as they headed into halftime up 57-41. Minnesota turned the ball over 14 times and the Suns finished with nine steals through the first two quarters.

After the Suns were in control, they did not lose grasp of their advantage from the third onwards. The Timberwolves only shot 21-for-62 (33.9%) at the end of the third.

“We did great with deflections and a lot of guys picking up the ball more than they want to,” Allen said. “This is one of the best communication games of the season. Everyone was talking on the backside, just great all around defensively.”

Every time Minnesota scored, Phoenix answered right back. Both teams had a poor night from behind the arc, though, with the Suns going 9-for-26 (34.6%) and the Timberwolves shooting at a 10-for-29 (34.5%) clip from three.

The low-offensive affair would end as Minnesota climbed back within 10 points, but Phoenix ultimately claimed a 97-87 victory. With turnovers being the sticking point of the game, both teams combined for 36 turnovers, split 18 per team.

Next Games

Phoenix Suns: Home vs. New Orleans Pelicans (45-31) on April 7 at 3 p.m. PT

Minnesota Timberwolves: Away vs. Los Angeles Lakers (36-30) on April 7 at 7 p.m. PT

Devin Booker Nears Suns’ Franchise Record

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Reporter Alec Cipollini covers Phoenix Sports News for Burn City Sports. You can follow him on his X account, @AlecCipollini

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