MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE – JANUARY 13: Anthony Edwards #1 of the Minnesota Timberwolves goes to the basket against Jaren Jackson Jr. #13 of the Memphis Grizzlies during the second half at FedExForum on January 13, 2022 in Memphis, Tennessee. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Justin Ford/Getty Images)
The Minnesota Timberwolves were hoping to march into Memphis on January 13 after a rough 128-125 loss to the New Orleans Pelicans just two days prior.
As far as picking up a win went, things looked good, and it seemed like Minnesota would simultaneously rebound from a rough defeat and play spoil to the Memphis Grizzlies, who were on a 10-game winning streak coming into the contest, something which Minnesota hasn’t done since the 2000-2001 season.
Leaving the first quarter, Minnesota was up 31-25. Heading into the second half the Wolves had extended their lead to seven. Things were looking good to start the second half too.
About halfway through the third quarter, ESPN gave the Timberwolves their highest win probability of the night with 75.8 percent. But unfortunately, the night wasn’t over.
3 keys for the Minnesota Timberwolves moving forward based on their loss to the Memphis Grizzlies
The high point of Minnesota’s night, the point at which they had a nearly 65 percent chance of coming away with their fifth win in six games, was also the last moment Memphis would give Minnesota before turning things around.
In the course of the second half of the third quarter, the Grizzlies would crank up the pressure and turn a 76-69 deficit into a 90-84 lead to start the fourth quarter. This was also the first time Memphis would surpass Minnesota’s game-high 75.8 percent win probability with 80.9 percent.
Minnesota would keep things close throughout the rest of the game, but coming into the fourth quarter off of a very big Grizzlies run, there was an undeniable sense of gloom heading into the final 12. And, as it turned out, for good reason.
Luckily, from every loss, some important lessons can be gathered. This one is no exception.