MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Cole Anthony hit a hurried 3-pointer at the buzzer and the Orlando Magic stunned the Minnesota Timberwolves 97-96 on Wednesday night to stop a six-game losing streak.
The Timberwolves blew a 13-point lead in the final 6:10. Jarred Vanderbilt missed a pair of free throws with a chance to ice the game for the Minnesota. Anthony grabbed the rebound on the final miss, pushed the ball quickly up court and the rookie drained a contested 3 from the right wing to win the game.
D’Angelo Russell scored 19 points and Michael Beasley added 13 for the short-handed Timberwolves, who were without Karl-Anthony Towns, Ricky Rubio and Juancho Hernangomez as part of the NBA’s health and safety protocols.
Russell keyed a 24-1 run in the second quarter for Minnesota, which led by as many as 20.
Two of the league’s most inefficient offenses looked the part during a sluggish first quarter. Vucevic scored 12 points while Minnesota shot 35% and Orlando led 25-21.
Starting the day, the Timberwolves were 26th in the league in offensive rating and the Magic were 28th.
Russell started the Wolves’ push early in the second, hitting three 3-pointers during a 16-0 run.
Orlando went scoreless for nearly five minutes and managed just 10 points in the quarter, shooting 3 of 23 from the field.
The Magic twice closed within two in the final 1:24 on 3s by Aaron Gordon and Anthony, but Gordon missed a wide-open 3 with 7.2 seconds left before Vanderbilt’s misses at the line.
Magic: Coach Steve Clifford said Al-Farouq Aminu (right knee surgery) is practicing in non-contact drills, but his return isn’t imminent. Clifford said Michael Carter-Williams (sprained left foot) is closer to returning but didn’t add a timeline for his return. … Vucevic scored 11 points and Fournier added 10 in the third as Orlando made its run.
Timberwolves: Towns, who announced on social media he tested positive for COVID-19, missed his second straight game. He’s only played in four of the team’s 13 games this season. Rubio and Hernangomez each missed a second game in a row. … Minnesota set a season high with 12 blocks, led by Naz Reid and rookie Jaden McDaniels with three apiece. … The 10 points in the second were the fewest allowed by the Wolves in a quarter this season. … McDaniels, the 28th overall draft pick out of Washington, set career highs with 12 points and eight rebounds.
Magic: Continue their longest road trip of the season Friday at Indiana. The Pacers lost at home to Dallas on Wednesday.
Timberwolves: Host the Atlanta Hawks on Friday after losing 108-97 in Atlanta on Monday.