Take away the 3rd quarter and the Wolves are dominating the NBA

The Wolves would probably be undefeated if they would've have played just a little bit better in the third quarter of games.
Author:
Updated:
Original:

The Timberwolves have outscored their opponents in 10 of 16 quarters this season but have just one win to show for it. Minnesota could be 4-0 if not for some major third-quarter meltdowns.

The Wolves led Memphis in the season opener by eight points at the half and trailed by two going into the fourth quarter. They jumped out to a 11-point halftime lead against Sacramento before getting outscored by 19 in the third. Most recently, the Wolves were leading the Nuggets by six at the half before getting outscored by 19 again in the third.

The lone exception was the home opener against a short-handed Grizzlies team and the result was a 36-point blowout.

"Yeah, that third quarter is haunting us right now," Andrew Wiggins said Thursday, according to radio announcer Alan Horton.

The issue is clear when you look at Minnesota's quarter-by-quarter scoring breakdown (Wolves number is on the left).

  • 1st quarter: 132-95
  • 2nd quarter: 115-100
  • 3rd quarter: 77-113
  • 4th quarter: 92-82

Based on net rating – an estimation of point differential per 100 possessions – the Wolves are completely dominating opponents in the first, second and fourth quarters, while ranking 29th out of 30 in the third quarter, according to NBA writer Zach Harper.

Overall, Minnesota's net rating ranks eighth in the NBA. Every other sub-.500 team is ranked 18th or lower.

“We gave up 30 in the second and 33 in the third and then you make a mad rush at the end to try and have a shot at it. It’s not the way to go," Wolves head coach Tom Thibodeau said Thursday after the Denver loss.

Up next, the Wolves take on Russell Westbrook and the Oklahoma City Thunder (3-1) at 5 p.m. Saturday.

Next Up

Image from iOS (96)

Early Saturday fire damages Burger King in Richfield

The fire was reported around 1:15 a.m. Saturday.

Jamal Mashburn Jr. / Gopher Basketball

Maryland hands Gophers first home loss of season

The 17th-ranked Gophers fell to the Terrapins 63-49 on Saturday afternoon.

Alibi Drinkery in Lakeville.

Minnesota Department of Health files lawsuit against Alibi Drinkery

The Lakeville bar has been in the news for defying orders.

Iron Tap snowmobile delivery

This MN restaurant will deliver to your ice house... on a snowmobile

Just in case you work up an appetite fishing on Lake Waconia.

Klobuchar and Trump

Klobuchar reacts to report Trump plotted against his attorney general

The NYT story alleges further tactics to overturn the election.

snow, plow

Snowy Saturday: Here's how much snow is forecast in Minnesota

Snow will reach the metro area by the early afternoon.

Cam Talbot

Wild improve to 4-1 with victory over Dubnyk, Sharks

The 4-1 win gives the Wild four victories in five games to start the season.

Screen Shot 2021-01-22 at 9.08.16 PM

Daughter of MN Supreme Court Justice, Allina Health CEO found dead in Iowa

The 21-year-old was found dead in the parking lot of a sorority, according to police.

Screen Shot 2020-09-04 at 8.42.40 PM

Federal charges: MN marijuana lobbyist threatened U.S. representative

"I want you to be as scared as possible," the voicemail allegedly says.

Related

Take away the 3rd quarter and the Wolves are dominating the NBA

The Wolves would probably be undefeated if they would've have played just a little bit better in the third quarter of games.

Wishful thinking about the Wolves' playoff hopes

Reality says the Wolves have little chance at the playoffs, but a more hopeful scenario could play out.

Wishful thinking about the Wolves' playoff hopes

Reality says the Wolves have little chance at the playoffs, but a more hopeful scenario could play out.

Wolves hand Boston a win with a horrible fourth quarter

In a season filled with blown leads, this one is easily the worst of the season.

Wolves hand Boston a win with a horrible fourth quarter

In a season filled with blown leads, this one is easily the worst of the season.

Wolves a sleeping giant? Thibs: 'We've gotta straighten it out fast'

Third quarters are killing the Wolves and head coach Tom Thibodeau has had enough.

Wolves a sleeping giant? Thibs: 'We've gotta straighten it out fast'

Third quarters are killing the Wolves and head coach Tom Thibodeau has had enough.

Jonathan Isaac could be the 3rd star the Timberwolves need

In search of a third star, the Wolves might find it in the NBA Draft.