And the Wolves didn’t seem to notice.
“Losers have the mentality, ‘Here we go again,’” Rambis said. “So this was great to see.”
Flynn wasn’t smiling about four minutes into the fourth quarter, though. He complained about a moving screen as he ran up the floor behind referee Bennett Salvatore, and earned his first technical foul before he realized what had happened. Coach Kurt Rambis quickly benched Flynn in favor of Ramon Sessions, and the rookie figured his night was over.
Two key defensive plays secured the Wolves eighth victory of the season. After Granger attempted another long ball, Kevin Love snagged the rebound and found Damien Wilkins in the open floor for a dunk, increasing the Minnesota advantage to 114-109. Jonny Flynn, who was sent to the bench following a technical foul with 8:12 left in the game, jumped back into the ball game and slashed through the passing lane for a steal. The rookie point guard read the play beautifully, which effectively ended the Wolves five-game losing skid.
Jefferson and Love finished with double-doubles. Jefferson led the Wolves with 25 points and 12 rebounds; Love overcame a shaky defensive effort against Indiana forward Troy Murphy in the first half to contribute 18 points and 13 rebounds. The Wolves outrebounded Indiana 56-36.
Ryan Gomes had three of his six assists in the fourth quarter and finished with 15 points and eight rebounds off the bench.