Kawhi Leonard scores 32 as Clippers sneak by Wolves


Kawhi Leonard scored 32 points on 12-for-26 shooting and the Los Angeles Clippers outlasted the Minnesota Timberwolves for an 89-88 win on Sunday afternoon in Minneapolis.

Norman Powell added 24 points on 9-for-13 shooting, including a 6-for-8 showing from beyond the arc, for the Clippers. Paul George finished with 15 points as Los Angeles overcame a rough game from James Harden, who finished with four points and went 0-for-10 from the field.

Anthony Edwards paced the Timberwolves with a team-high 27 points on 9-for-20 shooting. Karl-Anthony Towns had 18 points, nine rebounds and eight assists, and Rudy Gobert finished with 12 points and 16 rebounds.

The score was tied at 84-all when Leonard converted a three-point play with 2:01 remaining.

Towns made a dunk to pull the Timberwolves within 87-86 with 1:40 left, but the Clippers held firm.

Leonard made two free throws to increase Los Angeles’ lead to 89-86 with 13.1 seconds to go.

Edwards threw down a dunk with three seconds to go, but that proved to be Minnesota’s final shot attempt.

The Timberwolves clung to a 68-67 lead at the end of the third quarter.

Terance Mann made a step-back jump shot to give Los Angeles a 59-54 lead with 6:23 remaining in the third quarter. Minnesota closed the frame on a 14-8 run to pull in front.

The Clippers led 49-46 at the half.

Minnesota jumped out to a 23-7 lead in the first seven minutes of the game. It was a drastic reversal from the past two starts for the Timberwolves, who fell behind 14-0 two games ago against Memphis and 15-2 in their previous game against Sacramento to draw the ire of coach Chris Finch.

The Timberwolves led 30-18 at the end of the first quarter. Powell made a 3-pointer just before the buzzer to cut the Clippers’ deficit to 12 points.

Los Angeles surged during the second quarter. The Clippers outscored the Timberwolves 31-16 to gain a three-point halftime lead.

The Clippers opened the second quarter on a 13-0 run to grab a 31-30 edge. George made a 3-pointer from 25 feet out to finish the run.