New blood step up for Bryant and Garnett

MINNEAPOLIS (Minnesota) • On a night that was all about the final meeting of Kevin Garnett and Kobe Bryant, the next generation of young National Basketball Association (NBA) stars took over down the stretch.

First overall pick Karl-Anthony Towns got the better of No. 3 pick D'Angelo Russell as the Minnesota Timberwolves hung on for a 123-122 overtime win over the Los Angeles Lakers at Target Center on Wednesday.

Bryant and Garnett watched from the bench as the young core for both teams went back and forth during the final minutes.

Russell, 19, scored 13 of his 23 points in the fourth quarter, including a runner in the lane with two seconds remaining in regulation to tie the game at 114-all.

Guard Andrew Wiggins scored four of his team's nine points in overtime as Minnesota snapped a four-game losing streak.

Towns finished with 26 points and 14 rebounds for his 10th double-double in 21 games.

"It was great for both of us (to see the young players step up)," Bryant said of himself and Garnett, 39.

The 37-year-old forward finished his shift with 11 points on five-of-13 shooting.

Bryant's 1,513 career points against the Wolves are second only to former team-mate Karl Malone's 1,677.

Garnett had six points and four rebounds and is just two defensive rebounds shy of Malone's NBA record of 11,406.

Wolves guard Kevin Martin led all scorers with 37 points on 14-of-27 from the floor, including six-of-nine from beyond the arc.

He scored 17 of those points in the fourth quarter, helping the Wolves erase a five-point deficit with under 10 minutes to play.

Towns was consistently good too, scoring nine points in the first quarter and leading all players with 15 points and eight rebounds at the half.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 11, 2015, with the headline 'New blood step up for Bryant and Garnett'. Print Edition | Subscribe