MINNEAPOLIS (AP)Karl-Anthony Towns scored 10 of his 25 points in the third quarter and Anthony Edwards added 19 points as the Minnesota Timberwolves cruised to a 129-117 win against the Houston Rockets on Saturday night.
Playing without center Rudy Gobert, who was placed into the league’s health and safety protocols earlier in the day, Minnesota snapped a three-game losing streak. Kyle Anderson had 16 points while starting for Gobert.
Minnesota closed the first half on a 20-4 run and never looked back, extending Houston’s tough start to the season.
The Rockets, who were without rookie Jabari Smith Jr. due to an illness, lost their sixth straight game. Houston is 1-9 this season and has trailed by double-digits in nine of its 10 games.
Jalen Green had 21 points for the Rockets, hitting 4 of 11 from 3-point territory. Kevin Porter Jr. scored 13 and Alperen Sengun had 17 points for Houston, which had a season-high 23 turnovers leading to 36 points for the Timberwolves.
The young Rockets started quickly, hitting six of their first seven shots, including a 4-of-5 mark from 3, and held a lead in the first quarter.
The shots started to miss the mark and the turnovers increased. Houston shot 11 of 16 in the first and was 7 of 11 from the 3-point arch, but the turnovers allowed Minnesota to take control.
The Rockets had 15 turnovers at half as the Wolves made their run, scoring 27 points off turnovers and finishing the half with 13 fast-break points.
Minnesota’s lead expanded to as many as 24 in the third quarter.
Rockets: KJ Martin started for Smith and had 17 points. . Houston continues to be without Bruno Fernando (left knee soreness), Jae’Sean Tate (right ankle soreness) and TyTy Washington (left knee sprain). . The Rockets are 0-7 on the road this season. . It’s the fifth time this season Houston has allowed 124 points or more.
Timberwolves: Minnesota shot 61.3% from the field, its second-highest mark in a game this season. Its 15 made 3s were the second most this season. . Seven players scored in double figures. Taurean Prince led the bench with 16 points. … The Wolves had 60 points in the paint.
Rockets: Play at Orlando on Monday.
Timberwolves: Host the New York Knicks on Monday.
More AP NBA coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports