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first_imgNEW YORK  — The Minnesota Timberwolves could see the trouble that Brooklyn center Brook Lopez was having with Nikola Pekovic, so they knew where to go with the ball for the biggest possession of the game.Pekovic converted a tie-breaking three-point play with 48 seconds left, and the Timberwolves scored the final nine points of the game to beat the Nets 98-91 on Nov. 5.After Joe Johnson coughed up the ball to Thaddeus Young for the Nets’ 17th turnover of the night, Minnesota found Pekovic guarded by Lopez, who was playing in his second game after spraining his right foot. Pekovic drew contact with an easy basket under the paint, then made the free throw for a 94-91 lead.“That was the plan,” Pekovic said. “That’s what Coach said. I’m glad the guys really believe in me and they start calling plays for me. Coach called something and Ricky (Rubio) said, ‘No, no, we give the ball to him.’”Lopez committed an offensive foul on the ensuing play for Brooklyn’s final turnover. Young’s floater extended the lead 96-91 with 27 seconds remaining, and after Johnson missed a pair of shots, Kevin Martin hit a pair of free throws with 12 seconds left to seal the victory.“It’s hard to win, especially in crunch time like that. You have to take care of the ball and value every possession,” said Johnson, who led the Nets with 22 points.“We had two costly turnovers and we paid the price at the end.”Martin led the Timberwolves with 26 points and rookie Andrew Wiggins, playing in the arena where he was taken by Cleveland with the No. 1 pick in the draft, added 17.Deron Williams had 19 points for the Nets (2-2), who had won their last two games but will face the rival New York Knicks for the first time this season.“It’s good to get any game after this one. We’re disappointed in how we closed out the game,” Williams said. “It’s the beautiful thing of the NBA, you get a chance to get back on the court in a couple of days. It’s good that we’re playing the Knicks and we are always excited about that rivalry.”Minnesota looked like it was going to coast off to an easy victory, jumping out to a 17-2 lead midway through the first quarter as the Nets misfired on 10 shots.Brooklyn outscored the Timberwolves 46-30 during the next 18:06 to take a 48-47 at the half but the visitors took advantage of eight miscues by the Nets to go back ahead in the third quarter.“We battled because I think that’s the culture we’re trying to establish,” Minnesota coach Flip Saunders said. “Play hard, go out and battle every possession.”Minnesota had a 72-66 lead heading into the fourth quarter but was shaky to start the period, committing three turnovers that helped the Nets to a 10-0 run and a 76-72 lead on Williams’ 3-pointer with 8:19 left.Johnson’s 8-foot floater handed the Nets a 91-89 lead with 1:28 remaining before Rubio, who scored 14 points, 12 assists, beat Lopez and Williams to the basket for a layup that evened it at 91 with 1:17 left and set the stage for Pekovic.“Well, the guy whipped him,” Nets coach Lionel Hollins said about the matchup between Pekovic and Lopez.“I mean, it happens. You’ve got to give Pekovic credit. He was a man in there and I’m always saying that there’s always a badder man than you in the prison, you know, and you got to do it every night.”(ADRY TORRES)TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

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first_imgShare on WhatsApp Share via Email Topics Support The Guardian Since you’re here… Share on LinkedIn “Our Invictus family has turned these Games into a symbol of strength, honour and optimism for a new generation.”A regular championship for injured servicemen and women was an idea begging to be stolen, Harry said when he originally launched the Invictus Games.He played an instrumental role in bringing the Games to the UK in 2014, when 300 competitors from 13 countries took part in the inaugural competition.Named after Invictus, Latin for “unconquered”, the Games are being held in the southern hemisphere for the first time. Read more Prince Harry has opened the Invictus Games in Sydney, where more than 500 competitors will be taking part in 13 sports.It is the fourth Invictus Games to be held, following similar events in London, Orlando and Toronto.The prince, accompanied by the Australian prime minister, Scott Morrison, a Games ambassador and three athletes, climbed Sydney Harbour Bridge to raise the Invictus flag on the eve of the Games.The ceremony was delayed by heavy rain about two hours before it was due to start.During the ceremony, the prince said: “Invictus has become about the example of service and dedication our competitors have provided to the world. Invictus Games Reuse this contentcenter_img Prince Harry Guardian Today: the headlines, the analysis, the debate – sent direct to you Share on Twitter … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay. Whether we are up close or further away, the Guardian brings our readers a global perspective on the most critical issues of our lifetimes – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. We believe complex stories need context in order for us to truly understand them. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We hope you will consider supporting us today. We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent. Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Share on Messenger Sydney news Share on Pinterest Share on Facebooklast_img read more