Bobcats down Timberwolves

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Primoz Brezec muscled in a layup over several defenders with 54 seconds to play, then added a pair of free throws to help the Charlotte Bobcats seal a 97-92 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves.

It was the 12th-straight road loss for the Timberwolves, tying a mark for futility set 12 years ago. Minnesota had not lost 12 in a row on the road since March 26-Nov. 8, 1994.

Although they trailed by as many as 10, the Timberwolves rallied and led 83-77 with 5:52 to play.

But Charlotte reeled off a 14-2 run that started with Raymond Felton’s dunk and ended with Brezec’s 17-footer that put the Bobcats up 91-85 with 2:00 left.

Trenton Hassell made a free throw and Marcus Banks scored to cut the lead to 91-88, but Brezec took over from there.

He was in position under the basket for a sharp pass from Brevin Knight, and he shoved it over Hassell and through the hoop for a 93-88 lead. Banks answered for the Timberwolves, but after a series of misses by both teams, Minnesota fouled Brezec coming out of a timeout. He made both free throws for a 95-90 lead with 13.9 to go.

Kevin Garnett made a layup at the other end to cut it to three, but Felton was fouled and made both his free throws to put it out of reach for the Timberwolves.

Knight led Charlotte with 24 points and Felton finished with 17. Brezec and Matt Carroll had 14 each. Gerald Wallace, who was held to one point in the second half, had three steals and two blocks.

Garnett led the Timberwolves with 24 points and 22 rebounds. Davis had 20 points and Hassell scored 13.

The Bobcats led by as many as 10 in the first half and were up 53-47 at the break. But they couldn’t put Minnesota away when they had the chance.

Charlotte led 62-53 when the Timberwolves used a 10-2 run to pull within one. Knight ended the drought for the Bobcats with a layup, but Minnesota took the lead shortly after on Davis’ dunk that made it 69-68.

The Timberwolves then took a 71-70 lead into the fourth quarter.

NOTES: The Timberwolves had 54 points in the paint to Charlotte’s 38. … Minnesota is now 8-29 away from home this season. … Courtside seating was packed with Charlotte celebrities – NASCAR drivers Jeff Gordon, Kurt Busch and Brian Vickers, as well as Carolina Panthers’ receiver Steve Smith and free agent defensive tackle Brentson Buckner. …. Tuesday night marked the one-year anniversary of Charlotte rookies Felton and Sean May, and Minnesota’s Rashad McCants leading North Carolina to the NCAA championship. It was also May’s 22nd birthday.

AP-ES-04-04-06 2220EDT

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