Karl-Anthony Towns scored a season-high 40 points while D'Angelo Russell chipped in 22 points and 10 assists as the Minnesota Timberwolves rolled to their fourth consecutive victory, 141-123 over the host Houston Rockets on Sunday.
Towns was unstoppable, particularly in the first quarter, when he scored 18 points on 7-of-10 shooting from the field. He scored in myriad ways, tallying baskets on the move and in the post while drilling a pair of 3-pointers. He also grabbed nine rebounds.
When Towns took a breather after playing more than 11 minutes in the first, Russell took the reins, following his eight-point first quarter with 11 more in the second.
The Timberwolves basically had it easy against a Rockets defense that frequently left shooters open from the perimeter while repeatedly failing to get back in transition. Minnesota used a fast-break strategy to race to a 75-54 halftime lead and outscored Houston in fast-break points 31-18 for the game.
The Timberwolves led by as many as 25 before the intermission.
For Minnesota, Jarred Vanderbilt had a double-double of 21 points and 19 rebounds while Malik Beasley and Jaylen Nowell scored 13 and 11 points off the bench, respectively. Anthony Edwards chipped in 19 points and six assists.
Christian Wood tallied a team-high 22 points for Houston while rookie Josh Christopher, Garrison Mathews and KJ Martin totaled 46 points in reserve. Christopher shot 8 for 13 from the field, Mathews hit four 3-pointers, and Martin added seven rebounds, but the starting backcourt of Kevin Porter Jr. and Jalen Green combined for 19 points on just 6-for-20 shooting.
Houston allowed the Timberwolves to amass 74 points in the paint.
The Rockets fashioned an 11-0 run in the fourth quarter that cut their deficit to 124-109, but Towns scored through a David Nwaba foul at the 5:31 mark, and his subsequent free throw completed the 3-point play and extended the Minnesota lead back to 18 points.
--Field Level Media