Celtics Finish Road Trip With Timberwolves in Minnesota

Celtics Finish Road Trip With Timberwolves in Minnesota The Celtics are the only 5-0 team in the NBA after a resounding win in Philadelphia on Tuesday night, but their schedule will get no less grueling from here.

No rest for the cruising C's, who now travel to Minnesota to take on a Timberwolves team that's lost three straight and is looking at last place in the Northwest Division. The Celtics are tired as they continue their season-opening stretch of eight games in 12 days, but they've got the talent to tackle these T-Wolves.

When and Where

Wednesday, Nov. 4, 8 p.m. ET (CSNE)
Target Center, Minneapolis, Minn.

Records

Celtics (5-0, 1st place in Atlantic Division)
Timberwolves (1-3, 5th place in Northwest Division)

Head To Head

Here's a fast fact: Kevin Garnett has never lost to his former team. Since trading for KG two years ago, the Celtics are 4-0 against the Timberwolves, winning twice in 2007-08 and twice last season. Most recently, they picked up a win despite Garnett's absence with a knee injury — the C's won 109-101 on Feb. 1, 2009 behind 36 points from Paul Pierce.

Skinny

Since trading Garnett, the Wolves have tried to rebuild around a couple of former Celtics. Al Jefferson and Ryan Gomes were the two stars of the six-player package that the C's used to reel in KG, and both are now starters in Minnesota's frontcourt. With those two up front and a talented pair of young guards in Jonny Flynn and Corey Brewer, these Wolves are not without talent, but they need a deeper roster and a stronger defense to compete in the Western Conference.

Projected Starters

Celtics
Point guard: Rajon Rondo
Shooting guard: Ray Allen
Small forward: Paul Pierce
Power forward: Kevin Garnett
Center: Kendrick Perkins

Timberwolves
Point guard: Jonny Flynn
Shooting guard: Corey Brewer
Small forward: Damien Wilkins
Power forward: Ryan Gomes
Center: Al Jefferson

Stat Sheet

Celtics
The Celtics were 21-9 against the Western Conference last season.

They are beating their opponents by an average of 21.6 points this year.

Kendrick Perkins is second in the NBA with 11 blocks this season.

Rajon Rondo leads the league with 52 assists.

Ray Allen is 1-for-4 in three-point attempts over his last two games.

In two meetings against the Timberwolves since being traded two years ago, Kevin Garnett has 27 total points and 20 rebounds.

Paul Pierce has averaged 23.3 points and 7.4 boards against the Wolves in his career.

Timberwolves
The Wolves were 11-19 against the Eastern Conference last season.

They have 183 total rebounds this year, fourth-most in the NBA.

Corey Brewer leads the NBA with three steals per game.

Ryan Hollins is shooting 72.2 percent from the floor, second-best in the NBA.

Jonny Flynn is fourth in the NBA with 15 turnovers.

Ryan Gomes is averaging 11.3 points and 8.0 rebounds per game this season.

Al Jefferson has 45 points in his last two road games.

Damien Wilkins has averaged 6.8 points per game in eight career meetings with the Celtics.

Black and Blue

Celtics
Brian Scalabrine
made his return from a sprained ankle in Tuesday night's game in Philadelphia. He played just over five minutes and scored five points on 2-of-2 shooting.

Glen Davis is out indefinitely with a thumb injury sustained in an altercation last week.

Bill Walker underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right knee in October. He is out indefinitely as well.

Timberwolves
Kevin Love has a fractured left hand. He underwent surgery in mid-October and is expected back in December.

Al Jefferson has been slowed recently by Achilles tendinitis, but he's managed to play through the pain.

Jonny Flynn missed a team practice last week with flu-like symptoms. He now appears to be good to go.

This Date in Celtics History

In 2006, the Celtics got off to an 0-3 start for the first time in 12 years, losing 124-117 to the Wizards in Washington. Gilbert Arenas went off for 44 points on 14-of-25 shooting to bury the Celtics.

Overheard

"It’s home. A lot of friends and family get the opportunity to see me play. It’s always fun."
Rasheed Wallace, in the Boston Herald, after scoring 20 points on 7-for-10 shooting in his homecoming to Philadelphia

Press Box

Celtics
Rasheed Wallace enjoyed his homecoming.

Rajon Rondo's new contract has done nothing to distract these Celtics.

So, about that 72-win season.

Timberwolves
Kevin Garnett makes his return.

The Wolves keep falling short.

Kurt Rambis' time is now.

NBA
Dirk Nowitzki carried the Mavs in record-setting fashion.

Luol Deng fueled the Bulls.

Brandon Jennings is making quite a first impression.

Outlook

Rasheed Wallace made his return to his native Philadelphia on Tuesday night. Now, Kevin Garnett takes the floor in Minnesota. KG will be ready to raise his game against the familiar Timberwolves — these Celtics may be tiring, but they've got the energy to weather this difficult stretch and remain undefeated. This C's team should go from the NBA's first 5-0 squad to the first 6-0.

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