Alexander Shun | @alexpshun
Digital Content Manager | KFAN.com
The Minnesota Timberwolves have beaten the Phoenix Suns twice already this season and they will look to complete the trifecta tonight in Phoenix.
While the Timberwolves enter riding a two-game winning streak, the Suns are on a two-game winning streak of their own, including a 115-103 victory over the Toronto Raptors in which guard Eric Bledsoe poured in a career-high 40 points to go with his six rebounds and 13 assists.
"This is the best I've seen him," Suns coach Earl Watson told reporters, speaking about Bledsoe's performance in the Suns win over Toronto.
Should the Timberwolves win tonight, not only would it complete the season-sweep of the Suns - something Minnesota has not done in 13 years - but it would be their fourth-consecutive win over Phoenix dating back to last season.
The Timberwolves enter tonight's contest on a surprising hot-streak having won five of their last seven games to move themselves just 2.5 games out of the eighth spot in the Western Conference. And while the playoffs are still a possibility, the team is keeping their focus on individual improvements while winning one game at a time.
An obvious reason for the team's recent hot streak is big man Karl-Anthony Towns who is averaging 28.6 points, 13.2 rebounds and 3.2 assists in his last five games.
"He's playing out of his mind right now," Andrew Wiggins said of Towns. "He's doing it all. Rebounding, scoring, defending, everything. There's nothing he's not doing right now."
While Towns has been grabbing the headlines, Minnesota was aided in their last game - a 111-108 win over the Denver Nuggets - by their most inexperienced player, first-round draft pick Kris Dunn.
Dunn, who got the start due to the absence of regularly starting point guard Ricky Rubio, had a career-best performance. Even if that career is still 44 games young.
The rookie guard finished with 10 points, nine assists and eight rebounds, including multiple defensive rebounds down the stretch that helped seal the Timberwolves win.
"He's been coming on for a while," Timberwolves head coach Tom Thibodeau said of Dunn after the game on Sunday night. "His defense has been good from the beginning. Offensively, he's figuring it out."
While Rubio is set to return tonight sending Dunn back to the bench, the rookie certainly made an impression on Thibodeau and, should Rubio struggle to find his rhythm, expect to see some increased time for Dunn.
The Timberwolves should be encouraged by the fact that the Suns have allowed opponents to score 103 points or more in their last seven games while Minnesota has limited seven of their last 12 opponents to 99 points or less. That is a recipe that certainly sets up for success.