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Magic 100, Timberwolves 92

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ORLANDO, Fla. — Guard Arron Afflao had 18 points and forwards Maurice Harkless and Tobias Harris each had 17 points, leading the Orlando Magic to a 100-92 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves Saturday night.

Rookie reserve guard Victor Oladipo had 16 points, including 10 in the decisive fourth quarter as the Magic (22-55) snapped a three-game losing streak. Guard Jameer Nelson had a game-high 12 assists but just two points.

Guard Ricky Rubio led the Timberwolves with 18 points and 10 assists. Forward Corey Brewer added 15. Center Gorgul Dieng had 12 points and eight rebounds.

The Timberwolves, who beat the Miami Heat in double overtime Friday night, were without their three leading scorers (Kevin Love, Kevin Martin and Nikola Pekovic).

The lead changed hands five times in the fourth quarter. Oladipo hit a 3-pointer with 4:03 remaining for the 91-89 lead they never lost.

Rubio had eight points in the third quarter, helping the Timberwolves build a 13-point lead. They led 77-72 going into the fourth. The Magic surged early in the fourth quarter, taking an 80-79 lead — their first lead since early in the game — on a short jumper by Harris.

Minnesota led 48-46 at intermission, erasing the Magic’s earlier nine-point advantage. After a slow start, the Timberwolves got aggressive defensively, forcing the Magic into 12 first-half turnovers. Brewer had four steals before halftime.

Afflalo led everyone with 12 points by halftime, including 10 in the first eight minutes. Timberwolves forward Chase Budinger, who got a rare start, limped off the court with a leg injury in the first minute and never returned.

Rubio led the Minnesota charge with eight points in a four-minute span during the second quarter, after missing all four of his shots and going scoreless in the first period.

NOTES: Minnesota F Kevin Love missed the game because of back spasms. He played 44 minutes Friday night in the double-overtime victory in Miami when he had 28 points and 11 rebounds. He had 31 points and 17 rebounds in Minnesota’s earlier season victory over the Magic. … The Timberwolves also were without veteran G Kevin Martin (sore left foot), who missed his second consecutive game, and veteran C Nikola Pekovic (sore right ankle), who missed his third consecutive game. … The Timberwolves were eliminated from Western Conference playoff contention Friday, but they still have a good chance of finishing with their first winning season since 2004-05. … The Magic were without C Nikola Vucevic (sore left Achilles tendon) for the second consecutive game. Rookie C Dewayne Dedmon, who joined the Magic originally on a 10-day contract in February, made his first NBA start Saturday. … Magic G Arron Afflalo, the team’s leading scorer this season, had 10 points in the first eight minutes Saturday, breaking out of his recent slump when he averaged just 7.6 points in the previous three games, making just nine of 29 shots.

Up to the minute news and reports from the news wire of The Sports Xchange.

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