The Minnesota Timberwolves are into the NBA playoffs for just the second time in 18 years – and it’s safe to say Patrick Beverley is happy about that.
Despite star Karl-Anthony Towns fouling out during the fourth quarter, the Timberwolves staged a comeback to win their play-in game against the LA Clippers, 109-104.
Minnesota is now the No.7 seed and will face No.2 seed Memphis in the first round. It’s the first time they’re better than the eighth seed in the Western Conference since Kevin Garnett’s MVP season of 2003-04.
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Beverley had the game-sealing steal and celebrated wildly in front of his home fans, ripping off his shirt and throwing it into the crowd.
But his intense mood continued into the locker room where video emerged of him cursing out his old side the Clippers and those who didn’t believe in his team.
“We in the motherf***in’ playoffs,” he declared.
“I told you we was going to the playoffs and nobody believed me. Weak ass Clippers. Beat they motherf***in’ ass.
“F*** outta here. F*** outta here.”
The Clippers will host the winners of the New Orleans-San Antonio play-in game for the right to be the No.8 seed and face Phoenix in the first round.
NETS WIN THROUGH FOR CELTICS SHOWDOWN
The Brooklyn Nets have secured a place in the NBA playoffs with a 115-108 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers in the play-in tournament.
The Nets, who entered the play-in as the No. 7 seed in the Eastern Conference, will now face the No. 2 seed Boston Celtics in the first round of the play-offs.
A resounding first-half performance from Nets star Kyrie Irving in which he scored 20 points from a perfect 9-9 in shooting laid the perfect platform for Steve Nash’s side to brush the Cavaliers aside.
Irving was hitting them from here, there and everywhere as the 30-year-old remained perfect from 12 field goal attempts until he finally missed a shot with 10 minutes to go in the fourth, as a tricky three-point attempt bounced off the rim before being snatched by a Cavs man.
He ultimately finished with 34 points and 12 assists, making 12-15 from shooting.
Kevin Durant also played a major role in the victory with 25 points and 11 assists, including two clutch jump shots in the fourth quarter that helped put some breathing room between the Nets and the Cavs who were enjoying a favorable points run.
Durant and Irving made Nets scoring history as the first teammates to go score over 20 points and have over 10 assists in the same game since Derrick Coleman and Rumeal Robinson achieved the same feat in April 1993.
Australian ace Patty Mills also had a helping hand in the victory, draining two shots from beyond the arc to finish with 6 points and 5 rebounds.
One of Mills’ three-pointers came at the end of the first half in a moment that had Ben Simmons standing up and applauding. Simmons is expected to finally return to the court and make his Nets debut in the playoffs.
Durant dished the ball to Mills who was on the right sideline, before unleashing an inch-perfect shot to send the fans packed inside the Barclays Center wild as Brooklyn continued to give themselves breathing room.
Mills’ shot highlighted the Nets’ dominance in the first half, with Brooklyn piling up 40 points to the Cavaliers’ 20.
However, Cleveland held the home side to just 17 points of offense in the second quarter and put up 23 of their own as the Nets went into halftime holding a 57-43 lead.
After the relative offensive snoozefest in the second, both the Nets and the Cavaliers stepped it up a notch in the third as Cleveland did their utmost to give the home team and their fans a scare.
The Cavs were as close as six points away from the Nets in the fourth, but Brooklyn showed their quality in the end and secured the needed victory to book a spot in the play-offs.
Cleveland will now face the winner of the Atlanta Hawks v Charlotte Hornets play-in match as they look to keep their hopes alive for a playoff berth.