MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- The New Orleans Hornets were plugging along OK without one starter. Missing a second starter proved to be more than they could handle.
Kevin Garnett had 23 points and eight rebounds in three quarters, and Troy Hudson added 22 points and eight assists to lead the Minnesota Timberwolves to a 114-93 victory Friday night.
New Orleans has been without star guard Baron Davis since Jan. 28, when he went on the injured list after having knee surgery. Friday night, the Hornets also were missing starting forward P.J. Brown, who was attending a funeral.
NEW ORLEANS (93)
Mashburn 8-23 2-2 19, Magloire 2-8 0-0 4, Campbell 4-10 6-6 14, Lynch 3-5 4-6 10, Wesley 10-19 0-0 21, Traylor 2-7 0-0 4, Moiso 5-8 1-2 11, Alexander 1-5 0-0 2, Pack 1-4 2-2 4, Augmon 1-1 0-0 2, Drew 1-2 0-0 2. Totals 38-92 15-18 93.
Szczerbiak 7-16 3-3 18, Garnett 10-19 2-3 23, Nesterovic 5-7 1-2 11, Peeler 4-8 0-0 10, Hudson 7-13 2-2 22, Jackson 5-9 0-0 10, Gill 3-7 0-0 7, Rakocevic 1-2 0-0 2, Trent 3-7 0-0 6, Woods 1-1 0-0 3, Wilks 1-2 0-0 2. Totals 47-91 8-10 114.
New Orleans 29 17 24 23 -- 93
Minnesota 37 22 28 27 -- 114
3-Point Goals--New Orleans 2-10 (Wesley 1-2, Mashburn 1-7, Alexander 0-1), Minnesota 12-19 (Hudson 6-8, Peeler 2-4, Woods 1-1, Gill 1-1, Garnett 1-2, Szczerbiak 1-2, Wilks 0-1). Fouled out--None. Rebounds--New Orleans 60 (Lynch 10), Minnesota 43 (Garnett, Trent 8). Assists--New Orleans 23 (Lynch 8), Minnesota 39 (Hudson 8). Total fouls--New Orleans 13, Minnesota 19. Technicals--Traylor. A--16,347 (19,006).
"I was very pleased with our effort, but we weren't very efficient," Hornets coach Paul Silas said. "Missing P.J. Brown and Baron Davis, it's hard to be efficient."
David Wesley was very efficient for the Hornets early, scoring 15 of his 21 points in the first quarter on 7-of-10 shooting.
But Hudson hit four 3-pointers and Garnett had 10 points and five rebounds in the first quarter to negate Wesley's hot start, and the Wolves grabbed a 37-29 lead.
"Wesley was great tonight," Minnesota coach Flip Saunders said. "The biggest thing was we didn't get caught up in that."
The Timberwolves hit a season-high 12 of 19 shots from 3-point range (63 percent) in earning their fifth win in a row and 11th in a row at home.
After a solid first quarter offensively -- the Hornets shot almost 52 percent from the field -- it was all down hill for New Orleans.
After his big start, Wesley didn't make another shot until 8:18 of the third quarter, and the Timberwolves built a 64-52 lead.
The Hornets have struggled on offense since the All-Star break. In three games before the break, New Orleans averaged more than 100 points and shot almost 50 percent from the field and 3-point range.
In three games after the break, the Hornets have averaged just 81 points. They have yet to shoot over 42 percent from the field or over 20 percent from 3-point range.
"Offensively, we couldn't do that much," Silas said. "We just didn't have that much firepower. It's really difficult to lose your people and still maintain."
It doesn't matter how many starters are missing, if the team doesn't play with intensity, said the Hornets' George Lynch.
"P.J. could've made a difference, but we didn't play with enough intensity," Lynch said. "Any time a player like P.J. is out, you have to lift up and play harder. We just didn't have that intensity."
That was the difference with Minnesota. When Hudson and Garnett cooled down as the third quarter wore on, Wally Szczerbiak raised his level of play to finish off the Hornets.
After scoring just two points in the first half, Szczerbiak led a nine-point scoring burst at the end of the third quarter to give the Wolves control. His jumper with 9:45 left in the game gave Minnesota a 95-72 lead and capped a 15-2 run, allowing Garnett to rest the entire fourth quarter for the first time all season.
"I'll take rest over any double-double and any of the personal accolades," said Garnett, the MVP of Sunday's All-Star game. "Rest is always good. Rest is not a bad thing."
Szczerbiak finished with 18 points, seven rebounds and six assists.
Mashburn added 19 points on 8-of-23 shooting and seven rebounds for New Orleans.
Notes: Silas said Brown is expected to return to the lineup Sunday against Denver. ... Friday's game featured two of the four players in the NBA who average at least 20 points, six rebounds and five assists -- Garnett and Mashburn. The other two are Sacramento's Chris Webber and the Lakers' Kobe Bryant. ... Minnesota's 37 first-quarter points were two shy of its season high for points in a quarter.
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