NBA Playoffs: Breakding down the Rockets vs. Timberwolves series

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They should also limit the Western Conference top seeds from shooting three's - they are one of two teams to have recorded over 1,000 three-pointers this season and they have also scored twice as many three's than the Timberwolves per game. It worked - for the first time since 2004 the Timberwolves are in the postseason. The big man was a force on both ends, holding Minnesota's Karl-Anthony Towns to just eight points. They rank first in offensive rating, but don't sleep on Houston's defense with Clint Capela down low.

James Harden had himself a game in Houston, piling on 44 points to lead the Rockets to a 104-101 Game 1 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves.

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Houston and James Harden are the best regular season team in the National Basketball Association (and very possibly just the best team in the National Basketball Association, period). While the Game 1 loss was far more competitive than any of the team's four regular season meetings - which Houston swept convincingly - Sunday was an opportunity missed for Minnesota.

The Timberwolves come into this game 8 in scoring with 109.5 points a game. Minnesota got monster minutes from Derrick Rose.

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The Timberwolves had a one-point lead with about seven minutes left when Houston used a 9-0 run, with the last seven points from Harden, to make it 94-86 with about four minutes to go. The Minnesota Timberwolves waited 13 years to make the playoffs while the Houston Rockets spent the best part of the last two months of the regular season waiting for the playoffs. Russell Westbrook added 29 points, 13 rebounds and eight assists. Towns had 12 rebounds and two assists. Andrew Wiggins is third on Minnesota with 17.7 points plus 4.4 boards a game.

Offensive efficiency will be the mantra for the Timberwolves as they look to upset the Rockets. The Houston Rockets are averaging 112.4 points on 46 percent shooting and allowing 103.9 points on 46.2 percent shooting.

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The Wolves didn't get enough from their big guns to contend with a team that possesses the firepower Houston has. They shot 47.6 % from the field during the regular season (tied for the fourth-best shooting percentage of any team, only behind the Warriors, Pelicans and the Bucks) and are the second-best FT shooting team in the league, only behind the Warriors.

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