Emotional Patrick Beverly leads the celebration as the Minnesota Timberwolves beat the Los Angeles Clippers to advance to the playoffs

MINNEAPOLIS – Anthony Edwards and Patrick Beverley stood at the scorers’ table at goal center, shouting and celebrating in an ode to a defining moment in Minnesota Timberwolves history when Kevin Garnett stood at the table and celebrated in the 2004 playoffs.

Shortly after jumping off the table, Beverly sat down on the Timberwolves’ seat and started crying out in an outpouring of emotion. This was very personal for Beverley. The veteran goalkeeper not only felt the euphoria of the victory over his former team, but he was thrilled to help Minnesota clinch seventh place in the Western Playoffs by defeating the Los Angeles Clippers 109-104 on Tuesday. night.

Second-seeded Minnesota will play the Memphis Grizzlies in Game 1 of the playoff series on Saturday. This is the Timberwolves’ first playoff appearance since 2018.

“Man, I wanted this so bad,” said Beverly, who hugged his mom Lisa on the playground. “That’s just cake on the cake, cherry on top. Play, you can beat them…Another goal got scratched. I told you we were going to playoffs. Most of you all, y” they all looked at me like I was crazy when I first said it. I have told you all. “

And he wasted no time in telling his former team – who took him away in August – how he felt. The Clippers sent Beverly to Memphis, and the Grizzlies, in turn, exchanged him for Minnesota, giving him the contract extension he sought in February.

Forced into a late turn, Beverly celebrated in front of the Clippers’ bench, letting out a primal shriek before pulling back and pointing at the Minnesota jersey.

“Take them home,” Beverly said of what he eventually told his old classmates. Long trip to L.A. Take them home. It’s deeper than that for me. I gave my blood, sweat and tears to that organization. You guys know the story.

“Blood, sweat, and tears, to be crossed out in this way,” he is susceptible to injury. He is old. “This, this, this, that. For you to come in here and play them play and beat the ass, there’s no other feeling, man. There’s no other feeling.”

Beverly made good on a vow he made when he was introduced to the media in Minnesota in September that he would lead the Wolves to the playoffs. On Tuesday night, the franchise helped secure only its second trip to the post-season since Garnett stood at the same table after leading Wolves to the Western Conference Finals in 2004.

And Beverly did it against his former team. The base — who had seven points and 11 rebounds on Tuesday — spent four seasons with the Clippers and helped the team transition from Chris Paul’s Blake Griffin Deandre Jordan era to his current team with Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. Beverly helped establish the Clippers’ current hard-working identity and next-man mentality.

In Minneapolis, Beverly’s fickle hustle, tough defense and bravery made his mark on the youngster’s impressionable roster.

“They’ve got players a little bit more confident,” George said after scoring 34 points for the Clippers, who will now face the winner of the San Antonio Spurs and the eighth-seeded New Orleans Pelicans. “His energy and personality, you know, impacted that list.

“I know what was going to happen in this game. I wouldn’t let go of his weird style and try to make me confused. I knew it was all for the show. It’s for the audience. Engaging the fans. I love it. That when he’s in this situation, he ignites the team, ignites the arena. You need energy guys like that.”

Minnesota overcame many challenges to beat the Clippers. Los Angeles led by 10 with 8:54 left in the game, and Karl-Anthony Towns, frustrated with having had a serious problem throughout the game, blundered to 7:34 after scoring just 11 points.

But Edwards scored nine out of 30 after that 10-point difference, and D’Angelo Russell hit two 3-pointers in the final four minutes before finishing with 29 points to help Minnesota take a 21-5 victory.

“I took what he gave me from the match,” said Edwards, who will play in his first playoff game. “And that’s what they gave me.

“They were afraid of guarding me, and I took advantage of that.”

The Wolves celebrated in their court as if they had won a playoff streak. And the masses absorb it. After all, the franchise has lost an average of 46 games over the past three seasons.

“I’m not going to lie, this has been on my mind since I thought we were playing with them,” Edwards said of standing at the table like Garnett. “I was sleeping [and] I say I’m going to shoot the match-winning ball and jump on the table.”

Beverly and the Wolves will then have to face Ja Morant and Memphis. But they were going to get a taste of the playoff berth first.

“I told you, you,” Beverly said to Edwards. “They didn’t believe me. We’re going to playoffs, baby. They looked at me like I was crazy. They said, ‘Pat, you’re crazy!'” “