MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Minnesota Timberwolves showed off their improved defense Wednesday night against the San Antonio Spurs. It was quite a performance by Robert Covington who scored 21 points, Karl-Anthony Towns and Derrick Rose each had 16 and the Timberwolves shut down the Spurs for a 128-89 victory.

Minnesota (11-11) earned its fourth straight win to get to .500 for the first time since October 31. Minnesota had dropped 14 of its last 15 against San Antonio, but it held the Spurs to 39.5 percent shooting. These aren’t the Spurs of Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili, but the much-improved Timberwolves defense isn’t the same, either.

“We’re finally taking pride in it each and every night and not for a quarter, not for a few minute, not for one possession,” guard Tyus Jones said. “We’re staying locked in on that end of the floor and I think we’re starting to see it makes a difference when you’re locked in on defense.”

Minnesota improved to 7-2 since trading disgruntled star Jimmy Butler to Philadelphia in exchange for Covington, Dario Saric, Jerryd Bayless and a second-round draft pick.

Minnesota now prepares for the Boston Celtics this Sunday, December 1.

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