Magic at Timberwolves: Orlando aims to split back-to-back

Andrei Kirilenko - Debby Wong-US PRESSWIRE

Orlando faltered late in Tuesday's loss to the Bulls. Wednesday, the Magic take on an undermanned Minnesota team.

Coming off their first loss of the season, the Orlando Magic head to Target Center to take on the Minnesota Timberwolves, another of the league's pleasantly surprising teams.

Nobody expected the Timberwolves to be terribly competitive until Kevin Love and Ricky Rubio returned from injury. Instead, they own a 2-1 record thanks largely to Andrei Kirilenko's incredible play. The gadget forward is enjoying a renaissance in his return to the NBA--he played in Russia during the lockout-shortened 2011/12 NBA season--posting per-game averages of 14.3 points, 7.7 rebounds, 4.7 assists, and 2.7 blocks on 68 percent shooting.

The Magic fell to the Chicago Bulls on Tuesday, 99-93, despite a 28-point, 0-turnover performance from Arron Afflalo. Chicago shot 12-of-21 from the floor--including 9-of-16 on mid-range jumpers--in the decisive fourth quarter as the Magic squandered the two-point lead they held after three periods.

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