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Published February 23, 2012, 01:42 PM

Sweet 17: Wolves have already matched last season

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — After two miserable seasons and four bad ones before that, the Minnesota Timberwolves had nowhere to go except up.

By: DAVE CAMPBELL, Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — After two miserable seasons and four bad ones before that, the Minnesota Timberwolves had nowhere to go except up.

They're showing a lot more than marginal improvement.

The Timberwolves head into the All-Star break with a .500 record at 17-17, just one game out of eighth place in the Western Conference. Yes, that means only one game away from playoff position.

Seventeen wins is the same amount they finished last year with. That was an 82-game season. They've only played 34 times under new coach Rick Adelman with rookie point guard Ricky Rubio and emerging center Nikola Pekovic (PECK'-oh-vick).

All-Star Kevin Love has only gotten better, too, giving the Wolves plenty of confidence for the second half.

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