He wasn’t exactly Mr. Double-Double in his NBA career, but Hedo Turkoglu showed up big to help The San Antonio Spurs get a key win this day in 2004. Coming off an embarrassing loss to the 20-34 Cleveland Cavaliers, the Spurs traveled to Minnesota to face a Timberwolves team on a five-game winning streak.
With San Antonio at 36-19 and Minnesota at 40-15, the showdown was a battle of heavyweights. In fact, the Wolves (58-24) and Spurs (57-25) ended up with the first and second-best records in the Western Conference by the season’s end.
As the Spurs looked to redeem themselves after a poor performance, they raced to a 30-23 lead after one quarter, pushing their lead to nine at the half. Down 70-64 heading into the final frame, the Wolves used a heavy dose of Kevin Garnett, Sam Cassell, and Latrell Sprewell to cut the Spurs’ lead to just two points with 15 seconds remaining.
A pair of game-icing free throws by Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili allowed the Spurs to escape with a 94-92 win, but Hedo Turkoglu’s stellar rebounding night was a huge contributing factor. The Turkish forward pulled down a game-high 14 boards in 35 minutes to go along with his 13 points. He also buried two of his three made trifectas in the fourth quarter to help put the game away.
In Hedo’s total of 80 games played in San Antonio, this game was one of his two total double-doubles, with the other one being a 12-point, 12-rebound game against Milwaukee.
Despite having an underrated season in the Alamo City in which he led the team in 3-point shooting percentage with 41.9, Turkoglu chose Orlando the following season, narrowly missing out on an NBA title in 2005. Hedo is currently spending his time as the President of the Turkish Basketball Federation.