The Denver Nuggets traveled to Minnesota to take on their division rival Timberwolves at the Target Center on Wednesday night. The matchup ended up being one of the more entertaining games of the year and featured a 19 point lead, a furious comeback, seven ties, eight lead changes, and required overtime to find a victor. Jimmy Butler turned in a cold-blooded performance down the stretch and buried the Nuggets for good in overtime to secure a 128-125 victory for the Timberwolves.

The Nuggets looked sluggish as they got off to a slow start on the second night of their sixth back-to-back of the season. The Timberwolves — who are typically not a huge threat from beyond the arc — took advantage of the opportunity by breaking character and hitting their first five three-point attempts of the game.

Minnesota seemingly couldn’t miss Meanwhile, Denver couldn’t buy a bucket. The Nuggets went scoreless for over five minutes in the first quarter and Minnesota built up an 18-point lead. Denver chipped away at the lead and kept themselves in the game thanks to a spark off the bench from Will Barton — but they still trailed 35-23 after the first quarter.

The Nuggets were able to find their rhythm offensively in the second quarter as they were able to drop 35 points in the second frame. The problem was they couldn’t stop the Wolves on the other end.

The Wolves are one of the league’s best teams on the offensive glass. Denver needed a winning effort in this department, but they found themselves standing around and watching as the Wolves inhaled offensive rebounds and pounded the Nuggets with second-chance points.

Minnesota was clicking on all cylinders and had tallied 71 points by the half — their highest total in any half this season. The Wolves held a 13-point lead with three of their starters in double digits and all five shooting 50 percent or better from the field.

The Nuggets could have caved — this game seemed all but over — but Denver made some serious adjustments at halftime. They rediscovered their spectacular defensive form, holding the Wolves to just 17 points in the third quarter. They forced misses and they were able to limit the Wolves to just one offensive rebound.

Denver’s bench caught fire in the third as well. Will Barton and Trey Lyles willed the Nuggets back into a game that once looked like a sure blowout. The Nuggets closed out the third on a 14-2 run as the Timberwolves saw their lead shrink to just six points.

That run bled into the fourth quarter as it grew to a 22-4 stretch in Denver’s favor. Lyles and Barton combined for 19 of those points as Denver tied the game at 90 points with just under ten minutes remaining. That’s when Butler started to take over.

Butler — the best player on the floor — scored 13 of the Wolves’ 26 points in the fourth as the two teams traded blows down the stretch.

With less than 24 seconds remaining and trailing by one, the Nuggets successfully trapped Butler near half-court to force a jump ball. No one controlled the tip and there was a scramble for the loose ball that ended with Gibson securing the ball and was immediately getting fouled. Everyone got a chance to catch their breath being that Jeff Teague had hurt his knee in the scramble — which looked particularly gruesome on the replay — and limped off the court.

When action resumed, Gibson missed the first of two free throws and the Nuggets called a timeout. Barton drove to the rim on the ensuing possession and missed his layup attempt, but drew the foul. He knocked down both free throws to send the game into overtime after a Butler half-court heave narrowly missed as time expired.

Karl-Anthony Towns had fouled out near the end of regulation and with Teague having left the game, the Wolves needed Butler to carry them and he obliged. The two teams continued to go back and forth, but Butler scored 11 his team’s 13 overtime points to secure the victory. Butler finished with 39 points on the night.

Following the loss, the Nuggets fall to 19-16 on the year and three games back of Minnesota for first place in the division. Denver will have two days off before hosting the Philadelphia 76ers for their final game of the calendar year on Saturday.