Timberwolves' Anthony Edwards swaps fingers over Jazz's John Collins on poster dunk

By John Krawczynski, Shams Sarania, and Alex Andrejev

Minnesota Timberwolves star Anthony Edwards' poster dunk on Utah Jazz power forward John Collins on Monday was so intense it hurt both players.

Edwards said in a post-game interview with Bally Sports North that he dislocated a finger on his left hand. According to league sources, after contesting the slam, Collins, on the receiving end of Dunk, left with a head concussion. Collins did not suffer a concussion.

A highlight-worthy moment occurred in the third quarter when Minnesota trailed by one point. After snapping the ball to Edwards, he picked it up, dribbled down the court and passed it to Nikkeil Alexander-Walker, who then returned the ball to Edwards in the lane. Edwards then drove home the potential dunk of the year over the 6-foot-9 Collins.

After Edwards landed, he appeared to be holding his finger as teammates surrounded him.

Minnesota won 114-104, with Edwards scoring 32 points.

Edwards' Dunk History

Edwards is no stranger to high-flying dunks. From his rookie season, when he brought an avalanche on Toronto's Yuta Watanabe, he quickly became known as one of the league's most violent dunkers. Alperen Şengün, Jaren Jackson Jr., Jalen McDaniels and Jalen Duren are just a few defenders who have felt his wrath over the years. His best dunk, technically, didn't count, when he was called for an offensive foul in his second season when he threw up on Miami's Gabe Vincent.

This had an impact on Collins in more ways than one. While Edwards stepped up, the injured Karl-Anthony Towns, Rudy Gobert and Nas Reid were sidelined in the second half with head injuries. The Wolves outshot the Jazz 49-38 for a much-needed win.

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Collins did not return to the match after Edwards' hand inadvertently struck Collins in the head.

Dunk also took Edwards. He put the Wolves' threat on his back, scoring 25 of his 32 points in the second half. – John Krawczynski, Timberwolves senior writer

'He's Wolverine'

As Edwards threw Tangu down, he stopped and looked at his left hand. Team members looked at Edwards' finger and were wide-eyed as he quickly walked to the locker room to get attention. Timberwolves coach Chris Finch called a timeout to buy some time, as Edwards had to shoot a free throw after being fouled on a dunk. If he does not shoot the free throw, he cannot return to the game.

Edwards came back with his fingers sticking out of his left hand and was no worse for wear. It followed a pattern for the 22-year-old star. He is known for injuries that, at first glance, seem very serious. But after a quick trip to the locker room, he returned to play with little sign of ever being hurt.

“He's Wolverine,” said Justin Holland, Edwards' business manager. – Krawczynski

Big picture

Could a performance like this put Edwards in the conversation for the All-NBA first team? The four spots look very attractive with Nikola Jokic, Luka Doncic, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.

Boston's Jayson Tatum gets strong consideration for the fifth and final spot, the best player on the Boston Celtics, the best team so far this season. If Edwards puts up games like this to keep the Timberwolves in contention for the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference, where both Towns and Gobert are out, he'll make a compelling case.

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He is very motivated for it. In the previous 14 games, he averaged 29.1 points and 5.8 rebounds. He averaged 31 points and 7.2 rebounds in the five games Towns missed before the win over Utah. That puts the Wolves (47-21) in a tie for second in the West with Denver, a half-game behind Oklahoma City. – Krawczynski

Required reading

(Photo: Alex Goodlett/Getty)

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