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His assistant coach turned 50 on Monday and rapper 50 Cent was in the house Tuesday, so Timberwolves young All-Star Anthony Edwards simply beat them both, scoring a career-high 51 points in a crucial 130-121 comeback victory over Washington at Target Center.

On a night when Wolves star Naz Reid was ejected late in the first quarter because of a flagrant-2 foul, Nickeil Alexander-Walker entered and provided an energetic performance that, along with Edwards' play, turned around a game in which the Wolves trailed the 14th-place Wizards by 21 points in the first quarter's final minute.

Edwards rescued them with a scoring show that eclipsed his previous career high of 49 points by two. His drive down the lane through traffic for a falling-down layup reached those 51 points, on 17-for-29 shooting. He was 6-for-13 on threes.

"Once I looked up and he hit the three and got 47, I knew, everyone knows where his mind was at that point," Alexander-Walker said.

Apparently, Edwards did it for assistant coach Micah Nori, who just turned 50. The rookies sang him "Happy Birthday" on Tuesday morning.

Edwards credited rookie Leonard Miller for telling him what was in sight.

"He came to me like third quarter and said, 'You're going to get 50 tonight,' " said Edwards, who had 38 after three quarters. "I was like, 'Whatever it takes to win.' And he said, 'Why not do both?' So a big shout out to him."

Edwards scored 12 points in the first, nine in the second, 17 in the third and 13 in the fourth.

"He was in a groove," Wolves coach Chris Finch said. "He was feeling it for sure. We needed all of them, for sure. The thing about it for me was they came in the flow. He kept making the right play down the stretch for the most part. He was really finding people."

Edwards also had seven assists and six rebounds before he came to the bench just after he reached 51.

The Wolves and Denver are tied for first place in the Western Conference with 55-24 records and three games to play in the regular season. They play at 9 p.m. tonight, a game that will be on ESPN and BSN.

Edwards joined an exclusive Timberwolves club by hitting at least 50 points, including teammate Karl-Anthony Towns, Kevin Love, Corey Brewer and Mo Williams.

BOXSCORE: Wolves 130, Washington 121

He was asked what's next, 60, maybe 70?

"I mean, hopefully, I get there, 50 is tiring enough," Edwards said. "I don't know about 60 or 70. I don't know how people get 60. I don't know how Kobe got 81. Getting 50 is tiring. If I get in better shape, probably."

"Maybe, I don't know," Alexander-Walker said when asked if Edwards scored 50 for the 50-year-old. "He added a little cherry on top."

It came just a week after everybody, including Edwards, wondered where his shot had gone after he didn't make a three-pointer in four consecutive games.

Edwards had worked late nights with player development coach Chris Hines to find that show.

"There's a gym right up the street from the crib, like three minutes," Edwards said. "We were in there all night, every night. I went three, four nights without hitting the trey ball so I had to figure it out."

When did it come back?

"I have no clue," he said. "I never thought it left, but it just was never going in. I just had to figure it out."

The Wizards lost for the seventh time in eight games. They played without four injured players, including Apple Valley's own Tyus Jones (back).

Earlier Tuesday, the Wolves announced star big man Karl-Anthony Towns has been cleared for full-contact, 5-on-5 basketball activities and is "progressing" toward a return to play.

He underwent surgery to repair a left knee lateral meniscus on March 12.

Towns sat on the Wolves' bench Tuesday as he has done recently and Finch called himself optimistic that Towns will play before the playoffs begin next week.

"It'll be super fun because now you got KAT and Naz shooting it at 50% from three," Edwards said. "So that should be super fun."