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Phoenix guard Devin Booker might have known his Timberwolves history when he shoved forward Jaden McDaniels.

The incident came in the second quarter of the Timberwolves'105-93 victory in Game 2 of the Western Conference quarterfinal series, a win that gave them a 2-0 series lead.

Booker has played through offensive hell so far in this series when McDaniels has guarded him, and perhaps his shove of McDaniels, which drew a foul, was an attempt to rattle the same player who cost himself a chance to play in last season's playoffs after punching a wall in a tunnel near the Wolves bench.

McDaniels had an immediate response: a shove of Booker after the whistle, and he drew a technical foul. But that's where the outburst ended, and McDaniels channeled whatever anger was left the proper way in what coach Chris Finch said was the best game of McDaniels' career.

On a night when guard Anthony Edwards (15 points, 3-for-12) and center Karl-Anthony Towns (12 points, 3-for-7) failed to fill up the stat sheet, McDaniels had their back. He scored 25 points in 41 minutes, minutes that included defensive matchups against Booker and forward Kevin Durant almost the entire time he was out there. Booker finished with 20 points on 6-for-13 shooting but had six turnovers. Durant finished with 18 points, shooting 6-for-15.

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"Not playing last year, I was kind of antsy to play the first game and this game," McDaniels said. "Just being in this environment and being in the playoffs. It feels like a dream come true for me. I don't like missing out on it."

McDaniels never let up, and his tenacity has typified the Wolves through the first two games of the series.

So far, the Wolves have proved they aren't just capable of winning games against Phoenix. They likely have made the Suns question whether they are outmatched in this series.

That much was evident in the fourth quarter, when McDaniels glided down the lane for two consecutive layups against the gassed and helpless Suns. Those layups capped a 15-5 start to the fourth quarter — without Edwards on the floor — that put the Wolves up 17 and essentially ended the night. Instead of the Wolves letting their emotions get the better of them with officials, it was Phoenix — with coach Frank Vogel hopping up and down on the floor in hysterics at one point — showing outward signs of the Suns' internal panic.

"We can see it. I can feel it," said defensive backstop Rudy Gobert, who had 18 points and nine rebounds. "I can see them. It's tough. No one likes going against the type of defense that we're playing right now."

Gobert and McDaniels, along with Edwards and guard Nickeil Alexander-Walker, are the reasons for that. The Wolves' relentlessness on defense held Phoenix to only 42 second-half points.

BOXSCORE: Timberwolves 105, Phoenix 93

Center Naz Reid, one of McDaniels' best friends on the team, was all smiles talking about McDaniels' redemption from the embarrassment of last season. He said that competitive fire McDaniels showed in his spat with Booker can fuel the team.

"That's my brother," said Reid, who had five points. "Especially for me, I feel [the same] type of way. So if he gets into that fire, I feel like I'm going in there with him."

McDaniels added eight rebounds to his night and Finch cracked that he's been harping on McDaniels to rebound for about "250 games." The team broke out some "old-school football drills," according to Finch, to knock McDaniels around in practice to get him to rebound better.

"I like to play physical," McDaniels said. "It's the way we like to play."

Last season, when the Suns traded for Durant, Edwards gave an interview and was asked for his reaction to the trade. In a clip that has resurfaced this series, Edwards' answer was "They got KD, but we got Jaden McDaniels."

McDaniels made Edwards look like a prophet.

"Ant know what he talking about," McDaniels said.