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Timberwolves’ Anthony Edwards remains a big problem in Georgia

ATLANTA – The Sunday Funday gathering at Irby’s Tavern focused all its attention on the Braves, as evidenced by the vast majority of the two dozen televisions tuned to the team’s appearance on “Sunday Night Baseball” against the New York Mets. York, with audio of the match. .

A few of those TVs switched to TNT shortly before tipoff for Game 4 of the Timberwolves and Nuggets series at Target Center. With that came a few basketball fans – some just looking for a playoff game, but others eager to watch Atlanta’s rising star, Anthony Edwards.

“They have a great chance to win it all this season,” Chicago native and Los Angeles resident Guy Nardulli said of the Timberwolves before quickly turning to Edwards. “I’ll put it like this: Michael Jordan is the GOAT, the greatest of all time. This kid has a chance. He’s super talented and you can’t keep him.”

Edwards, 22, grew up in the Oakland City neighborhood south of Atlanta and made commutes lasting up to an hour in traffic to reach Holy Spirit Preparatory School on the city’s north side. . From there, he played one year at the University of Georgia before being selected No. 1 overall by the Wolves in the 2020 NBA Draft.

Now in his fourth NBA season, Edwards scored nine points in the first 4:03 of the game as the Wolves took a 15-9 lead on Sunday.

Around that time, Da-Shon Dixon sat down at the bar and immediately focused his attention on Edwards. Dixon, a native of Savannah, Georgia, attended Georgia Law School while Edwards averaged 19.1 points, 5.2 rebounds and 2.8 assists as a freshman for the Bulldogs .

“I guess I first noticed him his senior year of high school because he was going to UGA and he was the No. 1 high school player in the country,” Dixon said. “Obviously, he’s a phenomenal basketball player, but his personality just shines. … If you ask me, he’s next. He’s the heir apparent to LeBron James.”

The Nuggets extended their lead to 15 points in the second before Edwards made a couple of three-pointers in his 12-point quarter.

The Wolves/Edwards rooters were discouraged, but hope returned when Edwards scored 14 points in the third quarter, helping cut Denver’s lead to 11 points with 12 minutes left.

“They still have a chance,” Dixon said.

Those who watched the Braves game came away disappointed when the Mets won 4-3 on a home run. They quickly turned their attention to the NBA game and watched as the Wolves slowly pulled away, closing to 111-104 with 1:49 left in the fourth quarter on Edwards’ reverse layup.

He added a free throw to finish with a career-high 44 playoff points, but the Nuggets had the answer – a pair of baskets from Nikola Jokic that set the final score at 115-107 and tied the series at two matches each.

Afterward, Irby’s customers paid their checks and tipped their caps to Edwards, who didn’t want his team to win but made the argument that he’s among the best in the NBA.