The last piece of the puzzle for the Minnesota Timberwolves is in limbo at the moment. General manager Flip Saunders and owner Glen Taylor expect center Nikola Pekovic back on the Wolves very soon as he ponders the contract offer on the table.
Minnesota offered Pekovic a contract worth around $50 million over four years and Pekovic’s team countered. At the moment, it’s not clear what the negotiations are getting down to, but Taylor and Saunders have said recently they have no doubt he’ll be back in Minnesota.
For the Wolves, Pekovic’s return would make them one of the more well-rounded teams in the league. This offseason has been filled with plenty of signings that will help fill some of the major needs within the roster.
Kevin Martin, Chase Budinger, Corey Brewer and Ronny Turiaf will all come in and help in their respective area of strength, which arguably were more or less the major weaknesses from last season.
Bringing Pekovic back would make the Wolves a much better team for several reasons. First, without Pekovic there is absolutely no formidable post presence outside of Kevin Love. With Love being a more versatile scorer from all over the court, Pekovic’s interior presence is a valuable asset.
Second, the fact Minnesota has an offensive presence down low with Pekovic means less pressure on the outside shooters the Wolves have added. With Martin and Budinger the main shooters on the outside now, along with Brewer at times, it will be imperative they get open looks. Pekovic demands attention in the paint, therefore they will certainly get their shots.
Lastly, the fact that Pekovic is a 290 pound near-seven footer on both ends of the floor means the world to Minnesota. Specifically on the defensive end, Pekovic isn’t particularly strong in that area but his big body clogging the lane always affects how Minnesota’s opponents game plan. With both Pekovic and Love down low, the Wolves have one of the better front courts on both ends of the floor.