Minneapolis, MN, United States (4E Sports) – Center Nikola Pekovic has signed a five-year pact with the Minnesota Timberwolves worth $60 million plus incentive-related bonuses that could bring an additional $8 million.
Wolves president Flip Saunders initially offered a four-year deal worth around $48 million before the deal was clinched when a fifth year was agreed upon.
Five years was the maximum length that the Wolves could sign Pekovic with his Bird rights.
Pekovic hardly received offers from other teams, certain that the Wolves would match any offer sheet.
Saunders established that re-signing Pekovic this summer as one of his foremost priorities.
“Retaining Pek was our No. 1 priority this offseason, and we’re very excited that he’s chosen to continue his career in Minnesota,” Saunders said.
In addition to his low-post moves and agility, Pekovic is valued by the Wolves for his work in pick-and-roll coverage defensively against the offensive sets that are so prevalent all over the league.
Pekovic, 27, posted career highs last season by averaging 16.3 points and 8.8 rebounds in 62 games in his third NBA season and was set to reach the open market next summer as an unrestricted free agent.
According to Saunders, the team envisions Pekovic and Kevin Love teaming up as their ‘Bruise Brothers’ and forming one of the best frontcourts in the NBA for a long time to come.”
Pekovic recently withdrew from Montenegro’s national team ahead of next month’s Eurobasket tournament in Slovenia to finalize his Wolves contract.