The Minnesota Timberwolves and restricted free agent big man Nikola Pekovic are "getting closer" to a four-year, $50 million contract extension, Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski reports. The deal would take arguably the top remaining free agent, restricted or unrestricted, off the market.
For the Timberwolves, this move felt inevitable from the beginning of the summer. While Pekovic could have aggressively sought out offer sheets from other teams as a restricted free agent, Minnesota's ability to match any agreement quickly soured the market for the 27-year-old.
Barring some absolutely insane offer from another team, and we're talking close to max money, the Timberwolves were always going to retain Pekovic this summer. Without a team looking to blow Minnesota out of the water, figuring out terms on a contract extension felt like the most likely scenario.
A central part of the team's current core, Pekovic emerged as one of the top big men in the league over the last two seasons. Starting 62 games for Minnesota last season, he averaged 16.3 points and 8.8 rebounds per game, posting a PER of 20.3.