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Nikola Pekovic | Center

Team: Minnesota Timberwolves
Age / DOB:  (28) / 1/3/1986
Ht / Wt:  6'11' / 285
College: Montenegro
Contract: view contract details
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Recent News

Nikola Pekovic (ankle bursitis) said that he feels good after shedding his protective boot, but the Wolves are looking for ways to limit the wear-and-tear on his body.
Flip Saunders already said that he hopes to limit his starting center to around 26-27 minutes per game, and Pek is wearing a custom-made shoe as a preventive measure. His fantasy value is severely undermined by his minute-limit, injury risk, and lack of shot-blocking at the C position. If he does go down with an injury this season, Gorgui Dieng would immediately become a must-own player. Oct 1 - 1:24 PM

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Player News

Date:

Coach Flip Saunders hopes he will be able to keep Nikola Pekovic at 26-27 minutes per game.

"With Gorgui [Dieng] improving and Ronny (Turiaf) being healthy, we can get Pek down to 26, 27 minutes a night," said Saunders. "So he’s not going to have to play 12 minutes at a time. He’s a big guy. If you can’t change his weight, you change his workload so his body doesn’t take such a pounding." Throughout the four-years that Pekovic has been in the league, he's never made it through a full NBA season. And while a decreased workload may help him stay on the court, it's also going to hurt his fantasy value a bit. Pek shouldn't be targeted until the later rounds of drafts in standard leagues.
Sep 28 - 11:00 AM

In an interview with Wolves President and coach Flip Saunders, it was reported that Nikola Pekovic's minutes are expected to drop.

He has had a lot of injuries in the past couple of seasons and can't seem to stay on the court. He is a bruiser when healthy but the Wolves will feel more comfortable resting him with the improving Gorgui Dieng behind him. We wouldn't target Pekovic until the later rounds.
Source: Jerry Zgoda
Sep 27 - 8:08 PM

Nikola Pekovic is expected to play 27 minutes per game this season.

That sounds about right and it would be down from his 31 per game last season. Pekovic has struggled to stay healthy the past two seasons and the team will give Gorgui Dieng more minutes as the backup center. Pek's numbers haven't translated to fantasy very well, so he's only a borderline pick at the end of standard fantasy drafts.
Sep 15 - 11:21 AM

Flip Saunders is confident that Nikola Pekovic will be able to remain healthy for the 2014-15 season.

Saunders cited that the team has fitted Pekovic for a new shoe, and he's been working hard with trainers all summer. Saunders also mentioned that he plans to play more Gorgui Dieng in an effort to limit the stretches Pekovic plays. With that being said, Pekovic has never made it through more than 65 games in an NBA season, and he was only able to suit up for 54 games last year. Despite Flip's enthusiasm, Pekovic remains a huge injury risk, and that should be considered before drafting him.
Aug 24 - 2:06 PM

Flip Saunders stated that Nikola Pekovic's ankle is finally "pain-free."

While Pekovic is a serious talent in the league, he has yet to play a full season in his NBA career, missing an average of 25 games over the past four seasons. Pekovic should be well rested, and healthy coming into this years training camp, but with the amount of games missed over his career he has earned the "injury prone" label, and remains a risk-reward type of player.
Jun 6 - 4:05 PM

Nikola Pekovic (ankle) will not play on Sunday and he's doubtful to return this season.

The Wolves aren't playing for anything in their final three games so it makes sense to keep Pekovic on the bench. He tried valiantly to play through his ankle bursitis but ultimately the injury shut him down again, allowing rookie Gorgui Dieng to thrive with extended minutes in the starting lineup.
Apr 13 - 8:51 PM

Nikola Pekovic (ankle) and Kevin Martin will not play against the Rockets on Friday.

There has been nothing to suggest Pek will make it back this season. His ankle and Achilles issues have bothered him for a couple months and there is no incentive to play him. Gorgui Dieng will get the start and has become a nice fantasy big man.
Apr 11 - 7:13 PM

Nikola Pekovic (ankle) is listed as doubtful for Friday's game against the Rockets.

It's not official yet, but it looks like Pekovic is shutting it down for the season. Backup Gorgui Dieng is averaging an eye-opening 12.0 points, 11.6 rebounds and 1.5 blocks in 11 starts this season.
Apr 11 - 10:59 AM

Nikola Pekovic (ankle), Kevin Martin (foot), Shabazz Muhammad (knee), Chase Budinger (ankle) and J.J. Barea (back) will not play on Wednesday vs. the Bulls.

This will be Pek's fifth game out of the lineup in a row and there is no sign of his return. Gorgui Dieng has been great and put up a double-double on Tuesday, so he's safe to deploy again. Ronny Turiaf has helped off the bench, but he's looked like he's lost a step since his return. Pekovic can be cut everywhere.
Apr 9 - 6:55 PM

Nikola Pekovic (ankle) is expected to miss his fourth straight game on Tuesday.

His ankle bursitis has bothered him since late January and he's aggravated it twice by trying to return to action. With the Wolves' season drawing to a rapid close and no chance of a playoff berth, it makes sense for Minnesota to shut down their burly center for the six games which remain. At the moment, however, he's still listed as day-to-day.
Apr 7 - 1:53 PM

Nikola Pekovic (ankle) will not play on Saturday vs. the Magic.

Gorgui Dieng will start at center vs. Dewayne Dedmon, since Orlando's usual starter Nikola Vucevic is out with Achilles soreness.
Apr 5 - 5:53 PM

Nikola Pekovic (ankle) will not play against the Heat on Friday.

His ankle is just worn down from the rigors of the season and he's dealt with multiple aggravations in the past couple months. Pekovic can be dropped across the board with his low upside and high probability to miss more games. Gorgui Dieng will start and split minutes with Ronny Turiaf.
Apr 4 - 6:20 PM

Nikola Pekovic (ankle) is listed as questionable for Friday's game against the Heat.

The Wolves did not practice on Thursday, so there was no Pekovic update. But given how balky his ankle has been of late, we'd be surprised if he returned in this spot. Gorgui Dieng is certainly on the plug-n-play radar again, especially against a Heat team that often gets destroyed by bigs. Dieng is averaging 12.0 points, 13.3 rebounds, 1.1 blocks and 1.1 steals in his seven starts this season.
Apr 4 - 11:29 AM

Nikola Pekovic (sore right ankle) will not play in Wednesday's contest vs. the Grizzlies.

He's definitely a shut-down candidate considering he has aggravated his ankle injury multiple times in the past month. Pekovic can be cut in all leagues while Gorgui Dieng is solid player to own even with Ronny Turiaf (knee) back.
Apr 2 - 6:52 PM

Depth Charts

All Positions
PosRoleName
PG1Ricky Rubio
2J.J. Barea
3Mo Williams
SG1Kevin Martin
2Chase Budinger
3Zach LaVine
SF1Andrew Wiggins
2Corey Brewer
3Shabazz Muhammad
4Robbie Hummel
5Glenn Robinson III
PF1Thaddeus Young
2Anthony Bennett
C1Nikola Pekovic
2Ronny Turiaf
3Gorgui Dieng