Originally written on StraitPinkie.com  |  Last updated 4/2/14
Former Louisville big man and current Timberwolves center, Gorgui Dieng has been named the Western Conference Rookie of the Month in the NBA. Louisville fans may remember Dieng as a player who seemed to barely understand the rules of college basketball as an incoming freshman, who quickly blossomed into one of the best big men in the game 2 years later, taking the cards all the way to the championship. Dieng had seen limited minutes until the month of March and despite his great college career, seemed he would be nothing more than a 3rd string center in the NBA. Timberwolves center Nikola Pekovic had struggled with injuries through January and February and when coach Rick Adelman got word that Pekovic would be sidelined for most it not all of March, he decided to insert Dieng into the starting 5. Dieng managed to pick up 5 double-doubles in 6 games, including a game where he pulled down 21 boards while scoring 22 points. Dieng is the only rookie in franchise history to record a 20-20 game. In his 14 games during the month of March, Dieng averaged 8.6 points and 8.3 boards. Timberwolves guard Kevin Martin said about Dieng, It’s been a great sighting. He got his opportunity, but what he’s doing with his opportunity is something special. Two or three years from now, he’s going to be a really special center in this league. But he’s been poised throughout the year.”   Dieng was drafted 21st by the Utah Jazz and the decision by Minnesota to trade for him has obviously paid off. The question now becomes, with just a handful of games left, do the Timberwolves stick with their breakout rookie at center, or do they try to work Pekovic back in who had admitted that although cleared to play, he’s struggling with the pain. I love basketball, you know? Whether it’s on the street, outside, whatever. I just love playing basketball, and I choose to be a basketball player. So I need to make it fun. -Gorgui Dieng  
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Kings have had discussions with John Calipari

De’Andre Johnson charged with misdemeanor battery

Russell Wilson on salary: If it's $25M or $1.5M, I'll be ready to go

Luke Ridnour reportedly traded for fourth time in a week

Scottie Pippen: I was LeBron James before LeBron James

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Marc Gasol only visiting with Memphis Grizzlies

Draymond Green to meet with Warriors at onset of free agency

Panthers rookie WR: We're going to be the dynamic duo

Examining Bo Ryan's legacy at Wisconsin

World Cup semifinals preview: US-Japan, Germany-England

Tim Duncan to help Spurs pitch LaMarcus Aldridge

Popovich won't call free agents at midnight, he'll be in bed

Joe Buck explains why he quit Twitter

Should the White Sox and Indians become sellers?

Fan bases most deserving of a Super Bowl 50 win

2015 NBA Draft grades: Eastern Conference

Report: Redskins urged by major group to change team name

Under the radar NBA free agents

Michael Sam, boyfriend Vito Cammisano broke up?

Top seven storylines entering free agency around the NBA

Former FSU mascot killed in argument over gumbo recipe

Royals slipping in ASG voting, lose two more starters

Fred Smoot: I played with gay players, 'everyone knew'

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

NBA Draft grades: Eastern Conference

Under the radar NBA free agents

Michael Sam, boyfriend broke up?

Mickelson linked to money laundering?

Reminiscing on 'Love & Basketball' 15 years later

Selecting the 2015 NL All-Stars

The Sixers' latest horde

Projected landing spots for NBA's top free agents

MLB changes format for Home Run Derby

Revis to work out with Patriots DBs

Peterson: I'm still NFL's best RB

Kobe gives great quote on friendship

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.