MINNEAPOLIS In the NBA, no discovery comes without its price.
Last season, Timberwolves coach Rick Adelman admitted to using Nikola Pekovic sparingly when he first was cleared after his early-season injury solely because Adelman didn't know what he had. The new coach leaned on Darko Milicic at center until that became an idea too crazy for even the craziest to stomach, and only then did he give Pekovic his shot.
Seems like longer than just a year ago, right? Since then, the giant Montenegrin has become the Timberwolves' best find, a center with above-average abilities who's leading his team this season in scoring and rebounding with 15.6 points and 8.6 rebounds per game in Kevin Love's absence. He's been banged up a bit, sure, and has already missed 15 contests, but on the whole, the big man has been the most pleasant and competent of surprises.
Now, though, comes the price.
This offseason, Pekovic will become a restricted free agent and one of the most desira...