Agent Jeff Schwartz's initial asking price for Nikola Pekovic was around $15MM per year, a source tells Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN Twin Cities, and Schwartz and the Timberwolves continue to haggle over the amount of money the restricted free agent center will get in his next contract. Schwartz knows he won't get $15MM a year from the team, Wolfson tweets. The Wolves are offering four years and $48MM, and though they're willing to add some incentives, it's "nearly ludicrous" to expect that they'll budge from the $12MM annual base salary, as Wolfson writes in his Scoops column. Wolfson has plenty more on Pekovic and other Timberwolves issues, so let's dive in:
- It's possible that Pekovic could wind up with a fifth year in his deal, but it appears four years is more likely.
- A trade that would send Pekovic and Derrick Williams to the Blazers for LaMarcus Aldridge is far-fetched. Minnesota would prefer Kevin Love instead, Wolfson tweets, but Love doesn't appear to be on the market. Schwartz represents Love as well as Pekovic.
- J.J. Redick was five minutes away from heading to another team before talks revved up on the three-team trade that sent him to the Clippers, but that mystery team wasn't the Wolves. Redick met with Wolves brass and was prepared to sign with them, but talks never got that far.
- Andrei Kirilenko's claim that Wolves president of basketball ops Flip Saunders didn't want to give him a long-term contract is incorrect, writes Wolfson, who hears from two people who say Minnesota offered a three-year, $21MM deal.
- The Wolves have not invited Seth Curry to training camp, contrary to a report.
- Lorenzo Brown, Robbie Hummel, Othyus Jeffers and another big man figure to be the contenders for the 15th spot on the Timberwolves opening-night roster.