With the return of Nikola “Nimble Feet” Pekovic and Ricky Rubio, the Timberpups are finally starting to resemble the team I thought they could be at the beginning of the season. They might not win many games, but they were going to be exciting to watch. Except when Anthony Bennett comes in the game. Then it’s just more depressing than anything.
Nikola has been slow out of the starting gate to start this year, as well asafter his injury, which is only natural for a guy who was never very fast to begin with. This is his first 20-point game of the season after having had twenty such games last year. The absence of Rubio shouldn’t have had this much of an effect on his scoring; most players can make entry passes into the post where he does most of his work.
In any case, this performance might mark the return of the Pekovic of old, the one who lovingly placed the skull of each conquered opponent into his gigantic skull pile. I don’t know if Andre Drummond’s or Greg Monroe’s skulls were in the pile before this, but they definitely are now.