Kevin Martin, Nikola Pekovic return to Timberwolves lineup Saturday


Minnesota still holds out hope of making a playoff push — they are 5.5 games back of the eight seed Suns and will need to go about 20-5 the rest of the way to catch Phoenix’s pace. That’d be heck of a run.

So it’s good news that Minnesota is about to get its second and third leading scorers, Kevin Martin and Nikola Pekovic back on Saturday when they take on the Kings. The team made the announcement Saturday after shootaround.

Pekovic has been out a month — 13 games to be specific — with an ankle injury. He is a skilled scorer around the basket who averaged 18 points a game on 53.2 percent shooting plus he pulled down 9.1 rebounds a game. The Timberwolves offense jumps 4.5 points per 100 possessions when he is on the court.

Martin has been out seven games with a thumb injury. He is averaging 19 points a game and is shooting 39.9 percent from three, providing much-needed floor spacing for the Timberwolves. Minnesota’s offense jumps 3.8 points per 100 possessions when he is on the court.

When Martin and Pekovic are on the court together the Timberwolves are +5.4 per 100 possessions.

Getting these two back makes Minnesota better. Probably not 20-5 better, but they will be improved.