Before Tip-Off: Pekovic, Bonner out, Popovich describes Love’s unique skill set


There will be a celebration tonight at the AT&T Center as the San Antonio Spurs (29-14) prepare to retire the jersey of Spurs defensive great Bruce Bowen. Before the ceremonies begin however, there’s still some basketball to be played.KL

The Spurs will be hosting the Minnesota Timberwolves tonight as the Timberwolves just came from a jersey retirement ceremony in Golden State. Though coach Rick Adelman said this one might be a bit different.

“I don’t think they’ll the boo owner here though,” said Adelman of the Warriors’ jersey retirement ceremony, “that was pretty incredible.”

The Spurs will be “Red Rocket-less” as forward Matt Bonner will be out with back spasms. Head coach Gregg Popovich said Bonner’s medical issue just came out of nowhere.

“He just came up tight yesterday at the end of practice,” said Popovich.

The Timberwolves have been hit hard with injuries as Spanish point guard Ricky Rubio is out for the season, and now center Nikola Pekovic is also out as he was sent back to Minnesota so the Timberwolves could look at his sore left ankle.

The Spurs’ main priority tonight will be containing Wolves forward Kevin Love, who Popovich described as a unique player.

“He’s a really strange dude,” said Popovich of Love, ”but he’s a great player.”

“When you combine his skills with his body,” continued Popovich on Love, “he looks like he should be doing different things.”

I did want to know whether Kawhi Leonard or Stephen Jackson might spend some time defending Love tonight, as they did defending Dirk Nowitzki on Saturday, Coach Popovich responded, “I don’t  know, we haven’t played the game yet, we’ll see.”