Nikola Pekovic might not be regarded as one of the league's premier centers.
But don't try to convince DeMarcus Cousins that Pekovic is a pushover.
Cousins had 15 points and 14 rebounds in the Kings' 101-98 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves at Sleep Train Arena.
It was the first time in four games that Pekovic has started that the Kings have won over the last two seasons.
"It's a tough matchup against Pek because he's a big, strong guy," Cousins said. "But really not that physical - it's hard to explain. I'm not saying he's a soft player. I can't explain it, he's a tough matchup."
Cousins averaged 13.7 points, 6.7 rebounds, 0.7 assists and 4.7 fouls in the three previous losses against Pekovic.
Cousins was shooting 44.7 percent (17 of 38) in those games.
"That was good for him because Pekovic is a strong, strong guy," said Kings coach Keith Smart. "I thought that the numbers that Cousins had tonight against him were pretty good. You have to go through the league and play against a guy a couple of times to understand how they play and how you can still be effective in the game. You've got to keep your composure. I thought Cousins did some good things with that matchup and he had to play a little physical from both sides. I thought that Cole (Aldrich) came in and did a good job as well. We found a group and it was a team effort to win the game. It was hard to watch for a moment there."
The Kings won but ...
There were some unusual things about the Kings-Timberwolves game, statistically speaking.
*The Timberwolves shot 1 of 19 on three pointers. It's hard to miss that many threes, especially when some of them were good looks.
*The Kings outscored 21-0 in second chance points. The Kings had just four offensive rebounds compared to 17 for Minnesota.
*The Kings won even though they went fro the 4:01 mark of the fourth quarter (Toney Douglas 10-foot jumper) until the 41.3 second-mark of the quarter when Tyreke Evans scored the final two points of the game for the Kings.