The Timberwolves rank No. 13 in the Sports Illustrated website power poll of NBA teams. That’s one spot better than Kevin McHale’s Rockets and two ahead of Kevin Garnett’s Celtics.
Wolvers general manager Dave Kahn doesn’t receive enough credit for his 2010 deal that brought guard Luke Ridnour to Minneapolis. Without the consistent shooting of Ridnour, the Wolves would have only Kevin Love to include among dependable shooters.
It was six years ago this week that Kirby Puckett passed away at age 44. He was a hero of Garnett’s.
Fox Sports North telecasts the Twins-Yankees game on Sunday, the third spring training telecast seen in Minneapolis-St. Paul this month.
The Twins received a no hit two inning start by Scott Baker on Tuesday against TampaBay. The 29-year-old right-hander has been with the Twins since 2005 and ranks No. 11 in career starts and wins.
Twins left-hander Brian Duensing, who has been a starter in the past, could be most valuable in spot duty out of the bullpen. He held left-handed hitters to a .217 batting average last season.
TV play-by-play announcer Dick Bremer said on a Fox telecast Tuesday the Twins, who suffered through an extraordinary year of regular season injuries in 2011, were the only team in major league baseball last year to break camp with no players on the disabled list.
Former Gophers football player Lewis Garrison continues to make a name in college basketball officiating. He will officiate the men’s Division II NCAA Regional Tournament in Denver this weekend. He’s also one of six officials selected to work the men’s Division III Final Four in Salem,Virginia later this month. Garrison officiated the men’s MIAC championship game between Gustavus and St. Thomas in late February.
At the request of Sports Headliners, Mr. Basketball chair Ken Lien provided his rankings of the best prep boys teams in 4A, 3A, 2A and 1A. His top 10 in big school 4A are Hopkins, Eastview, Lakeview North, Osseo, Apple Valley, Duluth East, Woodbury, Roseville, Eden Prairie and Chanhassen. Benilde-St. Margaret’s is No. 1 in 3A followed by Minneapolis Washburn, DeLaSalle, St. Paul Johnson, Waconia, Mankato East, Blake, Hill-Murray, Grand Rapids and Delano.
The top 10 in 2A are Braham, Perham, Redwood Valley, St. Peter, Pelican Rapids, Plainview-Elgin-Millville, Waterville-Elysian-Morristown, St. Cloud Cathedral, Fairmont and Montevideo. Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa is No. 1 in 1A followed by Southwest MN Christian, Prairie Seeds Academy, Fair School, Dawson-Boyd, Lakeview Christian, Ellsworth, Browerville, Battle Lake and Maranatha Christian.
Lien said Cooper High sophomore forward Rashad Vaughn has scholarship offers from Baylor, Iowa, Iowa State, Minnesota and Texas. Hopkins wing Zach Stahl has an offer from Hawaii and Northeastern while Edina junior point guard Graham Woodward has been offered by Augustana (South Dakota).
Among names possibly on the University of Minnesota’s review list for athletic director are Darrin Nelson, former Vikings running back and senior associate athletic director at Stanford, and Suzanne Sanregret, athletic director at Michigan Tech and one of the few females in the country holding that position.
The Vikings Miller Lite Draft Party starts at 4 p.m. and continues through the conclusion of the NFL draft’s first round on Thursday, April 26 at Mall of America Field. Tickets are $10 in advance, $15 at the door. More information is available on the Vikings website.
Mark Rosen’s new book, Best Seat in the House, will first be available on March 29 at the downtown Barnes & Noble store where the WCCO TV sportscaster will be signing books starting at noon.
Through games of March 5, former Gopher Phil Kessel was tied for third in NHL goals with 32. He was fifth in points with a career high 68. Other Gopher alumni with over 30 points in the NHL: Blake Wheeler, 54, Thomas Vanek, 47, Kyle Okposo, 33 and Nick Leddy, 31.