St. Paul Pioneer Press
ST. PAUL — In the wake of the tightest game in recent memory two nights earlier, the Minnesota Wild exploded on Sunday at Xcel Energy Center en route to a 6-3 win over the sputtering Detroit Red Wings. It wasn't as pretty as the final score might indicate. "It was ugly," coach Bruce Boudreau said. "It was a really sloppy game for both teams."
MINNEAPOLIS — As Chicago Bulls forward Taj Gibson looked down at the Minnesota Timberwolves' bench, he noticed something about his former coach. Tom Thibodeau's hand was shaking. The Timberwolves blasted the short-handed Bulls 117-89 on Sunday at Target Center. In a wide scope, it was a game the Wolves should have won easily against a Chicago team missing its top two players with Dwyane Wade and Jimmy Butler out with injuries, and that's what Minnesota did.
BROOKLYN CENTER, Minn. -- Six adults have been arrested in connection with a fatal shooting at a Brooklyn Center hotel on Saturday night. Police were called to the Quality Inn Hotel at 1600 James Circle N. at 8:45 p.m. to find an adult female victim with a gunshot wound. She was pronounced dead at the scene. A subsequent investigation led to the arrests. This was not a random crime, police said.
ST. PAUL — The idea first came up in a cramped coaches' room about this time last year, one of the few things that stuck from a brainstorming session that included Minnesota Wild coach John Torchetti, assistant coach Andrew Brunette, general manager Chuck Fletcher and assistant GM Brent Flahr. With the Wild struggling and desperate for some kind of spark offensively, they thought aloud, why not put center Mikael Granlund on the wing? Torchetti said he would give it a try.
Coming off the worst season in Twin Cities franchise history, the Minnesota Twins are eager to right the ship. The only other 100-loss season in club annals was followed up with a 10-win improvement in 1983. Just a year removed from an 83-win season in 2015, this year's Twins will set their sights higher with the expected benefits of better health and regression to the mean.
MINNEAPOLIS — Putting a recent five-game losing streak in his rear-view mirror, Minnesota Gophers men's basketball coach Richard Pitino is touting his team's positioning as the program inches toward its first NCAA tournament appearance in four years. Pitino thinks his Gophers only need to win three of their final seven regular-season games to put themselves in good position for an at-large bid to March Madness.
MINNEAPOLIS — The Minnesota Vikings' offensive line purge has begun. Minnesota released guards Brandon Fusco and Mike Harris on Friday, clearing roster spots and cap space to rebuild an injury-ravaged and underperforming unit that precipitated the team's second-half collapse in 2016. Harris did not play all season because of an undisclosed illness, while Fusco struggled at right guard two years after signing a $24 million contract extension.
The movie "Slap Shot" turns 40 this month. No presents, please, unless they are wrapped in foil and reflect the enduring lessons of a counterculture classic. Capturing the spirit of the thing is easier than scoring a tap-in goal. Appreciating the raunchy parody's takedown of carnival violence is more subtle yet no less prescient while the NHL digs in against a concussion crisis that exposes fighting as caveman smearing of an otherwise progressive sport.
ANNANDALE, Minn. — The Woodbury man who demolished the house of Jacob Wetterling’s killer is giving the vacant lot to the city of Annandale. Developer Tim Thone said Tuesday, Feb. 7, that the city has agreed not to develop the quarter-acre lot for at least 10 years. Thone bought the house Dec. 16 for $58,000, including back taxes. He demolished the house on Dec. 23, with about $16,000 in donated help from local contractors. Thone hopes the donation of the land will help the Wetterling family — and the entire state — deal with the crime.