Vikings fans are consumed with the team’s search for a quarterback in 2018, seemingly spending 197 out of a possible 168 hours per week reading about Kirk Cousins, Case Keenum, Teddy Bridgewater and Sam Bradford (this might be slightly off, but we have the web traffic numbers to verify it is close).
Timberwolves fans spent much of Thursday emotionally invested in the news that former NBA MVP Derrick Rose has been added to the roster for the very difficult stretch run of a season that could — and really should — culminate with the franchise’s first postseason berth since 2003-04.
Twins fans spent the offseason pining for the organization to land a big fish pitcher, then settled into the reality that the offense — helped by the low-cost addition of high-octane slugger Logan Morrison — should once again carry a playoff-worthy team.
Minnesota United fans are only one game into Year 2 in Major League Soccer and have already been on the roller-coast of emotions — swinging from “ugh, not again” when the Loons looked much the same as last year in falling behind 3-0 at San Jose to “hey, what have we here?” when they rallied but fell short in a 3-2 defeat. Supporters figure to be boisterous and energized either way this season, with the MLS franchise still in a honeymoon phase and a new stadium on the horizon in 2019.
All four franchises are legitimately intriguing in their own ways. All four have also proved to be volatile in their own ways — and that’s part of their appeal when it comes to driving interest.
Teams with big swings up and down tend to make more news. Teams that stay more steady can, at times, get taken for granted.
Consider this, then, a quick shout-out to the two most consistent winners in this crowded major pro sports market: the Lynx and the Wild.
The Lynx set the highest bar, of course, winning four of the past seven WNBA titles. That sort of excellence is hard to sustain, but with each passing year that there are whispers the Lynx are going to fade or that they’re too old … well, Minnesota keeps pushing back.
The latest example: Acquiring three-time All-Star point guard Danielle Robinson earlier this week in a trade with Phoenix. With four starters who will be at least 32 when the season starts, and facing a condensed league schedule because of the FIBA World Cup, the Lynx needed an infusion of quality depth. Robinson, 28, is a veteran at a prime age — perfect for this roster.
The Wild, meanwhile, is well on its way to a sixth consecutive playoff appearance. If your attention drifted earlier this year after a lackluster start, know this: Minnesota is 20-7-4 in its last 31 games and is on pace to reach 100 points for the second consecutive season and third in the last four.
The core of this team has been together long enough now that an above-average level of play is the expectation. That’s not always deemed exciting, but in the NHL — where playoff runs materialize regardless of where a team is seeded — it beats the alternative.