Page 2 of 2 Previous

Continued: Sid Hartman: Wild, Wolves could both change coaches

  • Article by: SID HARTMAN , Star Tribune
  • Last update: April 3, 2011 - 12:01 AM

This has been a disastrous season from a win-loss standpoint for both the Wild and the Timberwolves.

It also has been a tough year financially for both franchises, with each team losing money because of a lack of ticket sales, sales of suites and corporate sales.

The Wolves could lose up to $20 million and are reported to have a big debt at one of the local banks. The Wild lost some money last year and will lose some more this year, but not as much as the Wolves.

Indications are that both coaches -- Kurt Rambis of the Wolves and Todd Richards of the Wild -- are in danger of losing their jobs.

Glen Taylor, owner of the Wolves, has refused to say that either President of Basketball Operations David Kahn or Rambis will be back next season, although each has one more year on his contract.

"We will talk about it after the season," Taylor said other day, giving no indication about the future of either one.

On March 20, when the Wolves lost 127-95 at Target Center to a Sacramento team that at the time had won fewer games than the Wolves, Taylor certainly talked as if there were going to be some changes. Earlier this season, Rob Moor, Taylor's son-in-law and the chief executive officer of the Wolves, had guaranteed that Kahn and Rambis would complete the third year of their contracts.

Taylor might not have to make a decision about Kahn and Rambis with an NBA work stoppage possible. He is chairman of the NBA Board of Governors and one of the chief negotiators with the labor unions.

Taylor admitted to me that some of his minority partners want to sell their shares in the Wolves because of the continued losing. However, Taylor said for them to get out they would have to find a replacement to take over.

Taylor is the most unique owner of a local sports team that I have known. He seems to love owning both the Wolves and the WNBA's Lynx, despite the losing by both franchises. He plans to work hard and continue his ownership because he is confident both teams eventually will become winners.

As for the Wild, even though the team remained in playoff contention for much of the season until finally getting eliminated Saturday, there's a better chance of Richards losing his job than Rambis. The team has failed to make the playoffs for three consecutive years. General Manager Chuck Fletcher said a decision on the status of Richards will be made at the end of the season.

Fletcher claims there is a poor free-agent group available this offseason, and even if that wasn't the case, the Wild is close to the salary cap and would have to trade some of its better players to strengthen the roster.

Both teams might have to make some serious changes if they are to have a good season in 2011-12, and unfortunately for the coaches, they are usually the victims of such changes.

No extension?

The current contract of Gophers athletic director Joel Maturi ends in June 2012.

When present University of Minnesota President Robert Bruininks announced his retirement, which is coming at the end of the present school year, he did offer Maturi a two-year extension. Then for some reason, it was reduced to one.

Now the word is that under new President Eric Kaler, Maturi won't have any extension. A decision on Maturi's future will come when Kaler takes over.

It also could be Maturi's choice. Maturi has refused to say he has made any decision on his future.

It could be that Maturi, 66, has had enough grief on the job and feels as though it might soon be time to give it up.

Jottings

• The Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission would have been in trouble had insurance not paid $22 million for the new Metrodome roof, since the commission had a balance of $11 million available in its banking account.

• Apparently, Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak is serious about doing something to remodel Target Center, with his plan to use some of the hospitality tax money that is paying for the Convention Center once the Convention Center is paid for. ... The word is that the Target Corp. still is interested in renewing the naming rights it has on Target Center that expires in September. Lifetime Fitness and Sanford Health of Sioux Falls, S.D., are candidates if Target doesn't renew.

• A record 1,200-plus state high school coaches attended the Minnesota Football Coaches Association's annual clinic this weekend in St. Louis Park, with new Gophers coach Jerry Kill wowing them with his long dissertation on winning football. ... Ed Lochrie, the very capable Gophers football trainer, turned down a lucrative offer from Notre Dame to stay with Kill.

• As it turns out, it looks as though the Twins were fortunate they didn't sign two-time Cy Young Award winner Johan Santana to a big contract extension. This is even though they didn't get much for him in the trade with the Mets -- only minor league pitcher Deolis Guerra remains from the original trade. Santana, healthy throughout his Twins career, saw last season cut short by shoulder trouble and had surgery in September. He recently told the New York Daily News that it is "too soon" to project when he will be able to return to this season, although the Mets' original hope was for sometime in July.

• Former Cretin-Derham Hall and Gophers athlete Jack Hannahan is off to a great start in his first year with the Cleveland Indians after spending 2010 with the Boston Red Sox's Class AAA Pawtucket club. He is 4-for-9 in his first two games with a home run and three RBI. The Indians are Hannahan's fourth major league team. ... Former Twins catcher Wilson Ramos went 3-for-4 Saturday in his first start of the season for the Washington Nationals. Ramos, traded for Matt Capps last year, batted .340 with a homer and two RBI in 19 spring training games and likely will share catching duties with veteran Ivan Rodriguez this season.

• Ex-Gophers defenseman Sam Lofquist has two goals and three assists in three playoff games and finished the regular season with eight goals and 28 assists in 62 games for Guelph of the Ontario Hockey League.

• Outfielder Joe Loftus, a former Holy Angels standout who was drafted by the Twins out of high school but did not sign, is batting .174 (4-for-23) with five RBI in 17 games for Vanderbilt, which is ranked No. 2 in this week's Collegiate Baseball Newspaper poll.

Sid Hartman can be heard weekdays on WCCO AM-830 at 6:40, 7:40 and 8:40 a.m. • shartman@startribune.com

  • related content

  • Kurt Rambis

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Detroit - M. Scherzer 4:37 PM
Baltimore - C. Tillman
Kansas City - J. Vargas 8:07 PM
LA Angels - J. Weaver
Minnesota 7:25 PM
Green Bay
Buffalo 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Detroit
Chicago 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Carolina
Cleveland 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
St. Louis 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia
Atlanta 10/5/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
Tampa Bay 10/5/14 12:00 PM
New Orleans
Houston 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Dallas
Baltimore 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Indianapolis
Pittsburgh 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Arizona 10/5/14 3:05 PM
Denver
Kansas City 10/5/14 3:25 PM
San Francisco
NY Jets 10/5/14 3:25 PM
San Diego
Cincinnati 10/5/14 7:30 PM
New England
Seattle 10/6/14 7:30 PM
Washington
NY Islanders 6:00 PM
New Jersey
Philadelphia 6:00 PM
Washington
Tampa Bay 6:30 PM
Florida
Minnesota 7:00 PM
St. Louis
Vancouver 8:00 PM
Edmonton
Winnipeg 8:00 PM
Calgary
Los Angeles 8:00 PM
Colorado
Fla Atlantic 6:00 PM
FIU
UCF 6:00 PM
Houston
Arizona 9:30 PM
(2) Oregon
Louisville 10/3/14 6:00 PM
Syracuse
San Diego St 10/3/14 9:00 PM
Fresno State
Utah State 10/3/14 9:15 PM
(18) BYU
(6) Texas A&M 10/4/14 11:00 AM
(12) Miss State
Ball State 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Army
Iowa State 10/4/14 11:00 AM
(21) Oklahoma State
Marshall 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Old Dominion
Southern Miss 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Middle Tennessee
(20) Ohio State 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Maryland
Purdue 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
Florida 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Tennessee
SMU 10/4/14 11:00 AM
(22) East Carolina
Virginia Tech 10/4/14 11:30 AM
North Carolina
Eastern Mich 10/4/14 1:00 PM
Akron
North Texas 10/4/14 1:30 PM
Indiana
Massachusetts 10/4/14 1:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
Tulsa 10/4/14 2:00 PM
Colorado State
New Mexico 10/4/14 2:30 PM
TX-San Antonio
(3) Alabama 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(11) Ole Miss
(14) Stanford 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(9) Notre Dame
(17) Wisconsin 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Northwestern
Navy 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Air Force
(7) Baylor 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Texas
(4) Oklahoma 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(25) TCU
Wake Forest 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(1) Florida State
NC State 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Clemson
Buffalo 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Bowling Green
Ohio U 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Central Mich
Oregon State 10/4/14 3:00 PM
Colorado
Vanderbilt 10/4/14 3:00 PM
(13) Georgia
Kansas 10/4/14 3:00 PM
West Virginia
Kent State 10/4/14 4:00 PM
Northern Ill
South Alabama 10/4/14 5:00 PM
Appalachian St
Texas-El Paso 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Louisiana Tech
(15) LSU 10/4/14 6:00 PM
(5) Auburn
UAB 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Western Ky
Texas Tech 10/4/14 6:00 PM
(23) Kansas State
Michigan 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Rutgers
Hawaii 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Rice
Toledo 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Western Mich
ULM 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Arkansas State
Georgia State 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Louisiana
Idaho 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Texas State
Memphis 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Arizona State 10/4/14 6:30 PM
(16) USC
So Carolina 10/4/14 6:30 PM
Kentucky
Pittsburgh 10/4/14 6:30 PM
Virginia
Miami-Florida 10/4/14 6:30 PM
Georgia Tech
(19) Nebraska 10/4/14 7:00 PM
(10) Michigan State
UNLV 10/4/14 7:00 PM
San Jose St
Ga Southern 10/4/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico St
California 10/4/14 9:30 PM
Washington St
Utah 10/4/14 9:30 PM
(8) UCLA
Boise State 10/4/14 9:30 PM
Nevada
Chicago 7:00 PM
Philadelphia
Winnipeg 10/3/14 6:00 PM
Ottawa
Calgary 10/3/14 9:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Edmonton 10/4/14 3:00 PM
Toronto
Brt Columbia 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Hamilton
Hamilton 10/10/14 6:00 PM
Toronto
Ottawa 10/11/14 9:00 PM
Brt Columbia

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How will the Vikings do Thursday in Green Bay?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close