We are Hall of Fame central here in Minnesota. Cris Carter was the latest to join the party, gaining election to the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Saturday. Chris Doleman ... John Randle ... Randall McDaniel ... Bert Blyleven ... Paul Molitor ... Kirby Puckett ... all in the last dozen years they've made their respective halls. And we're even leaving out names. That's how many there are. And it doesn't figure to stop any time soon. Don't believe us? Well, consider these players, either still playing or recently retired, who played or play for Minnesota pro teams and figure to have a shot at gaining election in the coming years:
THE SLAM DUNKS
Kevin Garnett: Da Kid might be getting close to the end of his career, but what a career it has been. He's won an MVP (2003-04 with the Wolves) and an NBA title with Boston. He has nearly 25,000 career points. He will be in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
Adrian Peterson: He's already 33rd in NFL career rushing yards. He just won his first MVP award. He figures to finish his career in the top five in rushing yards. A no-brainer as a Hall of Famer.
Jim Thome: His time in Minnesota came late and was short-lived, but Thome's home runs and reputation in the clubhouse will carry him to Cooperstown.
Brett Favre: Similar to Thome, he came to Minnesota late but made a huge impact. Again, an all-time great who will be in Canton without a doubt.
BEST OF THE REST
Joe Mauer: He has three batting titles, an MVP award and a .323 career batting average as a catcher -- and he still hasn't turned 30 yet. He could very well wind up in Cooperstown as long as he keeps up this pace.
Randy Moss: He's the best ever. Just ask him. The only thing that could keep him out of Canton would be his antics, but we doubt that will keep him out forever.
Jared Allen: He's only 30 years old and already he's 16th in NFL history with 117 sacks. He could realistically threaten the career record (Bruce Smith's 200), or at least finish among the top three. That would make a call from the hall a pretty good bet.
Jack Morris: The St. Paul native and 1991 World Series hero has one more chance on the ballot next year. He is on the cusp and could make it over the 75 percent threshold with a good surge.
Tony Sanneh: Another St. Paul native who is up for induction in the U.S. Soccer Hall of Fame for the first time this year.
Seimone Augustus/Maya Moore/Lindsay Whalen: The Big Three for the Lynx could all wind up some day in the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame, which opened in 1999.