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Influence, not game earns Lynx IMPACT25 Women of the Year honors

The Lynx were honored by ESPNW among the 2016 IMPACT25 Women of the Year and nominated for Woman of the Year this week.

The IMPACT25 honors the top athletes and influencers each year.

The Lynx continue to be one of the best teams in the WNBA, but are being honored for their support of Black Lives Matter.

The nomination reads “Aside from a stellar season and Maya Moore being one of the best basketball players alive, the team was a pioneer of athlete activism by showing up to a July game in warm-up shirts printed with 'Black Lives Matter' – the first of any pro sports team to do so.”

Olympic swimmer Katie Ledecky, U.S. gymnasts the “Final Five," WNBA star Nneka Ogwumike, pro softball pitcher Monica Abbott, NFL and MLB team doctor Robin West, and actress Kylie Bunbury, a Minnesota product, are among the nominated honorees.

The winner will be announced Dec. 13.

The complete 2016 IMPACT25 class:

Childhood memories: Bruce Boudreau's nostalgic tour of West Toronto

Bruce Boudreau grew up in West Toronto a devoted Maple Leafs fan entrenched in the hockey local community. The Wild first-year coach said this week “I don’t think you can get a bigger Leafs fan,” as he toured his hometown with Canada’s Sportsnet NHL insider Elliotte Friedman.

The pair drove the streets of the community Boudreau grew up in and made stops at his childhood home, the park he first skated in, and the arena he played youth hockey in.

The short video provides a nice inside look at the upbringing of the Wild coach.

“I was talking to my mom the other day and she said ‘I’m so nervous you’re coming to Toronto to play the Leafs,’ “ Boudreau explained in the video. “I said ‘Well mom, who are you going to cheer for?’ And she said ‘I don’t know yet.’ I said ‘I’m your son, you have to cheer for me.’ She said ‘Oh, the Leafs are so good this year.’

The Wild defeated the Maple Leafs 3-2 Wednesday night.

Boudreau reflects throughout the video growing up in his grandparents’ basement, spending his days skating at a nearby park, being a part of a 44-0 youth hockey season, his first major injury as a kid, and what it would mean to bring a Stanley Cup back to his hometown.

Friedman asked Boudreau “If you win a Stanley Cup in Minnesota, can you imagine bringing it back here?”

Boudreau answered “I’ve dreamt about it almost every day. When you’re a hockey guy, it’s pretty much the only thing I think about and I think it about it all the time.

“I’m so fortunate. Not many people get a chance to do what I’ve done for the last 40 years, so I count my blessings every day.”

Make sure you watch the full video for more great details: 

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