Dr. Sheldon Burns is the team doctor for the Vikings, Wild, Lynx and Timberwolves and has been doing it forever. Many of the athletes and coaches on those teams also have Burns as their family doctor. He also has been a physician for U.S. Olympic or world championship teams 11 times, and one of his big boosters is Duke men’s basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski, who had Burns as the doctor when he was coaching the Olympic men’s basketball team. A big-time committee of famous people in this town have wanted to throw a testimonial dinner honoring Burns, which he has declined.
But Thursday night at St. Paul RiverCentre, the Minnesota Academy of Family Physicians will honor Burns, who has been voted by that organization as the “Family Physician of the Year.”
Another physician of long standing with a local sports team is Dr. Pat Smith, who is in his 30th year as the doctor for the Gophers football team.
In those 30 years, Smith has worked under 10 athletic directors and seven football coaches at the university. Smith started under coach Lou Holtz in 1984 and has been taking care of the team right up through current coach Jerry Kill.
• The new Major League Baseball television contract with various networks will bring some $20 million to the Twins and each club, with payments coming in over a period of time. … Last season, the Twins’ revenue-sharing contribution was about $2 million, the lowest since they moved to Target Field.
• In the Twins’ 7-4, 11-inning loss to Oakland on Wednesday, starter Phil Hughes gave up four runs before retiring a batter, marking the first time this season that the Twins had given up a first-inning run. A year ago, the Twins led the league in allowing runs in the first inning with 120. … Infielder Nick Punto, who was with the Twins from 2004 to ’10, has been with St. Louis, Boston, the Dodgers and now with Oakland since leaving the Twins. … Two former Twins, Chili Davis and Chip Hale, are coaches with the A’s. … Joe Mauer, who went 2-for-4 with two walks Wednesday, has three multihit games in the past four games, hitting .438 (7-for-16) with one double and five walks in those four games.
• Former Gophers center Mychal Thompson has three children playing professional sports. His oldest son, Mychel, is a 6-6 swingman in the NBA Development League with the Santa Cruz Warriors. Klay is a 6-7 shooting guard averaging 18.2 points for the Golden State Warriors. His youngest son, Trayce, is a center fielder in the Chicago White Sox organization, hitting .250 through five games at Class AA Birmingham.
Sid Hartman can be heard weekdays on 830-AM at 7:40, 8:40 and 9:20 a.m. and on Sundays at 9:30 a.m. firstname.lastname@example.org