Rand: Minnesota's Seven Kevins

  • Article by: MICHAEL RAND , Star Tribune
  • Updated: August 31, 2014 - 10:29 PM

If you're a Kevin, there's a decent chance you will be a part of a Minnesota professional sports team someday. And if that happens, there is a pretty good chance your time here will come to an unceremonious end.

Minnesota Twins starting pitcher Kevin Correia (30) walked to the dugout after being pulled out of the game in the sixth inning. ] CARLOS GONZALEZ cgonzalez@startribune.com - April 7, 2014, Minneapolis, Minn., Target Field, MLB, Minnesota Twins vs. Oakland A’s – Twins home opener

Is your name Kevin?

If so, there’s a decent chance you will be a part of a Minnesota professional sports team someday. And if that happens, there is a pretty good chance your time here will come to an unceremonious end — with a possibility of a great new beginning after.

Want examples? Oh, there are examples. Here is a power ranking of Minnesota’s Seven Kevins who have left over the years. There are certainly more, and you can feel free to e-mail suggestions for others:

1. Garnett: The best player in Timberwolves history, the key component on the only eight teams in franchise history to make the playoffs, a former MVP and a loyal guy who stayed 12 years before the Wolves went into a full rebuild. KG went to Boston, of course, and won a championship (of course).

2. Williams: The former Vikings defensive tackle played here for 11 years, was named an Associated Press first-team All-Pro five times and anchored some of the best run defenses Minnesota has ever had. Similar to Garnett, Williams left after 11 seasons — the final one coming in 2013 — when the Vikings went with a youth movement on the defensive line. He signed with the Seahawks, so a championship for Williams is within reach as well.

3. Love: The quality of Kevins is such that Love, a top-15 player (and maybe more) in the NBA, is only No. 3 on this list. He trails Garnett because he lacks the defensive credentials, playoff accomplishments and longevity in Minnesota. He was traded to Cleveland, which will be favored to win the NBA title this season.

4. Tapani: He was 75-63 with a 4.06 ERA during his Twins career, including his best season in 1991, when Minnesota won the World Series. That would qualify him to be an ace these days. The Twins fell on hard times and traded Tapani to the Dodgers in 1995. Los Angeles went on to win the division that season.

5. McHale: He gains points for his Gophers career and for some moves leading the Wolves (presiding over the drafts that landed Garnett and Love), but he tumbles in the Kevin rankings for much of his Wolves tenure. Then again, the Wolves haven’t made the playoffs since dumping McHale, while he has taken his new team, the Rockets, twice as head coach.

6. Slowey: He was 39-29 in his Twins career, which is particularly impressive since he was 0-8 during his final disastrous 2011 season. Unlike the other Kevins, Slowey didn’t exactly thrive after leaving.

7. Correia: In parts of two seasons here, Correia was often the most reliable pitcher on one of the worst starting staffs in baseball. That’s light praise, but his reward was a trade to the Dodgers, who are leading the NL West.

If these trends continue, Kevin Martin — a veteran on a Wolves team filled with youth and wing players — could be the next to go, probably to an NBA contender.

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  • Houston Rockets coach Kevin McHale yells to his players in the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Minnesota Timberwolves, Monday, Jan. 30, 2012, in Houston. Minnesota won 120-108. (AP Photo/Pat Sullivan)

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