Postseason push: Will local teams be gone or go on?

  • Updated: March 5, 2014 - 8:05 AM
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Local sports teams - including the Timberwolves - will soon learn their postseason fate.

Photo: Photo Illustration, Star Tribune

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At different points this winter, each of these four teams have been written off. The Wolves repeatedly have played dead, but they just finished their best road trip (4-1) in years. The Wild spent the holidays in a nasty tailspin, but it now has won five in a row. And both Gophers basketball teams started this week labeled as the last team to get an NCAA bid in the tournaments, according to ESPN’s projections. All four have a chance to make a run, and any or all could fizzle before the finish:

Wild (34-21-7)

In the best position

Standings: Seventh in the Western Conference with 75 points — seven points up on Dallas, which is in the eighth and final spot, and eight points ahead of Phoenix and Winnipeg.

Rest of schedule: Twenty games remain, 10 at home.

Optimist’s view: The Wild is 14-4-2 in 2014, on pace for an impressive 99 points and peaking behind the play of young goalie Darcy Kuemper (above).

Pessimist’s view: The Wild plays eight of 10 on the road from March 17-April 3 and has wilted late the past two seasons.

Will the Wild make it? Vote here.

Wolves (30-29)

In need of a streak

Standings: 10th in the West, 4½ games out of the eighth and final position.

Schedule: Five of the next six at home against beatable foes. Then it gets tougher: road games against Dallas, Houston, Memphis, Brooklyn, Miami and Golden State.

Optimist view: The Wolves are healthy and capable of chasing down Dallas. The Mavs are 36-25, which projects to a 48-34 finish. The Wolves can go 18-5 to get to that record.

Pessimist view: Memphis is a game behind Dallas, and even 18-5 might not be enough to jump two teams.

Will the Wolves make it? Vote here.

Gophers men’s hoops (18-12)

20 wins could do it

Standings: Eighth in the Big Ten, with a 7-10 conference mark.

Schedule: One regular-season game (Sunday at home against Penn State) before the Big Ten tournament.

Optimist view: The Gophers should be favored to both beat Penn State and win their first-round Big Ten game, and that should put them on the right side of the bubble.

Pessimist view: They have been dismal away from Williams Arena (2-7), so getting that needed win at Indy won’t be easy.

Will they make it? Vote here.

Gophers women’s hoops (19-11)

Badgers in the way

Standings: The Gophers finished the regular season tied for sixth (8-8) in the league.

Schedule: The Big Ten tournament starts Thursday, and the Gophers play Wisconsin at 8 p.m.

Optimist view: The Gophers have beat Wisconsin twice by double digits, and should have no trouble getting an NCAA bid-clinching victory.

Pessimist view: In the past six years, the Gophers have lost their first conference tournament game five times.

Will they make it? Vote here.

 

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NY Mets 3 FINAL
St. Louis 2
Pittsburgh 4 FINAL
Atlanta 2
Miami 7 FINAL
Washington 11
Detroit 4 FINAL
Philadelphia 4
Minnesota 6 Bottom 9th Inning
Baltimore 5
NY Yankees 7 Bottom 9th Inning
Houston 0
Tampa Bay 2 Bottom 10th Inning
Boston 2
Baltimore 4 FINAL
Toronto 2
Cincinnati 5 Bottom 4th Inning
LA Angels 3
Chicago Cubs 1 Top 2nd Inning
Kansas City 0
Los Angeles 0 Top 1st Inning
San Francisco 0
Chicago WSox 0 Bottom 1st Inning
Cleveland 0
Milwaukee 0 Bottom 1st Inning
Oakland 0
Seattle 0 Top 1st Inning
San Diego 0
Texas 0 Top 1st Inning
Los Angeles 0
Colorado 2 Bottom 1st Inning
Arizona 0
Arizona 0 Bottom 1st Inning
Colorado 0
Houston 99 FINAL
Washington 91
LA Lakers 45 2nd Qtr 2:03
Brooklyn 52
Minnesota 6 1st Qtr 4:46
New Orleans 14
Philadelphia 3:30 PM
Cleveland
Detroit 5:00 PM
Miami
LA Clippers 5:00 PM
Boston
Dallas 6:00 PM
Indiana
Memphis 6:00 PM
San Antonio
Oklahoma City 8:00 PM
Phoenix
Washington 1 2nd Prd 9:06
NY Rangers 2
Calgary 4:00 PM
Nashville
Boston 4:00 PM
Carolina
Detroit 4:00 PM
NY Islanders
Florida 4:00 PM
Ottawa
Anaheim 6:00 PM
New Jersey
Chicago 6:30 PM
Winnipeg
San Jose 6:30 PM
Pittsburgh
Michigan State 63 2nd Half 1:48
Louisville 62
Gonzaga 4:05 PM
Duke
Philadelphia 4:00 PM
Chicago
Toronto FC 6:00 PM
Real Salt Lake
(7) Florida State 74 FINAL
(3) South Carolina 80
Villanova 70 FINAL
West Virginia 75
Michigan 45 2nd Half 13:16
Southern Miss 32
Temple 4:00 PM
Middle Tennessee
Siena 4:00 PM
Louisiana
St Marys-CA 4:00 PM
UCLA
(5) Baylor 7:30 PM
(2) Notre Dame
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