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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New Orleans 7:25 PM
Carolina
Tampa Bay 11/2/14 12:00 PM
Cleveland
Arizona 11/2/14 12:00 PM
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Philadelphia 11/2/14 12:00 PM
Houston
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NY Giants
Washington 28 2nd Qtr
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Detroit 7:00 PM
Minnesota
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Cleveland
Utah 7:30 PM
Dallas
Oklahoma City 9:30 PM
LA Clippers
Boston 0 1st Prd 4:01
Buffalo 0
Winnipeg 1 1st Prd 1:23
New Jersey 0
Los Angeles 0 1st Prd 3:49
Pittsburgh 2
Chicago 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Philadelphia 0 1st Prd 19:48
Tampa Bay 0
Arizona 0 1st Prd 20:00
Florida 0
San Jose 7:00 PM
Minnesota
Anaheim 7:00 PM
St. Louis
NY Islanders 8:00 PM
Colorado
Montreal 9:00 PM
Vancouver
(2) Florida State 0 1st Qtr 11:40
Louisville 0
Troy 0 1st Qtr 13:26
Ga Southern 7
Cincinnati 10/31/14 7:00 PM
Tulane
Tulsa 10/31/14 7:02 PM
Memphis
Air Force 11/1/14 10:30 AM
Army
ULM 11/1/14 11:00 AM
Texas A&M
(19) Oklahoma 11/1/14 11:00 AM
Iowa State
Northwestern 11/1/14 11:00 AM
Iowa
(24) Duke 11/1/14 11:00 AM
Pittsburgh
Maryland 11/1/14 11:00 AM
Penn State
Wisconsin 11/1/14 11:00 AM
Rutgers
Rice 11/1/14 11:00 AM
FIU
(21) East Carolina 11/1/14 11:00 AM
Temple
UCF 11/1/14 11:00 AM
Connecticut
Boston College 11/1/14 11:30 AM
Virginia Tech
North Carolina 11/1/14 11:30 AM
Miami-Florida
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Colorado
Central Mich 11/1/14 12:00 PM
Eastern Mich
Western Mich 11/1/14 1:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
Western Ky 11/1/14 2:00 PM
Louisiana Tech
NC State 11/1/14 2:00 PM
Syracuse
Virginia 11/1/14 2:30 PM
Georgia Tech
Purdue 11/1/14 2:30 PM
(17) Nebraska
BYU 11/1/14 2:30 PM
Middle Tennessee
(10) TCU 11/1/14 2:30 PM
(20) West Virginia
Indiana 11/1/14 2:30 PM
Michigan
Florida 11/1/14 2:30 PM
(9) Georgia
Georgia State 11/1/14 2:30 PM
Appalachian St
Kentucky 11/1/14 3:00 PM
Missouri
Kansas 11/1/14 3:00 PM
(12) Baylor
Texas State 11/1/14 3:00 PM
New Mexico St
Houston 11/1/14 3:00 PM
So Florida
USC 11/1/14 3:30 PM
Washington St
Arkansas State 11/1/14 4:00 PM
Idaho
South Alabama 11/1/14 4:00 PM
Louisiana
New Mexico 11/1/14 4:30 PM
UNLV
UAB 11/1/14 6:00 PM
Fla Atlantic
(4) Auburn 11/1/14 6:00 PM
(7) Ole Miss
Old Dominion 11/1/14 6:00 PM
Vanderbilt
Colorado State 11/1/14 6:00 PM
San Jose St
Arkansas 11/1/14 6:15 PM
(1) Miss State
Stanford 11/1/14 6:30 PM
(5) Oregon
Tennessee 11/1/14 6:30 PM
So Carolina
Texas 11/1/14 6:30 PM
Texas Tech
Southern Miss 11/1/14 7:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
(6) Notre Dame 11/1/14 7:00 PM
Navy
Oklahoma State 11/1/14 7:00 PM
(11) Kansas State
Illinois 11/1/14 7:00 PM
(13) Ohio State
(14) Arizona 11/1/14 9:30 PM
(25) UCLA
California 11/1/14 9:30 PM
Oregon State
San Diego St 11/1/14 9:30 PM
Nevada
Wyoming 11/1/14 9:45 PM
Fresno State
(18) Utah 11/1/14 10:00 PM
(15) Arizona State
Utah State 11/1/14 10:00 PM
Hawaii
Bowling Green 11/4/14 7:00 PM
Akron
Toledo 11/4/14 7:00 PM
Kent State
Buffalo 11/5/14 7:00 PM
Ohio U
Northern Ill 11/5/14 7:00 PM
Ball State
(22) Clemson 11/6/14 6:30 PM
Wake Forest
Sporting Kansas City 7:00 PM
Red Bull New York
Hamilton 10/31/14 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Winnipeg 11/1/14 3:00 PM
Calgary
Brt Columbia 11/1/14 6:00 PM
Edmonton
Toronto 11/2/14 11:00 AM
Montreal
Ottawa 11/7/14 6:00 PM
Toronto
Calgary 11/7/14 9:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Montreal 11/8/14 3:00 PM
Hamilton
Edmonton 11/8/14 6:00 PM
Saskatchewan
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