The Glory Days for this generation of Minnesota sports fans would not have been good enough for a Bruce Springsteen song, but they were pretty good still.
We just didn't know or appreciate it at the time. And so, like a former football star at a high school reunion, we are gleefully reliving the past. The older we get, the better we were.
The latest stop on the nostalgia tour Monday brought former Gopher Jordan Leopold back to Minnesota. He was, of course, a key member of the 2002 Gophers men's hockey team — which really kicked off the best three-year Minnesota sports stretch anyone born between 1975 and 1995 has experienced as an adult.
The Gophers men's hockey team followed that 2002 championship with another the next year. The Gophers women's basketball team made a Final Four run in 2004.
The Twins won division titles in 2002 through 2004 and even won a playoff series that first year. The Wolves made the playoffs all those years, too, culminating in a Western Conference finals trip in 2004. The Wild made a run to the Western Conference finals in 2003. The Vikings beat the Packers in the playoffs after the 2004 season.
This is the era for which we are nostalgic, and local teams have obliged in massive quantities in feeding that yearning. This is not a complaint because A) it's fun and B) a lot of the moves made sense. But it's getting crazy in terms of sheer volume.
Within the past year, the Wild brought in Leopold and 2003 Gophers star Thomas Vanek. The Twins brought back Torii Hunter as a player and Eddie Guardado as a coach. The Wolves brought back Kevin Garnett as a player and Flip Saunders as head coach.
If we dig deeper, we find more: The two stars of that Gophers women's basketball team, Lindsay Whalen and Janel McCarville, are with the Lynx. The Vikings brought back Randy Moss in 2010. The Wild brought in Keith Ballard, who starred on both the Gophers' NCAA title teams.
If you're wondering who is next to come back from those Glory Days, our question is different: Who is left? We've about exhausted the market.
Maybe Kevin Williams could come back for a ceremonial retirement with the Vikings. Maybe Michael Cuddyer will be a trade deadline pickup in 2016.
Most of the rest are accounted for already because in Minnesota sports, the Glory Days might pass us by — but we'll just go gather them up and live them again.