I wrote a pile of utter garbage several years ago, proclaiming that the San Antonio Spurs’ time as a perennial NBA playoff team and title contender was coming to a close. The key players were getting old, the argument went. All good things come to an end at some point, and this long Spurs dynasty was one of them.
A search for this misguided opinion has yielded no results; for whatever reason the Internet does not want me to find my old thoughts. But it was written. And it won’t be written here again about the Lynx.
Nobody knows how long this good thing will last with the Lynx, but this much is known: a win in Wednesday’s Game 5 of the WNBA Finals against Indiana would give the Lynx their third championship in five seasons and turn an excellent run into a dynasty.
After researching our Division I and top-level professional teams for the better part of Tuesday, this is offered with a fair amount of certainty: dynasties are hard to come by at the top levels of Minnesota sports.
If you’re willing to go back quite a ways, of course, you’ll find our highest-profile examples.
The Gophers are credited with three consecutive national championships in football from 1934-36, and another two back-to-back in 1940-41. That’s five in eight seasons, a run that got head coach Bernie Bierman an athletic building named after him. (Jerry Kill might win the race for Governor just by winning the Rose Bowl once).
The Minneapolis Lakers won five NBA championships in a six-year span in the late 1940s and early 1950s, though the columnist who often occupies page 3 of this section is better qualified to talk about that.
After that, it’s all college sports and mostly hockey. The Gophers men’s team won three NCAA titles in six years in the 1970s. They went back-to-back in 2002-03, but that elusive third title that makes a dynasty (at least in my eyes) eluded them. The Gophers women and Minnesota-Duluth women qualify as dynasties, as they have won 10 of the past 15 NCAA titles combined. The sustained run of success of the Gophers wrestling program, which included NCAA titles in 2001, 2002 and 2007, is also in the mix.
The Vikings and Twins have had their sustained runs of success, but it’s hard to call any stretch for either a dynasty. Wild, Wolves or North Stars? Nope. So the Lynx have a chance to be this state’s first top-level pro sports dynasty in six decades.
Three titles in five years would do it. And I definitely wouldn’t be the one to doubt their ability to make it four in six years should they get the job done Wednesday.