Here we go with the latest installment of The Cooler:

*Ted Cruz, the U.S. Senator from Texas who made a failed run at the Republican nomination for President in 2016, was at Game 7 of the Warriors vs. Rockets game Monday in Houston. How do we know that for sure? Cruz tweeted a picture of himself in the arena wearing a Rockets shirt, imploring a Houston victory and using the hashtag #ClutchCity. And then, uh, the Rockets missed 27 consecutive three pointers during a 101-92 loss that sent the Warriors to the NBA Finals against Cleveland for the fourth consecutive year.

*Almost as amazing as the Vegas run to the Stanley Cup Finals is the collection of pregame introduction shows the team has put together. It was no different before Monday’s Game 1 victory over Washington. Feast your eyes:

*Speaking of Vegas, there have been rumblings from NHL owners (including the Wild’s Craig Leipold) about not liking the expansion format that helped launch the Golden Knights’ unlikely run this season, but Commissioner Gary Bettman said the rules will be the same for Seattle when that city presumably gets a franchise expansion approved in the near future. The format wasn’t nearly as generous when the Wild entered the league in 2000.

*The Twins sputtered to a 21-27 record through 48 games, but nobody should give up hope. Of their final 114 games, 66 are against the historically bad American League Central. That’s 58 percent, including a stretch of 11 in a row and 17 out of 20 that started Monday with an 8-5 win over Kansas City.

*In a ranking of nearly 300 U.S. cities, Minneapolis/St. Paul came in 26th on Wallet Hub’s list of the best ones for basketball fans. That ranking includes college and NBA, but curiously doesn’t seem to include the WNBA. I have to imagine the area would have fared even better with the Lynx included. You can see a breakdown of the findings here, including a note that the Wolves score big points for arena accessibility while the Gophers fare poorly in the area of ticket prices.

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