Thanks to Michael Corleone, we all know to keep our friends close but our enemies closer. In sports, enemies are abundant. For every championship season, there is a team that pulled off the upset. For every winning play, a gutting gaffe. For every hero, a villain.
Who has got the goat of Minnesota sports teams and players over the years? That question was pondered by a group of Star Tribune sportswriters and editors who gathered Wednesday for our weekly Virtual Happy Hour.
We had time for 18 picks, and a bevy of the usual suspects got away. A.J. Pierzynski, anyone?
You can read the Virtual Happy Hour chatter that went into the picks at startribune.com/villains.
Here are our picks:
1. Norm Green (Chris Miller, pro sports editor)
2. Aaron Rodgers (Andrew Krammer, Vikings writer)
3. Brett Favre (Michael Rand, senior digital writer)
4. New York Yankees (Jeff Day, copy editor)
5. Drew Pearson (Randy Johnson, Puck Drop editor)
6. Michigan Wolverines football (Brian Stensaas, night web sports editor and golf writer)
7. Blair Walsh (Ken Chia, copy editor)
8. Al Secord (Joe Christensen, Gophers editor)
9. Dave Forbes (Pete Steinert, Sunday sports editor)
10. Dick Butkus (Steinert)
11. Chuck Knoblauch (Christensen)
12. Carl Pohlad (Chia)
13. Eden Prairie football (Stensaas)
14. Todd Bertuzzi (Johnson)
15. Jimmy Butler (Day)
16. Stephon Marbury (Rand)
17. Nate Poole (Krammer)
18. Nick Bockwinkel (Miller)