I asked all of you on Twitter to come up with "measured hot takes" with "logic and thought" behind them — and allow me to either agree or disagree. This one certainly qualifies as being out on a limb:
This is probably 75% optimism about the Wild and 25% pessimism about those other three teams. Let's dig a little deeper to see if we buy it.
First off: The included teams are significant. If the Lynx and/or Minnesota United were lumped with the Twins, Vikings and Wolves, I'd say no way. Both of those teams made the "final four" of their leagues this past season and are in line to compete for a championship again in the near future. The Lynx in particular, with four WNBA titles since 2011, are always a threat to win it all.
With just four teams considered, though, we need to go further.
Vegas future odds show the Wild as 50 to 1 long shots to win the Stanley Cup this year. Those are longer odds than the Vikings started 2020 with (28 to 1) and much longer than what the Twins are currently listed at regarding World Series odds in 2021 (15 to 1). The Wolves, at 190 to 1, are not a factor. They need to figure out how to close out Memphis before they can think about anything else.
So clearly the betting odds favor the Twins to be the first of these four teams to win a championship if it happens anytime soon. Though they are coming off two years of playoff disappointment, they remain a threat. And they are a good bet to at least get back to the postseason in 2021.
The Wild in 2021 is probably 50-50, maybe a bit better, to even make the playoffs. This chart of point projections has the Wild finishing with 62.8 in this shortened 56-game season. The magic number for the West division, from which four teams will make the playoffs, is projected at 61.9.
But in the big picture, none of the four teams is really a favorite to win a championship this season.
The Twins come closest, but six MLB teams have more favorable odds. If they don't win a title in the next 2-3 years, their window will probably start to close — as their young players get more expensive and they continue to be outspent by factors of two or three by larger market teams.
The Vikings are going to have a hard time winning a Super Bowl as long as Kirk Cousins is their quarterback. That's not necessarily an indictment of Cousins — who has earned a top 10 Pro Football Focus quarterback grade each of the last two seasons — as much as it is a function of reality.
Teams that win Super Bowls in this era tend to either have precocious young QBs playing on relative bargain first contracts, thus allowing for strong quarterback play AND a beefed up roster around them ... or they have future Hall of Fame quarterbacks.
Cousins is neither. He's an expensive above-average quarterback, and winning a title with him would be an exception to the rule. He has two years left on his contract and could very well get another extension this offseason if the Vikings seek cap relief.
The Wolves have some promising pieces, led of course by Karl-Anthony Towns, but at this point they are staring way up at even the fringes of a playoff race.
The Wild has an interesting mix of stable veterans and potential young-ish stars. If Kevin Fiala continues on last year's trajectory and Kirill Karpizov lives up to the hype, they might have a team worthy of not just making the playoffs but scoring goals when they get there. The wild card is goaltending, but there, too, they have some promise with veteran Cam Talbot (good career playoff numbers) and the potential of Kaapo Kahkonen.
There are still too many "ifs" to say the Wild will be a serious contender in 2-3 years, but it's not out of the question. The NHL's hard salary cap creates a truly level ice sheet and the Wild has shown the ability to sign major free agents in the past.
If the Wild can break through and win one Stanley Cup, winning another would obviously be in play. From 2009-17, Pittsburgh, Chicago and Los Angeles all won multiple cups and combined to hoist the trophy eight out the nine times.
So overall: Asserting the Wild will win two championships before the Twins, Vikings or Wolves win one is a pretty hot take that could be cooled off rather quickly. But if you're just optimistic enough about the Wild and pessimistic about the rest, it's possible to imagine that happening.