2021-05-29 17:44:26 –
It’s unclear how the Green Bay Packers-Aaron Rodgers saga will end. The same for what seems a long-brewing Minnesota Vikings-Danielle Hunter contract dispute
But what is clear is that the Packers, with Rodgers as quarterback this season, could be a 13-4 team. Without him, more like 7-10.
The Vikings with Hunter rushing from the edge this season? Perhaps 10-7. Without him? Try 7-10.
The Vikings should be able to adjust Hunter’s undervalued contract, considering the NFL has $113 billion — that’s billion, not million — coming in new media deals beginning next year.
Presumed NHL rookie of the year Kirill Kaprizov is 24 years old. But he won’t be the oldest NHL rookie of the year. That was another Russian, Sergei Makarov, who was 31 when he won the Calder Trophy with the Calgary Flames in 1990.
After that, the league adopted the “Makarov Rule,” which states a rookie has to be 26 or under to win the trophy. Makarov, by the way, is most famous for being the right wing on the Soviet Red Army’s famed KLM line with Igor Larionov and Vladimir Krutov.
Lead investor in the proposed purchase of the Timberwolves-Lynx from Glen Taylor — Marc Lore — according to Forbes has about $500 million to put into the $1.5 million deal.
Lore’s partner, Alex Rodriguez, has much less, perhaps $100 million. The NBA’s debt limit is $325 million, making the deal appear somewhat dubious.
Now comes word from Forbes that Taylor had an all-cash offer to sell the Wolves for $1.4 billion, but instead opted to sell to Lore and Rodriguez. Why? Because it would allow Taylor to remain controlling partner for two years. The $1.4 billion cash offer is no longer on the table.
The Twins are averaging 9,402 of their current COVID-allowed 23,700 attendance capacity for games at Target Field. Although there’s been some discussion about moving some night games to day games for public safety concerns downtown, that’s not expected to happen.
“Clearly, public safety is on the mind of a lot of our fans,” Twins president Dave St. Peter said Wednesday. “But the reality of it is we survey our fans and talk to fans about how they feel once they come to the games, and upwards of about 95 percent of those fans say they feel safe coming into the ballpark, parking, what have you.
“Yeah, there are some real public safety challenges for our downtown. But the perceptions of those challenges are far worse than the reality in our mind. We have a role; we built a downtown ballpark. It’s not realistic to play all day games. We do need to play night games.
“And frankly, we’re trying to lead, we’re trying to reinvigorate our downtown. One of the ways we can do that is bringing back large scale events like Twins baseball. Employees coming back downtown over the next several months will be another big part of that.
“So we tend to believe that Twins baseball at Target Field remains a very safe endeavor for all fans. And those fans who have chosen to come out are experiencing that.”
Best Minnesota high school baseball college prospect might be Atwater Cosmos Grove City left-handed pitcher-outfielder college-uncommitted senior Josh Kingery, son of former Kansas City Royals outfielder Mike Kingery.
Drew Gilbert, the former Stillwater pitcher-outfielder star, is hitting .275 with six home in 59 games as a sophomore for No. 4 nationally-ranked Tennessee. Pitching, Gilbert hasn’t given up a run in 8 1/3 innings with eight strikeouts.
Gilbert’s pitching star teammate at Stillwater, Will Frisch, is 3-0 with a 2.17 ERA with 51 strikeouts in 54 innings as a freshman for Oregon State.
Former Simley High infielder Michael Busch, 23, who received a signing bonus of $2.3 million from the Dodgers two summers ago, last week hit his sixth homer of the season for Class AA Tulsa.
Ex-Twins reliever Trevor May, 31, is 2-1 with a 2.50 ERA for the first-place Mets, with 24 strikeouts in 18 innings.
Northwestern grad Erik Bremer, 25, son of longtime Twins TV play-by-play voice Dick Bremer, this season is radio play by play voice for the Washington Nationals’ Class A affiliate Fredericksburg (Va.). This is Erik’s sixth year of play by play, counting his work in the Cape Cod League as well as two seasons calling games in Australia. This is Dick’s 38th major league season.
Dalvin Cook at No. 46, and Adam Thielen at No. 47, are the only Vikings among the NFL’s top 50 players in league apparel sales. Ex-Viking Stefan Diggs of Buffalo is No. 50. No. 1 is Tampa Bay’s Tom Brady, No. 5 the Packers’ Rodgers.
That was Gophers hockey icon Johnny Mayasich in the Twin Cities last week visiting family before returning to hometown Eveleth. Mayasich, 88, plans to continue his curling competition when COVID-19 diminishes.
Among 36 officials working the first round of the NBA playoffs are Ken Mauer from St. Paul and Pat Fraher from Hastings. Mauer, in his 27th playoff season, leads the group with 223 playoffs games worked. Fraher is in his 13th playoff season. Minnetonka native Eric Dalen is an alternate for his first playoff.
James Marvel, who struck out four and allowed no earned runs in 5 1/3 innings in Indianapolis’ 6-4 victory over the Saints in St. Paul the other day, is the son of former Minnesota Women’s State Amateur golf champion Julie Gumlia, who with her mother Jody twice won the Women’s State Four-Ball championship.
Sports memorabilia collector Corey Nikko of Cloquet has 524 baseballs signed by individuals who played for the Twins. By his count, 891 men have played for the Twins. He’s still got 367 autographed balls to get.
NBA hall of famer Shaq O’Neal has sold his interest in 155 Five Guys hamburger restaurants, Front Office Sports mentioned.
Meanwhile, former Gopher Kris Humphries, 36, who spent 16 seasons in the NBA during which he made more than $62 million, and his father, former Gophers football player William Humphries of Minneapolis, have increased their Five Guys franchise ownerships to 10 in Minnesota and Wisconsin. They also own three Crisp & Green restaurants. Kris also owns a multitude of real estate buildings.
“One of the first books I ever gave Kris when he was in (Hopkins) high school was ‘The Millionaire Next Door,’/I” William said.
Outfielder Torii Hunter, Jr., 26, son of the former Twins outfielder, is batting .176 between Double-A Rocket City and Triple-A Salt Lake with three home runs in 20 games for LA Angels minor league affiliates.
After Joe Mauer’s final major league game, the future hall of famer donated his entire three-foot long bag of catching gear for display at Target Field.
Among protocols for the MIAC baseball playoffs were prohibiting sunflower seeds at venues.
Former Twins manager Ron Gardenhire makes the ceremonial first pitch at the St. Cloud Rox opening game on Friday against Duluth.
Troy Merritt from Spring Lake Park shot 13-under-par (66 on Saturday, 65 on Sunday) in the recent Byron Nelson PGA tournament in Texas, earning $263,250.
Besides increasing his season total to $796,926, Merritt advanced 22 spots to No. 114 in FedEx Cup standings. The top 125 advance to FedEx playoffs that begin in August, with first-place prize money of $15 million from a total fund of $60 million.
That was Casey Danielson of the noted Osceola, Wis., golfing family winning the other day on the Symetra Tour, the official developmental tour of the LPGA. Danielson ranks sixth on the tour’s money list with $36,762 after seven events.
The Twins will honor their 1991 World Series champions with a 30th anniversary on Aug. 14 before their game against Tampa Bay./l
DON’T PRINT THAT
Wild owner Craig Leipold says he has no regrets about the $98 million, 13-year contracts he gave to Zach Parise and Ryan Suter. Those deals each have four years left.
“The signing of both Ryan and Zach were great signings; they changed our team significantly from both a financial standpoint and from a ticket sales and culture standpoint,” Leipold said. “I would do the whole thing over again. It was going to be basically $100 million per player; the longer we made the contract the more you could divide by 100, so that’s how we got the cap number to $7.5 million for both of them.”
Does the owner expect both players to play out their contracts?
“I don’t know. That’ll be up to them,” he said.
Research on Wild coach Dean Evason shows that on Jan. 7, 1986, playing for the Hartford Whalers against the Calgary Flames, Evason scored a hat trick. But he also received a five-minute penalty and 10-minute misconduct for a fight with Calgary’s Doug Risebrough, who eventually would become the Wild’s GM.
There’s buzz now that Kevin Garnett, who is said to be worth more than $200 million, will be heavily involved in the Timberwolves basketball department if he joins franchise investors Alex Rodriguez and Marc Lore if/when they gain full control in 2023. The word is Garnett, the ex-Timberwolf, wants the franchise to remain in Minnesota but Rodriguez wants to move it to Seattle, where he played for seven seasons.
Full NHL playoff shares for Wild players losing in seven games to Las Vegas could amount to about $15,000 apiece.
New Utah men’s basketball coach Craig Smith, who was a serious candidate for the Gophers job that went to Ben Johnson, is highly involved with 6-8 Steffon Mitchell, the former Shakopee star who is transferring from Boston College.
Gophers athletes could find out on July 1 whether they can be paid for their names, images and likeness by corporate sponsors.
The Twins’ playoff odds dropped from 64 percent before the season to nine percent on Friday, according to fivethirtyeight.com statistical analysis, which projects the team to finish with a 77-85 record and six percent chance to win their division.
Wei-Long Hsu last weekend received a check for $195,000 for winning the LPGA Pure Silk Championship. At the same time, Tim Mickelson, who caddied for brother Phil in winning the PGA Championship, is expected to get more than $200,000 from Phil’s $2.16 million prize.
Members of Southview Country Club raised more than $10,000 to help defray expenses for their 17-year-old Isabella McCauley’s competition in the U.S. Women’s Open golf championship this week at the posh Olympic Club in San Francisco. Other Twin Cities clubs, including Minneapolis, North Oaks and Minikahda, with layouts similar to that of the Olympic Club contributed their courses for practice.
McCauley, who left for San Francisco on Saturday, is scheduled to play practice rounds at Olympic with Sarah Burnham on Monday and Amy Olson on Tuesday of the LPGA Tour.
With Troy Vincent apparently pulling out of consideration, it looks like Sean Frazier, who was Barry Alvarez’s deputy a.d. at Wisconsin before taking the a.d. job at Northern Illinois, is frontrunner to succeed Alvarez as a.d. at Wisconsin.
Among those rumored for the job is former Gophers interim a.d. Beth Goetz, the a.d. at Ball State.
No doubt fiery late Herb Brooks would have gone ballistic over granddaughter Oliva Paradise and her University of St. Thomas women’s tennis team’s program elimination by the school, which could lead to a Title IX lawsuit if not reinstated.
Meanwhile, the university is in the midst of hiring some 40 assorted athletics assistants for its move to Division I.
Bud Grant, 94, who says he’s been associated with University of Minnesota athletics for 77 years, has a video out promoting reinstatement of the Gophers men’s tennis program, which is being eliminated for so-called budget reasons.
Twins third baseman Josh Donaldson, 35, with a guaranteed $92 million, four-year contract, is batting .227 in 38 games.
The number of American Legion baseball teams in Minnesota has reached a record high 372 this year. Except for last year (due to COVID-19), the Minnesota American Legion has held a state tournament annually since 1926. Tournaments this year begin in July at various locations.
Gophers athletics director Mark Coyle is paid nearly $1 million a year under his current contract, which runs through 2026. Ohio State a.d. Gene Smith’s recent new deal that also runs through 2026 is worth $2 million annually.
The NCAA Women’s Final Four basketball tournament will be April 1 and April 3 at Target Center, where local fans hope UConn star Paige Bueckers from Hopkins makes it a homecoming. NCAA VP for women’s basketball Lynn Holzman will do a Dunkers Zoom meeting about the tournament on June 24./l
In a four-page Sports Illustrated feature on Prince this week, a junior high school teammate of the late 5-foot-3 musician from Minneapolis, describing his youth basketball skills: “He could dribble, he could shoot, and he was quick, classic point guard. I’m telling you, a few more inches and, who knows, we might think of Prince as a basketball player, not a musician.”
Danielle Hunter’s contract dispute with Vikings not exactly Aaron Rodgers-like – Twin Cities Source link Danielle Hunter’s contract dispute with Vikings not exactly Aaron Rodgers-like – Twin Cities