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The 10 biggest Minnesota Sports train wreck moments of 2016

By Mackey & Judd

Most sports talk shows and local fan bases take time at the end of the year to reflect on all of the positive things that happened over the past 12 months. Cleveland, for example — and for a change — has a lot of good things to look back on in 2016.

Not Minnesota.

We, once again, were left wallowing in our sports sorrows. Even the mighty Minnesota Lynx lost a heart-breaking Game 5 of the WNBA Finals.

This simply wasn’t our year.

In an effort to pay proper respect to one of the more nightmarish years in Minnesota sports history, Mackey and Judd ranked the top 10 biggest Minnesota sports train wreck moments of 2016:

10. Timberwolves stumbling out of the gate

With Tom Thibodeau taking over the organization, and with the best young core group of players in the NBA, expectations were high for the Wolves. Many were talking playoffs. Instead, the Wolves tripped all over themselves to start the season and still haven’t fully recovered. There’s still plenty of time for long-term success, but the short-term buzz kill makes our list.

9. The Vikings select WR Ole Miss, Laquon Treadwell

Three targets. One catch. Thanks for playing.

8. Miguel Sano in right field

This idea was an obvious first-guess disaster from the get-go in the eyes of anyone who had watched more than 5 games of Twins baseball over the past couple years. Sano was too big and lumbering to cover right field, nor did he have a sense for route running. Predictably. A cannon for an arm doesn’t make up for pop-ups turning into doubles.

7. Teddy Bridgewater’s gruesome injury

The shock factor, the likeability of Teddy, and the presumption of Super Bowl contention caused this event to be one of the biggest gut punches in recent Vikings history. Sam Bradford wound up having a solid season in Teddy’s place, but the Vikings sacrificed a first-round pick to bring him in.

6. Mike Yeo getting fired + Wild in January

Between mid-January and mid-February of 2016, the Wild won exactly one game. This futile stretch concluded with eight straight losses and the firing of Mike Yeo.

5. Gopher basketball in early 2016

A sex video, Carlos Morris booted from the team, and a 2-16 conference record. Need we say more?

4. Blair Walsh’s miss against Seattle in the playoffs

In retrospect, we should have looked at this missed 27-yarder as foreshadowing for the rest of the year — not just for the Vikings, but for Minnesota sports in general. Many fans would have cut Walsh on the spot. The Vikings waited a few months.

3. The firing of Terry Ryan

This event put a bow on perhaps the worst multi-year stretch in Minnesota Twins history — five 90-loss seasons, including four of 96 losses or more. The Twins also had the league’s worst pitching staff over that stretch. For a franchise that almost never makes major changes, the mid-season firing of Ryan was a bit shocking — although far from unwarranted.

2. The Gopher football boycott mess

Eric Kaler, Mark Coyle and Tracy Claeys showed how miscommunication — or lack of communication — between leaders can result in a national brush fire of embarrassment for a football program. It’s tough to find any individual party that handled this situation flawlessly, and in the end the University of Minnesota athletic department wound up in the headlines — yet again — for all the wrong reasons.

1. The Vikings’ post-bye week collapse

This is not hyperbole: The Vikings’ fall from 5-0 to out of playoff contention prior to Week 17 is one of the greatest collapses in NFL history.

During the collapse, the Vikings saw their offensive coordinator quit, their kicker get booted off the team, their offensive line emerge as one of the worst in recent NFL history, and their head coach undergo multiple serious eye surgeries.

But hey, there’s always next year!

The post The 10 biggest Minnesota Sports train wreck moments of 2016 appeared first on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.

Source:: 1500 ESPN Sportswire

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