Monday, September 14, 2009

Monday Moments

  • After taking last Friday off as a reminder of the 8-year anniversary of the terror attacks on the United States, we return to the less important world of sports.
  • TCF Bank Stadium opened to rave reviews last Saturday in the Gophers' 20-13 victory over Air Force. The team is back on campus for the first time since 1981, and a beautiful day - capped by a victory - was the perfect way to christen the new digs. The hope is that Gopher football can become more competitive - especially with top in-state recruits - because of the new facility. I am going to take a cautious approach here. Winning begets recruiting, and a new facility should serve as a tie-breaker. Coach Tim Brewster and his staff have blanketed the state and the country in search of top talent, and the current Gopher roster has a lot of young talent on it. Now, the team just needs to win. For now - at least until Cal invades this coming Saturday - it is a time to celebrate the return of on-campus outdoor football to Minnesota.
  • Wild camp is in session and here is the roster from Strb beat writer extraordinaire Michael Russo. The Wild also brought in former NJ Devil Petr Sykora on a tryout basis this week in hopes he can compete for a spot on the top three lines. The exhibition schedule gets under way this week in St. Louis. It's hard to believe NHL season is here.
  • The Timberwolves had another active few weeks. First, they signed Milwaukee Bucks' guard Ramon Sessions to an offer sheet and then acquired him when Milwaukee elected not to match the deal. The deal is 4 years for $16.4M, and gives the team a cheaper backup to Jonny Flynn in the point guard mix. Secondly, they lost guard Rodney Carney to the Philadelphia 76ers via free agency. Carney showed some athleticism in his lone season in Minnesota and the Wolves had hoped to sign him. However, he elected to return to Philly. Finally, the Wolves landed veteran guard Antonio Daniels from the New Orleans Hornets in a trade for Bobby Brown and Darius Songaila. Daniels arrives with a draft pick and an expiring contract - two things Basketball Ops head "Meerkat" David Kahn covets. Brown arrived late last season in a deal with Sacramento for Rashad McCants and had limited impact. Songaila was part of the Randy Foye deal in which the Wolves landed the 5th draft pick this past summer from Washington.
  • In case you're wondering, the Wolves' current roster and salary situation looks like this - minus the Sessions contract. Third-year man Corey Brewer is the longest-tenured Timberwolf.
  • The situation surrounding Gopher basketball incoming freshman Trevor Mbakwe continues to unfold, as the University has allowed him to practice with the team but not participate in any games. Mbakwe is charged with felony battery during an incident in Miami in April.
  • On my WCHA Examiner page last week, I included the season previews for Denver and Michigan Tech. Minnesota and UMD follow this week. Stay tuned there and at my Twins' page for updates.

No comments:

Post a Comment