Dane Mizutani / St. Paul Pioneer Press
ST. PAUL—Maybe it's a coincidence that last season, at the ripe age of 35, Lynx forward Rebekkah Brunson had one of her most productive campaigns in recent memory. Or maybe it's not. As far as Brunson, now 36, is concerned, it's no mistake she's still playing at such a high level entering Year 15 of her WNBA career. "I feel great and I'm sure that's attributed to some of things that I put into my body," the 6-foot-2 veteran said. "You just feel better eating the right things."
EAGAN, Minn.—On Friday, May 4, about 20 miles from Dinkytown, a trio of former Minnesota Gophers were busy trying to make a name for themselves on the first day of Vikings rookie minicamp at the team's new training facility in Eagan. While no Gophers were selected in last week's NFL Draft, running back Kobe McCrary, safety Kunle Ayinde and defensive tackle Merrick Jackson were awarded tryouts with Minnesota with the hope of making the Vikings' roster ahead of OTAs.
MINNEAPOLIS—Carlie Wagner grew up idolizing Lindsay Whalen, and while she has practiced on the same court as her idol a number of times, there's something much different about doing it as a teammate with the Lynx. "It's a dream come true," Wagner said. "Sometimes I still can't believe it." Such is life for the 22-year-old guard from New Richland, Minn., who is in Lynx training camp after being selected in the third round of the 2018 WNBA Draft.
EGAN, Minn. — Without anything to actually study, rookie linebacker Hercules Mata'afa still pulled an all-nighter to prepare for rookie minicamp with the Vikings. "It's a five-hour time difference," said Mata'afa, who is from Lahaina, Hawaii. "I made sure I stayed up all night so I could get adjusted. I was able to sleep (on Thursday) night to get ready for this."
EGAN, Minn. — Vikings rookie defensive tackle Jalyn Holmes waited through the first two nights of the NFL Draft without hearing his name called, an excruciating experience for the 22-year-old and his family, who gathered at home in Norfolk, Va., to take in three-day spectacle. "I thought I was going to go on Friday and ended up not going," Holmes said. "That was a hard night."
MINNEAPOLIS — There's been a conspicuous absence the first week of Lynx training camp. As the team begins defense of its WNBA championship, star guard Maya Moore has been nowhere to be found. Moore has had a busy spring finishing up a playoff run with UMMC Ekaterinburg, a powerhouse Russian team that won the EuroLeague title recently.
ST. PAUL — Before the start of the 2017-18 season, Wild forward Jason Zucker literally put his money where his mouth is. As a part of the #GIVE16 campaign he and his wife, Carly, started, the 26-year-old winger pledged to donate $1,600 for every goal he scored during the upcoming season. Little did Zucker know he was about to embark on a breakout season, setting a career-high with 33 goals, second on the team to Eric Staal's 42.
ST. PAUL — Ever since the Wild selected high-scoring winger Dmitry Sokolov in the seventh round of the 2016 NHL Draft, there has been speculation about when the team would actually sign the Russian sniper to a contract. That finally happened Wednesday, May 2, when the 20-year-old Sokolov signed a three-year, entry-level contract.
MINNEAPOLIS -- After winning their fourth WNBA championship in seven years last October, the Lynx are still waiting on the customary White House invitation, coach Cheryl Reeve said earlier this week on the Sports Media Podcast. She added that former President Barack Obama contacted the team immediately after it won the WNBA championship in 2011, 2013 and 2015. Traditionally, any team that wins a major championship gets invited to the White House, though that has become a point of contention since President Donald Trump took office.
EAGAN, Minn.—As new Vikings cornerback Mike Hughes was introduced Friday evening, April 27, at team headquarters in Eagan, longtime seamstress Penny Bryce watched with pride from the side of the room. Hughes turned his Vikings jersey around, revealing his last name, and Bryce burst into a grin before taking the stage alongside the 21-year-old rookie.