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MINNESOTA SPORTS ROUNDUP: Wild blank Chicago, series now 2-1

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ST.PAUL --  The Minnesota Wild scored four times in the third period on their way to a 4-0 rout of the Chicago Blackhawks in Game Three of the NHL Western Conference semifinals at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul last night.  Mikael Granlund put two away, including a late empty-netter to seal Minnesota's victory.  Erik Haula and Zach Parise also scored for the Wild, who still trail the best-of-seven set two-games-to-one.  Ilya Bryzgalov turned away all 19 shots he saw for the victory.  Corey Crawford made 14 saves in goal for Chicago.  The Wild will host Game Four on Friday at 8:30 p.m.

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Here is the schedule and the results for the NHL Western Conference Semifinal best-of-seven series between the Minnesota Wild and the Chicago Blackhawks:

Game One (Friday 5/2):  Chicago 5, Minnesota 2 (CHI leads series 1-0)

Game Two (Sunday 5/4):  Chicago 4, Minnesota 1 (CHI leads series 2-0)

Game Three (Tuesday 5/6):  Minnesota 4, Chicago 0 (CHI leads series 2-1)

Game Four (Friday 5/9):  Chicago at Minnesota, 8:30pm

Game Five (Sunday 5/11):  Minnesota at Chicago, if necessary, TBD

Game Six (Tuesday 5/13):  Chicago at Minnesota, if necessary, TBD

Game Seven (Thursday 5/15):  Minnesota at Chicago, if necessary, TBD

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The Montreal Canadiens defended home ice with a 4-2 win over the Boston Bruins last night north of the border to grab a 2-1 series advantage.  There's just one game on the schedule Wednesday night.  The New York Rangers host the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game Four of their Eastern Conference semifinal series.  The Pens hold a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven set.  The "SoCal" series resumes Thursday night as the Los Angeles Kings take a 2-0 series lead into their home matchup with the Anaheim Ducks.

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The Indians built an early lead and starting pitcher Josh Tomlin made it stand as Cleveland dropped the Minnesota Twins 4-2 at Progressive Field in Cleveland last night.  Tomlin tossed six-and-two-thirds innings of one-run ball in his first start of the year.  Nick Swisher went 2-for-4 with an RBI while Michael Brantley and Yan Gomes each knocked in a run as well.  Bryan Shaw closed it out for his first save as the Tribe won its third in five games.  Chris Colabello hit a solo homer and Eduardo Escobar went 2-for-4 with an RBI for Minnesota.  Samuel Deduno gave up four runs in five innings to fall to 0-and-2 as the Twins saw a three-game slide end.  Game three of the four-game series is tonight at 6:05 p.m.

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The Golden Gopher baseball team raced by Augsburg 10-0 yesterday in a game played at Siebert Field.  Freshman Matt Stemper of Burnsville had three hits, including a triple, drove home two and scored twice for the Gophers.  Minnesota is now 23-and-19 on the season and will host Concordia-Moorhead tonight at 6:35 p.m. on the U of M campus.

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The NFL Draft is just one day away.  The first round gets started tomorrow night in New York City, followed by rounds two and three on Friday and the final four rounds on Saturday.  The Minnesota Vikings hold the eighth overall pick in the first round and have eight selections in all.  General manager Rick Spielman says he and his staff have been going over every possible scenario they can think of so they are fully prepared heading into the opening round tomorrow night.

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Minnesota will submit its final bid today (Wed) to host Super Bowl 52 at the new Vikings stadium.  The bid for the 2018 NFL title game will be delivered to all 32 owners and the NFL front office.  Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority Chair Michele Kelm-Helgen says hosting the Super Bowl is an economic boom for the area, especially the hospitality industry: "We have as part of our bid more than 180 hotels have committed large blocks of rooms to host the 120-thousand people who will come to our state."  The co-chairs of Super Bowl Bid Committee are meeting with the media today (9am) in Minneapolis.  Minnesota is competing with Indianapolis and New Orleans for Super Bowl 52.  

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The WNBA Minnesota Lynx have waived guard Theairra Taylor and center Asya Bussie in a pair of roster moves yesterday.  Taylor is a St. Paul native who was trying to make the team as a rookie out of the University of Iowa.  The Minnesota roster now stands at 14 players.  The Lynx travel to Orlando to take part in a preseason tournament starting on Friday.

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