MINNESOTA SPORTS ROUNDUP: Wild start Olympic break with win over Nashville
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota forward Nino Niederreiter scored the winning goal 2:16 into overtime to lift the Wild past the Predators 3-2 at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul last night. Jonas Brodin and Zach Parise both scored in the first period for the Wild, who have won two in-a-row after a two-game skid. Darcy Kuemper kicked aside 16 of the 18 shots he faced in the victory. Craig Smith scored twice for Nashville, which has picked up at least a point in four straight. Carter Hutton allowed all three goals on 36 shots in the setback. The Wild now enter the Olympic break.
The visiting Golden Gopher men's hockey team outshot Wisconsin 32-to-19, but could not find the net enough to win the game last night in Madison. The Badgers beat Minnesota 2-1 to hand the Gophers their first-ever Big Ten loss. Minnesota's lone goal came from freshman Taylor Cammarata of Plymouth on a feed from Eden Prairie native Kyle Rau. The teams were tied 1-1 after the first period, skated to a scoreless second frame, and Wisconsin's Jake McCabe tallied the go-ahead marker in the third. Minnesota is now 19-3-and-5 on the season and 8-1-and-2 in the Big Ten. The Badgers are 15-8-and-2 overall and 6-4-and-1 in the league. The same two teams play tonight in Madison at 8 p.m.
The Minnesota Golden Gophers are back home to take on the Indiana Hoosiers tomorrow night at Williams Arena. Minnesota has lost three in-a-row for the first time this season following Wednesday's 77-74 triple-overtime setback at Purdue. The Gophers are now 15-and-8 on the season and 4-and-6 in Big Ten play. The Hoosiers are 14-and-8 and 4-and-5. Tipoff tomorrow is 7:15 p.m.
The Minnesota Timberwolves play the Pelicans tonight at New Orleans Arena. The T'wolves have dropped three of their last four games following Wednesday's 106-97 setback in Oklahoma City. Minnesota sits at 24-and-25 on the year. New Orleans is 21-and-27. After tonight's game, the Timberwolves will return home for a four-game homestand starting tomorrow against Portland.
Timberwolves forward Kevin Love is one of eight players that will compete in the Three-Point Shootout during NBA All-Star break in New Orleans next weekend. He is joined by Portland's Damian Lillard, Cleveland's Kyrie Irving, Washington's Bradley Beal, Brooklyn's Joe Johnson, Orlando's Arron Afflalo, Golden State's Stephen Curry, and San Antonio's Marco Belinelli.
The Minnesota Vikings are turning to Norv Turner to run their offense. He has been named offensive coordinator of the Vikes. Turner was the OC last season for the Cleveland Browns after spending the previous six years as head coach of the San Diego Chargers. Turner was 56-and-40 with the Bolts and also has head coaching experience with the Washington Redskins and Oakland Raiders. George Edwards will be defensive coordinator for new Minnesota head coach Mike Zimmer. He spent the last two seasons as linebackers coach of the Miami Dolphins, but was previously DC for the Buffalo Bills.