There's hope for the tortured souls of Minnesota sports fans.
On Saturday, the Toronto Raptors advanced to the NBA Finals, giving the city its first championship appearance – in the four major sports: MLB, NFL, NHL, NBA – in 73 seasons.
The bad news: Minneapolis/St. Paul has the longest championship appearance drought among cities with an MLB, NFL, NHL and NBA team.
How many combined seasons have the Vikings, Twins, Timberwolves and Wild gone without a spot in the title round?
Answer: 103 seasons!
You have to go back to the 1991 Twins – who won the World Series – for the last time one of Minnesota's four teams went to a championship.
That's an entire lifetime for someone like me, who's 26-years-old (born in 1992) and has never seen a local team make it so far. Thanks to the Lynx, sports fans like me can lay claim to four WNBA titles since 2011, but that's about it.
Myself and many others have seen said teams in this millennium reach the doorstep of a championship series, only to fall short.
- 2017 Vikings
- 2009 Vikings
- 2003-04 Timberwolves
- 2002-03 Wild
- 2002 Twins
- 2000 Vikings
At least this year's Twins team is off to a great start and could break the streak. They entered play Sunday with the best record in the league; with an offense that's in a league of its own and a starting pitching staff that's been better than anticipated.
Meanwhile, the Vikings still have a window to make a Super Bowl. The NFC isn't under a stranglehold by any team. If Kirk Cousins is protected and the defense continues to thrive under Mike Zimmer, they could return to a Super Bowl for the first time since the 70s.
The Timberwolves have a great piece in Karl-Anthony Towns, a young head coach in Ryan Saunders and a new president of basketball operations in Gersson Rosas, but they've got a long way to go before steering towards a NBA Finals appearance.
For the Wild, they may have the longest to go. They're one of the oldest teams in the league and with Zach Parise and Ryan Suter's contracts in place for seven more years, it will be difficult for them to turn things around quickly enough to where they'd be a championship contender.
Other teams like the New Orleans Saints, Chicago Cubs, St. Louis Blues – who at one point suffered more than Minnesota teams – snapped their droughts in the last 10 years.
Maybe the Twins can pull it off, or maybe we're heading down another 103 years of waiting.