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Missed cross-check is among the worst calls in Minnesota sports history

The Twins, Vikings and Lynx have been killed by officiating failures.

Officials don't have easy jobs, but sometimes the boo birds are warranted, and last night was no exception.

Winnipeg's Josh Morrissey delivered a nasty cross-check to the side of Wild star Eric Staal's head, knocking him to the ice, leaving him stunned and in pain. 

Everyone in America saw it. Somehow, all of the officials missed it, giving credence to this Bruce Boudreau postgame remark.

“My take is the same take as everyone in the building. The refs saw it and decided not to call it because we were already on the power play. Cost us the game," the Wild coach said. 

He's right, and the no call will likely cost the Wild their season. 


No call on cross-check costs Wild in Game 4 loss to Jets

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Only 14 teams since 2000 have won a series after trailing 3-1 or 3-0. 

Minnesota did it twice in 2003 against Colorado and Vancouver, but their chances appear ultra slim this time around because they're without Ryan Suter and Zach Parise, and Winnipeg is the best home team in the NHL. 

Bad calls by the refs go down in history just like game-winning touchdowns in the Super Bowl and walk-off home runs in the World Series. 

Sadly, only Minnesotans will remember this one because it happened in an oft-forgotten first-round series. 

Even sadder is that this is the kind of fortune Minnesota sports fans have. 

Joe Mauer's double in the 2009 ALDS

In many ways, it's similar to the blown call by umpire Phil Cuzzi in the 2009 ALDS between the Yankees and Twins. 

Tied 3-3 in the 11th inning of Game 2, Joe Mauer led off with what should've been a ground-rule double, only to get sent back to the batter's box when Cuzzi ruled the slicing drive foul. 

Mauer, the 2009 AL MVP, wound up singling to center anyway, and the Twins loaded the bases with nobody out and still failed to score, but had the double been allowed, Mauer probably would've scored on Jason Kubel's base hit the next at-bat. 

Instead, Mark Teixeira hit a walk-off home run in the bottom of the 11th and the Yankees went on to sweep the best-of-five series. 

It was a series-changing call. Had the Twins won and evened the series 1-1, they might've used that momentum to win Game 3 and perhaps the series. 

Phantom pass interference on Ben Leber

It's less clear that this call cost the Vikings against the Saints in the 2009 NFC Championship Game, but it certainly was a debatable call. 

Tied 28-28 in overtime, the Saints had the ball 1st and 10 at the Minnesota 42 yard line when Drew Brees chucked a prayer down field to tight end David Thomas, whose feet became tangled with Vikings linebacker Ben Leber

Leber was called for pass interference, a 13-yard penalty to put the Saints in field goal range. 

Two plays later the Saints got another freebie when Robert Meachum was given a catch even though the ball appeared to touch the ground. 

The rest is history as the Saints kicked a field goal and went on to win the Super Bowl.

Missed shot-clock violation costs the Lynx a title

Even the four-time WNBA champion Minnesota Lynx are vulnerable to bad officiation. 

Go back to a decisive Game 5 of the 2016 WNBA Finals between the Lynx and Los Angeles Sparks. 

Nneka Ogwumike's shot with 1:14 remaining in regulation should not have counted due to a shot-clock violation, but the officiating crew refused to review it, and it proved fatal for the Lynx as they lost by one point, 77-76. 

The next day, the WNBA admitted the officials got it wrong and said the play should've been reviewed. 

Again, the NHL will likely issue a bogus apology to the Wild, but it's too late now, just like it was too late then for the Lynx. 

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