The Wolves finally figured out how to close, outscoring the Washington Wizards 24-21 in the fourth quarter Tuesday to pick up a 116-111 win. KAT had 37 points and 10 rebounds and finished a perfect 3-for-3 from 3-point range, including a corner bucket with 29 seconds to play that pushed the Wolves' lead to 114-109.
Devan Dubnyk, Wild goalie (↓ DOWN)
Dubnyk is still waiting on his 200th career win. He was in the net for all five goals in a brutal home loss to the Colorado Avalanche, who moved into the first wild-card spot and are now just three points back of the Wild. Dubnyk has struggled against the Avalanche this season, allowing six, five and five goals in consecutive meetings with Colorado this season.
Kirk Cousins, probable Vikings quarterback (↑ UP)
Cousins intends to sign a three-year deal somewhere in the neighborhood of $84 million, fully guaranteed. You can read about the statistical impact of the move here, but that last part is curious, and potentially game-changing. Of the four major U.S. sports, the NFL is the only one that is historically averse to guaranteed contracts. The top free-agent quarterback on the market signing such a deal could point towards a coming shift in that thinking, and give high-value players like Aaron Rodgers -- whose leverage over the Green Bay Packers is incalculable -- new precedent to point as they negotiate moving forward.
USA TODAY SportsBrad Mills
Jared Spurgeon, Wild defenseman (↓ DOWN)
The playoff race is heating up, and the Wild could be without one of their best defensemen for a significant stretch. Spurgeon appeared to lose an edge during the Wild's loss to the Avalanche, colliding awkwardly with the dasher. Head coach Bruce Boudreau later said the injury wasn't to Spurgeon's knee or ankle, but with just 12 games to go -- and 10 of them against potential playoff teams -- any stumbles could cost the Wild.
It's been a big week for Bjelica, who had 10 points, seven rebounds, four assists, three steals and two blocks in the Wolves' win over the Golden State Warriors on Sunday. He struggled out of the gate Tuesday but eventually helped power the Wolves to a win over the Wizards, hitting his final five shots of the game and finishing with 17 points.