Dane Mizutani / St. Paul Pioneer Press
EAGAN, Minn. -- Vikings coach Mike Zimmer talked openly about his team’s offensive ineptitude following Sunday, Nov. 18’s 25-20 loss to the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Without directly calling out first-year offensive coordinator John DeFilippo, Zimmer was clear about wanting his team to show more commitment to the running game. The fact that Zimmer is voicing his frustration about his offense at this point in the season is alarming at best and divisive at worst.
EAGAN, Minn. -- With word that Pro Bowl linebacker Anthony Barr plans to return from his lingering hamstring injury to play Sunday, Nov. 25, against the Green Bay Packers, Eric Wilson likely will slide back into a reserve role on the Vikings’ defense.
ST. PAUL -- Matt Dumba was disinterested in speaking to reporters after Sunday’s 3-1 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks, the first time that the Wild have lost back-to-back games in regulation this season. “I don’t know,” Dumba said. “It’s frustrating.” That much was palpable throughout the 68-second interview as Dumba opted for a handful of clipped answers before retreating to the showers.
EAGAN, Minn. -- If Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr has his way, he will be back on the field for this week’s game against the Green Bay Packers. He says he was “pretty close” to playing in Sunday’s 25-20 loss to the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field, but he ultimately was kept out of his third consecutive game because of a lingering right hamstring injury. “I’ll play this week,” Barr said Monday, Nov. 19. “I’m playing.”
CHICAGO — The Chicago Blackhawks have been one of the worst teams in the NHL over the past month, entering Sunday’s game against the Wild with only a single win in the last 10 games, a stretch that ultimately cost longtime coach Joel Quenneville his job. And while they’re going nowhere fast under the watchful eye of 33-year-old coach Jeremy Colliton, the Blackhawks still proved, as always, they know how to beat the Wild, doing it 3-1 at United Center.
CHICAGO — There’s something about Wild winger Mikael Granlund that always seems to leave people wanting more. As good as Granlund has been been over the past few seasons — and he is on pace for his third consecutive 60-plus-point campaign — there are times when he disappears for long stretches. Like during Saturday’s home loss to the Buffalo Sabres when Granlund seemed more interested in painting a pretty picture on most plays than attacking at full speed.
EAGAN, Minn. -- No Portillo’s for Vikings rookie Chad Beebe this weekend. Though the 24-year-old receiver grew up on the well-known Chicago cuisine, he begrudgingly has decided to take a pass when Vikings are in Chicago to play the Bears on Sunday night at Solider Field. “Not exactly in the diet plan,” Beebe said with a laugh. “Maybe in the offseason.” Even without chowing down on the renowned Italian beef and side of cheese fries, it’ll be a nice homecoming for Beebe, who grew up about 45 minutes away, in Aurora, Ill.
EAGAN, Minn. -- A full palette of emotions rushed over Ameer Abdullah after being waived by the Detroit Lions last week. “It was a shock,” Abdullah said. “That’s the team that drafted me. That’s where I kind of made home. It was tough.”
EAGAN, Minn. -- When it comes to Khalil Mack, the stats speak for themselves, the highlights jump off the screen. The defensive end has been everything the Chicago Bears hoped he would be when they acquired him in a blockbuster trade with Oakland.
EAGAN, Minn. -- The last time the Vikings played, Stefon Diggs watched from the sideline, and it wasn’t much fun. “It was terrible,’’ Diggs said about missing his first game of the season. “I felt horrible. It’s like watching your brothers go outside and play and you got to stay in the house.” The wide receiver missed a 24-9 victory over Detroit on Nov. 4 because of bruised ribs, but he said Thursday he will play against the Bears on Sunday night in Chicago.