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Twin Cities pro sports teams call off games after racial unrest

Men jump on police vehicles near the site of a shooting involving a police officer on Sunday in Brooklyn Center, Minn. (Carlos Gonzalez/Star Tribune via AP)

MINNEAPOLIS — In the raw aftermath of another killing of a Black man by police in Minnesota, there was no place for pro sports in the Twin Cities on Monday.

The Minnesota Twins, Wild and Timberwolves all postponed their games a day after the shooting of 20-year-old Daunte Wright following a traffic stop in a nearby suburb.

Major League Baseball’s Twins were set to begin a four-game series against the Boston Red Sox on Monday afternoon at Target Field.

About an hour before the scheduled first pitch and as players warmed up in light rain, the police chief in Brooklyn Center — a city adjacent to Minneapolis where violent protests took place the night before — announced that the shooting was an “accidental discharge,” with the officer involved firing her handgun instead of a stun gun.

“We came to the conclusion that the right thing to do was for us to not play today, rooted in respect for the Wright family but also rooted in our mind in the safety of all of those involved in today’s game,” Twins president Dave St. Peter said.

The Red Sox were staying at a hotel outside the city due to the timing of their visit during former Officer Derek Chauvin’s murder trial. Most visiting teams stay within a few blocks of the ballpark. The Twins, who consulted with MLB and state and local officials about the postponement, said there had been no discussion of moving the series to another city.

The NBA’s Timberwolves called off their game on Monday night against the Brooklyn Nets, without immediately announcing when it would be rescheduled.

“Yesterday’s tragic event, involving the life of Daunte Wright, once again leaves our community mourning,” the Timberwolves said, extending sympathy to Wright’s family.

The NHL’s Wild were supposed to host the St. Louis Blues on Monday night. The postponement was made “out of respect for heartbreaking incident” in Brooklyn Center, the team said. That game was rescheduled for May 12, during the extra week the league has added to the regular season to accommodate postponements due to COVID-19 protocols.

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz announced a curfew from 7 p.m. Monday until 6 a.m. today for the three counties that include Brooklyn Center, Minneapolis and the capital of St. Paul, where the Wild play.

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