With sports on an indefinite hiatus, I have taken to YouTube to check out one game every day. On Saturday, I watched the 2004 NBA Western Conference Semifinal Game Seven between the Wolves and Kings.

From 1989-2007, I was about the biggest Timberwolves fan on Earth. My grandpa and I would sit in the dining room nearly every night watching the team struggle its way toward relevance for the first seven seasons while the Wolves never finished higher than 11th in the Western Conference.

Then, in the 1996-97 season, the Wolves finished sixth in the West thanks to a developing core of Kevin Garnett, Stephon Marbury and Tom Gugliotta. The Wolves were promptly swept by the Rockets in the first round of the playoffs, the first of seven straight first round playoff exits.

However, the Wolves loaded up before the 2003-2004 season by acquiring Latrell Sprewell and Sam Casell and earned the top seed in the Western Conference. After dispatching the Denver Nuggets in the first round for their first ever series win, the Wolves hosted a dangerous Sacramento team in the semis.

I was at the game (I have attended nearly every home playoff game in Wolves history), and the energy rivaled any big game I had ever been to at that point. When the Wolves held on to win the game, I am not ashamed to admit tears fell from my face.

I called my grandpa from the arena and he sounded just as excited as I was about the win. All those years of heartbreak and frustration were instantly wiped away.

St. Cloud Sports Year In Review