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Thinking Out Loud: We’ll never get complete truth about Deflategate

01.23.15 at 12:49 pm ET
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Rooke_JohnThinking out loud . . . while wondering whatever happened to John Linehan …

— The NFL’s investigation into Deflategate against the Patriots? It’s the first league investigation of improperly deflated balls that didn’t involve use of PEDs. Just sayin’.

— I get the integrity/fair play/honesty part. But having covered the NFL for more than 30 years now, I also understand what people do to gain an edge. The Patriots push the envelope as much as any team or organization I’ve ever seen … maybe as much as I saw the Oklahoma Sooners push it in the 1970s and ‘€˜80s under Barry Switzer. They were real, straight-out-of-the-West outlaws. It doesn’t make it right, but few teams with a winning mentality want to be left behind.

— If there was a willful violation of the rules that occurred, that’s one thing. If someone within the Patriots organization purposely flaunted the rulebook, well, they’ll pay. It doesn’t mean the players are all cheaters, or the coaches, or the announcers or the fans. I don’t believe we’ll ever get the exact answer we’re looking for. In this case, it makes the current mob mentality of the media a real embarrassment … and a byproduct of the digital era of immediacy in which we currently live. We want answers, and we want them now … in 140 characters or less. The truth, and the search for the truth be damned.

— It seems that most in the national media throwing their darts toward New England have forgotten a few things along the way. The Colts, at one time, allegedly piped in crowd noise to their stadium for an advantage. There also were real strong thoughts on Indy purposely losing in 2011 to gain an advantage in the Andrew Luck derby. How does the old saying go? Those who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones? Make note, NFL. Stupid is as stupid does.

— The national pundits have proven themselves to be nothing more than sanctimonious windbags this week, in reacting to this story. Forfeit the Super Bowl? Year-long suspensions? Over two pounds of air in a football? Yeah, let’s make this more important than PED use in the sport or domestic violence. Guys like Michael Wilbon and Stephen A. Smith — who I have respected as reporters and columnists for a long time — are simply throwing these things out there for shock factor … to gain ratings and notoriety as the media helps stir this story into a big deal.

— And the former football players’ comments on all of this? It’s laughable. For instance, former Jacksonville QB Mark Brunell — who lost an AFC title game to NE in 1996 — said he “did not believe what Tom [Brady] had to say.” Why don’t you at least have the guts to call him a liar? Jerome Bettis, who also lost a couple of big ones to the Patriots as a Pittsburgh Steeler, and whose teams reportedly had rampant PED use throughout the roster: “I’m disappointed in you, Tom Brady.” Really, fellas? I’m disappointed in the four-letter network that gave you a voice.

— Get a clue. We don’t like it because it affects us. But it is a story because of Spygate. It is a story because of the tuck rule. It is a story even because of the 1982 Snow Plow Game. It is a story because the Patriots win — a lot — especially over the past 20 years. It’s a story because everyone loves to see the king fall on his crown, so to speak, whenever possible. Cheating? If I wanted to cheat, I’d do more than just deflate some footballs … and I think the same holds true for Bill Belichick. My guess is he knows exactly what other teams do during the course of a season — to his team and others — but he’s not a rat. Like former J-E-T-S coach Eric Mangini was a few years ago, and like some in other organizations are now.

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Read More: Bill Belichick, Deflategate, Super Bowl XLIX, Tom Brady

Friday’s Morning Mashup: Kobe Bryant out again with torn rotator cuff

01.23.15 at 8:07 am ET
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Welcome to Friday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

FRIDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NBA: Celtics at Nuggets, 9 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Bulls at Mavericks, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: VCU at Saint Louis, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Manhattan at Quinnipiac, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Valparaiso at Green Bay, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
NHL: All-Star Fantasy Draft, 8 p.m. (NBCSN)
College hockey: Providence at UMass-Lowell, 7 p.m. (NESN)
Soccer: FA Cup, Manchester United at Cambridge, 3 p.m. (FS1)
Tennis: Australian Open, 9 p.m., 3 a.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

— The hits keep on coming for the Lakers and Kobe Bryant. On Thursday the team announced that Bryant tore his right rotator cuff in the second half of Wednesday’s loss to the Pelicans when he attempted a two-handed dunk.

Bryant, 36, headed home Thursday after an MRI revealed the tear.

Bryant remained in the game after suffering the injury despite struggling to do anything with his right arm. A righty, he managed to hit a 14-foot jumper with his left hand (video above).

He said after the game that it felt as if the shoulder “came out of the joint a little bit.”

“I felt fine when I went up, and didn’t feel too good when I came down,” he said.

The NBA’s highest-paid player at $23.5 million, Bryant is averaging 22.3 points per game, although he missed eight games over the past month to get some rest.

— The Bulls are struggling, but star guard Derrick Rose said it’s not the fault of coach Tom Thibodeau.

Fingers have been pointed at the former Celtics assistant as the team had lost six of its last eight games before Thursday’s 104-81 victory over the Spurs.

“This doesn’t have anything to do with Thibs at all,” Rose said. “The way that we’ve been playing doesn’t have anything to do with Thibs. He’s preparing us right. He’s doing everything and did everything possible to prepare us as a coach. It’s up to the players to give that effort.”

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Read More: Derrick Rose, Gregg Popovich, kobe bryant, Tom Thibodeau

Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Andrew Luck top pick in Pro Bowl draft

01.22.15 at 8:31 am ET
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Welcome to Thursday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

THURSDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NBA: Celtics at Trail Blazers, 10 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Spurs at Bulls, 8 p.m. (TNT)
NBA: Nets at Clippers, 10:30 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: South Florida at Temple, 6:30 p.m. (ESPNews)
College basketball: Notre Dame at Virginia Tech, 7 p.m. (NESN)
College basketball: Ohio State at Northwestern, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Alabama at Arkansas, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Coast Carolina at UNC-Asheville, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: DePaul at Seton Hall, 7 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: George Washington at Fordham, 7 p.m. (NBCSN)
College basketball: Maryland at Indiana, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Arizona at Stanford, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Washington at Colorado, 9:30 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: St. Mary’s at Gonzaga, 11 p.m. (ESPNU)
Tennis: Australian Open, 11 p.m., 3 a.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

Andrew Luck, fresh off his loss to the Patriots in Sunday’s AFC championship game, was selected first overall by Team Carter in Wednesday’s Pro Bowl draft. It was the second straight year Luck was tabbed No. 1 overall for the game.

It’s nice, I guess,” Luck said of his selection. “The reality is that everybody is deserving of it. There’s a bunch of No. 1 picks in there, but it’s nice, I guess.”

Team Irvin has a decidedly Dallas flavor, as alumni captain Michael Irvin loaded up on players from his former club, including quarterback Tony Romo, running back DeMarco Murray, tight end Jason Witten and offensive linemen Tyron Smith, Zack Martin and Travis Frederick.

Romo and fellow Team Irvin QBs Matt Ryan and Matthew Stafford will throw to the likes of Odell Beckham Jr., Golden Tate, Emmanuel Sanders, Randall Cobb and Jimmy Graham. Panthers linebacker (and former Boston College star) Luke Keuchly is one of the anchors of the defense.

Team Carter features QBs Drew Brees and Andy Dalton, running backs Jamaal Charles, Justin Forsett and Alfred Morris, and receivers A.J. Green, T.Y. Hilton, Jordy Nelson and Antonio Brown.

Defensively Team Carter has Texans defensive end J.J. Watt and cornerback Aqib Talib.

— The first meeting between the Bills and Jets next season should be interesting, with former Jets coach Rex Ryan now at the helm of the Bills. The talk already has begun, as a former Jets assistant now working for the Bills spoke candidly about Jets QB Geno Smith’s issues this past season.

David Lee, who was the Jets quarterbacks coach before moving to Buffalo with Ryan, assigned some blame for New York’s issues on the second-year signal caller.

“Rex and I talked about it, he had some inconsistency, and the up-and-down part is what killed us,” Lee said. He would get loose with the football. We played good enough defense over there to win both years, but his play, it’ll cost you, and it cost us.”

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Read More: Andrew Luck, David Lee, Geno Smith, Hope Solo

Report: Peyton Manning plans to return to Broncos, pending physical

01.21.15 at 2:01 pm ET
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According to a report in The Denver Post, Peyton Manning will return to the Broncos next season if he passes his annual physical examination.

Manning, 38, was noncommittal following his team’s loss to the Colts in the AFC divisional round on Jan. 11. Reportedly slowed by a leg injury, Manning struggled as the Broncos suffered the upset. Coach John Fox was fired shortly thereafter, replaced by Gary Kubiak.

Manning missed the entire 2011 season, his last as a member of the Colts, following neck surgery.

The Broncos need to know Manning’s status before March 10, when his $19 million base salary becomes fully guaranteed.

Read More: Peyton Manning,

Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Twitterverse calls out Patriots after latest Deflategate news

01.21.15 at 7:46 am ET
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Welcome to Wednesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

WEDNESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NHL: Bruins at Avalanche, 10 p.m. (NESN)
NHL: Blackhawks at Penguins, 8 p.m. (NBCSN)
NHL: Kings at Sharks, 10:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
College hockey: Merrimack at Boston College, 7 p.m. (WEEI-AM)
NBA: Thunder at Wizards, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Rockets at Warriors, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: UMass at St. Joseph’s, 7 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: North Carolina at Wake Forest, 7 pm. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Houston at Cincinnati, 7 p.m. (ESPNews)
College basketball: Memphis at Tulsa, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Marquette at St. John’s, 7 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Texas Tech at Oklahoma State, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Creighton at Butler, 9 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: SMU at Tulane, 9 p.m. (CBSSN)
Tennis: Australian Open, 9 p.m., 3 a.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

— Following Chris Mortensen’s report that 11 of the 12 game balls used by the Patriots in Sunday’s AFC championship game were underinflated, the Twitterverse weighed in on the latest Deflategate news — and there weren’t many people giving the Pats the benefit of the doubt.

NFL legend Jerry Rice checked in quickly, tweeting: 11 of 12 balls under-inflated can anyone spell cheating!!! #Just Saying.

Bob Kravitz, the Indianapolis columnist who broke the story late Sunday night, called for Bill Belichick to face harsh punishment.

Wrote Kravitz: If morts report is on target, and I’m sure it is, belichick should be suspended from the Super Bowl. My opinion.

Added Kravitz: If bob kraft is a true man of integrity he will take it out of the leagues hands and fire belichick. Not holding my breath.

Colts punter Pat McAfee wondered if his team should step in if the Patriots are suspended. Wrote McAfee: If New England was to be DQ’d.. We’d be their replacements right??… I should probably lay off these strawberry marts.

Joked Panthers kicker Graham Gano: Looks like someone’s gonna be in trouble for not deflating that 12th ball…

However, Gano also appeared to provide a defense for the Patriots, noting in a series of tweets that the weather can affect the balls.

Wrote Gano: When checking the game balls, the refs check the psi indoors. This is frustrating bc the ball loses some pressure in cold weather. During our home playoff game this year I asked the official if he could check the psi outside again bc the ball felt flat and said he could not. I guess you can’t blame the official for that. Rules are rules. Maybe the league will make some changes this offseason. Sucks kicking a flat ball tho.

— The Ravens moved quickly to replace Gary Kubiak, tabbing Marc Trestman as their new offensive coordinator.

Trestman was fired last month after two seasons as head coach of the Bears. Chicago was a disappointing 5-11 this season.

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Read More: Deflategate, Graham Gano, Jerry Rice, Marc Trestman

Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Seahawks apologize after comparing comeback to civil rights struggle

01.20.15 at 8:19 am ET
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Welcome to Tuesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

TUESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NHL: Bruins at Stars, 8:30 p.m. (NESN)
NHL: Penguins at Flyers, 7:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
College basketball: Boston College at Syracuse, 7 p.m. (ESPNU; WEEI-AM)
College basketball: LSU at Florida, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Kansas State at Iowa State, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Dayton at Davidson, 7:30 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Iowa at Wisconsin, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Tennessee at South Carolina, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: San Diego State at Air Force, 9:30 p.m. (CBSSN)
Tennis: Australian Open, 9 p.m., 3 a.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

Seahawks tweet 1-20-15– The Seahawks were understandably emotional after Sunday’s overtime victory over the Packers, a game in which Seattle trailed by 16 points at the half and needed two late fourth-quarter scores, a successful onside kick and an overtime touchdown to advance to the Super Bowl.

However, the team acknowledged it took things too far afterward by referencing quotes from Martin Luther King on the day meant to honor the civil rights legend.

The team’s official Twitter account tweeted a photo of quarterback Russell Wilson on Monday with two King quotes: “We shall overcome,” and, “Take the first step in faith. You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.”

The tweet was eventually deleted, and an apology followed: We apologize for judgment shown in a tweet sent earlier. We did not intend to compare football to the civil rights legacy of Dr. King.

Meanwhile, Wilson drew some criticism for his own tweet, in which he used the famous line from former NC State basketball coach Jim Valvano just months before he died of cancer: Don’t give up, don’t ever give up.

Wilson did not address the critics who assailed him for comparing a football game to battling cancer, but he retweeted a note from the group Strong Against Cancer that read: @DangeRussWilson In football, and in life. Thank you for inspiring the #StrongAgainstCenter team every day, Russell.

— The Cavaliers have had their issues this season, but after they knocked off the Bulls, 108-94, on Monday, it was Chicago’s turn to lament a lack of cohesiveness.

Guard Derrick Rose did not hold back when discussing his team’s performance. The Central Division-leading Bulls have lost six of their last eight games.

“We’ve got to give a better effort,” Rose said. “It seems like we’re not competing and it’s [expletive] irritating.”

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Read More: Derrick Rose, Jon Jones, Martin Luther King, Russell Wilson

Monday’s Morning Mashup: Free agent RHP Max Scherzer reportedly has 7-year deal with Nationals

01.19.15 at 7:55 am ET
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Welcome to Monday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

MONDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NBA: Celtics at Clippers, 3:30 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Pistons at Hawks, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Mavericks at Grizzlies, 5 p.m. (NBA TV)
NBA: Bulls at Cavaliers, 7:30 p.m. (TNT; WEEI-AM)
NBA: Lakers at Suns, 10 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: Pittsburgh at Duke, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Texas at TCU, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Oklahoma at Kansas, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Florida State at Clemson, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Villanova at Georgetown, 9 p.m. (FS1)
NHL: Flyers at Islanders, 1 p.m. (NHL Network)
NHL: Avalanche at Blues, 8 p.m. (NBCSN)
Soccer: Premier League, West Bromwich at Everton, 2:55 p.m. (NBCSN)
Tennis: Australian Open, 9 p.m., 3 a.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

— According to multiple reports, the Nationals have agreed to a seven-year contract with Tigers free agent pitcher Max Scherzer worth more than $180 million.

The Washington Post quoted a course as saying the deal is “complicated” and might not be announced immediately.

The Red Sox, Yankees, Dodgers and Tigers reportedly were not among the finalists in the running to land the 30-year-old, who went 18-5 with a 3.15 ERA last season, one year after winning the AL Cy Young with a 21-3 record and 2.90 ERA. In seven seasons with the Diamondbacks and Tigers, Scherzer is 91-50 with a 3.58 ERA.

Scherzer turned down a reported $160 million offer from the Tigers last spring, with agent Scott Boras eyeing a record deal for the right-hander.

According to ESPN’s Jayson Stark, the Nationals will have to trade starting pitcher Jordan Zimmerman and possibly shortstop Ian Desmond in order to clear up enough money to afford Scherzer.

Peyton Manning, nursing a right thigh injury, told the league he will not play in next weekend’s Pro Bowl in Arizona.

Manning has received 14 Pro Bowl selections, the most every for a quarterback, and he said he takes the recognition “very seriously.” He has never missed a Pro Bowl except when he was preparing for a Super Bowl.

“I’ve believed that, if healthy, it’s a player’s responsibility to play in the game because of what it means to be voted in by your peers and the fans,” Manning said. “I’m disappointed that I’m just not healthy enough this year to be part of it. It’s going to be tough not being down there with the other guys, but it hasn’t had enough time to heal.”

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Read More: Max Scherzer, Peyton Manning, Robert Allenby,

Thinking out loud: URI getting closer, but not quite there

01.17.15 at 9:47 am ET
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Rooke_JohnThinking out loud (while wondering whatever happened to Larry Shyatt) …

URI had its best winning streak in five seasons going into Tuesday night’€™s test against VCU. It shouldn’t be five more seasons before we see another five-game win streak.

A statement game? The real disappointment from Rhody’€™s 65-60 close-call defeat to 17th-ranked Virginia Commonwealth at the Ryan Center was the nine-point lead with nine minutes to play, and URI couldn’t hold it. The top teams figure out a way to finish. That’€™s not to say URI isn’t good — the Rams are getting there, and they will punish someone this season. But they’€™re still learning how to be good, and to compete with (and beat) the best in the Atlantic-10, the next step is to finish what you start.

Very impressed with VCU’s Treveon Graham — who hurt his ankle diving for a loose ball early in the second half and returned to lead his team to a road win. It was a “wow” effort, hitting 4-of-5 from 3-point range after the injury, and the kind of effort the URI Rams will need from someone to take the next step up the ladder.

Twelve second-half turnovers, added to Graham’€™s performance, were too much for URI to overcome. Rhody’€™s close, but the Rams haven’€™t lit the cigar just yet. Thirty-five solid minutes can beat Fordham, or maybe George Mason, but it takes 40 to get over the top.

Now that the college football season is complete, the fall standings for the Learfield Sports’€™ Directors Cup show Providence athletics ranked 20th nationally among 195 Division 1 institutions earning points — and No. 1 in the nation among non-football (FBS/FCS) schools. The men’€™s soccer team (finishing third) and men’€™s and women’€™s cross country performances (finishing 13th) have the Friars sports teams standing tall.

Friar fans, want a real resume-builder? Miami’€™s Hurricanes blew through fourth-ranked Duke — at Cameron Indoor — by 16 points this week, shooting 67 percent in the second half. On the road, and the Blue Devils hadn’t lost at home in almost three years. Whoa.

The Big East, if not the rest of the college basketball world, is getting to know PC’s Kris Dunn. And recognizing him, too. Dunn was named Big East Player of the Week for the first time in his career this past week, averaging 20.5 points, 5.5 rebounds and 7.5 steals per game the previous week. He was also the ECAC Division 1 New England Player of the Week for those efforts, and The Sporting News named Dunn to its Midseason All-American 2nd team.

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Friday’s Morning Mashup: Ray Rice reportedly reaches settlement with Ravens

01.16.15 at 8:12 am ET
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Welcome to Friday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

FRIDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NBA: Bulls at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Warriors at Thunder, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Cavaliers at Clippers, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Iona at Niagara, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: St. Francis at Robert Morris, 9 p.m. (ESPNU
NHL: Capitals at Predators, 8 p.m. (NHL Network)
College hockey: Boston College at Boston University, 7 pm. (NESN; WEEI-AM)
College hockey: UConn at Notre Dame, 7:30 p.m. (NBCSN)

AROUND THE WEB:

Ray Rice, who had been seeking more than $3.5 million for wrongful termination from the Ravens, reportedly reached a settlement with the team Thursday, shortly before his grievance hearing was to be held.

Rice, who had signed a five-year, $35 million contract in July 2012, was seeking back pay of his $3.529 million base salary for the season.

A source told The Baltimore Sun that the two sides reached a compromise that was “fair.”

Rice was released on Sept. 8, after video emerged of him knocking out his then-fiancee in a hotel elevator earlier in the year. The NFL, which had suspended Rice two games, extended his suspension to indefinite when the video become public. However, an arbitrator overturned the suspension and reinstated Rice, who became a free agent.

Rice, 27, apparently has received no interest from other teams since his reinstatement, although he continues to work out in hopes of getting a second chance.

A three-time Pro Bowler, Rice is the second-leading rusher in Ravens history.

— With the retirement of Kyle Orton, the Bills are in the market for a quarterback — either a starter or someone to back up EJ Manuel. In a radio interview Thursday, new coach Rex Ryan creatively implied that he wouldn’t rule out a reunion with Mark Sanchez.

“Well, I’ve still got the tattoo,” he told ESPN’s “Mike & Mike,” referring to the infamous rendering of his wife in a Sanchez No. 6 Jets jersey on his right arm.

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Read More: alex rodriguez, Mark Sanchez, Ray Rice, Rex Ryan

Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Hal Steinbrenner says Yankees ‘not going to be afraid to spend money’

01.15.15 at 8:07 am ET
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Welcome to Thursday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

THURSDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NHL: Rangers at Bruins, 7 p.m. (NESN)
NBA: Thunder at Rockets, 8 p.m. (TNT)
NBA: Cavaliers at Lakers, 10:30 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: Auburn at Florida, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Richmond at George Washington, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Cincinnati at Memphis, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Nebraska at Wisconsin, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Colorado at Arizona, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Belmont at Murray State, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Utah at Arizona State, 10 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: BYU at Pacific, 11 p.m. (ESPNU)

AROUND THE WEB:

— The Yankees have made it clear the team is not willing to spend the kind of money it would take to land top free agent pitcher Max Scherzer this offseason. However, managing general partner Hal Steinbrenner apparently is leaving the door open for a significant upgrade of some kind.

“Look, it’s not over ’til it’s over,” Steinbrenner said Wednesday from the owners meetings in Arizona. “We still have a full month before spring training. We’re always going to continue to improve. I’m not putting a cap on it. We’ve certainly filled some holes that we had. We’ll keep going for the next few weeks.”

Added Steinbrenner: “We’€™re still the New York Yankees, all you guys know that. We know what the fans expect. We know what the town expects. We’€™re not going to be afraid to spend money.”

The Yankees are expected to surpass the $200 million payroll mark this year, although Steinbrenner noted a team does not have to spend that much to win.

“There’s just a certain amount I’m going to go,” Steinbrenner said. “You all know my opinions about payroll, where you should be and where you really don’t need to be to win championships.”

Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch‘s media sessions — in which he repeats a version of the same answer to every question — have become painful to watch, and many fans want them to end.

One fan started an online petition asking the NFL to change its media policy and stop “bullying” Lynch by fining him (a total of $100,000 this season) for failing to cooperate, noting that talking to the media “should be a personal choice.”

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Read More: Hal Steinbrenner, Marshawn Lynch,