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Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Giants’ Antrel Rolle lashes out at New York fans

12.01.10 at 7:43 am ET
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Welcome to Wednesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

NHL: Bruins at Flyers, 7 p.m. (NESN)
NBA: Trail Blazers at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. (CSNEE; WEEI)


‘™¦ Giants safety Antrel Rolle is not happy with New York fans who booed the team before its comeback Sunday against the Jaguars. Rolle, who signed with the Giants in the offseason after five years with the Cardinals, didn’t like the reaction from the home crowd when New York fell behind 17-6 in the first half. The Giants came back to win the game 24-20 and improve to 7-4.

“You don’t boo your team,” Rolle said. “I don’t care what happens. You don’t boo your team.”

Added Rolle: “You know, we’re 7-4. We’re not 2-10, you know? There’s going to be ups and downs during the season. [Not] under any circumstances should you boo your team. That’s just the reality of it.”

‘™¦ Former Patriot Matt Cassel is having a stellar season in Kansas City after struggling last season. Clark Judge at looks at Cassel’s resurgence and the Chiefs’ decision to acquire him.

‘™¦ The Nets and Knicks have been at odds since the Nets started moving ahead with their plans to relocate to Brooklyn. The Knicks did not take well to a billboard ad the Nets displayed near Madison Square Garden, responding with an enormous Amar’e Stoudemire ad in Brooklyn. More recently, the Knicks produced an ad that taunted the Nets, saying: “Hey Nets, You can walk like us, you can talk like us, but you ain’t never gonna be like us.” First-year Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov offered his rebuttal before the teams met Tuesday night. “I don’t think we want to be like the Knicks,” he said of the team that hasn’t won an NBA title since 1973 or a division title since 1994. “I think we’d more like to resemble the Lakers.”

‘™¦ Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki signed a 10-year contract extension worth almost $160 million. At Yahoo! Sports, Jeff Passan explains why it’s a big mistake for the Rockies to spend so much of their budget on one player, even one as valuable as Tulowitzki.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Dec. 1, 1961, which Red Sox pitcher ‘€” he started the season in the minors but still managed to make the American League All-Star team ‘€” was named AL Rookie of the Year?

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Read More: Antrel Rolle, Matt Cassel, Mikhail Prokhorov, Troy Tulowitzki

Yankees await counter offer from Derek Jeter

11.30.10 at 9:21 pm ET
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According to The Associated Press, Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter and his agent, Casey Close, met on Tuesday, with the Yankees waiting on a formal counter-offer to their initial three-year, $45 million proposal. The report stated that Close has mentioned a four- or five-year deal that averages approximately $23 million per year, but that he has only used those numbers loosely, and that Jeter and his representative have yet to give New York a formal proposal. added that Yankees representatives met in Tampa with Jeter and Close, suggesting that such a meeting likely included co-owner Hal Steinbrenner and GM Brian Cashman.

Read More: Derek Jeter, Rumor Mill, Yankees,

Report: Dodgers contact Jason Varitek

11.30.10 at 5:10 pm ET
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According to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, the Dodgers have contacted a gaggle of free agent catchers, including Jason Varitek. Among the the catchers the team has expressed interest in are Rod Barajas, A.J. Pierzynski, and Miguel Olivo.

The Dodgers are trying to figure out a course of action regarding Russell Martin, who is recovering from a labral tear in his right hip that limited him to 97 games last season. The team is not expected to tender Martin a contract before Dec. 2.

Varitek, 38, is coming off a four-year, $40 million contract signed in free agency following the 2004 season. In 1478 games, all with the Red Sox, Varitek has hit .258/.343/.436 with 182 homers and 721 RBI.

Read More: jason varitek, Rumor Mill,

Raiders to start Jason Campbell Sunday against Chargers

11.30.10 at 3:19 pm ET
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The Raiders will start quarterback Jason Campbell against the Chargers Sunday due to a potential season-ending injury to Bruce Gradkowski, according to Jason La Canfora of Campbell has started seven games this season after being benched twice in favor of Gradkowski.

According to the Oakland Tribune Tuesday, Gradkowski suffered a third-degree separation of his throwing shoulder Sunday in the Raiders 33-17 loss. He sustained  the same injury in Week 3 after getting hit by Shaun Phillips of the Cardinals. The injury forced Gradkowski to miss the next four games.

Campbell has thrown for 1,322 yards and seven touchdowns this season, while turning the ball over 16 times. He did lead the Raiders to a 35-27 win over the Chargers in Week 5 when he threw for 159 yards and a touchdown.

Read More: Bruce Gradkowski, Jason Campbell, Rumor Mill,

Cortland Finnegan upset with punishments NFL doled out

11.30.10 at 3:19 pm ET
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Titans cornerback Cortland Finnegan said Monday that if he had thrown a punch at Texans wideout Andre Johnson he would have been suspended, according to a USA Today report. Both players received $25,000 dollar fines Monday, after a brawl in the Titans-Texans game that involved Johnson landing punches on Finnegan after the whistle.

“As a respect issue, when your helmet comes off, the play is over,” Finnegan told Nashville’s 104.5 FM. “Did I want it to escalate into that? Absolutely not. At a point he snapped and he started throwing blows. The only thing that upsets me ‘€¦ is if you reverse that and it’s me I have a game suspension.”

Finnegan has been fined three times this season by the NFL and labeled by other players as “dirty.”

“He got my helmet off and I got his. To me, that is the end of the play,” Finnegan said. “This is the NFL, not the NHL, and it is a higher standard. That’s the NHL, they fight and they get penalties for that. In the NFL that is unheard of. You do that and you are suspended, hands down. That is what I have been taught, that is what everyone knows.”

The cornerback said that he will appeal the fine. The two teams play again on Dec. 19 when the Texans travel to Tennessee.

Read More: Andre Johnson, Cortland Finnegan, Rumor Mill,

Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger is wearing boot but should play Sunday

11.30.10 at 3:19 pm ET
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Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is wearing a boot after re-injuring his foot Sunday in the team’s 19-16 win over the Bills. Coach Mike Tomlin said that Roethlisberger may miss practice Wednesday but is likely to play on Sunday, when the Steelers play the Ravens in an NFL North first place showdown.

Roethlisberger stayed in the game after sustaining the injury and had an 18-yard run later in the game. He missed the team’s week 4 loss to the Ravens, when Joe Flacco led a last-minute drive to lead Baltimore to a 17-14 win.

Read More: Ben Roethlisberger, Joe Flacco, Rumor Mill,

Report: Frank Gore out for the season

11.30.10 at 3:18 pm ET
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According to Mike Florio of ProFootball Talk, 49ers running back Frank Gore will miss the rest of the season after he suffered a hip injury Monday night against the Cardinals. Gore injured his right hip in the first quarter and went to the locker room with trainers before returning for a short period. He will be placed on the injured reserve later this week.

He finished the game with five carries and 52 yards in the 49ers 27-6 win. Gore has accounted for 40 percent of the team’s offense with 1,305 yards and five touchdowns.

Former Eagle Brian Westbrook filled in for Gore, rushing for 136 yards and a touchdown. Westbrook has just 28 carriers on the season, all but five coming last night against the Cardinals.

Read More: Brian Westbrook, Frank Gore, Rumor Mill,

Yankees GM to rappel as elf

11.30.10 at 2:45 pm ET
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No, the title of this blog post is not a joke. Yankees general manager Brian Cashman is not only going to dress up as one of Santa’s little helpers, but also rappel down the side of a building.

Cashman agreed to descend from the Landmark Building in Stamford, Conn., this Friday and Sunday as part of the Stamford’s Heights and Lights event. The Yankees GM will be in full elf costume, according to Stamford Downtown president Sandy Goldstein, when he jumps off and then rappels down the 350-foot building.

Earlier in the week, Goldstein asked the Yankees GM if he was scared and Cashman replied “Sandy, nothing is scarier than general managing the Yankees.”

Read More: brian cashman, Rumor Mill,

Report: NASCAR driver Bobby Hamilton Jr. pulled gun

11.30.10 at 12:59 pm ET
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According to a local Tennessee television station, Bobby Hamilton Jr. is accused of pulling a gun on racers at his Highland Rim Speedway in Greenbrier. The NASCAR driver was allegedly carrying the weapon and displayed it in a dispute with some racers at his track Saturday night. Anthony Walker, a super stock racer, and crew member Scott Thompson argued with Hamilton after they were disqualified for the car not being the proper weight. The pair told the WSMV station that they wanted a refund of their entry fee and Hamilton Jr. pulled the weapon.

“He cocked it back and started waving it around saying, ‘I’ll pop it, I’ll pop it,'” Thompson told the station. “I’ve never had a gun pointed at me and I definitely didn’t like it.”

Hamilton has a different version of events. He said he was going to his truck to get the refund money when he, “was almost surrounded” and felt threatened. He claims he saw the men reach into their pockets, and according to the story, that he saw they had pocket knives. “I kept watching their hands, watching their gestures,” Hamilton said. “They just kept getting more frustrated, about the time their hands go in their pockets, about the time they were coming out, they charged, and that’s when I said, ‘not today, not today.'”

Hamilton told the station that he lifted his shirt to show the men his gun, which contradicts the police report in which Hamilton claimed to have taken it out of his pocket. “I’m going to protect my business,” Hamilton said. “And I’m going to protect my life.”

Millersville Police Chief Ronnie Williams said Hamilton does have a carry permit and that no charges were filed because it’s a “he-said, she-said” situation.

Read More: Bobby Hamilton Jr., NASCAR, Rumor Mill,

Titans QB Kerry Collins could start Sunday

11.30.10 at 12:57 pm ET
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Titans coach Jeff Fisher has not ruled out Kerry Collins as the starter for Sunday’s game against the Jaguars. Collins has missed two games because of a strained calf muscle, but was healthy enough to back up rookie Rusty Smith against the Texans this past Sunday.

Collins’ status is day-to-day and if he isn’t ready to go, Smith will again get the start. Smith went 17-for-31 with three interceptions and a quarterback rating of 26.7 in his first NFL start. After starting the season at 5-2, the Titans have lost their last four games in a row.

Read More: Jeff Fisher, Kerry Collins, Rumor Mill, Rusty Smith