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Herschel Walker wants to make a comeback in the NFL

01.25.11 at 7:49 am ET
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Speaking in a conference call leading up to his upcoming mixed martial artist match, 48-year-old Herschel Walker suggested that he would want to make a comeback to the National Football League.

“I’ve told everyone that at 50 I might try football again to show people I can do that,” said Walker, who identified Minnesota and Atlanta has his two preferred landing spots. “I want to be the George Foreman of football, come back and do that one more time.”

Walker, who will be making his second MMA appearance, Saturday night, suggested he is in better condition now than during his NFL playing days, which ended in 1997.

“I’m a much better-conditioned athlete now than when I was playing football,” Walker said. “I’m 48 and in better shape now than I was when I was in my early 20s, playing football.”

Read More: Rumor Mill,

Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Jets’ Antonio Cromartie turns anger toward union, owners

01.25.11 at 7:46 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.

WHAT’S HAPPENING LOCALLY TUESDAY:
NBA: Cavaliers at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE; WEEI)

AROUND THE WEB:

‘™¦ Jets cornerback Antonio Cromartie, last heard around these parts blasting Tom Brady in the press and then helping his team knock off the Patriots in the playoffs, has a new target. While cleaning out his locker Monday following the loss to the Steelers a day earlier, the free agent expressed anger over the looming lockout.

“To tell you the truth, they need to get their damn minds together … and just get this [expletive] done, and stop bitching about money,” he said of discussions between the union and owners. “Money, money ain’t nothing. … Money can be something that can be here and gone.”

Added Cromartie: “You’ve got our head union reps acting like an a–hole, and they got their guys acting like a–holes. They just need to get their [expletive] together and get it done.”

Cromartie also said he wants to be back with the Jets next season. “I love playing for the guys in this locker room, I love playing for this coaching staff, I love playing for this whole organization,” he said. “They let you be a man here. It’s definitely exciting, and there’s something special here.”

‘™¦ The NBA’s crackdown on unsportsmanlike behavior has resulted in 34 percent more technical fouls for that reason this season. In The Los Angeles Times, Mike Bresnahan examines the impact ‘€” most players don’t like it ‘€” and notes that rescinded technicals have increased more than 300 percent from last season.

‘™¦ ThePostGame blog delves into the interesting story of Voros McCracken, a sabermetrician who developed a revolutionary theory in 1999 that pitchers control only strikeouts, walks and home runs, while their advantage almost entirely disappeared on every other ball put in play. His defense-independent pitching statistics (DIPS) became widely popular and he was hired by the Red Sox, only to be let go in 2005 and struggle to find work from then on.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Jan. 25, 1972, which Bruin was named MVP of the NHL All-Star Game?

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Read More: Antonio Cromartie, Voros McCracken,

UPDATE: Bears QB Jay Cutler has sprained MCL

01.24.11 at 12:04 pm ET
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In the aftermath of reports (including this one from the Chicago Sun-Times) that Bears quarterback Jay Cutler tore the medial collateral ligament in his left knee during Sunday’€™s loss to the Packers, Bears coach Lovie Smith clarified that Cutler suffered a sprained MCL.

Cutler left the game early and has been widely criticized for a lack of toughness since the NFC championship game ended, but Smith defended his quarterback, and said that the injury was severe enough that his availability for the Super Bowl would have been in question. Smith told reporters that Cutler “showed a lot of toughness” in trying to play through the injury and wanted to return to the game, but that the medical and coaching staff decided that he could not do so.

He added that he was surprised by the intensity of reaction by other NFL players to the injury, suggesting that those who are on and around the Bears do not question the quarterback’s toughness.

The Sun-Times report indicated the team is determining the grade of the MCL tear, which helps determine if the injury can heal naturally or if it would require surgery.

For more, click here.

Read More: Jay Cutler, Rumor Mill,

Bobby Cox, Joe Torre, Lou Piniella honored by baseball writers

01.24.11 at 11:40 am ET
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Bobby Cox, Joe Torre and Lou Piniella, all of whom retired from managing this year, were honored by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America on Saturday for their combined 81 years of managerial experience.

Cox finished fourth in career regular-season wins with 2,504, while Torre finished fifth with 2,326 and Piniella 14th with 1,835.

Torre and Piniella both thanked late Yankees owner George Steinbrenner ‘€” Torre for letting him manage New York for 12 years and Piniella for giving him his start as a manager. Cox, meanwhile, singled out former Braves pitchers Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and John Smoltz ‘for allowing me to keep working.’

Read More: Bobby Cox, Joe Torre, Lou Piniella, Rumor Mill

Sidney Crosby will miss All-Star Game

01.24.11 at 11:37 am ET
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Penguins star Sidney Crosby, who is still recovering from a concussion, will not attend the NHL All-Star Game, the Penguins announced Monday.

Pittsburgh general manager Ray Shero said Crosby is making progress, but that he is not yet symptom-free. He has still not been cleared to return to physical activity.

Read More: Rumor Mill, Sidney Crosby,

Evgeni Nabokov hangs up on Islanders GM Garth Snow

01.24.11 at 10:52 am ET
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Shortly after claiming Evgeni Nabokov off waivers, Islanders general manager Garth Snow called the veteran goaltender to welcome him to the organization. Instead, Nabokov hung up immediately after Snow identified himself.

Nabokov’s agent, Don Meehan, later told Snow it was all a misunderstanding and that Nabokov did not realize who he was talking to, mistakenly thinking it was just another reporter calling.

“I just gave him the benefit of the doubt and I said to Donnie, ‘Do me a favor. When he gets done with all his phone calls, give him my number and get back to me,’ ” Snow told The Associated Press.

Snow and Nabokov finally talked Sunday, but it remains uncertain if Nabokov will join the Islanders. Nabokov was hoping to join the Stanley Cup-contending Red Wings, but was instead claimed by the Islanders, who are 18 points out of the eighth playoff spot in the East.

Read More: Evgeni Nabokov, Garth Snow, Rumor Mill,

Report: Carson Palmer wants trade from Bengals

01.24.11 at 7:40 am ET
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Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer plans to ask the team for a trade and will consider retiring if Cincinnati does not accommodate him, according to an ESPN report.

Palmer, who was drafted No. 1 overall in 2003 and has only played for the Bengals, is under contract through 2014. The Bengals went 4-12 this season.

Read More: Carson Palmer, Rumor Mill,

Monday’s Morning Mashup: Jets fans hold rally at Rex Ryan’s house

01.24.11 at 7:32 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.

WHAT’S HAPPENING LOCALLY MONDAY:
NHL: Bruins at Kings 10:30 p.m. (NESN)

AROUND THE WEB:

‘™¦ Jets coach Rex Ryan got a sendoff from fans in the town where he lives before the Jets lost Sunday’s AFC championship game to the Steelers. Fans were invited to show up outside his New Jersey house Saturday morning for an early morning pep rally. Invitations were sent by the mayor of Summit, N.J., as well as the local high school football coach. The event was approved by Ryan’s wife, Michelle, who made an appearance.

Meanwhile, after Sunday’s game, Ryan told the media he plans to be back next year, and people that want to criticize his team can “go ahead, but you’ve really got no right.”

‘™¦ Jay Cutler‘s toughness has been questioned after the Bears quarterback left Sunday’s NFL championship game against the Packers with a knee injury. In the Chicago Sun-Times, Rick Telander defenders Cutler, writing that he has many flaws, but lack of toughness isn’t one of them.

‘™¦ The Lakers are showing signs of trouble during the regular season, but that’s something they’ve done before, only to regroup in time for the playoffs. In The Los Angeles Times, Mark Heisler explains why this year’s edition of the Lakers might not be able to turn things around in time.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Jan. 24, 1971, the Bruins beat the Canadiens 4-2 at Boston Garden after a pregame ceremony honoring which active player?

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Read More: Ben Roethlisberger, Eric Valentin, Jay Cutler, Rex Ryan

Bears QB Jay Cutler questioned for toughness after leaving with injury

01.24.11 at 6:34 am ET
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Bears quarterback Jay Cutler left Sunday’s NFC championship game against the Packers in the first half with a left knee injury. He played the first series of the third quarter before leaving the game for good. Backup Todd Collins (from Walpole) came on in relief but was ineffective and was replaced by Caleb Hanie. The Bears lost the game, 21-14. Afterward, Cutler was being criticized for an apparent lack of toughness.

Tweeted NFL analyst Deion Sanders: Folks i never question a players injury but i do question a players heart.

Cardinals defensive lineman Darnell Dockett tweeted: If I’m on chicago team jay cutler has to wait till me and the team shower get dressed and leave before he comes in the locker room!

Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher defended his teammate. “Nothing like jealous people at home watching,” he said. “Players around the league you said, right? Yeah, I love jealous people when they are watching our game on TV while their season is over.”

Added Urlacher: “Jay was hurt. I don’t question his toughness, he’s tough as hell. He’s one of the toughest players on our football team. He doesn’t complain when he gets hit. He goes out there and plays every Sunday, he practices every single day, so, no, we don’t question his toughness.”

Read More: Jay Cutler, Rumor Mill,

Fitness legend Jack LaLanne dead at 96

01.24.11 at 6:27 am ET
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Fitness guru Jack LaLanne died Sunday of respiratory failure due to pneumonia Sunday afternoon at his home in central California, his longtime agent said.

“I have not only lost my husband and a great American icon, but the best friend and most loving partner anyone could ever hope for,” Elaine LaLanne, LaLanne’s wife of 51 years and a frequent partner in his television appearances, said in a written statement.

LaLanne had a television show from the 1950s to the 1970s in which he demonstrated exercises using no special equipment. He continued to be an inspiration to Americans until his death. He founded a chain of fitness studios and late in his life he promoted Jack LaLanne’s Power Juicer.

Read More: Jack LaLanne, Rumor Mill,