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Teenage transgender wrestling champion Mack Beggs is a living embodiment of courage

03.02.17 at 3:10 pm ET
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The word “courageous” gets tossed around carelessly these days. But in a sports context, it’s difficult to think of somebody who fits the word better than Mack Beggs, the 17-year-old transgender Texas state girls’ wrestling champion.

Beggs, who identifies as male, wasn’t permitted to wrestle boys this year. The University Interscholastic League, which oversees athletics in Texas public schools, says students’ genders must be based off their birth certificates. So Beggs was forced to wrestle girls. He went 56-0 this season and knocked off Chelsea Sanchez for the 110-pound weight class title last weekend. When the Euless Trinity junior’s hand was raised in victory, he was greeted with an impassioned mix of boos and cheers.

“I just heard the boos, but I heard more cheering,” Beggs told ESPN Wednesday. “Honestly, I was like, ‘You know what? Boo all you want, because you’re just hating. You hating ain’t going to get me and you nowhere, and I’m just going to keep on doing what I’ve got to do.’

Many of Beggs’ detractors, including WEEI’s Gerry Callahan, say he shouldn’t have been allowed to compete at all.

“Sometimes you’re not allowed to do what you want to do,” Callahan told me on the radio this week. “It’s totally unfair to ask a boy to make a move –– a lot moves go right to the crotch. You want a boy doing that to a girl?”

It wasn’t Beggs’ choice to wrestle in the girls’ division. His attorney says he wanted to face boys, but was rebuffed. At that moment, he was faced with a choice: stop wrestling because of who he is, or keep pressing forward. Beggs chose the latter, and says he was faced with taunts throughout the entirety of the season. He was called “”f—-t” and “it,” with some opponents declining to step onto the mat with him. One of his friends’ fathers even sued him, saying he will bring “imminent threat of bodily harm” to the girls he’s competing against.

That’s a lot of trouble to go through just to wrestle. People who suggest Beggs, or other student-athletes in his position, change their gender identities to gain a competitive advantage are out of their minds. Beggs just wants to embrace who he is.

“You just have to stay strong,” he said. “There’s going to be sucky days. There is going to be sucky days, believe me. … There’s always going to be another day. There’s always going to be another week. You’ve just got to keep on rolling.”

It’s understandable why some parents are apprehensive about their daughters facing Beggs, who’s been taking testosterone injections in order to expedite his transition from female-to-male. But the fault here lies with the UIL, which prohibits Beggs from competing against other males. Irate parents should take their complaints to the state. It’s not Beggs’ responsibility to worry about the comfort of his opponents. He must do what’s best for him.

Transgender kids are some of the most vulnerable people in the U.S. More than 80 percent of transgender students say they feel threatened at school, and 41 percent of transgender people say they’ve tried to commit suicide at least once in their lives. The suicide attempt rate of the overall U.S. population is 4.6 percent.

In his interview with ESPN, Beggs said he thought about taking his own life when he was in seventh grade. By refusing to cower to social pressure, he may now be a role model to other transgender kids who are entertaining those same dark thoughts. Thanks to the Trump administration’s decision to overturn federal protections for transgender students, a simple act like going to the bathroom could now be a traumatizing experience for some. Imagine living in a world where you’re perceived as such an outcast, that performing even a basic bodily function could invite scorn and ridicule. It’s important for the marginalized to see others who stand up against adversity, and raise their hands high –– just like Beggs.

Today, only 16 states and the District of Columbia permit transgender student-athletes to compete based on their gender identity sans medical intervention. Seven states require an amended birth certificate or proof of medical action, such as surgery or hormones. In Texas, birth certificates can only be changed with a court order. It’s an expensive and arduous process, meant to make it difficult for transgender people to be who they are.

After going through this season, perhaps Beggs will serve as a trailblazer when it comes to transgender rights in the athletic community. It’s his most consequential fight yet.

Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Transgender wrestler Mack Beggs speaks out after criticism

03.02.17 at 9:36 am ET
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Good morning! Here is your Thursday Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories and scores from our news wire.

THURSDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
MLB:
Exhibition: Boston at Baltimore, 1 p.m. (WEEI-AM 850)
MLB:
Exhibition: Miami vs. Houston, 1 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB:
Exhibition: LA Dodgers vs. San Francisco, 8 p.m. (MLB Network)
NBA: Cleveland at Boston, 8 p.m. (CSN, ESPN)
NBA: Houston at LA Clippers, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
NHL: Pittsburgh at Chicago, 8 p.m. (NBCSN)
College basketball: Arkansas at Florida, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Michigan at Northwestern, 7 p.m. (Big Ten Network)
College basketball: UConn at East Carolina, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: URI at Saint Joseph’s, 7 p.m. (NESN Plus)
College basketball: BC at Notre Dame, 8 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-AM 850)
College basketball: VCU at Dayton, 8 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Kansas State at TCU, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Louisville at Wake Forest, 9 p.m. (NESN Plus)
College basketball: Marquette at Xavier, 9 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Michigan State at Illinois, 9 p.m. (Big Ten Network)
College basketball: Texas at Texas Tech, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Air Force at San Diego State, 10 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Utah State at UNLV, 11 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Washington at UCLA, 11 p.m. (FS1)
Women’s college basketball: Clemson vs. Virginia Tech, 1 p.m. (NESN Plus)
Women’s college basketball: BC vs. Georgia Tech, 3:30 p.m. (NESN Plus)
Women’s college basketball: North Carolina vs. Pittsburgh, 6:30 p.m. (NESN)

AROUND THE WEB:

— Mack Beggs, the transgender wrestler who won the Texas state girls’ wrestling title last week, opened up in an interview with Outside the Lines on Wednesday, saying he needs to “stay strong” against the scrutiny he has received for wrestling against girls.

The 17 year-old Beggs identifies as male and said he was undeterred by the boos from the crowds during matches on his way to winning the championship.

“I just heard the boos, but I heard more cheering,” Beggs said. “Honestly, I was like, ‘You know what? Boo all you want, because you’re just hating. You hating ain’t going to get me and you nowhere, and I’m just going to keep on doing what I’ve got to do.’

“That’s why I’ve always had that mentality,” he went on. “If you’re going to be negative, you know, whatever, that’s not going to faze me.”

Beggs said he has been called “f—-t” and “it” and said his taking testosterone is the reason for the boos and criticism.

“I mean, I’ve been winning before when I didn’t have testosterone, but now that, you know, I’m actually winning winning, people want to go crazy,” Beggs said. He said he believes some people “just automatically want to call me a cheater.”

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Ex-NBA star Amar’e Stoudemire: I would ‘shower across the street’ to avoid gay teammate

03.01.17 at 4:09 pm ET
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Amar'e Stoudemire averaged 18.9 points per game during his NBA career. (Richard Mackson/USA TODAY Sports)

Amar’e Stoudemire averaged 18.9 points per game during his NBA career. (Richard Mackson/USA TODAY Sports)

When former NBA center Jason Collins came out of the closet four years ago, he appeared to receive widespread support around the league. Several stars, including LeBron James and Kobe Bryant, tweeted out their admiration for him. But it’s important to remember that despite public displays of solidarity, homophobia still persists in locker rooms across the country. Six-time NBA All-Star Amar’e Stoudemire demonstrated that this week when he was asked about the prospect of having a gay teammate.

In an interview with the Israel-based Walla! Sports, Stoudemire said he wouldn’t feel comfortable sharing a post-game shower with a gay person.

“I’m going to shower across the street. Make sure my change of clothes are around the corner. And I’m going to drive — take a different route to the gym,” he said.

The former Suns and Knicks forward didn’t back off when he was asked whether he was kidding.

“There’s always a truth within a joke,” Stoudemire said.

After 15 seasons in the NBA, Stoudemire is currently playing for Hapoel Jerusalem of Israel’s Premier League. He was fined $50,000 in 2012 for tweeting a gay slur during the offseason, which he apologized for.

“I am a huge supporter of civil rights for all people,” he said, via ESPN. “I am disappointed in myself for my statement to a fan. I should have known better and there is no excuse.”

But after listening to Stoudemire’s most recent comments, it’s apparent his apology was little more than lip service. Considering no active player in the four major professional sports leagues has come out since Collins and former NFL prospect Michael Sam in 2013, it’s safe to surmise Stoudemire probably isn’t alone, either. On a corporate level, the sports world is more tolerant than ever before. But Stoudemire’s statement is a reminder there’s still a lot of work to be done.

Read More: Amar'e Stoudemire,

Glen ‘Big Baby’ Davis is still ripping Doc Rivers

03.01.17 at 2:40 pm ET
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Glen Davis played under Doc Rivers with the Celtics from 2007-2011. (Gary A. Vasquez/USA TODAY Sports)

Glen Davis played under Doc Rivers with the Celtics from 2007-2011. (Gary A. Vasquez/USA TODAY Sports)

Glen “Big Baby” Davis continues to attack his former coach, Doc Rivers.

In an interview on NBA Insider Chris Broussard’s podcast two weeks ago, Davis called Rivers “overrated” and said he was “lucky as hell” to win a championship with the Celtics in 2008. As a guest on FS1’s “Undisputed” Wednesday,” the ex-LSU star took his criticisms of Rivers one step further.

“I think that he’s so caught up in being the president that hey, you need to be the coach. Danny Ainge was the president, and he got everything done the way it was supposed to be done,” Davis said. “He didn’t have to worry about that. Coach the game like you know how to coach. You’re an X’s and O’s coach. Get a great defensive minded coach like [Tom] Thibodeau once again.”

It’s been an up-and-down run for Rivers with the Clippers, who acquired him from the Celtics for a first-round pick in 2013. Though the Clippers have won more than 50 games in each of Rivers’ three seasons, they’ve failed to advance past the conference semifinals. Perhaps their biggest playoff disappointment came in 2015, when they blew a 3-1 lead against the Rockets. Davis says that series solidified his feelings about Rivers being overmatched in his role as Clippers coach and president of basketball operations.

“So I’ve seen the process. I know. I’ve been in the locker room when it was 3-1 against Houston and we lost. So, I see it. It’s just the fact, does he see it? Does he see it?,” he asked.

Davis’ apparent animosity towards Rivers dates back to his ankle injury in 2015, which he says was misdiagnosed. The 6-foot-9 forward hasn’t played in the NBA since.

“When you win a championship with somebody, you don’t treat nobody like that,” Davis said on Broussard’s podcast last month. “No matter if it’s a business or not, because it’s bigger than basketball between us, Doc. I’ve never left you at the altar. I’ve never left you at the altar. I never left. You got get Spencer Hawes, he does nothing, you gotta trade him. You got me on the bench, knowing that I could play, but you still go play Spencer Hawes … you’re just trying to cover your own butt because Spencer’s not panning out the way you want him to pan out, and I just don’t like that.”

Read More: doc rivers, Glen Davis,

Katie Nolan is overrated

03.01.17 at 12:37 pm ET
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Katie Nolan is reportedly on the cusp of receiving a major push at FS1. (Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports)

Katie Nolan is reportedly being wooed by ESPN. (Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports)

Katie Nolan is a superstar within the echo chamber of Twitter. But outside the cozy confines of social media, she’s a relative non-factor.

With 18 months left on her exclusive deal with Fox Sports, Nolan is reportedly being groomed for a larger role at the network. An unnamed FS1 executive told Sporting News last week the Framingham native’s TV exposure is going to increase “five-fold” following the cancellation of “Garbage Time,” her irreverent and lowly rated late-night talk show. But FS1 may have some competition for Nolan going forward. According to Sporting News’ Michael McCarthy, ESPN is wooing her for a role at the WorldWide Leader, perhaps to take part in a new national morning program with Mike Greenberg. The “Mike and Mike” co-host inked a new mega-contract with ESPN last year that will reportedly pay him $6.5 million annually.

Nolan, 30, first rose to prominence three years ago when she released an introspective commentary about the NFL’s gross mishandling of the Ray Rice domestic violence case. In it, she recounts her decision to pull back from asking Roger Goodell about the leniency of Rice’s original two-game suspension at a Fox Sports event, out of fear it would anger her superiors. Nolan chides herself for staying silent, and vows to be a leading opinionated female sports voice.

“It’s time for women to have a seat at the big boy table,” she says. “And not where their presence is a gimmick or a concept. Just a person who happens to have breasts offering their opinion on the sports they love and the topics they know. Because the truth is, the NFL will never respect women and their opinions as long as the media it answers to doesn’t. I’m ready when you are, Fox.”

Roughly six months after the Rice video, which has been viewed nearly 388,000 times on YouTube, Nolan launched “Garbage Time” in March 2015. But outside of a blistering rant about the media’s coverage of Greg Hardy’s return to the NFL, she failed to make noise on her weekly show. Last spring, SportsTVRatings calculated that “First Take,” the often mocked shout fest on ESPN, was nearly 14 times more popular than “Garbage Time.” Nolan averaged roughly 32,666 viewers per episode for her first three shows this year, drawing about one-third of the audience that Skip Bayless’ Undisputed attracted last week –– during the doldrums of the sports calendar. (More recent “Garbage Time” viewership data isn’t available.)

Nolan’s abysmal ratings may be more of a commentary on FS1 than her. The network also cancelled “Fox Sports Live” last week, after the highlight-centric show with Canadian anchors Jay Onrait and Dan O’Toole couldn’t attract an audience in four years. FS1’s lack of live game coverage at night gives it a dramatic disadvantage against ESPN, which owns rights agreements with almost every major sports league. With the absence of a strong lead-in, it’s difficult for FS1 studio shows to gain traction. This was evident last fall, when the station fell from first to 60th among cable networks in primetime ratings after the World Series had started airing exclusively on Fox.

It’s apparent that Nolan is talented and deserves the opportunity to have a bigger platform. Fox Sports missed a chance to do that at the Super Bowl, when it relegated her to social media segments during pregame coverage.

But make no mistake: Nolan is far from a TV star. As she demonstrated with her viral videos about Rice and Hardy, it’s possible to gain traction with a limited platform. As long as the content is good, people will generally find it. But it’s been more than one year since Nolan has factored into the news cycle. Perhaps her most recent notable bit was a crowdfunding effort last summer to buy David Ortiz a bench to put in Central Park –– a lame gimmick that doesn’t seem befitting for somebody who says she wants be a leading female sports voice.

It’s probably tempting for ESPN to throw millions at Nolan and thrust her into a leading role. She’s shown flashes of brilliance, willing to buck conventional wisdom and condemn the usually staid sports media industry. But right now, outside of the insulated world of social media, Nolan is a fringe player. She’s more notable in theory than reality.

Read More: Katie Nolan,

Draymond Green continues his feud with Paul Pierce by taking a shot at his Celtics career

03.01.17 at 9:43 am ET
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Paul Pierce is in a war of words with Draymond Green. (Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports)

Paul Pierce is in a war of words with Draymond Green. (Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports)

After withstanding a Twitter beatdown from Paul Pierce last week, Warriors forward Draymond Green has fired back with vengeance.

The latest chapter in the Pierce-Green feud happened Tuesday, when Green took a shot at Pierce’s career with the Celtics on his podcast.

“People tend to forget he was struggling to to get to the playoffs … Then all of a sudden Ray Allen and KG showed up. Let’s not forget that,” he said. “Just because you were scoring points don’t mean you were carrying the team. If you couldn’t get anywhere and you couldn’t do nothing, where were you carrying them to? … Pierce had had an amazing career. He was a beast. But how far was he carrying those teams? If you weren’t carrying them that far, I guess we’re in the same boat.”

During the Warriors-Clippers contest last Thursday, Green told Pierce, who’s in his final season, he’s not deserving of a farewell tour. That prompted Pierce to remind Green about the Warriors’ collapse against the Cavaliers in the NBA Finals last season.

While Green has a point about Pierce needing Kevin Garnett and Allen to reach the promised land, that’s hardly a negative commentary on the Truth. It takes more than one star to achieve success. Just ask Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook, who’s averaging a triple-double this season and will be lucky to win a first-round series.

The Clippers and Warriors don’t face each other again this season, so if Pierce and Green are going to continue their beef, it will likely have to wait until the playoffs.

Read More: Draymond Green, Paul Pierce,

Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Florida State player sort of gets revenge on Grayson Allen; Budapest pulls out of 2024 Olympic bid

03.01.17 at 9:19 am ET
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Good morning! Here is your Wednesday Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories and scores from our news wire.

WEDNESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS: 
NBA: Cleveland at Boston, 8 p.m. (CSN, ESPN)
NBA: Houston at LA Clippers, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
NHL: Pittsburgh at Chicago, 8 p.m. (NBCSN)
MLB: Exhibition: Boston at Baltimore, 1 p.m. (WEEI-AM 850)
MLB: Exhibition: Miami vs. Houston, 1 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Exhibition: LA Dodgers vs. San Francisco, 8 p.m. (MLB Network)
College basketball: Arkansas at Florida, 7 p.m. ESPN2
College basketball: Michigan at Northwestern, 7 p.m. (Big Ten Network)
College basketball: UConn at East Carolina, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: URI at Saint Joseph’s, 7 p.m. (NESN Plus)
College basketball: BC at Notre Dame, 8 p.m. (NESN, WEEI-AM 850)
College basketball: VCU at Dayton, 8 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Kansas State at TCU, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Louisville at Wake Forest, 9 p.m. (NESN Plus)
College basketball: Marquette at Xavier, 9 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Michigan State at Illinois, 9 p.m. (Big Ten Network)
College basketball: Texas at Texas Tech, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Air Force at San Diego State, 10 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Utah State at UNLV, 11 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Washington at UCLA, 11 p.m. (FS1)
Women’s college basketball: Clemson vs. Virginia Tech, 1 p.m. (NESN Plus)
Women’s college basketball: BC vs. Georgia Tech, 3:30 p.m. (NESN Plus)
Women’s college basketball: North Carolina vs. Pittsburgh, 6:30 p.m. (NESN)

AROUND THE WEB:

— Florida State’s Xavier Rathan-Mayes was one of the players that was tripped earlier this season by Duke’s Grayson Allen and he may have got his revenge on Tuesday night.

In the Duke-Florida State matchup at Cameron Indoor Tuesday, Rathan-Mayes fell to the floor and when Allen stepped over him, he fell down himself. Likely not intentional, and probably a bit of an acting job on Allen’s part, but likely made Rathan-Mayes feel like he got a little revenge.

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Read More: Boston 2024 Olympics, kevin garnett,

Curt Schilling tries to flaunt his military credentials on Twitter, gets smacked down by an U.S. army veteran

02.28.17 at 12:04 pm ET
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Curt Schilling is no stranger to Twitter wars. (David Manning/USA TODAY Sports)

Curt Schilling is no stranger to Twitter wars. (David Manning/USA TODAY Sports)

It’s been a rough stretch for Curt Schilling on Twitter. Last week, he defended right-wing troll Milo Yiannopoulos, then retreated after hearing the former Breitbart editor’s rationalization of pederasty. But that fleeting moment of embarrassment pales in comparison to the pummeling Schilling took Tuesday, when he tried to explain away Donald Trump’s degradation of the U.S. military.

In a speech Monday about his plans to increase defense spending, President Trump said U.S. soldiers are hapless in combat.

“We must ensure that our courageous servicemen and women have the tools they can be to deter war, and when called upon to fight in our name, only do one thing: win,” he said. “We never win and we don’t fight to win. We don’t fight to win. We’ve either got to win or don’t fight it at all.”

After those remarks, former Missouri Security of State and Afghanistan war veteran Jason Kander condemned Trump on Twitter. Schilling fired back, saying Trump was talking about military leadership, not the troops on the ground.

Trump routinely lambasted the U.S. armed forces during his ascent to the Oval Office. Last year, he claimed to know more about defeating ISIS than our country’s generals. He’s extended his ire towards the intelligence community in recent months, comparing it to Nazi Germany.

Later in the unsolicited Twitter exchange, Schilling cited his military credentials, saying he once spent 18 days with troops in the Middle East. Kander, who was a decorated intelligence officer in the Army National Guard, responded in kind.

Stop the match. Kander wins in a knockout.

Read More: Curt Schilling,

Adidas NFL combine island prize is more burden than reward

02.28.17 at 11:51 am ET
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Sporting News Athletes participating in this year’s NFL Combine will have a chance to own their own island, thanks to adidas.

The footwear company will offer up a piece of paradise to anyone who can break Chris Johnson’s legendary 40-yard dash time of 4.24 seconds. The record, which was set in 2008, is going to be hard to beat, but maybe the prize will push an athlete to new limits.

There are a few rules to this, though. The athlete has to break the record wearing adidas shoes and must agree to an endorsement deal with the company before the start of the upcoming NFL season. The company will select the island, and there is a maximum value of $1 million.

Making the record based around a 40-time is of course going to be unfair to the offensive linemen and punters at the event, but tough luck, I guess.

Even if a record isn’t broken, adidas is willing to pay $10,000 to the athlete (wearing adidas shoes) who gets the fastest 40 time.

This sounds way better than it actually is.

There’s no guarantee the island will be “a piece of paradise.” Just as some deserts are made of ice, so are some islands. It could be an Arctic island or an island in outer space. The terms and conditions are very vague.

Most decent islands cost well over what Adidas is willing to pay, but here are some islands you can buy for under $1 million. A couple of them are OK but keep in mind adidas is picking which one you get. That’s a big catch here. Plus, the rules state Adidas will provide the island “as soon as reasonably possible,” which could mean anything.

The island probably won’t have running water or infrastructure so you’re going to have to bring that there yourself and those costs are not included in what Adidas is covering. And you have to travel there which will cost money, as will getting supplies for daily life shipped to the island. Kind of a hassle. Unless you want a deserted island, you’re going to have to shell out a lot for this “prize.” And pay taxes on it.

Of course, if you were in the market for an island already this isn’t such a bad deal.

In general, if an island is ever in your choice of prizes, your best bet is usually to take whatever else they’re offering.

Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Connecticut aquarium names seal after Trey Flowers; ESPN reportedly looking to woo Katie Nolan from FS1

02.28.17 at 9:30 am ET
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Good morning, here is your Tuesday Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories and scores from our news wire.

TUESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
MLB: Exhibition: NY Yankees at Boston, 1 p.m. (WEEI-AM 850)
MLB: Exhibition: Baltimore at Philadelphia, 1 p.m. (MLB Network)
NHL: Arizona at Boston, 7 p.m. (NESN)
NHL: Colorado at Philadelphia, 7 p.m. (NBCSN)
NBA: Golden State at Washington, 7 p.m. (NBA)
NBA: Charlotte at LA Lakers, 10:30 p.m. (NBA)
College basketball: Buffalo at Ohio, 6 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Georgetown at Seton Hall, 6:30 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Maryland at Rutgers, 6:30 p.m. (Big Ten Network)
College basketball: Florida State at Duke, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Indiana at Purdue, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Mississippi State at South Carolina, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: St. John’s at Creighton, 8 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: DePaul at Providence, 8:30 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Ohio State at Penn State, 8:30 p.m. (Big Ten Network)
College basketball: Oklahoma State at Iowa State, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Pittsburgh at Georgia Tech, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Vanderbilt at Kentucky, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Fresno State at Boise State, 10 p.m. (CBSSN)

AROUND THE WEB: 


— Connecticut’s Mystic Aquarium is honoring the Patriots’ Super Bowl win by naming a rescued seal after a member of the championship team.

Each year the aquarium has a naming theme for its rescue seals and this year’s theme is flowers. Fittingly, it decided to name one of the seals Trey after Patriots defensive end Trey Flowers. Trey is expected to be released back into the wild after he completes his rehabilitation in two to three weeks.

Before the Super Bowl, Mystic Aquarium made a bet with the staff at the Georgia Aquarium that whichever aquarium’s team lost the Super Bowl, the staff must perform the sea lion show in the opposing team’s jerseys. Georgia’s staff fulfilled the bet while the sea lions performed “Under the Boardwalk” last week.

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Read More: ESPN, Katie Nolan, Trey Flowers,