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Thursday’s Morning Mashup

12.17.09 at 6:49 am ET
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Welcome to Thursday’s Morning Mashup, where we’ll get you caught up on what’s going on in the sports world and beyond.

The Randy Moss defenders in the media have made their way to the forefront. ESPN’s Merril Hoge leads the way, checking the video to determine that not only did Moss not quit, “He never took one single play off during that game. In fact, it was probably one of his best games without the ball in his hands that I’€™ve seen him play over his career.’€

The Boston Herald breaks it down for you. And here’s Hoge’s report. UPDATE: Daryl “Moose” Johnston, who was the Fox analyst Sunday, weighed in with his opinion in an interview with Dennis & Callahan this morning.

Dan Guttenplan defends his criticism of Moss before getting into his weekly NFL picks.

MORE FOOTBALL: Chris Price writes about the Patriots defense simplifying things. Bengals receiver Chris Henry was seriously injured falling out of a pickup truck in a domestic dispute. UPDATE: Henry died from his injuries. He was 26 years old.

The University of Cincinnati hired Butch Jones from Central Michigan to be its coach. San Jose State went with Duke defensive coordinator Mike MacIntyre. A suspect in the stabbing death of UConn cornerback Jasper Howard pleaded not guilty.

BASEBALL: John Lackey and Mike Cameron were introduced to Boston, and rumors continued to circulate about Padres first baseman Adrian Gonzalez. Get the wrap-up at the Full Count blog. Check in at noon for a Hot Stove Chat with WEEI’s baseball experts. Elsewhere, the Roy Halladay deal finally was completed. Lefty reliever Mike Gonzalez is leaving the Braves for the Orioles. Catcher John Buck signed with the Blue Jays.

BASKETBALL: Michael Holley has his NBA Power Rankings, with the Celtics moving into the top spot. Kobe Bryant hit another buzzer-beating game-winner, this time in overtime to defeat the Bucks (video below). Chauncey Billups injured his groin in the Nuggets’ win over the Rockets.

HOCKEY: Martin Brodeur tied the record for most games played in goal as the Devils beat the Canadiens. Senators center Jason Spezza and Ducks forward Joffrey Lupul are out 6-8 weeks with injuries.

MISC.: Tiger Woods was named The Associated Press Athlete of the Decade.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Dec. 17, 1957, the Red Sox released this infielder and signed him to be a player-manager for their Triple-A affiliate in Minneapolis. He managed Minneapolis to a Junior World Series championship before embarking on a long major league managerial career, noted for the fact that he became the winningest manager never to win a league pennant. Who is he?

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “Looking across the field from the other dugout, I have a lot of respect for the way these guys play the game. They really play it hard, they play it the right way. I think I’ll fit in well.” ‘€” New Red Sox pitcher John Lackey, on Wednesday’s Dale & Holley show

STAT OF THE DAY: 5 ‘€” Tom Brady’s finish in voting for AP Athlete of the Decade

‘NET RESULTS: Kobe. Again.

Here’s an impressive hockey shootout goal.

For the second time this season, a bat interrupted a professional sporting event. And for the second time, the bat paid the price.

TRIVIA ANSWER: Gene Mauch

SOOTHING SOUNDS: Jim Bonfanti, drummer for the Raspberries, is 61 today. Here’s his band performing on the Mike Douglas show, and guests Joe Namath and Billie Jean King meet the musicians after the song.