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Monday’s Morning Mashup: Knicks’ J.R. Smith guarantees title, warns Paul Pierce of ‘consequences’ for talk

09.02.13 at 7:48 am ET

Welcome to Monday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

MLB: Tigers at Red Sox, 1:35 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
MLB: White Sox at Yankees, 1 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Marlins at Cubs, 2:10 p.m. (WGN)
MLB: Orioles at Indians, 4 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Rays at Angels, 9 p.m. (MLB Network)
College football: Florida State at Pittsburgh, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
Tennis: U.S. Open, 11 a.m. (CBS), 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
Golf: Deutsche Bank Championship, 11:30 a.m. (TGC), 1 p.m. (NBC)


‘€¢ Knicks guard J.R. Smith brushed off Paul Pierce‘s comments about the Nets becoming New York’s team and guaranteed a title this season for his club.

“I’m 100 percent sure,” the 2013 NBA Sixth Man of the Year said when asked about the Knicks ending their championship drought.

Smith, speaking at a charity event in New York over the weekend, said that despite the loss of some key players, the Knicks are positioned to make a run at the team’s first title since 1973.

“I feel comfortable,” he said. “People ruled us out last year early, too. We added some great pieces. Unfortunately, we got rid of some good pieces. But we added Andrea [Bargnani], Beno [Udrih], Metta [World Peace]. We have to consistently play like we did the first 20 games last year the whole season. We can’€™t have a middle-of-season lapse. We have to consistently play the same way.”

As for Pierce, Smith said the former Celtic doesn’t know what he’s talking about when he says the Nets can be the city’s top team. Pierce also said last month that his hatred for the Knicks has “grown to another level” since he was traded to Brooklyn.

“I just look at him as a bitter person just getting out of Boston,” Smith said. “He doesn’t really know what New York is all about. He’s been playing in Boston his whole career.”

Added Smith: “He just knows, just know that his words have consequences and he’s going to have to pay for them.”

‘€¢ The University of Georgia had injury added to insult when it was confirmed that receiver Malcolm Mitchell tore his ACL celebrating a touchdown by a teammate during the fifth-ranked Bulldogs’ 38-35 loss to No. 8 Clemson on Saturday.

Mitchell, the team’s top returning receiver, leaped to celebrate with Todd Gurley following the running back’s 75-yard touchdown run in the first quarter.

“He went to congratulate his teammate and I think they jumped up and chest-bumped or whatever and it ended up that he landed in a bad way,” Georgia coach Mark Richt told reporters in a conference call Sunday. “So he knew something happened.”

Mitchell is slated to have season-ending surgery soon and will apply for a medical redshirt so that he can retain two more years of eligibility.

Here’s the video, in which Mitchell (26) doesn’t appear to do anything out of the ordinary.

‘€¢ Super Bowl XLVII is remembered in part for a half-hour delay caused by a power outage, which preceded a 49ers rally before the Ravens held on for 34-31 victory. Ray Lewis isn’t convinced it was an accident.

“I’m not gonna accuse nobody of nothing — because I don’t know facts,” the recently retired Ravens linebacker told NFL Films, via USA Today. “But you’re a zillion-dollar company, and your lights go out? No. [Laughs] No way.

“Now listen, if you grew up like I grew up — and you grew up in a household like I grew up — then sometimes your lights might go out, because times get hard. I understand that. But you cannot tell me somebody wasn’t sitting there and when they say, ‘The Ravens [are] about to blow them out. Man, we better do something.’ … That’s a huge shift in any game, in all seriousness. And as you see how huge it was because it let them right back in the game.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Sept. 2, 2001, with Yankees pitcher Mike Mussina one strike away from a perfect game, which Red Sox pinch-hitter singled to center field?

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “He looked good. He looked almost Gronk-esque.” — Michael Hoomanawanui, on fellow Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski, who practiced in full pads Sunday for the first time since offseason back surgery

STAT OF THE DAY: 25-12 — The Red Sox’ major league-best record in day games, following Sunday’s 7-6 victory over the White Sox

‘NET RESULTS (mobile users, check the website to see the videos): In a high school football game in Texas, Copperas Cove, which had just taken a three-point lead with one seconds remaining, squibs the kickoff only to see it returned for the winning touchdown by A&M Consolidated when Brandon Jackson laterals it to Derrick Dick, who races across the field to the end zone.

Duquesne’s Sean Brady makes a one-handed catch and holds on while taking a hit to score a touchdown against Albany.

Following a last-lap collision in Sunday’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race, Max Papis criticizes Mike Skeen in an interview and then gets a hard slap across the face from Skeen’s girlfriend. Papis claims the slap left him with a dislocated jaw.


SOOTHING SOUNDS: The late Billy Preston was born on this day in 1946.

Read More: J.R. Smith, Malcolm Mitchell, Paul Pierce, Ray Lewis