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Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Dolphins reportedly encouraged Richie Incognito to ‘toughen up’ Jonathan Martin

11.06.13 at 8:18 am ET
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Welcome to Wednesday’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.

WEDNESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NBA: Jazz at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Bulls at Pacers, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Mavericks at Thunder, 9:30 p.m. (ESPN)
NHL: Penguins at Rangers, 7:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
College football: Central Michigan at Ball State, 8 p.m. (ESPN2)
MLS playoffs: Revolution at Sporting KC, 9 p.m. (CSNNE Plus)
Soccer: UEFA Champions, AC Milan at Barcelona, 2:30 p.m. (FS1)

AROUND THE WEB:

Richie Incognito

Richie Incognito

• The Dolphins coaching staff has tried to distance itself from the behavior of offensive lineman Richie Incognito, who is accused of harassing and threatening teammate Jonathan Martin, but a report in the Florida Sun Sentinel indicates the coaches might have provided a spark for the controversial veteran.

Multiple sources told the Sun Sentinel that the coaches told Incognito to “toughen up” Martin after the young lineman missed a voluntary workout in the spring. That apparently led to the infamous voicemail from Incognito in which he uses a racially derogatory term and threatens to slap Martin’s mother in the face.

An unidentified former Dolphins lineman told Fox Sports that coaches supported and encouraged hazing to toughen up Martin and others, although the Sun Sentinel report indicated head coach Joe Philbin annually warned veterans against hazing.

Dolphins players claimed to know nothing of the problems Martin was having before he took a leave from the team last week.

“I never heard anything about it until now,” said linebacker Dannell Ellerbe, who served on the team’s leadership council along with Incognito and four other players.

The NFL Players Association called for a “fair investigation” of the situation.

“We expect that the NFL and its clubs create a safe and professional workplace for all players and that owners, executives, coaches and players should set the best standards and examples,” the NFLPA said in a statement. “It is the duty of this union to hold the clubs and teams accountable for safety and professionalism in the workplace.”

Incognito, meanwhile, was approached by a reporter from Miami’s WSVN-TV while leaving an appointment and said only: “I’m just trying to weather the storm right now. This will pass.”

WSVN-TV – 7NEWS Miam Ft. Lauderdale News, Weather, Deco

• It didn’t take long for Kevin Garnett to exert his influence on the Nets. The former Celtic sent a message after Sunday’s loss to the lowly Magic that the team can’t give anything less than a full effort.

The team responded with a fast start en route to a 104-88 victory over the Jazz on Tuesday night in Brooklyn.

“We’re trying to form something here,” Garnett said. “I think Paul [Pierce] reiterated some of what I was talking about, and it’s just consistency. You can’t play a passionate game against Miami and then go out and play the way we did against Orlando.

“I was just letting them know that consistency is the difference between great teams and OK teams. … That was the message.”

Garnett also wanted the Nets to make sure they did not have a letdown on their home court against a winless team like the Jazz (who play the Celtics in Boston on Wednesday).

“We have to protect our home,” Garnett said. “We’re trying to establish something here at home. … Any teams that we feel we’re better than, we should go out and beat.

“When they’re playing here in Brooklyn, they have to know they’re playing here in Brooklyn, and that’s what we’re trying to establish.”

Joy Johnson, the oldest woman to complete Sunday’s New York City Marathon, said she wanted to run until she died. This week she essentially got her wish.

Johnson, 86, passed away Monday, after returning to her hotel room following an annual interview on NBC’s “Today” show. The San Jose resident had run New York for the 25th time Sunday. She stumbled and hit her head around the 20th mile but insisted on finishing the race, which she did in about eight hours.

“I always say I’m going to run until I drop,” the retired gym teacher said in a prerace interview Saturday. “I’m going to die in my tennis shoes. I just don’t know when I’m going to quit.”

Said her daughter, Diana Boydston: “At least she was running, the way she wanted to go.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Nov. 6, 1976, the Red Sox became the first team to sign a player who declared for free agency under baseball’s new rules. Which player signed a $1 million, four-year contract with the Sox?

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “I think, in the end, you want to play where you’re wanted. I have great relationships with our coach and our GM here and I know how much they want me. I know how much they want me and it feels great to play here. That’s all I have to say on that.” Tyler Seguin, on returning to play the Bruins as a member of the Stars

STAT OF THE DAY: 4 – Consecutive games in which the Bruins have allowed the opposition score first, including Tuesday’s 3-2 shootout loss to the Stars

‘NET RESULTS (mobile users, check the website to see the videos): From Tuesday’s Ohio-Buffalo college football game, Ohio quarterback is called for intentional grounding in the end zone (a safety) despite throwing the ball at the 4-yard line before being pushed backward.

TRIVIA ANSWER: Reliever Bill Campbell, who formerly pitched for the Twins

SOOTHING SOUNDS: Glenn Frey was born on this day in 1948. Here he is with the Eagles.

Read More: Jonathan Martin, Joy Johnson, kevin garnett, Richie Incognito