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Monday’s Morning Mashup: Ex-Patriots receiver Bethel Johnson teases New England fans after AFC championship loss to Broncos

01.20.14 at 8:06 am ET

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NHL: Kings at Bruins, 3 p.m. (NESN, NHL Network)
NBA: Nets at Knicks, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Pelicans at Grizzlies, 5 p.m. (NBATV)
NBA Trail Blazers at Rockets, 8 p.m. (TNT)
NBA: Pacers at Warriors, 10:30 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: Loyola, Md., at Boston University, 7:30 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: North Carolina at Virginia, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Creighton at Villanova, 7 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Ohio State at Nebraska, 7 p.m. (BTN)
College basketball: Delaware State at North Carolina A&T, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Maryland at NC State, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Marquette at Georgetown, 9 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Baylor at Kansas, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: Premier League, Everton at West Bromwich, 3 p.m. (NBCSN)
Tennis: Australian Open, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)


— Former Patriots receiver Bethel Johnson apparently was not happy with his treatment by the team when he was sent packing in 2006, and he took pleasure in teasing New England fans following Sunday’s AFC championship game loss to the Broncos.

Tweeted Johnson on Sunday night: I said when the Pats trade me that they’ll never win another championship. Say what you want about me, I was there 3yrs & left with 2 rings.

Added Johnson, now 34: If they’d sign me back we’ll win immediately.

Johnson was drafted by the Patriots in the second round in 2003 out of Texas A&M and primarily played special teams. He’s generally considered one of Bill Belichick‘s worst draft picks.

In the summer of 2006, he was traded to the Saints but cut before the regular season while dealing with a knee injury. He went on to play for the Vikings that season, then played a year in the Canadian Football League after being cut by the Eagles and Texans.

Johnson apparently heard enough from Patriots fans, because his Twitter account was taken down Monday morning. Before then, he tried to defuse the situation, tweeting: I made a statement to get a rise out of the Pats fans and I got it…y’all are hilarious. I have nothing but love 4 the team that drafted me.

— Canucks coach John Tortorella reportedly will have a hearing with the NHL on Monday following his tantrum during Saturday’s game against the Flames, when he fiery coach approached the Calgary locker room after the first period to continue a dispute.

The game started with the Flames putting their fourth line on the ice. Tortorella responded in kind, and there was a line brawl immediately after the puck drop. During the brouhaha, Tortorella screamed at Calgary coach Bob Hartley.

Hartley denied intending to start off the game with a fight.

“Those guys are playing well for us,” he said of his fourth-liners. “They got us a goal last game. Obviously we’re not scoring many goals. We had absolutely zero intentions there. Those guys are playing hard for us. We’re a disciplined hockey club. As far as I know, they were the home team so they had the luxury to put whoever they wanted on the ice.”

Asked why he didn’t go with his top line to avoid a brawl, Tortorella claimed he was protecting his players.

“I see the starting lineup. I know the other guy across the bench and it’s easy for people to say put the Sedins out there and it’s deflated,” Tortorella said. “I can’t put our players at risk that way. With the lineup that he had, I’m not going to put those type of players at risk and that’s what ensues.

“I’m not proud of it. I’ve apologized to every one of the players involved in it. I don’t feel great about it at all, especially [Kellan Lain, who was making his NHL debut]. That’s my biggest mistake was putting Lainer in that lineup and I’ll kick myself forever not having someone else there. But I’d do the same thing again if it came that way because I cannot put anybody else out there not knowing what’s going to happen and knowing the other guy across from me.”

After the period, Tortorella headed toward the Calgary locker room but was pushed aside. Flames assistant coach Clint Malarchuk tried to get at Tortorella but was restrained by his team.

— According to an ESPN story, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell plans to sit outside in the stands at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford N.J., for the Super Bowl, despite early predictions of freezing temperatures with a possibility of rain and snow.

This would not be a new thing for Goodell, who has appeared in the stands at other cold-weather games and claims to enjoy the experience.

In the previous coldest Super Bowl, played at Tulane Stadium in New Orleans on Jan. 16, 1972, then-commissioner Pete Rozelle sat outside as the temperature dipped to 39 degrees.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Jan. 20, 1996, in the NHL All-Star Game at what was then called the FleetCenter in Boston, which Bruin scored with 38 seconds remaining in regulation to give the East a 5-4 victory over the West?

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “Losing is never easy. But when you have somebody as talented as [Peyton Manning], who puts in as much work and effort, and has done it for so long, it’s a little bit easier to swallow.” — Patriots defensive lineman Rob Ninkovich, after Sunday’s 26-16 loss to the Broncos in the AFC championship game

STAT OF THE DAY: 69 — Seconds — overlapping the first two periods — in which it took Bruins forward Brad Marchand to score two goals during Sunday’s 3-2 shootout loss to the Blackhawks

‘NET RESULTS (mobile users, check the website to see the videos): A ballboy at the Australian Open takes a ball to the face but gets right back in his stance.

Here’s a time-lapse video of the Metrodome being deflated for the final time, as the Vikings are building a new home.


SOOTHING SOUNDS: Slim Whitman was born on this day in 1924.

Read More: Bethel Johnson, John Tortorella, Roger Goodell, super bowl