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Monday’s Morning Mashup: Broncos QB Peyton Manning squashes retirement talk

01.27.14 at 8:06 am ET

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NHL: Bruins at Islanders, 7 p.m. (NESN)
NHL: Sabres at Penguins, 7:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
NHL: Kings at Sharks, 10 p.m. (NBCSN)
NBA: Timberwolves at Bulls, 8 p.m. (NBATV)
College basketball: Duke at Pittsburgh, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Norfolk State at Savannah State, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Villanova at Georgetown, 9 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Oklahoma State at Oklahoma, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Colgate at Lafayette, 9 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Arkansas-Pine Bluff at Texas Southern, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)


Peyton Manning put rumors about his retirement to rest when he told the Denver Post he has no plans to step away from the game following his record-setting season.

“I think when you still enjoy the preparation, the work part of it, I think you ought to be still doing that.” Manning said. “When I stop enjoying it, when I can’t produce, when I can’t help the team, that’s when I’ll stop playing. If that’s next year, maybe it is. I certainly want to continue to keep playing.”

Manning, 37, is scheduled to have his surgically repaired neck examined, and there was speculation that he could leave the game if there were any concerns. However, he is due to make $20 million next season, giving him more than enough incentive to come back, even if the Broncos win the Super Bowl.

“A number of players have walked away as champions,” said Manning, who passed for an NFL-record 55 touchdowns in 2013. “I’m sure that’s a great feeling for those people. John Elway. Ray Lewis did it last year. Michael Strahan. Talking to Ray Lewis and talking to John Elway, they couldn’t play any more [physically]. That was all they had to give. They truly left it all out there.

“I still enjoy playing football. I feel a little better than I thought I would at this point coming off that [neck fusion] surgery. I still enjoy the preparation part of it, the work part of it. Everybody enjoys the game. Everybody is going to be excited to play in the Super Bowl.”

— Veteran Broncos safety Mike Adams grew up in Paterson, N.J., about 12 miles from MetLife Stadium, where his team will play the Seahawks in Sunday’s Super Bowl. If Denver wins, Adams said he plans a victory march to his hometown. Without delay.

“If we win the Super Bowl, I’m going to keep my helmet and pads on and I’m walking home,” Adams said, adding: “After I get to the IHOP on Route 3, I’ll start hitchhiking. But they’d probably think I’m just some crazy person.”

An undrafted free agent from Delaware, Adams had a tough childhood. He never knew his father, and his mother died of ovarian cancer when he was a rookie with 49ers in 2004. He doesn’t try to paint a picture of his hometown as a pleasant place, but his walk home would be proof that anyone can escape a tough upbringing.

“It can be almost like a cancer,” Adams said of Paterson. “And I say that because the negativity in that place can be like a snowball rolling downhill.”

— Basketball Hall of Famer Tom Gola died Sunday at the age of 81 at a long-term care facility in Meadowbrook, Pa., where he had been staying since falling and hitting his head on a curb in 2003.

Gola starred at La Salle, leading the Explorers to the 1954 NCAA championship before losing to Bill Russell‘s San Francisco squad in the 1955 title game.

The 6-foot-6 Gola left the college game as a three-time All-American with an NCAA-record 2,201 rebounds. He remains one of only two Division 1 collegians to record 2,000 points and 2,000 rebounds. He’s also one of only two men to win an NIT, NCAA and NBA championship.

Gola helped the Philadelphia Warriors to the 1956 NBA title as a rookie and went on to become a five-time All-Star in 10 NBA seasons with the Warriors and Knicks.

He then coached La Salle for two seasons, posting a 37-13 record, before becoming a politician and running an insurance agency.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Jan. 27, 1986, which Patriots defensive standout announced his retirement after setting a team record for most games played with 210?

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “This was the toughest game I ever had to play. Tougher than any championship game, or any Game 7. This game was just really hard to focus and concentrate on what was at hand.” — Paul Pierce, on his return to Boston with the Nets for Sunday night’s game against the Celtics

STAT OF THE DAY: 71.4 — Percent shooting for Harvard from 3-point range in Sunday’s 80-50 rout at Dartmouth, a school record (min. 10 attempts)

‘NET RESULTS (mobile users, check the website to see the videos): From Sunday’s game in Irvine, Calif., UC Irvine’s Alex Young hits a running 3-pointer at the first-half buzzer, and Hawaii’s Keith Shamburger nails an off-balance trey just before the end of regulation to force overtime.

From Saturday night’s game in Portland, Timberwolves guard Ricky Rubio throws a three-quarter-court alley-oop pass to Corey Brewer.

Capitals star Alex Ovechkin juggles the puck on his stick before beating Canadiens goalie Carey Price.

Following RPI’s upset of third-ranked Union in college hockey action on Saturday night, Union coach Rick Bennett goes after RPI coach Seth Appert as the teams mix it up on the ice.

TRIVIA ANSWER: Defensive end Julius Adams, who played 15 seasons with the Patriots

SOOTHING SOUNDS: Ross Bagdasarian Sr., who went by the name David Seville when he created the Chipmunks, was born on this day in 1919. (He died in 1972.)

Read More: Mike Adams, Peyton Manning, super bowl, Tom Gola