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Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Chuck Pagano has ‘best day of my life’ as he gets extension from Colts 01.05.16 at 7:54 am ET
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Welcome to Tuesday’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.

TUESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NHL: Capitals at Bruins, 7 p.m. (NESN)
NHL: Canadiens at Flyers, 7 p.m. (NBCSN)
NBA: Bucks at Bulls, 8 p.m. (NBATV)
NBA: Warriors at Lakers, 10:30 p.m. (NBATV)
College basketball: Marquette at Providence, 7 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Richmond at Rhode Island, 7 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Wisconsin at Indiana, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Minnesota at Penn State, 7 p.m. (Big Ten Network)
College basketball: East Carolina at Tulsa, 7 p.m. (ESPNews)
College basketball: Temple at UConn, 8 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Butler at DePaul, 8 p.m. (FSN)
College basketball: Oklahoma State at Baylor, 8 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Kentucky at LSU, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Tulane at Houston, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Nebraska at Iowa, 9 p.m. (Big Ten Network)
College basketball: Georgetown at Creighton, 9 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Boise State at Utah State, 10 p.m. (CBSSN)

AROUND THE WEB:

— It was a surprise to many that coach Chuck Pagano and general manager Ryan Grigon were retained by Colts owner Jim Irsay. It was even more surprising that both men received extensions that tie them to the team for the next four years.

Even Pagano appeared to have accepted his fate Sunday, as he accepted the game ball and a hug from linebacker Robert Mathis in a somber locker room after the season finale. However, despite the Colts’ struggles this season, Irsay saw something that convinced him to stay the course.

“These are our guys. These guys are ready,” Irsay said Monday. “Like I said, there’s been a lot reported, a lot written. Like I said, I know what the reality is and this is what’s best for the Indianapolis Colts going forward. I’m sure of that.”

Pagano, who missed 12 games while battling cancer in 2012, led the Colts to the AFC championship game last season, but with quarterback Andrew Luck battling injuries most of this season, Indianapolis went 8-8 and missed the playoffs.

“I’ve had a lot of great days in my life, but none better than today,” Pagano said. “This is absolutely the best day of my life, and I’m grateful and I’m thankful to Mr. Irsay and his family for the opportunity that he’s given me.”

There have been reports that Pagano and Grigson did not get along, but neither men addressed that issue, instead choosing to focus on the future.

“What we went through this year and that adversity, I believe from Andrew Luck to myself to coach Pagano, that adversity is what’s going to springboard us to greatness because that’s life. That’s life,” Grigson said. “He’s a fighter, I’m a fighter, Jim is a fighter and all three of us are going to fight together until we get the crown.”

Tom Coughlin‘s tenure with the Giants is over after 12 up-and-down seasons that ended with a third straight losing campaign. The 69-year-old announced Monday he was stepping down after his team finished 6-10.

“I met with [owners] John Mara and Steve Tisch this afternoon, and I informed them that it is in the best interest of the organization that I step down as head coach,” Coughlin said in a statement Monday. “I strongly believe the time is right for me and my family, and … the Giants organization.”

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Read More: byron scott, Chuck Pagano, Jim Irsay, Julius Randle
Friday’s Morning Mashup: New York AG wants fantasy companies to refund residents, pay fines 01.01.16 at 9:26 am ET
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Welcome to Friday’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.

FRIDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NHL: Canadiens at Bruins, 1 p.m. (NBC)
College football: Outback Bowl, Northwestern vs. Tennessee, noon (ESPN)
College football: Citrus Bowl, Michigan vs. Florida, 1 p.m. (ABC)
College football: Fiesta Bowl, Notre Dame vs. Ohio State, 1 p.m. (ESPN; WEEI-FM)
College football: Rose Bowl, Iowa vs. Stanford, 5 p.m. (ESPN; WEEI-FM)
College football: Sugar Bowl, Oklahoma State vs. Mississippi, 8:30 p.m. (ESPN; WEEI-FM)
College basketball: Utah at Stanford, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: UCLA at Washington, 11 p.m. (FS1)

AROUND THE WEB:

— New York has amped up its battle against daily fantasy sports companies DraftKings and FanDuel, requesting that the companies return all the profits to state residents who lost money with them and pay a fine of up to $5,000 per case.

According to an ESPN report, New York attorney general Eric Schneiderman filed an amended lawsuit Thursday, adding the request for restitution of funds. The companies took in more than $200 million in entry fees in 2015 from at least 600,000 New York customers.

The sides are scheduled to argue before an appellate panel Monday to determine whether the companies can continue to operate in New York as the case proceeds to trial. Schneiderman initially demanded the companies leave the state in early November. He was granted a temporary injunction Dec. 11 that prevented DraftKings and FanDuel from operating in the state, but an appellate court quickly reversed the decision.

Schneiderman claims the companies are operating illegal gambling operations, and lately he’s attacked the organizations for what he says is deceptive advertising.

Last week, Illinois attorney general Lisa Madigan said DraftKings and FanDuel are profiting from illegal gambling and must leave her state as well. The companies responded by filing lawsuits there.

— The Colts’ struggles this season have been well-documented, and now amid reports that coach Chuck Pagano is on his way out, Indianapolis is playing the blame game.

WTHR-TV columnist Bob Kravitz on Thursday wrote that Pagano’s job was made more difficult by general manager Ryan Grigson, whom sources described as a “terrible meddler.”

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Read More: Chuck Pagano, daily fantasy sports, IK Enemkpali, Ryan Grigson
Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Colts coach Chuck Pagano dismisses OC Pep Hamilton in attempt to ‘put us in the best position to succeed’ 11.04.15 at 8:13 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: Celtics at Pacers, 7 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Knicks at Cavaliers, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Clippers at Warriors, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
NHL: Blues at Blackhawks, 8 p.m. (NBCSN)
College football: Ohio at Bowling Green, 8 p.m. (ESPN2)
Soccer: Champions League, Arsenal at Bayern Munich, 2:30 p.m. (FS1)
Soccer: Champions League, Bayer Leverkusen at Roma, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

Pep Hamilton

Pep Hamilton

— With the underachieving Colts continuing to struggle at 3-5 with three straight losses, the first domino to fall in Indianapolis is offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton, who was fired Tuesday.

“As head coach of this team, it’s my responsibility to make sure I’m doing everything we can to put us in the best position to succeed,” coach Chuck Pagano said in a statement. “We thank Pep for his service to the team and wish him all the best.”

There has been speculation that the Colts could make a major change during their bye week, which comes after Sunday’s game against the Broncos, and that Pagano’s job is in jeopardy. Replacing Hamilton with associated head coach Rob Chudzinski could be Pagano’s last-ditch effort to turn things around.

Said Pagano in a brief conference call: “Through the first eight weeks of the season, we have felt our offense hasn’t performed at the consistent level that we need.”

Hamilton, who was offensive coordinator at Stanford when Andrew Luck played there, had been with the Colts since 2013.

Part of the Colts’ problems can be traced to Luck, who reportedly has been playing with fractured ribs — although the Colts only listed the QB with a shoulder issue on their injury report.

“Andrew is as tough a competitor as I have ever been around. He is going through a stretch right now, we are all going through a stretch right now,” Pagano said after Monday night’s overtime loss to the Panthers. “I am not worried about Andrew Luck. Together we will get this thing fixed.”

General manager Ryan Grigson also is believed to be on thin ice. Indianapolis Star columnist Gregg Doyel, for one, was amazed that Grigson remains in place.

Wrote Doyel after Hamilton’s firing: Meanwhile, the GM who put that comically bad offensive line in front of quarterback Andrew Luck earlier this season, the GM who put together this oddly too-old, too-young team — the GM who hired Pep Hamilton, of all people — stays in charge.

When the nuclear winter comes, Ryan Grigson will survive it. That’s all I’m saying.

— The Cowboys ended the Joseph Randle experiment Tuesday, cutting the running back they had hoped would replace DeMarco Murray following Murray’s departure in free agency over the summer.

Randle, who was arrested twice in four months less than a year ago, missed Sunday’s loss to the Seahawks due to personal issues, and the team said it was cutting him so he could focus on his problems.

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Read More: Chuck Pagano, Joseph Randle, Patrick Kane, Pep Hamilton
Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Colts confident ailing QB Andrew Luck will play Sunday 10.01.15 at 8:03 am ET
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Welcome to Thursday’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.

THURSDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
MLB: Red Sox at Yankees, 7:05 p.m. (NESN, ESPN2; WEEI-FM)
MLB: Cubs at Reds, 12:30 p.m. (MLB Network)
NFL: Ravens at Steelers, 8:25 p.m. (CBS, NFL Network; WEEI-AM)
College football: Miami at Cincinnati, 7:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College football: Alabama State at Texas Southern, 7:30 p.m. (ESPNU)
NHL preseason: Blackhawks at Blues, 8 p.m. (NNHL Network)
NHL preseason: Avalanche at Ducks, 10:30 p.m. (NHL Network)
Soccer: UEFA Europa, Tottenham at Monaco, 1 p.m. (FS1)
Soccer: UEFA Europa, Sion at Liverpool, 3 p.m. (FS1)
Soccer: NWSL champoonship: FC Kansas City vs. Seattle Reign, 9:30 p.m. (FS1)

AROUND THE WEB:

— As if the season isn’t going bad enough for the 1-2 Colts, quarterback Andrew Luck sat out most of Wednesday’s practice for what the team said was a sore throwing shoulder.

Coach Chuck Pagano said the move was precautionary, and that Luck is expected to play Sunday against the Jaguars.

“I’m not a witch doctor, I don’t have a crystal ball. I just listen to the trainers and the doctors, but I wouldn’t bet against [No.] 12, ever,” Pagano said, adding: “Supreme confidence that he’ll play.”

Luck, who was injured during this past Sunday’s win over the Titans — although he would not revel precisely how or when the injury occurred — has not missed a game since being drafted No. 1 overall in 2012.

“There’s always bumps and bruises that show up in high school, college and the NFL. You deal with stuff, you manage it,” Luck said. “It’s nothing more than that in my mind.”

There has been speculation that Luck’s injury actually is to his ribs, especially after Luck winced Sunday when backup Matt Hasselbeck tapped him after a touchdown pass. The Colts added quarterback Alex Tanney to the practice squad Tuesday, and Hasselbeck handled most of the throwing Wednesday.

“It’s probably not the first time they’ve tried to [give Luck some rest],” Hasselbeck said. “It’s probably the first time he gave in.”

— Mets slugger Yoenis Cespedes has two bruised fingers but no broken bones after taking a pitch off his hand during Wednesday night’s loss to the Phillies.

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Read More: Andrew Luck, Chuck Pagano, Derrick Rose, Yoenis Cespedes
Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Indianapolis in panic mode after lifeless Colts lose again 09.22.15 at 8:04 am ET
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Welcome to Tuesday’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.

TUESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
MLB: Rays at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
MLB: Yankees at Blue Jays, 7:07 p.m. (ESPN)
MLB: Rangers at Athletics, 10 p.m. (MLB Network)
WNBA playoffs: Mystics at Liberty, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
WNBA playoffs: Sparks at Lynx, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

Andrew Luck and the Colts were manhandled by the Jets on Monday night. (Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Andrew Luck and the Colts were manhandled by the Jets on Monday night. (Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

— The defending AFC championship game finalist Colts are laying a dud this season, and there are calls for change in Indianapolis.

The highly touted Colts offense turned over the ball five times for the second straight week — including a fumble by running back Frank Gore at the opposing 1-yard line — in Monday night’s 20-7 loss to the Jets.

Andrew Luck finished 21-of-37 for 250 yards and a touchdown with three interceptions and a fumble. Indy also was called for 11 penalties. And normally sure-fired kicker Adam Vinatieri missed a 29-yard field goal — his first miss of less than 30 yards since 2007 — as the Colts went into halftime with no points for the second week in a row.

“Andrew Luck normally makes the people around him better,” Indy Star writer (and noted Patriots hater) Gregg Doyel said. “They’ve never been great around him. He normally makes them better; he’s making them worse.”

Said Colts coach Chuck Pagano: “You can’t penalize yourself, you can’t turn the ball over. We have to protect give [Luck] a clean pocket. You can’t drive the length of field and put the football on the ground.”

There has been speculation that Pagano’s job is in jeopardy. Prior to the game, Pagano told ESPN that he expects to finish his career with Indianapolis.

“This is my last job,” said Pagano, who turns 55 on Oct. 4. “And that’s what my plans are. We’ve won, and we’ll continue to do that. But when I took this thing, I said that’s my last job. And when I said that, I meant it. I’m not going nowhere.”

— Those offseason rumors about Randy Moss making an NFL comeback have died down, and Pro Football Talk reports that the onetime Patriots star has not reached out to any teams about resuming his career — nor have any teams inquired about his plans.

Moss is said to be happy working in television, mainly as an analyst on Fox’s pregame show.

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Read More: Andrew Luck, Chuck Pagano, David Stearns, Randy Moss
Colts lose Ahmad Bradshaw to season-ending neck injury 10.09.13 at 8:14 am ET
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When the Colts traded for Trent Richardson more three weeks ago, they envisioned a two-headed running attack featuring Richardson and offseason acquisition Ahmad Bradshaw.

Indianapolis lost one part of that equation on Tuesday when the Colts announced Bradshaw would be placed on the injured reserved list and forced to undergo season-ending surgery on his neck.

“Ahmad has obviously seen several specialists, collected a lot of information,” coach Chuck Pagano said. “He’s going to take the next couple of weeks to kind of sit back and decide where he’s going to go with this thing.”

Bradshaw injured his neck in the Colts’ 27-7 win over the 49ers in Week 3. He sat out Indianapolis’ last two victories.

The Colts signed the former Giants running back to a one-year, $1.1 million contract this past offseason, with the hope to pair him with running back Vick Ballard, who enjoyed a breakout season last year. However, Ballard suffered a season-ending injury as well, which necessitated the Richardson trade.

The onus now falls on Richardson and Donald Brown to make up for the losses of Ballard. Richardson has collected 151 yards and two touchdowns, but only a 3.0 yards per attempt, in three games with Indianapolis thus far. Meanwhile, on just 19 carries, Brown already has racked up 157 yards and one touchdown.

Bradshaw ends his season with 41 carries, 186 rushing yards and two touchdowns.

Read More: Ahmad Bradshaw, Chuck Pagano, Donald Brown, Trent Richardson
Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Colts coach Chuck Pagano makes inspirational return after battling leukemia 12.25.12 at 7:59 am ET
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Welcome to Tuesday’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.

TUESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NBA: Celtics at Nets, noon (CSNNE, ESPN; WEEI-FM)
NBA: Knicks at Lakers, 3 p.m. (ABC; WEEI-FM)
NBA: Thunder at Heat, 5:30 p.m. (ABC; WEEI-FM)
NBA: Texans at Bulls, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Nuggets at Clippers, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Mississippi at Hawaii, 4:30 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Indiana State vs. Miami, 7:30 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: San Diego State vs. Arizona, 9:30 p.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

‘™¦ Colts coach Chuck Pagano, recovering from a battle with leukemia, returned to the team Monday for the first time since taking an indefinite leave on Oct. 1. Pagano will prepare his 10-5 team for Sunday’s regular-season finale against the conference-leading Texans.

“I feel great,” he said. “My weight is back. My energy is back and again, it’s just a blessing to be back here.”

An emotional Pagano said Monday ranks as the second-best day of his life, behind only his wedding, and he thanked assistant Bruce Arians for leading the team to a playoff berth.

“When I asked for Bruce to take over, I asked for him to kick some you-know-what and to do great,” Pagano said. “Damn, Bruce, you had to go and win nine games? Tough act to follow. Tough act to follow. Best in the history of the NFL. That’s what I have to come back to.”

Said team owner Jim Irsay: “I know Chuck is ready for this challenge. In speaking to his doctor multiple times, I know that the time is right for him to grab the reins, get the head coaching cap on and begin the journey. It’s been a miraculous story. It really is a book. It’s a fairytale. It’s a Hollywood script. It’s all those things but it’s real.”

‘™¦ Jets coach Rex Ryan, speaking to the media Monday, sidestepped the question of whether quarterback Tim Tebow asked to be taken out of the team’s wildcat package, but he did acknowledge that Tebow was not pleased about being passed over for the starting job following Mark Sanchez‘ benching.

“He was disappointed, there’s no question,” Ryan said. “He was disappointed that he was not named the starter, but with that being said, I’m not going to get into private conversations that I have with players, but it was my decision to use Jeremy Kerley in the wildcat, without question.

“But I’ll say this: I believe if Tim’s number was called, he would’ve went in and played. I don’t think there’s any doubt about that.”

Tebow is expected to be released or traded after the season.

Meanwhile, the Jets reportedly plan to demote general manager Mike Tannenbaum after the season and have started reaching out to potential replacement candidates.

‘™¦ Former Pro Bowl linebacker Joey Porter — who did his best to get under the skin of the Patriots when he played for the Steelers and Dolphins — was released from a California jail Monday after paying a $70,000 debt to the Hard Rock Casino in Las Vegas. Porter, 35, had been arrested over the weekend for allegedly writing a bad check.

Porter played 13 NFL seasons, including the last two with the Cardinals, before retiring this summer.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Dec. 25, 1971, the Bruins played on Christmas Day for the final time (that was the last year the NHL had Christmas games), posting a 5-1 victory over the Flyers led by a goal and three assists from which forward?

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Read More: Chuck Pagano, Joey Porter, Rex Ryan, Tim Tebow
Colts shave heads to support ailing coach Chuck Pagano 11.07.12 at 4:42 pm ET
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The Colts are doing something special as a team to honor their ill coach Chuck Pagano.

As a sign of solidarity, about a dozen players shaved their heads after Tuesday’s practice. Pagano lost his hair while undergoing treatment for leukemia.

Players who shaved their heads included kicker (and former Patriot) Adam Vinatieri, defensive end Cory Redding, Pro Bowl safety Antoine Bethea and punter Pat McAfee.

Pagano gave an emotional postgame speech to players following their defeat of the Dolphins this past week.

On Monday, his physician, Dr. Larry Cripe, said Pagano was in “complete remission.”

Read More: Chuck Pagano, Indianapolis Colts, NFL, Rumor Mill
Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: NFL players vote Jets’ Rex Ryan most overrated coach 11.06.12 at 7:45 am ET
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Welcome to Tuesday’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.

TUESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NBA: Raptors at Thunder, 8 p.m. (NBA Network)
College football: Ball State at Toledo, 8 p.m. (ESPN2)
UEFA Champions League soccer: Manchester City vs. Ajax, 2:30 p.m. (FSC)

AROUND THE WEB:

‘™¦ The Sporting News conducted a midseason poll of 103 NFL players from 27 teams to determine the most overrated coach in the league. Much to Patriots fans’ delight, coming in at No. 1, named on 35 ballots, is Jets coach Rex Ryan. However, in second with 16 votes is Pats boss Bill Belichick. Andy Reid of the Eagles is third with nine votes.

Said an anonymous AFC offensive player of Ryan: “His coaching style is over the top. Some of the things he does in front of the cameras are way over the top. You put that with the New York media and he has a pretty big reputation, I guess. I don’€™t even know if you’€™d call him overrated anymore because it’€™s going to be a couple of years since he was in the AFC finals. He’€™s pretty funny, and he’€™s a pretty good coach. But not THAT good.”

The players also were asked which college coach they would most like to see in the NFL. Alabama’s Nick Saban, who was a flop with the Dolphins in 2005 and ’06, came in at No. 1 with 32 votes, followed by Ohio State’s Urban Meyer (16).

‘™¦ Chuck Pagano, on leave from the Colts while he battles leukemia, is winning that battle. Pagano’s physician on Monday said that the coach’s disease is in “complete remission.”

Pagano, who delivered an emotional locker room speech to his team after Sunday’s win over the Jets in his first return to Indianapolis’ Lucas Oil Stadium since his Sept. 26 diagnosis, is scheduled to start a second round of chemotherapy later this week.

“His [blood cell] count was great,” interim coach Bruce Arians told reporters after Pagano visited the team complex Monday. “He knows that this next [round] is going to be really tough and we’re praying for him, and he’s going to be fine.”

‘™¦ Jim Durham, who was ESPN Radio’s top play-by-play caller for NBA games, died Sunday at his home in suburban Houston at the age of 65. Durham, who had broadcast games for ESPN since 1996, called the Celtics‘ season-opening loss to the Heat last Tuesday.

The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame’s Curt Gowdy Media Award winner last year, Durham called Bulls games on radio and television from 1973-91 among his other jobs.

“The voice of champions,” Michael Jordan texted to ESPN. “I will miss him.”

‘™¦ This being election day, Yahoo! Sports has a list of 10 athletes who could be president. Among the names: Drew Brees, Jeremy Roenick, Magic Johnson, Tim Tebow, Derek Jeter and Laila Ali.

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

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Read More: Bill Belichick, Chuck Pagano, Jim Durham, Rex Ryan
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Ailing Colts coach Chuck Pagano gives emotional postgame pep talk to team 11.05.12 at 7:01 am ET
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Welcome to Monday’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.

MONDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NFL: Eagles at Saints, 8:30 p.m. (ESPN; WEEI-FM)
NBA: Timberwolves at Nets, 7:30 p.m. (NBA TV)
Premier League Soccer: Southampton at West Bromwich Albion, 3 p.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

‘™¦ The surprising Colts are 5-3 after Sunday’s win over the Dolphins, and the fact that they’re doing so well while their coach is off battling leukemia is even more impressive.

Chuck Pagano, weakened by chemotherapy treatment, paid a visit to the locker room after Sunday’s game and delivered an emotional pep talk.

“As I mentioned before the game, you guys are living a vision, not circumstances,” Pagano told the players. “Because you know where [the prognosticators] had us in the beginning, every last one of them, but you refused to live in circumstances. And you decided consciously as a team, as a family, to living a vision. And that’s why you bring things home the way you brought it home today. That’s why you’re champions, and well on your way.

“I’ve got circumstances. I understand it. You understand it. It’s already beat. ‘€¦ My vision, I’m living to see two more daughters get married, dance at their weddings and hoist the Lombardi Trophy several times.”

‘™¦ Panthers running back DeAngelo Williams helped his team to a victory in Washington on Sunday, and he explained that part of Carolina’s motivation was Washington’s decision to make the contest a “homecoming” game, welcoming back 150 former players and wearing throwback uniforms.

“That was definitely motivating,” Williams said. “I mean, you don’€™t say you’€™re going to have a homecoming in the National Football League. I mean, you do it in college. It’€™s [against] one of those teams that’€™s just terrible. You don’€™t book a good team for homecoming. ‘€¦ I don’€™t know if they had a dance or anything; I just know you don’€™t give a team extra motivation by putting that on your program, just blatantly coming out and saying, ‘You’€™re our homecoming game.’ ”

Added Williams later on Twitter: I’ve never been more insulted in the nil until today!

‘™¦ The New York City Marathon was canceled due to the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy, but that did not deter thousands of runners, who showed up Sunday morning in Central Park to run an adjusted version of the 26.2-mile race.

“A lot of people just wanted to finish what they started,” explained Lance Svendsen, who organized an alternative marathon called Run Anyway that drew about 600 participants.

Meanwhile, other would-be marathoners took a ferry to Staten Island to help people in the neighborhoods that suffered the most damage.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Nov. 5, 1946, the newly founded Celtics played their first-ever home game, which was delayed after which player damaged the backboard during warmups?

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Read More: Andrew Luck, Chuck Pagano, DeAngelo Williams, New York City Marathon