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Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Knicks owner James Dolan ‘by no means an expert in basketball,’ will defer to Phil Jackson 03.19.14 at 8:11 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: Heat at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Pacers at Knicks, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Spurs at Lakers, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, Cal Poly vs. Texas Southern, 6:40 p.m. (truTV)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, Iowa vs. Tennessee, 9:10 p.m. (truTV)
College basketball: NIT, Illinois at Boston University, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: NIT, Vermont at Georgia, 8 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: NIT, UC Irvine at SMU, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: NIT, LSU at San Francisco, 10 p.m. (ESPNU)
NHL: Blues at Blackhawks, 8 p.m. (NBCSN)
MLB preseason: Pirates at Red Sox, 7 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
MLB preseason: Rays at Orioles, 1 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB preseason: Angels at White Sox, 4 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB preseason: Cubs at Rockies, 9:40 p.m. (MLB Network)
Soccer: UEFA Champions, Olympiakos at Manchester United, 3:30 p.m. (FS1)

AROUND THE WEB:

Phil Jackson is taking control of the Knicks, and owner James Dolan (left) says he's happy to stay out of the way. (AP)

Phil Jackson is taking control of the Knicks, and owner James Dolan (left) says he’s happy to stay out of the way. (AP)

– The Knicks introduced new president Phil Jackson to great fanfare Tuesday with controversial owner James Dolan saying he is “willingly and gratefully” ceding authority to allow Jackson the space to fix the team.

Making a rare media appearance, Dolan acknowledged what New York fans have known for years: he’s no whiz when it comes to running a basketball team. Although he admittedly has meddled in basketball decisions in the past, he said he’s prepared to defer to those who are more qualified.

“The two gentlemen to my left [Jackson and general manager Steve Mills] are the experts in basketball. I am by no means an expert in basketball,” Dolan said. “I’m a fan, but my expertise lies in managing companies and new businesses. So I think I’m a little out of my element when it comes to the team.”

The 68-year-old Jackson, who signed a five-year deal worth a reported $60 million, said he plans to focus on “the kind of culture that’s built” and improve the experience for the players.

“The organization has suffered in the past few years from things I think have just been created, by press, by lack of continuity, by lack of solidarity,” Jackson said.

Jackson has won 13 NBA titles — two as a player with the Knicks and the rest as a coach with the Bulls and Lakers — and he said leading New York to a title would the perfect way to go out.

Said Jackson: “This would be the pinnacle, a capstone, on the remarkable career that I’ve had.”

– Former Pistons standout Ben Wallace was sentenced to a year in jail — but only ordered to serve two days of the sentence — for leaving the scene of a car accident last month.

An SUV registered to Wallace crashed into a fence outside a Virginia home last month, taking out a 20-foot section of the fence.

“It was dark, but it’€™s clear from here I saw one person trying to fight to get out of the car,” homeowner Silverio Acosta told WTVR-TV. Acosta said he saw the man smash pieces of wood against the fence after exiting the car “because he was angry.”

Wallace, who pleaded guilty to drunken driving and weapon possession charges related to an incident in the Detroit area three years ago, pleased no contest Tuesday.

– No 16 seed has ever knocked off a 1 seed in the NCAA tournament, although there have been two one-point games (Georgetown’s escape vs. Princeton, and Oklahoma’s victory over East Tennessee State, both in 1989) and an overtime contest (Michigan State over Murray State in 1990).

The Wall Street Journal takes a look at how such an upset can happen, noting that teams that came close were able to slow down the game and/or use a solid zone defense.

Three No. 15 seeds have knocked off No. 2 seeds in the last two years, but the 16 seeds are 0-116 since the tournament expanded in 1985, despite teams from smaller leagues closing the gap on the power conferences.

Said TNT analyst Charles Barkley: “It’s going to happen at some point soon.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On March 19, 1972, which Bruins player scored two power-play goals in a 7-3 victory over the visiting Minnesota North Stars and in the process set an NHL single-season record with 27 power-play goals (he finished the season with 28)?

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Read More: Ben Wallace, James Dolan, NCAA tournament, Phil Jackson
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Jason Collins receives warm welcome in Nets debut 02.24.14 at 7:47 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:
NBA: Celtics at Jazz, 9 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Mavericks at Knicks, 7:30 p.m. (NBATV)
College basketball: Syracuse at Maryland, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Oklahoma State at TCU, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Oklahoma at Kansas, 9 p.m. (ESPN)

AROUND THE WEB:

Jason Collins played for the Nets in Sunday night’s win over the Lakers, becoming the first openly gay player in one of the four major professional sports leagues in the United States, after signing a 10-day contract earlier in the day.

Collins received a brief but warm round of applause from the crowd at Los Angeles’ Staples Center when he checked in during the second quarter. He played a total of 10 1/2 minutes, recording two rebounds and five fouls.

“I know that I can play in the NBA and it felt good to be out there tonight,” Collins said after the game. “Conditioning-wise, I felt good. I don’t think I got tired. It was a lot of fun to get back out on the court and set screens, hard fouls. Didn’t take any charges tonight — that’ll change. I’ll get in position next time. As far as basketball timing, it’s going to take at least a couple of practices.”

Teammate Paul Pierce, who had 25 points and seven rebounds to help the Nets end an 11-game losing streak against the Lakers, offered support for the 12-year veteran. Pierce also played alongside Collins on the Celtics last season.

“In the society we live in, you know this was going to happen eventually,” Pierce said. “He is a guy who’s going to be able to open the door for so many athletes — not only in America but around the world — to feel comfortable to come out and not feel embarrassed and feel like they’re welcomed in the sports world. It isn’t about race, gender or sexuality. It’s about being a part of a team and caring for one another. That’s all that matters at the end of the day.”

NBA commissioner Adam Silver also expressed support for Collins.

“Jason told us that his goal was to earn another contract with an NBA team,” Silver said in a statement. “Today, I want to commend him on achieving his goal. I know everyone in the NBA family is excited for him and proud that our league fosters an inclusive and respectful environment.”

– The debate continues about the charge call in Saturday night’s showdown between Syracuse and Duke, with even veteran officials unsure of whether the call was correct after watching slow-motion replays.

One thing no one is debating: Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim did not handle the situation well, storming onto the court and swearing at referee Tony Greene, leading to his ejection and effectively ending his team’s chances of winning. Syracuse was trailing by just two points with 10 seconds left when Boeheim lost his cool.

“I just thought that was the worst call of the year, that’s all,” Boeheim said after the game. “I just hate to see the game decided on that call.”

The ACC announced Sunday that Boeheim would not receive further punishment.

– The Knicks continue to underwhelm, and the people of New York aren’t happy about it.

One fan, a 19-year-old who is the son of a New York City police officer, allegedly tweeted death threats against Knicks owner James Dolan, leading to his arrest for harassment, according to the New York Daily News.

Police told the Daily News that Johnny Giamella tweeted, “James Dolan, it’s officially time to die,” and, “Death to James Dolan.” He also posted pictures of himself holding a gun.

Dolan’s security chief saw the tweets and notified police.

Meanwhile, Ron Artest‘s opinionated brother, Daniel, sent out a series of tweets blasting the organization after learning that the team was in the process of buying out Ron’s contract. Daniel called Dolan “the worst owner in sports,” and also wrote, “Mike Woodson is trash as a coach.”

Added Daniel: “Ron wanted to be a Knick his entire career and his dream became a nightmare. Knicks need an overhaul. Top to bottom.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Feb. 24, 1917, which Red Sox legend was sold to the Indians?

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Read More: James Dolan, Jason Collins, Jim Boeheium, Ron Artest
Friday’s Morning Mashup: Flyers chairman Ed Snider calls NHL’s Olympic break ‘ridiculous’ 02.07.14 at 8:00 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:
NBA: Kings at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Trail Blazers at Pacers, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Timberwolves at Pelicans, 9:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Seton Hall at Villanova, 7 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Manhattan at Canisius, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: DePaul at Creighton, 9 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Detroit at Valparaiso, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Marshall at Southern Mississippi, 9:30 p.m. (CBSSN)
NHL: Rangers at Penguins, 7 p.m. (NHL Network)
College hockey: Merrimack at Boston College, 7 p.m. (WEEI-AM)
College hockey: Western Michigan at Miami (Ohio), 7 p.m. (CBSSN)
College hockey: Maine at Notre Dame, 7:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
Olympics: Opening ceremony, 7:30 p.m. (NBC)

AROUND THE WEB:

Ed Snider

Ed Snider

– As the NHL prepares to take two-plus weeks off so that its star players can compete in the Sochi Olympics, at least one high-level executive is speaking out against the break.

Flyers chairman Ed Snider voiced his disapproval after Thursday’s 3-1 victory over the Avalanche.

“It’s ridiculous, the whole thing is ridiculous,” Snider said. “I don’t care if it was in Philadelphia, I wouldn’t want to break up the league. I think it’s ridiculous to take three weeks off, or however long it is, in the middle of the season. It screws up everything. ‘€¦ How can anybody be happy breaking up their season. No other league does it, why should we? There’s no benefit to us whatsoever. If anything I can only see negatives.”

Added Snider of the Olympics: “I hate them.”

However, reminded that the Flyers won the Stanley Cup reached the Stanley Cup finals during the last Olympic year (2010), Snider laughed.

“Maybe I like them,” he joked. “I forget about that.”

Snider also isn’t happy with Team Canada’s snub of Flyers forward Claude Giroux, who scored an empty-net goal Thursday, the same day Hockey Canada executive director Steve Yzerman chose Lightning forward Martin St. Louis to fill the roster spot vacated by the injured Steven Stamkos. Yzerman also is the Lightning’s general manager.

“It’s a farce,” Snider said. “[Giroux is] one of the best players in the game. It’s ridiculous. He’s better than half the guys on that team.

“Anybody that things Claude Giroux doesn’t belong on the Canadian team, they don’t know anything about hockey as far as I’m concerned. It’s politics, to a certain degree. He had to pick his own guy. His own guy is good, but Claude is better.”

– The Knicks continue to plod along, with a record of 19-30 in a woefully bad Eastern Conference, and it’s not sitting well with controversial owner James Dolan. According to a report in the New York Daily News, Dolan visited the locker room following Wednesday’s loss to the Trail Blazers and asked Carmelo Anthony if coach Mike Woodson should be fired.

Anthony, who scored 26 points Wednesday but missed all five of his shots in the fourth quarter, is said to be sensitive to the fact that he could be viewed as a “coach-killer.”

“There may be players that have a problem with Woody and want to blame him, but Carmelo isn’t one of them,” a person close to Anthony told the Daily News. “If Carmelo has tuned out Woody or doesn’t want him as a coach, why did he score 62 points two weeks ago? Why was he Player of the Month in January?”

On the other hand, Tyson Chandler has publicly questioned Woodson, and the center reportedly has grown close to team president Steve Mills.

Woodson, appearing on ESPN New York radio Thursday, acknowledged that it’s been a trying season.

“This year has been, for me, it’s been kind of a disaster from a coaching standpoint in trying to get players to compete and play at a high level,” he said. “That’s the frustrating part about it, because I know we’re better than what we’ve shown and we’ve still got a chance.”

The Nets are 12-4 in 2014 following Thursday’s 103-89 victory over the short-handed Spurs, improving their season record to 22-25, but TNT analyst Charles Barkley is not impressed.

“I don’t think they’re any good at all,” Barkley said on a conference call with reporters earlier Thursday. “Listen, you’ve only got two teams in the East, you’ve got the Heat and you’ve got the Pacers. I actually think probably the Washington Wizards are the third-best team in the Eastern Conference.

“I could get on here and lie to you, but listen, it’s the Heat and the Pacers. Nobody else is any good ‘€¦ or worth talking about, to be honest with you.”

Barkley offered little hope for a turnaround from point guard Deron Williams, who has not been the same since being traded from the Jazz in February 2011. A three-time All-Star in Utah, Williams has struggled with injuries and inconsistency since. He’s been slowed by ankle injuries this season and admitted Saturday that his confidence “is not my highest” after shooting 3-for-12 against the Pacers.

“Deron Williams has been hurt a lot the last couple of years. He’s never going to get back to Utah,” Barkley said of the 29-year-old. “His best days are behind him.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Feb. 7, 1999, which Patriots defensive player was named co-MVP of the Pro Bowl after helping the AFC to a 23-10 victory?

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Read More: Carmelo Anthony, Charles Barkley, Ed Snider, James Dolan
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Broncos QB Peyton Manning scheduled for MRI on ankle following win over Chargers 11.11.13 at 7:53 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: Dolphins at Buccaneers, 8:30 p.m. (ESPN; WEEI-FM)
NBA: Magic at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Nuggets at Jazz, 9 p.m. (NBA TV)
NHL: Lightning at Bruins, 1 p.m. (NESN)
College basketball: Kent State at Temple, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: UMKC at Creighton, 8 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Colorado State at Gonzaga, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: BYU at Stanford, 11 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Western Kentucky at Wichita State, 1 a.m. Tuesday (ESPN2)
College basketball: Akron at Saint Mary’s, 3 a.m. Tuesday (ESPN2)
College basketball: New Mexico State at Hawaii, 5 a.m. Tuesday (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

Peyton Manning

Peyton Manning

• The Broncos won their first game without coach John Fox, who is recovering from heart surgery, but it ended with a scare.

Peyton Manning re-injured his right ankle while being hit by Corey Liuget in the closing minutes of Sunday’s 28-20 victory over the Chargers in San Diego. Although he remained in the game, Manning limped out of the stadium and said he would have tests to determine the extent of the injury.

“Pretty sore,” Manning said of the ankle, which has been a source of trouble for him for a month. “They kind of got me twice in that lower area. I felt better coming into the game after the bye week, but pretty sore. I’ll get an MRI [Monday], so I’ll know a little more then.”

Manning, who threw for 330 yards and four touchdowns with no interceptions, originally injured the ankle last month and aggravated it the following week. He said he’s likely to suit up for Sunday night’s matchup with the undefeated Chiefs.

“I certainly plan on it, yeah,” he said. “I had [an MRI] a couple of weeks ago. I took a couple of hits today, so just kind of an update to see what it says. I’m hoping for no change.”

• A Chargers tailgater received a ticket for throwing a football in the parking lot at Qualcomm Stadium before a game last month.

Jesse Unger, 27, was approached by police and handed a citation, and while he says the officers told him it was for $60, he discovered online that it actually was $280.

Unger took the matter to court last week, and the judge agreed with Unger that it was ridiculous. He suspended the fine after Unger pleaded guilty to “throwing the football.”

“I couldn’t believe that I was going to admit to something that has no business being considered a crime,” he said.

Then, according to Unger, the judge complained about the Chargers’ lack of production in the running game.

The San Diego Union-Tribune investigated and determined that three other NFL venues have a similar police: Tennessee’s LP Field, Indianapolis’ Lucas Oil Stadium and Seattle’s CenturyLink Field.

• The Knicks were routed by the Spurs on Sunday, 120-89, but owner James Dolan remains confident in his team. Either that, or he’s setting up coach Mike Woodson to take the fall.

While performing with his band, JD & The Straight Shot, at the Cutting Room in Manhattan, Dolan reportedly said of Wednesdays game against the Hawks: “We’re going to win the next game. That’s a guarantee.”

This came after fans started a brief “Fire Woodson” chant during Sunday’s game.

Said Woodson when asked about the fans’ reaction: “I don’t worry about that stuff. I’ve got to coach them.”

Woodson did acknowledge that his team played like one with no pride.

“No, not at all,” he said. “It’s something we’ll address [Monday] at the practice facility. It’s my job to push them through it and get them over the hump.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Nov. 11, 1999, which Red Sox skipper was named American League Manager of the Year?

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Read More: James Dolan, mike woodson, Peyton Manning,
Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Heat fan sues Spurs for resting top players 01.16.13 at 7:41 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: Hornets at Celtics, 8 p.m. (CSNNE; WEEI-FM)
NBA: Rockets at Mavericks, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Heat at Warriors, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Miami at Boston College, 7 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-AM)
College basketball: NC State at Maryland, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Michigan State at Penn State, 7 p.m. (Big Ten Network)
College basketball: Pittsburgh at Villanova, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Xavier at St. Bonaventure, 8 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: West Virginia at Iowa State, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Purdue at Nebraska, 9 p.m. (Big Ten Network)
College basketball: Kansas State at TCU, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: UNLV at San Diego State, 10 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Saint Mary’s at BYU, 11 p.m. (ESPNU)

AROUND THE WEB:

Spurs coach Gregg Popovich's decision to rest four key players for a November game against the Heat did not sit well with the league or fans. (AP)

♦ A lawyer from Miami is suing the Spurs for sending four top players home prior to a game against the Heat on Nov. 29, which he claims violates the state’s deceptive and fair trade practices law. Larry McGuinness filed a class-action suit in Miami-Dade County claiming Spurs coach Gregg Popovich “intentionally and surreptitiously” sent home Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili and Danny Green to give them some rest, causing McGuinness and other fans to suffer “economic damages” because they paid a premium price for tickets.

“It was like going to Morton’s Steakhouse and paying $63 for porterhouse and they bring out cube steak,” said McGuinness, who bought his ticket on the resale market. “That’s exactly what happened here.”

NBA commissioner David Stern apologized to fans after the game (a 105-100 Miami win), calling it “unacceptable,” and fined the Spurs $250,000.

Popovich acknowledged he was not doing right by fans when he said at the time: “If I was taking my 6-year-old son and daughter to the game, I would want them to see everybody. And if they weren’t there, I’d be disappointed.”

However, Popovich later made it clear he believes he did what’s best for his team: “I’ve done it before and I’ll do it again, I’m sure,” he said.

♦ The Knicks are in London for a game against the Pistons on Thursday, but the talk Tuesday was about owner James Dolan‘s decision to have audio technicians at both ends of the Madison Square Garden court over the weekend to tape all of Carmelo Anthony‘s on-court conversations. Reportedly, Dolan was trying to protect Anthony following the controversy over Kevin Garnett‘s alleged insult about Anthony’s wife during a recent game that led to the Knicks forward getting a one-game suspension for trying to confront Garnett after the game.

“I don’t care about the microphones,” Anthony said upon his arrival in London. “I wasn’t aware of it. I found out on the plane.”

Added Anthony: “I don’t think the mikes are going to stop what goes on out on the court. But it was funny when I heard it. No, I wasn’t upset. Not at all.”

♦ The former media director for the Syracuse athletic department pleaded not guilty Tuesday to four counts of second-degree unlawful surveillance for secretly videotaping male athletes in the locker room shower. Roger Springfield, whose real name is Roger Cahak, was released on his own recognizance and ordered to return next Tuesday.

Springfield was charged with videotaping football, lacrosse and soccer players four times, dating back to 2010. A total of 14 videos were found along with still images, but the charges were limited to the most recent four videos as the others fell outside the statute of limitations.

Springfield, a 57-year-old married father of three, was fired in the fall after a Syracuse athletics department employee discovered one of the videos.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Jan. 16, 1974, which Bruin became the eighth player in NHL history to record 450 goals when he scored in a 5-5 tie with the Blackhawks in Chicago?

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Read More: Carmelo Anthony, Gregg Popovich, James Dolan, syracuse
Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Knicks owner James Dolan reportedly tapes Carmelo Anthony’s on-court conversations 01.15.13 at 8:01 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: Trail Blazers at Nuggets, 9 p.m. (NBATV)
College basketball: Tennessee at Kentucky, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Wake Forest at Clemson, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Notre Dame at St. John’s, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Mississippi at Vanderbilt, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Wisconsin at Indiana, 9 p.m. (ESPN)

AROUND THE WEB:

Carmelo Anthony

♦ According to multiple reports out of New York, Knicks owner James Dolan had audio technicians stationed at both ends of the Madison Square Garden court during the team’s two weekend games holding parabolic microphones designed to capture everything said by and to Carmelo Anthony.

Anthony recently was suspended one game for his postgame altercation with Kevin Garnett that began when the two exchanged insults on the court. Apparently, Dolan wanted a tape of every conversation Anthony had — perhaps so that he could vindicate the player if he’s involved in another confrontation, although the specific reason is unclear.

Said coach Mike Woodson on Monday: “I heard about it, but I don’t know about all of that, I don’t know where it came from.”

Said a league executive to the New York Post: “I’m sure they were trying to placate Carmelo Anthony over anything else. But it would [tick] me off if I didn’t know about it.”

♦ Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel‘s parents got a pep talk from Texas A&M athletic director Eric Hyman recently, with the AD encouraging the freshman quarterback’s family to be more careful with his public persona.

Manziel, who was arrested last summer after he showed false identification following a fight outside a bar, tweeted a picture of himself holding a wad of cash at an Oklahoma casino last month, and a day later the 20-year-old was photographed partying at a Dallas bar.

“I told them he’s no longer a freshman, and he’s no longer a sophomore, junior or senior,” Hyman said Sunday. “He is a ‘Heisman.’ … It’s [about] education, and we’ve got to help the family and Johnny with the transition into being a Heisman award-winner. There are things you have to learn, and we have to help him with that.”

Said Manziel last week: “I’ve got to learn from [things] and move on, and make sure I don’t make some of the same mistakes.”

Tim Tebow‘s brother, Peter, took pleasure in the Broncos’ 38-35 overtime loss to the Ravens on Saturday. Apparently bitter over how Denver shipped his brother to New York following his memorable season in 2011, Peter tweeted after the game: Am I the only one in Denver who’s happy right now?

After the tweet made its way around the web, Peter apologized on Monday.

Tweeted Tim’s older brother: My comment after the game was uncalled for. I may root for another team but I should never gloat about anyone’s misfortune. I’m truly sorry.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Jan. 15, 1987, which Bruins forward recorded an assist in a 6-4 victory over the Hartford Whalers to become the 35th player in NHL history with 500 career assists?

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Read More: Carmelo Anthony, James Dolan, Johnny Manziel, Tim Tebow
Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Rangers coach John Tortorella critical of owner James Dolan’s optimistic talk 01.18.12 at 7:40 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: Raptors at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. (NESN)
NBA: Mavericks at Clippers, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Cincinnati at UConn, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Clemson at Miami, 7 p.m. (NESN)
College basketball: Texas at Kansas State, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

♦ Rangers coach John Tortorella is known for speaking his mind and not backing down to anyone, and apparently it doesn’t matter even when dealing with the team’s owner. After James Dolan told the media Tuesday that the first-place Rangers were “pretty close” to winning a Stanley Cup, Tortorella called out his boss.

“Right now up to this point we’ve done a pretty good job — we just have to go about our business,” Tortorella said after the Rangers shut out the Predators, 3-0, and Dolan had left the room on Madison Square Garden’s fifth floor. “Like I have my owner up here talking about a Stanley Cup. That’s a bunch of bull—-. We need to take one game at a time.”

♦ Oilers forward Taylor Hall slipped on a puck during pregame warmups Tuesday night and ended up colliding with two teammates and getting a skate across his face. Hall, who was not wearing a helmet, was taken to a hospital for stitches above his eye. The No. 1 pick in 2010, Hall was taken one spot before the Bruins grabbed Tyler Seguin. Hall has scored six goals in his past nine games.

“This is one of those fluky things. It just happens,” Oilers coach Tom Renney said. “Not much we can do about it.”

A man was shot and killed at a restaurant inside a Vancouver hotel where the U.S. women’s soccer team is staying as they compete in an Olympic qualifying tournament. A team spokesman said no players witnessed the shooting.

Tweeted goalie Hope Solo: Saved by our instant yoga session. Was about to walk to starbucks when all hell broke loose in the lobby of our hotel! Life is precious…

♦ Former Titans coach Jeff Fisher, named last week as coach of the Rams, was first at the scene of a serious car crash Sunday in Brentwood, Tenn., and aided two injured teenagers until medical personnel arrived. On a 911 tape, a woman who called for help can be heard recognizing Fisher. “Hi, coach Fisher. Hi. We need you. Right now!” she said. “There’s coach Fisher. That’s Jeff Fisher, from the Titans. So hold on. We need him. Immediately.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Jan. 18, 1973, the Red Sox signed their first designated hitter, with the position set to debut that season. Which veteran was obtained to fill that role?

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Read More: Hope Solo, James Dolan, John Tortorella, Taylor Hall
Friday’s Morning Mashup: NBA players confront fans during summer league games 08.05.11 at 7:56 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.

WHAT’S HAPPENING LOCALLY FRIDAY:
MLB: Yankees at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. (NESN; WEEI)

SATURDAY:
MLB: Yankees at Red Sox, 4:10 p.m. (FOX; WEEI)
MLS: Chivas USA at Revolution, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE)

SUNDAY:
MLB: Yankees at Red Sox, 8:05 p.m. (ESPN; WEEI)

AROUND THE WEB:

♦ Anyone who has seen video of summer league basketball could tell that it was only a matter of time before a confrontation erupted between a player and a fan. Fans at games ring the edges of the court and often walk onto the court after big plays to celebrate, frequently making contact with the players.

While Kevin Durant was being lauded for his memorable performance in New York, Timberwolves forward Michael Beasley did not enjoy being taunted about his failure to stop Durant. During a game at Dyckman Park, Beasley confronted a fan who was heckling him, pushing the fan in the face before security stepped (video here).

Even Durant had issues with hecklers this week. Here’s video from a game at New York’s Pro City in which Durant responds to a fan who was riding him.

Meanwhile, in San Francisco Thursday night, Lakers forward Matt Barnes reportedly punched someone in the face during a game there.

♦ Knicks owner James Dolan, who apparently does not mind being the butt of jokes, plays in a blues band. He wrote a song called “Fix the Knicks” that his band played last week before an Aretha Franklin concert on Long Island. An excerpt from the song: “Doing my best, yes, that’s my promise. I check with my friends, call Isiah Thomas.” The audience groaned at the line.

♦ It might not be a major problem in Boston — witness the Red Sox’ record attendance Thursday night — but declining ticket revenue is a concern nationally in all of the major sports. At Slate.com, Neil deMause looks at the situation and concludes we’re headed for a two-tiered system in which some teams and events can name their price while the majority of tickets go at bargain-basement prices on the secondary market.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Aug. 5, 1979, which Red Sox pitcher became the first player born and raised in the Netherlands to record a major league victory?

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Read More: Isiah Thomas, James Dolan, Matt Barnes, Michael Beasley
Report: Carmelo Anthony expected to meet with Nets and Knicks this weekend 02.18.11 at 8:52 am ET
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Carmelo Anthony is expected to meet face-to-face with both Madison Square Garden chairman James Dolan and Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov this weekend in Los Angeles, according to the New York Daily News.

The article said this is expected to be the final step before the Nuggets trade Anthony to either the Knicks or Nets. Anthony has said publicly that the Knicks are his top choice.

The Daily News reported Tuesday that the Nuggets would likely ask the Knicks for forward Danilo Gallinari, point guard Raymond Felton, another starter and a first-round pick in return for Anthony and point guard Chauncey Billups.

Read More: Carmelo Anthony, James Dolan, Mikhail Prokhorov, Rumor Mill
Report: Lakers have talked to Nuggets about Carmelo Anthony 02.09.11 at 8:22 am ET
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After months of rumors that Carmelo Anthony was going to end up with either the Nets or Knicks, another team reportedly has entered the mix.

Chris Broussard of ESPN reports that the Lakers have had preliminary discussions with the Nuggets about acquiring the star forward. The Lakers’ package would be centered around center Andrew Bynum.

Broussard writes that the Lakers front office is in disagreement when it comes to trading Bynum, though. Jim Buss, the son of owner Jerry Buss, has repeatedly resisted attempts to move Bynum in the past.

The article says that a Lakers source told ESPNLosAngeles.com that the deal won’t happen. The New York Daily News cited an unnamed source saying the Lakers had already shot down an offer from the Nuggets that included Bynum. Still, Broussard reports the deal is not dead and quotes an unnamed source saying, “The Lakers are definitely an option.”

Meanwhile, the New York Daily News also reported that Knicks owner James Dolan was personally getting involved in the talks in an effort to move things along.

Read More: Andrew Bynum, Carmelo Anthony, James Dolan, Rumor Mill