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Report: Peyton Manning plans to return to Broncos, pending physical 01.21.15 at 2:01 pm ET
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According to a report in The Denver Post, Peyton Manning will return to the Broncos next season if he passes his annual physical examination.

Manning, 38, was noncommittal following his team’s loss to the Colts in the AFC divisional round on Jan. 11. Reportedly slowed by a leg injury, Manning struggled as the Broncos suffered the upset. Coach John Fox was fired shortly thereafter, replaced by Gary Kubiak.

Manning missed the entire 2011 season, his last as a member of the Colts, following neck surgery.

The Broncos need to know Manning’s status before March 10, when his $19 million base salary becomes fully guaranteed.

Read More: Peyton Manning,
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Free agent RHP Max Scherzer reportedly has 7-year deal with Nationals 01.19.15 at 7:55 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 Clippers, 3:30 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Pistons at Hawks, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Mavericks at Grizzlies, 5 p.m. (NBA TV)
NBA: Bulls at Cavaliers, 7:30 p.m. (TNT; WEEI-AM)
NBA: Lakers at Suns, 10 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: Pittsburgh at Duke, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Texas at TCU, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Oklahoma at Kansas, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Florida State at Clemson, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Villanova at Georgetown, 9 p.m. (FS1)
NHL: Flyers at Islanders, 1 p.m. (NHL Network)
NHL: Avalanche at Blues, 8 p.m. (NBCSN)
Soccer: Premier League, West Bromwich at Everton, 2:55 p.m. (NBCSN)
Tennis: Australian Open, 9 p.m., 3 a.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

— According to multiple reports, the Nationals have agreed to a seven-year contract with Tigers free agent pitcher Max Scherzer worth more than $180 million.

The Washington Post quoted a course as saying the deal is “complicated” and might not be announced immediately.

The Red Sox, Yankees, Dodgers and Tigers reportedly were not among the finalists in the running to land the 30-year-old, who went 18-5 with a 3.15 ERA last season, one year after winning the AL Cy Young with a 21-3 record and 2.90 ERA. In seven seasons with the Diamondbacks and Tigers, Scherzer is 91-50 with a 3.58 ERA.

Scherzer turned down a reported $160 million offer from the Tigers last spring, with agent Scott Boras eyeing a record deal for the right-hander.

According to ESPN’s Jayson Stark, the Nationals will have to trade starting pitcher Jordan Zimmerman and possibly shortstop Ian Desmond in order to clear up enough money to afford Scherzer.

Peyton Manning, nursing a right thigh injury, told the league he will not play in next weekend’s Pro Bowl in Arizona.

Manning has received 14 Pro Bowl selections, the most every for a quarterback, and he said he takes the recognition “very seriously.” He has never missed a Pro Bowl except when he was preparing for a Super Bowl.

“I’ve believed that, if healthy, it’s a player’s responsibility to play in the game because of what it means to be voted in by your peers and the fans,” Manning said. “I’m disappointed that I’m just not healthy enough this year to be part of it. It’s going to be tough not being down there with the other guys, but it hasn’t had enough time to heal.”

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Read More: Max Scherzer, Peyton Manning, Robert Allenby,
Top Boston Sports Stories of 2014, No. 6: Patriots lose to Broncos in AFC championship game 12.28.14 at 10:21 am ET
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Over the final days of the year, WEEI.com will count down the top 14 stories of 2014 in Boston sports. This is No. 6: Patriots lose to Broncos in AFC championship game. To read other stories in this series, click here.

Alfonzo Dennard and the Patriots couldn't keep up with Demaryius Thomas and the Broncos in the AFC title game. (Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Alfonzo Dennard and the Patriots couldn’t keep up with Demaryius Thomas and the Broncos in the AFC title game. (Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

The Patriots’ 2013 season was not quite like the ones fans are used to.

Sure, New England boasted a solid 12-4 record, clinched the AFC East well before season’s end, earned a first-round bye and breezed past its divisional-round opponent to reach its third straight AFC championship game. But this Patriots team limped its way through the season as a group pillaged by losses to a number of key players.

It started with tight end Aaron Hernandez, who was arrested weeks before training camp and subsequently released by the team before being charged with murder. But that was just the start of the Pats‘ woes, as the likes of Vince Wilfork, Jerod Mayo and Rob Gronkowski were lost for the season with major injuries.

However, fans still sought that coveted fourth Vince Lombardi trophy after the Patriots won five of their last six regular-season games to win their fifth straight division title, then crushed the Colts, 43-22, led by 166 yards and four touchdowns from LeGarrette Blount.

Up next, as expected, was Peyton Manning and the top-seeded Broncos. It would be the 15th time Tom Brady and Manning would square off, the fourth time they would meet in the playoffs and their second matchup of the season.

The Patriots rallied from a 24-0 halftime deficit to beat the Broncos, 34-31, in overtime at Gillette Stadium in the regular season. But with a 13-3 record to end the year, the Broncos hosted the Jan. 19 meeting for the right to play in the Super Bowl.

With all that was unique and difficult about the Patriots’ season, one thing was similar to the year before: It ended with a disappointing loss in the conference title game.

This time, the Broncos manhandled the Patriots defense for 507 total yards in a 26-16 beatdown in a game that wasn’t as close as the scoreboard read.

“You can’t win when you can’t get off the field,” defensive end Rob Ninkovich said after the game. “That’s basic fundamental football. They do a good job of keeping the sticks moving with various formations.”

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Read More: Aqib Talib, Bill Belichick, Demaryius Thomas, Peyton Manning
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Jets CB Dimitri Patterson returns to team after going AWOL 08.25.14 at 7:34 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:
MLB: Red Sox at Blue Jays, 7:07 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
MLB: Yankees at Royals, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: Premier League, Liverpool at Manchester City, 2:55 p.m. (NBCSN)
Tennis: US Open, 11 a.m. (Tennis Channel), 1 p.m. (ESPN), 6 p.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

Dimitri Patterson

Dimitri Patterson

— Jets cornerback Dimitri Patterson met with team brass on Sunday night after failing to show up for Friday night’s game against the Giants and having no communication with the team for about 48 hours.

General manager John Idzik said during a conference call prior to Sunday’s meeting that while Patterson had not returned messages from himself and coach Rex Ryan, Patterson’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, let them know earlier Sunday that the player was physically OK, although the reason for his disappearance was not made clear.

“I’d like to talk to him so we could figure out what’s behind it,” Idzik said.

Patterson, who signed a one-year, $3 million deal in April and was expected to start in the team’s depleted secondary if he was able to fight through a variety of leg injuries that slowed him down this summer, was last seen at the pregame meal Friday.

“Obviously, as the game went on, we still had major concerns for his health and where he was, but were unable to locate him,” Ryan said.

Added Idzik: “There really wasn’t any warning that we had of something like this,” Idzik said. “There was nothing to indicate this kind of behavior.”

Broncos receiver Wes Welker suffered a concussion — his third diagnosed concussion in less than a year — when he was hit by Texans safety D.J. Swearinger, and Peyton Manning was not pleased with the play.

The Denver quarterback let Swearinger know right after the play — on which Swearinger was penalized — then Manning drew a flag for taunting after he yelled at the safety following a touchdown pass on the next play.

On Sunday, Texans coach Bill O’Brien came to the defense of his player.

“D.J. was not trying to do any harm,” O’Brien said. “He was trying to make a play, make a tackle. The call was correct. What you continually have to do is show the guys on tape what a proper tackle is. It’s not leading with the head. It’s hitting with your shoulder and hitting basically between the shoulders and the waist and not above the neck area. But last night’s play was a tough one to say, ‘You were really at fault there.’ ”

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Read More: Albert Ebosse, D.J. Swearinger, Dmitri Patterson, Peyton Manning
Report: Broncos QB Peyton Manning cleared after neck exam 03.03.14 at 1:04 pm ET
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Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning was cleared to play in 2014 after having an exam on his surgically repaired neck, according to multiple reports.

Broncos executive vice president John Elway confirmed the news to ESPN.

The exam was mandated by the five-year, $96 million contract Manning signed with Denver as a free agent in 2012. Manning, 37, missed the entire 2011 season while recovering from the surgery and then was released by the Colts.

Manning set NFL records by passing for 5,477 yards and 55 touchdowns this past season. He led the Broncos to a 13-3 record and a victory over the Patriots in the AFC championship game. The Broncos were routed by the Seahawks, 43-8, in the Super Bowl.

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Monday’s Morning Mashup: Richard Sherman tweets support for Peyton Manning after Super Bowl 02.03.14 at 7:50 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: Spurs at Pelicans, 8 p.m. (NBATV)
College basketball: Notre Dame at Syracuse, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Xavier at Villanova, 7 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Hampton at Morgan State, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Georgetown at DePaul, 9 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Iowa State at Oklahoma State, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Prairie View A&M at Alabama A&M, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
NHL: Avalanche at Devils, 7:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
College hockey: Beanpot, Harvard vs. Northeastern, 5 p.m. (NESN)
College hockey: Beanpot, Boston College vs. Boston University, 8 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-AM)
Soccer: Premier League, Manchester City vs. Chelsea, 2:55 p.m. (NBCSN)

AROUND THE WEB:

— We all know how Richard Sherman feels about 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick thanks to the cornerback’s antics at the end of the NFC championship game. After Sunday’s 43-8 rout of the Broncos in the Super Bowl, however, Sherman was defending the losing QB.

When Sherman — who suffered a high ankle sprain and left Sunday’s game in the second half — got wind of Seahawks‘ fans criticism of Peyton Manning on his Twitter account, the cornerback asked for moderation.

Wrote Sherman: There is no reason to bash him on here please Seattle let’s just enjoy this one!!!! He is still a Future HOF player.

Added Sherman: Peyton is the Classiest person/player I have ever met! I could learn so much from him! Thank you for being a great Competitor and person.

 

Manning, who avoided throwing in Sherman’s direction, completed 34-of-49 passes for 280 yards and a touchdown, but he was picked off twice and had a passer rating of 73.5, far less than Seattle QB Russell Wilson (123.1). The Broncos, who had the most prolific offense in NFL history in 2013, were shut out until the final play of the third quarter.

Warren Sapp apparently ended his feud with Michael Strahan when he apologized to the former Giants defensive end over the weekend.

Sapp, who was inducted into the Hall of Fame last year, had said that Strahan was not one of the most worthy candidates this year. However, Strahan was one of the seven individuals elected Saturday.

Sapp said he apologized to Strahan when he saw him Saturday night.

“I hugged him and I wouldn’t let him go,” Sapp said on NFL Network, for whom he works as an analyst. “I said, ‘Please forgive me.’ I said, ‘Dumb Lex Luthor came to the city of Gotham and pulled Superman’s cape. How foolish could I have been, my man? Please forgive me.’

“If he tells the story any different, he’s lying to you, America, because I sure did apologize. I’m going to beg for forgiveness because there’s a party in Canton, and I promise you, I’m not going to miss it.”

— Jets quarterback Geno Smith received some advice from general manager John Idzik and coach Rex Ryan: Stay out of trouble.

Smith has been involved in a couple of embarrassing situations since the Jets’ season ended, and the team would prefer that be the last of it.

“When you’re a quarterback in the NFL and you’re a quarterback for a franchise in a big market such as New York, all eyes are on you 24/7,” Idzik told reporters at a promotional event before Sunday’s Super Bowl. “I think Geno is experiencing this first-hand. Obviously, I’ve kept in close contact with him. This is part of learning how to deal with these things.

“We’ve addressed them, he’s addressed them, so [I have] no real concerns that way. It’s just how to deal with your celebrity and the visibility that goes along with that position.”

Smith, who was at the same event, would not discuss the incident on a Virgin America airplane that caused him to leave his flight (and for which the airline apologized). Also, an Atlanta woman who claimed she had an affair with Smith posted a lewd photo on Instagram she claimed to be the QB.

“It’s not a big deal,” Smith said of his offseason issues. “I just have to continue to do things that got me here, which is be myself. I’m not a troublemaker, I’m not a bad person and I don’t do things that get me in trouble.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Feb. 3, 2002, the Patriots beat the Rams for their first Super Bowl title. Who scored the Patriots’ first touchdown?

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Read More: Geno Smith, Michael Strahan, Peyton Manning, Richard Sherman
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Broncos QB Peyton Manning squashes retirement talk 01.27.14 at 8:06 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:
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)

AROUND THE WEB:

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?

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Read More: Mike Adams, Peyton Manning, super bowl, Tom Gola
Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Broncos exec John Elway says Peyton Manning not getting enough credit 01.16.14 at 8:04 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:
NHL: Bruins at Stars, 8:30 p.m. (NESN)
NHL: Kings at Blues, 8 p.m. (NBCSN)
NBA: Nets vs. Hawks, 3 p.m. (NBATV)
NBA: Knicks at Pacers, 7 p.m. (TNT)
NBA: Thunder at Rockets, 9:30 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: Providence at St. John’s, 7 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: UConn at Memphis, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Missouri at Vanderbilt, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Houston at Louisville, 7 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Belmont at Eastern Kentucky, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Ohio State at Minnesota, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Arizona State at Arizona, 9 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: BYU at San Francisco, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Long Beach State at UC Santa Barbara, 11 p.m. (ESPNU)
Tennis: Australian Open, 11 p.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

John Elway, the Broncos legend who now serves as the team’s executive vice president of football operations, knows a thing or two about trying to win a championship to secure a legacy.

However, Elway — who quarterbacked the Broncos to two Super Bowl wins at the end of his illustrious career — says Peyton Manning shouldn’t have to beat Tom Brady‘s Patriots in Sunday’s AFC championship game and win a second Super Bowl to prove anything.

“He’s won a Super Bowl,” Elway said of Manning. “For some reason he doesn’t seem to get the credit for having won one Super Bowl already. I think maybe the comparison is Tom going to five and Peyton having been to two and winning one, that may be it.”

Added Elway: “There is no question, having been through that, I understand where Peyton is. He doesn’€™t have the monkey that he hasn’€™t won one. He has been there two times and won one. This is all about at this point in time trying to win a Super Bowl and then what that does for the organization as well as it just adds to Peyton’€™s legacy and where he is.”

Brady has a 10-4 record vs. Manning, including a 2-1 mark in the postseason. With the 2013 Broncos setting NFL records for the most prolific offense ever, it’s put added pressure on Manning to deliver a title.

“Fair or not, that’€™s the way it is,” Elway said. “As a quarterback, especially the level you’€™re at with Peyton, that’€™s what they are going to look at. If we can win a championship this year, it’€™s going to help with Peyton’€™s legacy. Even if we don’€™t, I think the year that he’€™s had this year is going to still help with his legacy. He’€™s had a tremendous year. For some reason, Peyton is not getting the credit — he’€™s been there twice and he got one. You get to the point where Peyton is, the greatness that he’€™s had, there is always someone trying to put chinks in the armor and that’€™s what they go after.”

— Lakers guard Nick Young was ejected from Wednesday’s 121-114 loss to the Suns in Phoenix for throwing a punch during a second-quarter fracas. After being hit in the face by rookie center Alex Len while going in for a layup, Young shoved Len and then swing at guard Goran Dragic‘s face. Len also was ejected.

“I just reacted and got caught up in the moment. Like anyone would have,” Young said. “It was a tough foul.”

Young also wasn’t pleased with his own team, as no one came to his defense.

“What I’m mad about is it was 1-on-5,” Young said. “I felt like if someone would have gotten in the middle of everything it wouldn’t have escalated as much. I felt bad for Dragic. He was right there. I didn’t throw [a] punch. I was trying to shove people out of my way. I was getting pushed further back. It was more trying to get out.”

— A Little League coach in California is suing one of his own players because the player threw his helmet while celebrating a home run and it hit the coach in the heel.

“At first I thought it was a joke,” the boy’s father, Joe Paris, told KCRA-TV. “Now I think it’s absurd.”

Alan Beck, who coached a Lakeside Little League team in Roseville (outside Sacramento), filed papers that the boy “carelessly threw a helmet, striking Plaintiff’s Achilles tendon and tearing it.”

Beck is seeking $500,000 for pain and suffering, and more than $100,000 for lost wages and medical bills.

“I don’t think the boy meant to harm him,” acknowledged Beck’s attorney, Gene Goldsman. “But this wasn’t a part of the game. A guy who volunteers his time to coach should not be subjected to someone who throws a helmet in the manner that he did. What the kid did, it crossed the line.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): 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: John Elway, Nick Young, Peyton Manning, Tom Brady
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Anthony Bosch details alleged PED use, bribes by Alex Rodriguez 01.13.14 at 8:07 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: Rockets at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Wizards at Bulls, 8 p.m. (NBATV)
College basketball: Syracuse at Boston College, 9 p.m. (ESPNU; WEEI-AM)
College basketball: Charleston at Northeastern, 7 p.m. (NBCSN)
College basketball: Virginia at Duke, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Texas at West Virginia, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Lafayette at Loyola (Md.), 7:30 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Kansas at Iowa State, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: Premier League, Arsenal at Aston Villa, 3 p.m. (NBCSN)
Tennis: Australian Open, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

Anthony Bosch, who ran the Florida anti-aging clinic with affiliations to Major League Baseball players, said in an interview with CBS’ “60 Minutes” Sunday night that he provided an assortment of performance-enhancing drugs to Alex Rodriguez and even injected A-Rod himself at times.

Rodriguez’s 211-game suspension was reduced to 162 games plus playoffs (the entire 2014 season) by an arbitrator Saturday, and he has indicated he will file a suit in federal court to overturn the ruling. He has denied using PEDs.

According to Bosch, Rodriguez started working with him in the summer of 2010, shortly before the Yankees slugger hit his 600th home run. Bosch said A-Rod wanted to know what Manny Ramirez used in 2008 and ’09, when he had a resurgence of power while playing for the Dodgers (although he eventually was suspended).

Bosch said he was paid $12,000 per month to supply Rodriguez with banned drugs including testosterone and human growth hormone.

Bosch detailed his links to Rodriguez, including hundreds of text messages and a document that indicates he was paid $50,000 from “A-Rod Corporation” that Bosch said was an effort to keep him quiet. The money was returned. Bosch also said people with an affiliation to Rodriguez threatened him. That led Bosch to strike a deal with MLB for security and legal assistance in exchange for his testimony.

Rodriguez’s lawyers have claimed the player’s relationship with Bosch was limited to nutrition consultations. Attorney Joe Tacopina criticized MLB for cooperating with the “60 Minutes” interview, even though Tacopina himself was interviewed on the program.

“Tonight’s further expansion of Bud Selig and Rob Manfred‘s quest to destroy Alex Rodriguez goes beyond comprehension,” Tacopina said in a statement. “In a clearly pre-orchestrated display, Selig and Manfred, having known for some time what the result of the arbitration would be (in light of Manfred sitting on the arbitration panel) put forth an unparalleled display of hubris and vindictiveness — complete with Manfred appearing in tandem with the drug dealer Tony Bosch, both in full makeup, celebrating the joint victory of Bosch’s lies and Manfred’s intimidation and payments for testimony.”

Peyton Manning is riding high after ending a personal three-game postseason losing streak and leading the Broncos to the AFC championship game against the Patriots. However, according to an ESPN report, Manning’s future could be in jeopardy.

The report indicates that Manning will have an offseason exam on his surgically repaired neck, and if there is an increased risk of injury, the quarterback will be forced to decide whether to retire.

Manning underwent fusion surgery on his neck while a member of the Colts and missed the entire 2011 season.

Last week, Manning commented about his future, saying, “The light is at the end of the tunnel for me, no question.”

— Rangers pitcher Derek Holland is expected to miss about three months of the season after having surgery Friday to repair torn cartilage in his left knee. Holland denied a report that he suffered the injury while playing in an amateur hockey game, instead explaining that it was caused by his dog, a boxer named Wrigley.

“I was running around with the dog and took off up the stairs,” Holland told the Dallas Morning News. “He chased me and ran up under me and undercut me, and I slammed my head on the steps.

“It could have been worse. I could have cracked my head open. I was doing a typical guy thing, closing around with the dog thing, and this happened.”

Holland, who signed a five-year contract before the 2012 season and is due to make $5.4 million this year, was injury-free in 2013, leading the team in starts (33) and innings pitched (213) while going 10-9 with a 3.42 ERA.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Jan. 13, 1983, the Red Sox shipped which veteran pitcher to the Mets for a minor leaguer to be named later (infielder Mike Davis, who never reached the majors)?

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Read More: alex rodriguez, Anthony Bosch, Derek Holland, Peyton Manning
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Peyton Manning named Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year 12.16.13 at 7:46 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: Timberwolves at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE)
College basketball: Gardner-Webb at Duke, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Mississippi Valley State at Northwestern, 7 p.m. (BTN)
NFL: Ravens at Lions, 8:40 p.m. (ESPN; WEEI-FM)
NHL: Maple Leafs at Penguins, 7 p.m. (NHL Network)

AROUND THE WEB:

‘€¢ Peyton Manning, in the midst of a standout season with the Broncos at age 37, was named Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year.

Manning, in his second season in Denver, has led the Broncos to an 11-3 record and the No. 1 seed in the AFC (helped by the Patriots’ loss to the Dolphins on Sunday). He has thrown 47 touchdown passes, three short of Tom Brady‘s single-season record with two games to play.

The 2012 NFL Comeback Player of the Year after missing the previous season while recovering from neck surgeries, Manning is the first Bronco — and first Denver athlete — to win the award.

LeBron James won last year’s honor, then went on to lead the Heat to their second straight NBA title.

“At first, when I knew we were considering Manning, I thought: good choice. Lifetime-achievement-award choice,” said SI senior writer Peter King, who announced the winner on NBC at halftime of Sunday night’s game between the Bengals and Steelers. “But if you isolate this year, you’€™re looking at a player two years removed from four neck procedures that would have prompted many 35-year-old legends to choose retirement. He has his Super Bowl. He has his MVPs. Now he’€™s on the verge of breaking the most important single-season quarterback records [touchdown passes and passing yards] in the 94-year history of the game. He threw seven touchdown passes against the defending Super Bowl champs. And he’€™s got his team set to win the top seed in the AFC. Who plays his best’€”wounded, with so many great young guns chasing him’€”at 37?”

‘€¢ The Giants were eliminated from the playoffs last week, and that’s not sitting well with team legend Lawrence Taylor. The former linebacker said he thinks coach Tom Coughlin‘s time has come, despite his two Super Bowl championships.

Tom Coughlin has done wonders for the Giants. Personally, I don’€™t know if I could play for him, but the guy is a winner, he is a fighter. But I think it is time for him to take his talents on the road,” Taylor told the New York Post on Saturday night at David Ortiz‘s charity golf tournament in the Dominican Republic. “He’€™s done all he can do for the Giants. If he wants to coach, I think he needs to take his philosophies to another team.

“After a while, the players just stop listening. I respect the man, but it’€™s time. As much as I like Coughlin and the job he has done, it’€™s time for a shakeup.”

On the other hand, Taylor had kind words for Ortiz.

Big Papi has a big heart and he cares,” Taylor said. “A guy like that with that notoriety, with that status, he could easily say kiss off and do his own thing. He genuinely loves people and things he does for the city of Boston and the Dominican Republic.”

‘€¢ Penn State coach Bill O’Brien, the former Patriots assistant who was put in charge of restoring the Nittany Lions to prominence following the Jerry Sandusky scandal, reportedly has been approached by two NFL teams and is considering returning to the pros.

O’Brien was said to have been close to leaving Penn State for the Eagles job last year, but he decided to return to Happy Valley for a second season mainly out of loyalty. This time, he appears to be more willing to make the jump, especially after the school received more punishment than expected for its handling of the Sandusky situation. Also, his buyout is less financially restrictive than last year.

The Texans and Vikings are the teams said to have contacted him already, with Washington another possibility.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On. Dec. 15, 2003, which Celtic had his number retired to the rafters?

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