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Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Carmelo Anthony downplays reports of rift on Knicks 12.11.14 at 8:11 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: Blackhawks at Bruins, 7 p.m. (NESN)
NBA: Cavalier at Thunder, 8 p.m. (TNT)
NBA: Rockets at Kings, 10:30 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: Maine at Boston College, 7 p.m. (WEEI-AM)
NFL: Cardinals at Rams, 8:25 p.m. (NFL Network)
Soccer: UEFA Europa, Tottenham at Besiktas, 1 p.m. (FS1)
Soccer: UEFA Europa, Krasnodar at Everton, 3 p.m. (FS1)

AROUND THE WEB:

Carmelo Anthony

Carmelo Anthony

— The Knicks’ losing ways continued Wednesday night, but much of the talk was about a report that star forward Carmelo Anthony and guard Tim Hardaway Jr. nearly came to blows following last Tuesday’s loss to the Nets after an on-court argument.

ESPN also reported that multiple players confronted Anthony about his shot selection, “telling him he shoots too much, doesn’t move or pass the ball and only plays defense when he feels like it.”

Anthony, who sat out Wednesday’s loss to the Spurs to rest his sore knee, acknowledged having a players-only meeting Saturday, but he insisted it was “very positive.”

“We felt like guys were holding things back they needed to say or get out and we had that meeting. Everybody had a platform to say how they felt about what was going on,” Anthony said (via the New York Daily News). “At this point, man, I try to just stay positive. I’€™m not a guy who, when darts are being thrown at me from anonymous sources, I will not allow myself to throw those darts back at my teammates. The best thing I can do is to be there for them, even when and if they’€™re feeling any kind of way about me personally, I have to be there. And I do that.”

Hardaway confirmed that he and Anthony argued during last Tuesday’s game, but he told reporters it was a “heat in the moment type of deal.”

“Everybody in this locker room is treated as brothers,” Hardaway said. “We’re a family and we’ve moved on.”

— It’s clear that Jets owner Woody Johnson will make some changes after a miserable season. The question is how many changes will he make?

“It’€™s safe to say you’ve got to do things differently that you did to get you to this point,” Johnson told the New York Daily News. “The thing about football is that after every season, everybody is up for grabs. You take a look at everything. You’€™re trying to get to the Super Bowl. It doesn’€™t sound like I should even be saying that at this point. But that’€™s what my goal is. That’€™s what the fans want. They want to have a clear direction in terms of how they get to where they want to go. I have to give them confidence they are going to have a chance to get where they want to go.”

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Read More: Andrew Heaney, Carmelo Anthony, John Idzik, Rex Ryan
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Lions RB Reggie Bush, other NFL players wear ‘I can’t breathe’ shirts 12.08.14 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: Celtics at Wizards, 7 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Nuggets at Raptors, 7:30 p.m. (NBA TV)
College basketball: Kennesaw State at Butler, 7 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: IUPUI-Fort Wayne at Purdue, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: UC Santa Barbara at SMU, 8 pm. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Brown at Providence, 9 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: North Dakota at Minnesota, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
NFL: Falcons at Packers, 8:30 p.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: Premier League, Manchester United at Southampton, 2:55 p.m. (NBCSN)

AROUND THE WEB:

— One week after a handful of Rams players gained national attention by making the “hands up, don’t shoot” gesture before their game, Lions running back Reggie Bush went through pregame warmups wearing a shirt with the words “I can’t breathe” written on it — a reference to the last words of Eric Garner, the New York man who died after being placed in a chokehold by police.

“I’ve always been the kid who is reserved and stays out of stuff like that, but I just felt like these last couple weeks, I’ve been really upset about what’s happening from a police standpoint,” Bush said after the game (via MLive.com). “I don’t know all the details or facts with the Ferguson issue, or the Eric Garner issue, but I know there’s some form of injustice that’s going on. And it really affected me.”

Bush, the son of a longtime San Diego police officer, was one of at least three NFL to wear a shirt with Garner’s words Sunday. The night before, NBA star Derrick Rose wore a similar shirt in pregame warmups before his Bulls played Saturday night. And Washington defensive tackle Chris Baker did the “hands up, don’t shoot” gesture after a sack Sunday.

Bush has the support of his coach, Jim Caldwell.

“I grew up in the ’60s, where everybody was socially conscious,” Caldwell said. “I believe in it. I would be a hypocrite if I stood up here and told you any differently. More than likely, some of those protests that Dr. King and some of the others took part in, non-violent protests, is the reason why I am standing here in front of you today. So absolutely, no question about it. I don’t mind it.”

— Meanwhile, LeBron James indicated Sunday he is interested in wearing an “I can’t breathe” shirt before one of his team’s upcoming games. His next game is Monday in Brooklyn against the Nets. However, Britain’s Prince William and Duchess Kate Middleton are scheduled to attend that game, and James said is looking forward to appearing before the Royal Couple.

“It’s an honor,” James said Sunday. “It’s a huge honor. The stuff that you read about, people like them are only in books growing up. And to hear that they’re coming to town to see me play and they want to see me do what I do best, it’s a huge honor.”

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Read More: Eric Garner, Geno Smith, LeBron James, Prince William
Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Rex Ryan ‘sick’ after latest loss to Dolphins drops Jets to 2-10 12.02.14 at 8:14 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: Lightning at Sabres, 7:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
NHL: Flyers at Sharks, 10 p.m. (NBCSN)
College basketball: Pittsburgh at Indians, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Minnesota at Wake Forest, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Stephen F. Austin at Memphis, 7 p.m. (ESPNews)
College basketball: Niagara at St. John’s, 7 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Syracuse at Michigan, 7:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Illinois at Miami, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Northern Illinois at DePaul, 9 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: NC State at Purdue, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: BYU at Utah State, 9 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Ohio State at Louisville, 9:30 p.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: Premier League, Stoke City at Manchester United, 2:40 p.m. (NBCSN)

AROUND THE WEB:

— Geno Smith returned as the starting quarterback — although he wasn’t announced to the home crowd during player introductions — and the losing continued for the Jets, who dropped a 16-13 decision to the Dolphins on Monday night.

“I can’t believe we’re 2-10,” despondent coach Rex Ryan said. “A joke.”

Smith, who said after the game that he wanted to run out with his team rather than be introduced individually, only attempted 13 passes (completing seven for 65 yards) as the Jets tried to take the pressure off the young QB by focusing on the ground game (49 rushes for 277 yards). Smith only attempted eight passes before his team’s final drive, which ended with a game-closing interception.

“It’s gut-wrenching,” said Smith, whose insertion into the lineup ahead of Mike Vick reportedly was not well received by all the team’s coaches. “I can’t tell you how heartbroken I am.”

Added Ryan: “I feel sick. We played great for the most part, in a lot of areas. … Everybody in [the locker room] is hurting. Hurting for each other, for our fans. We’ll do anything for a win.”

Meanwhile, Jessie James Decker, the singer and wife of Jets receiver Eric Decker, said her husband has had a tough time dealing with all the losing.

“It’s been a really hard season,” she said in a radio interview with 95.5 WPLJ. “He’s been, I don’t want to say depressed, but he’s been depressed. He has been. It’s been really hard, and my heart breaks for him.”

— An examination will be done on the brain of former Ohio State football player Kosta Karageorge to determine if he had a traumatic brain injury.

Karageorge, a senior walk-on who had wrestled his first three seasons at the school, is believed to have shot himself after texting his mother, “I am sorry if I am an embarrassment but these concussions have my head all [expletive] up.”

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Read More: Darryl Talley, Geno Smith, Kosta Karageorge, Rex Ryan
Jets’ Nick Mangold calls Steelers DB Mike Mitchell’s leap over offensive line ‘a dirty play’ 11.10.14 at 11:06 am ET
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The frustration of an eight-game losing streak boiled over at the end of the Jets’€™ win over the Steelers on Sunday.

As quarterback Mike Vick set up in the victory formation to take a knee, closing out the team’s second victory of the season, Steelers safety Mike Mitchell attempted to jump over the offensive line in attempt to get the ball.

As Mitchell jumped leaped toward Vick, Jets center Nick Mangold grabbed and body-slammed the safety to the ground. A small scrum ensued, but no penalties were called.

“I think it’s a dirty play, and that’s what it is,” Mangold said after the game. “Didn’t expect him to do that, but he did it. I didn’t think it was the smartest of plays, but we’re glad that he wasn’t able to get to Mike.”

The play only added to coach Rex Ryan‘€™s anger toward the officiating. As the clock winded down, Ryan was visibly angry and swore at the referees as he walked onto the field. The coach said the officiating crew didn’t do a good job of protecting Vick during the game.

In second quarter, no flags were thrown when Vick took a hit to his head as he went to the sideline. But Ryan was called for an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty late in the game because of his disagreements with the officials.

“I got a little upset,” Ryan said of his penalty. “In this league, they put a huge emphasis on protecting the quarterback and all players, as they should. I’m not so sure our quarterback was protected the same as the other quarterback today.”

Read More: Mike Mitchell, Mike Vick, New York Jets, Nick Mangold
Friday’s Morning Mashup: Angry relative calls ‘evil’ Alex Rodriguez ‘the devil’ 11.07.14 at 8:16 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: Pacers at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Grizzlies at Thunder, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Cavaliers at Nuggets, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
NHL: Capitals at Blackhawks, 8:30 p.m. (NHL Network)
College hockey: Boston University at Boston College, 8 p.m. (NBCSN)
College football: Fordham at Bucknell, 6:30 p.m. (CBSSN)
College football: Memphis at Tulane, 7:30 p.m. (ESPNU)
College football: Utah State at Wyoming, 8 p.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

NY Daily News 11-7-14– The New York media’s assault on Alex Rodriguez‘s character continued Friday, with the New York Daily News quoting the wife of A-Rod‘s cousin/alleged PED mule as saying the Yankees player is “the devil.”

Carmen Sucart, wife of Yuri Sucart, ripped Rodriguez for accusing Yuri of trying to extort him. Rodriguez reportedly admitted his widespread use of PEDs after publicly denying it while Major League Baseball was in the process of suspending him for the 2014 season, and now he’s apparently trying to cover himself by shifting the blame to others.

“He is the devil,” Carmen told the New York Daily News. “He is evil.”

Carmen said A-Rod visited the house where the Sucarts were living — owned by Rodriguez — in 2012 and offered $50,000 and an apartment if the Sucarts would sign a confidentiality agreement. Carmen said she declined the offer.

“He was not angry,” Carmen recalled of the visit. “He was arrogant. You know what he did? He peed outside on my wall, next to the pool. He didn’t ask for the bathroom. He go outside and he just pee right there. He came over, took his thing out and went right there.”

Shortly after that meeting, the Sucarts hired a Miami attorney, who sent a letter to Rodriguez asking for a cash settlement. According to court filings, Rodriguez agreed to a deal in June 2013, giving the Sucarts a $700,000 payment and then three other payments totaling $200,000.

However, Carmen Sucart said Rodriguez later threatened he was going to “destroy” the family.

“Alex is so poor, the only thing he has is money,” Carmen said. “He sleeps with his money, he will die with his money.”

Yuri Sucart, 52, is facing seven federal charges accusing him of distributing PEDs. His trial is scheduled to begin in February.

His wife said Yuri is in poor health, having undergone surgeries on his heart and legs since his August arrest and two-week stint in jail.

LeBron James has a message for Cavaliers fans panicking over the team’s 1-3 start: “Relax.”

James on Thursday referenced a tweet from Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers after his team’s slow start this season, writing: In the words of the great @AaronRodgers12 ‘Relax.’

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Read More: alex rodriguez, John Idzik, Kyrie Irving, LeBron James
Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Jets fan flies plane over practice calling for GM John Idzik’s job 11.06.14 at 8:07 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: Oilers at Bruins, 7 p.m. (NESN)
NHL: Devils at Blues, 8 p.m. (NHL Network)
NBA: Spurs at Rockets, 8 p.m. (TNT)
NBA: Mavericks at Trail Blazers, 10:30 p.m. (TNT)
NFL: Browns at Bengals, 8:30 p.m. (NFL; WEEI-FM)
College football: Clemson at Wake Forest, 7:30 p.m. (ESPN; WEEI-AM)
College football: Bethune-Cookman at Norfolk State, 7:30 p.m. (ESPNU)
Soccer: UEFA Europa, Tottenham at Tripoli, 1 p.m. (FS1)
Soccer: UEFA Europa, Lille at Everton, 3 p.m. (FS1)

AROUND THE WEB:

— A plane flew over Jets practice Wednesday towing a banner that read “Fire John Idzik.” The plane circled the field for about 20 minutes, while Idzik and owner Woody Johnson were in attendance.

According to the New York Daily News, at one point Idzik and Johnson stood by coach Rex Ryan and shared a laugh, though it was not clear if they were joking about the plane.

Ryan later said Idzik did not appear to be “overly upset,” but “I personally don’t think it’s appropriate.”

MASHUP POLL: Was Wednesday's stunt at Jets practice inappropriate?

  • No, Idzik has been terrible and the fans have a right to express their frustration like this (74%, 560 Votes)
  • Yes, that's taking it too far and embarrassing the team and its fans (26%, 194 Votes)

Total Voters: 754

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Jets players expressed disappointment with the stunt.

“It’s annoying,” receiver Eric Decker said. “You’re trying to practice … and then you see something that becomes a distraction, and then there’s a whole bunch of negative thoughts just going through your head. Now everybody’s attention is up in the sky as opposed to on the practice field.”

Added quarterback Michael Vick: “It’s like, kick a man when he’s down. We understand, people do that. Some people want to see other people suffer. … I think that was a bit extreme. The money they spent on jet fuel could’ve been given to some type of charity.”

The folks at the FireJohnIdzik website, who raised money to take out billboards near MetLife Stadium calling for the general manager to be dismissed, tweeted that they did not fund the plane. Read their tweet: This is not our plane but we endorse it.

The owner of the plane told the Daily News his company was approached about a week ago and said the woman behind it did not want to be identified but that she is a “frustrated” longtime Jets fan.

— Controversial Knicks guard J.R. Smith received his first punishment of the 2014-15 season after punching Wizards guard Glen Rice Jr. in the groin during the fourth quarter of Tuesday’s game at Madison Square Garden, a 98-83 Washington win.

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Read More: Adrian Peterson, J.R. Smith, John Idzik, Rex Ryan
Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Jets GM John Idzik addresses ‘unsatisfactory’ performance in strange press conference 10.28.14 at 8:15 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:
World Series: Giants at Royals, 8 p.m. (Fox; WEEI-FM)
NHL: Wild at Bruins, 7 p.m. (NESN, NBCSN)
NBA: Mavericks at Spurs, 8 p.m. (TNT)
NBA: Rockets at Lakers, 10:30 p.m. (TNT)

AROUND THE WEB:

NY Daily News cover 10-28-14Rex Ryan appears likely to be the one who takes the fall for the disaster that is the Jets’ 2014 season, but general manager John Idzik might have sealed his own fate Monday.

Idzik met the media to address the 1-7 team’s issues, and his strange press conference gave the the New York tabloids plenty of fodder.

The New York Daily News described it as “a bizarre 19-minute monologue complete with forced emotion, jaded talking points and illogical babble.”

“My performance to date is unsatisfactory,” Idzik said during his lengthy rambling opening statement in which he repeatedly referred to two typewritten pages of notes and appeared awkward and uncomfortable. He recounted stories of meeting Jets fans ages 5 to 75 and said he spends more time with Ryan than his own wife.

Idzik voiced support for Ryan, who appears unlikely to return next year — if he even lasts this season.

“The last time I checked, all the traits that make Rex Ryan our leader — our head coach — are still intact,” Idzik said. “He’€™s an excellent football mind. He’€™s a teacher. He’€™s a coach. He’€™s a motivator. He’€™s a mentor. He’€™s able to adapt. He sees both short- and long-term vision. He’€™s a competitor to his soul and he will never quit. It comes as no surprise that our players want to play so hard for Rex Ryan and his staff. … I support Rex.”

However, Idzik would not commit to Ryan for the second half of the season.

“It’€™s not not committing,’€ Idzik said. “It’€™s just our policy not to focus on job status during the season.”

MASHUP POLL: Will coach Rex Ryan and GM John Idzik survive in New York?

  • No, Ryan and Idzik both will be fired before next season (72%, 388 Votes)
  • Ryan will be gone but Idzik will get another chance (11%, 58 Votes)
  • Idzik will be gone but Ryan will get another chance (9%, 50 Votes)
  • It's the Jets -- both will be back next year (8%, 41 Votes)

Total Voters: 537

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Ryan, in turn, expressed support for Idzik, who is in his second season running the team.

“I know one thing: He’s trying his best,” Ryan said. “There’s no question about it.”

— Florida State, already facing heavy criticism for numerous issues with quarterback Jameis Winston and its handling of his situation, has another problem: Running back Karlos Williams is being investigated for an alleged domestic battery incident, according to the Tallahasee Police.

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Read More: John Idzik, Karlos Williams, Mo Collins, Rex Ryan
Despite latest loss and calls for immediate firing, Jets coach Rex Ryan ‘not worried’ about job status 10.27.14 at 10:41 am ET
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What started as a promising season for the Jets quickly came crashing down in eight weeks. After a 43-23 home loss to the Bills, there could be some changes coming in New York.

Quarterback Geno Smith, who was selected in the second round of the 2013 draft, has all but flopped this season. Sunday’€™s game against Buffalo was no different. By the end of the first quarter, three of his eight passes were intercepted.

“It was just atrocious the way that I started out,” Smith said. “I never expected to start a game out like that.”

Backup Mike Vick entered for the struggling QB, but that did not matter. The Jets’€™ worst start since coach Eric Mangini’€™s 2007 team has led many in the New York area to call for changes in the Meadowlands.

Many feel that Smith has gotten ample time to succeed with the Jets, but he’€™s continually come up short. Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News wrote that it’€™s time for New York to move on from Smith and allow Vick to get some starts. It’€™s not the long-term solution, though it would be an improvement over Smith’€™s turnover-filled play.

But a quarterback shakeup would just be the beginning. The New York Post went as far as to say coach Rex Ryan should be fired Monday. Although general manager Jon Idzik hasn’t done much to acquire skill position talent, giving Ryan the ax would send more shock waves through the team, according to Mike Vaccaro.

“No, I’€™m not worried about that,” Ryan said about his future on Sunday. “I’€™m worried about the team. The team is the focus. I tell you that because it’€™s true.”

Read More: Geno Smith, Mike Vick, Rex Ryan,
Thursday’s Morning Mashup: NHL players voice support for Ottawa after attack at Parliament building 10.23.14 at 8:09 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: Islanders at Bruins, 7 p.m. (NESN)
NFL: Chargers at Broncos, 8:25 p.m. (CBS, NFL Network; WEEI-FM)
College football: UConn at East Carolina, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College football: Miami at Virginia Tech, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: UEFA Europa, Everton at Lille, 1 p.m. (FS1)
Soccer: UEFA Europa, Tripoli at Tottenham, 3 p.m. (FS1)

AROUND THE WEB:

NHL players and teams expressed their thoughts and support for Ottawa after Wednesday’s terrorist attack on the Parliament building in Canada’s capital.

Wednesday night’s game between the Senators and Maple Leafs in the Ottawa suburb of Kanata was postponed following the shooting, which left a soldier and the suspect dead.

“We are shocked and deeply saddened by today’s tragic events on Parliament Hill and in downtown Ottawa,” Senators owner Eugene Melnyk said in a statement Wednesday afternoon. “Our collective thoughts and prayers are with the families of the victims as well as with all members of Parliament and staff who have had to manage through today’s difficult circumstances.

“Hockey is certainly secondary to these types of tragic events and we know our fans stand alongside us with the league’s decision to postpone tonight’s game.”

The Maple Leafs were staying at a hotel near where the violence took place. According to reports, a man walked up to a soldier standing guard at a war memorial and shot him dead, then walked inside Parliament, where more shots were fired before he was killed.

Tweeted Leafs forward Joffrey Lupul at the time: Surreal scene outside of our hotel right now. Lot of very brave police officers we should all be very proud of.

Said the Maple Leafs in a statement: “We have been witness today to some terrible events but are thankful to those brave men and women for their tireless service in protecting everyone’s safety.”

The Senators, who were supposed to play the Bruins on the day of the Boston Marathon attacks in April 2013 (that game was postponed), next play at home Saturday against the Devils.

Tweeted Senators defenseman Chris Phillips: Heartfelt thanks to all first responders for putting their safety on the line for ours. OttawaStrong.

Before Wednesday’s Penguins-Flyers game in Pittsburgh, fans sang the Canadian national anthem out of respect.

— Jets coach Rex Ryan is enduring a miserable season at 1-6, but he definitely hasn’t lost his sense of humor.

Ryan walked in on the New York media’s conference call with Bills wide receiver Sammy Watkins on Tuesday, en route to his daily press conference, and he decided to pose as a reporter and ask Watkins a question in advance of the teams’ game Sunday.

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Read More: Bryan Stow, Darrelle Revis, Rex Ryan, Sammy Watkins
Friday’s Morning Mashup: Despite close loss to Patriots, Jets coach Rex Ryan gets buried by NY media 10.17.14 at 8:22 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:
College football: Fresno State at Boise State, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
College football: Temple at Houston, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
NBA preseason: Mavericks at Cavaliers, 7:30 p.m. (NBA TV)
NBA preseason: Jazz at Clippers, 10:30 p.m. (NBA TV)
MLS: Real Salt Lake at Timbers, 10 p.m. (NBCSN)
Soccer: Women’s CONCACAF final, United States vs. Guatemala, 9 p.m. (FS1)

AROUND THE WEB:

NY Daily News 10-17-14– Many people will look at Thursday night’s game and say the underdog Jets put up a valiant effort before coming up short on the final play — a blocked field goal that allowed the Patriots to escape with a 27-25 victory.

In New York, it’s another loss in a miserable season, and the calls for Rex Ryan‘s job are growing louder.

In the New York Daily News, beat write Manish Mehta (who discussed Ryan’s future on Dennis & Callahan on Wednesday), wrote a faux obituary in his column.

Wrote Mehta: Rex Ryan‘€™s Jets, 6, of New York/New Jersey passed away Thursday night after more than a month-long battle with shaky quarterback play, embarrassing secondary issues and inferior talent.

Official time of death: 11:59 p.m. EDT.

The team is survived by untold thousands, who have endured more than four decades without a championship and wandered down a painful path for too long. The death blow was delivered by a familiar nemesis in the most heartbreaking manner on a night when Ryan’€™s Jets deserved to live for another day.

Brian Costello of the New York Post also wrote about Ryan as the soon-to-be-former Jets coach, noting: Rex Ryan‘s time with the Jets will be defined by how close he came, but ultimately failed, to overtaking the Patriots.

MASHUP POLL: Did Rex Ryan buy himself more time with Thursday's narrow loss?

  • Yes, he showed he still can coach by taking a less-talented team and nearly knocking off the Patriots (54%, 357 Votes)
  • No, bottom line is they're 1-6 and he should not return next season (46%, 304 Votes)

Total Voters: 661

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ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith told Middays with MFB on Thursday that Ryan has been “sabotaged” by general manager John Idzik, a theory that Mehta apparently supports but doesn’t believe will save the coach.

Wrote Mehta: Ryan weaved magic to win eight games last season with a dearth of talent to avoid the ax, but he’€™ll need divine intervention to escape what appears to be the end of a six-year road filled with spine-tingling highs and unfathomable lows.

— Clippers star Blake Griffin wrote a first-person article for The Players Tribune in which he shares his thoughts and some anecdotes about former owner Donald Sterling, comparing him to a “weird uncle” and indicating Sterling was way off the mark when he insisted his players “love” him.

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Read More: Blake Griffin, Donald Sterling, Rex Ryan, Stephen Garcia