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Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Bills OL Richie Incognito starts workouts with new team after ‘inner reflection’ 04.07.15 at 8:09 am ET
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Welcome to Tuesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

TUESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
MLB: Orioles at Rays, 7:10 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Rangers at Athletics, 10:05 p.m. (MLB Network)
NBA: Spurs at Thunder, 8 p.m. (TNT)
NBA: Lakers at Clippers, 10:30 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: Women’s NCAA Tournament final, UConn vs. Notre Dame, 8:30 p.m. (ESPN)
NHL: Wild at Blackhawks, 8:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
Soccer: Premier League, Queens Park at Aston Villa, 2:55 p.m. (NBCSN)

AROUND THE WEB:

Richie Incognito

Richie Incognito

— Richie Incognito began offseason conditioning with his new Bills teammates Monday, and the controversial offensive lineman acknowledged that his year and a half in exile following the 2013 bullying scandal with the Dolphins was “humbling.”

Incognito was benched by the Dolphins for the final eight games of the 2013 season, and no team was willing to sign him last year.

“It was definitely difficult sitting out, knowing I could still play, knowing I had talent to contribute,” Incognito said [via ESPN]. “It was a learning process. At first there was a lot of frustration: ‘Why am I not signed? Why am I not on a team?’ It was a time for inner reflection. Kind of a time for growth.

“Then it was an acceptance, and accepting the fact that I’m not going to play this year, that I’m going to have to chalk it up and wait for another opportunity.”

An NFL investigation found that Incognito bullied teammate Jonathan Martin, and there were reports of other incidents of harassment.

“There was a lot of things said and done that I wish I could change,” Incognito said. “But moving forward, you have to accept that there was definitely a learning process and a growing process and a process that I went through to become a better person. Nobody’s perfect. I think the biggest thing is I’ve learned from what I’ve went through, I’ve learned from what went down. I’ve grown from it.”

Incognito added that he’s “very thankful” that the Bills have given him a chance, which came about after he met with team owners Terry and Kim Pegula as well as new coach Rex Ryan.

Rex Ryan spent a lot of time talking about being a good teammate and coming in and putting my best foot forward,” Incognito said. “One of the big things they wanted to make sure was that I could still be myself without having any of the issues.”

Said Ryan: “I just wanted to see the sincerity that he was speaking with and where he was at. He’s got a burning desire to play this game still. I think that’s important. And obviously — hey, look, we’ve all made mistakes. Every single one of us in here has made mistakes. I know I’ve made than you guys. But it’s what we do and how excited he is about getting a new opportunity, and I can’t wait to watch him. But he’s a Bill now. He’s just one of us.”

Alex Rodriguez received mostly cheers from the Yankee Stadium faithful in Monday’s opener, although there wasn’t much else for New Yorkers to cheer about in a 6-1 loss to the Blue Jays.

Rodriguez, in his first at-bat in over a year following his MLB suspension, batted seventh as the designated hitter. He walked in his first plate appearance, then hit a single to right-center fielder in his second and lined out in his final at-bat.

“I have to admit, it definitely felt good. That’s for sure,” Rodriguez said.

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Read More: alex rodriguez, Avery Johnson, Masahiro Tanaka, Rex Ryan
Report: Bills’ deal with Richie Incognito worth $2.25M 02.09.15 at 9:40 am ET
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Richie Incognito

Richie Incognito

On Saturday, the Bills announced via their website that they had “reached an agreement in principle” with Richie Incognito and, according to ESPN, the deal is for one year and $2.25 million.

The former Dolphin was involved in a bullying scandal in 2013 where he and fellow offensive linemen John Jerry and Mike Pouncey bullied former teammate Jonathan Martin. The incident led to Incognito’s suspension for the remainder of that season, the last eight games.

Incognito, 31, reportedly had visits with the Buccaneers in August and Broncos in November but remained out of football for the 2014 season.

Now, with Rex Ryan at Buffalo’s helm, Incognito has landed with the Bills, despite Buffalo defensive tackle Marcell Dareus once calling him “the dirtiest player in the NFL.”

During his introductory news conference in January, Ryan expressed his intentions to “build a bully” of a football team.

“We’re going to see if you want to play it for 60 minutes,” Ryan said.

Read More: Buffalo Bills, Rex Ryan, Richie Incognito,
Friday’s Morning Mashup: Rex Ryan plays down impact of Deflategate on Patriots 01.30.15 at 8:08 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: Rockets at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Mavericks at Heat, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Bulls at Suns, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Harvard at Princeton, 6 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Monmouth at Fairfield, 8 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Kent State at Buffalo, 10 p.m. (ESPNU)
NHL: Sabres at Canucks, 10 p.m. (NHL Network)
College hockey: Providence at Boston College, 7:30 p.m. (WEEI-AM)
College hockey: North Dakota at Nebraska-Omaha, 8:30 p.m. (CBSSN)
Tennis: Australian Open, 3 a.m. (ESPN)

AROUND THE WEB:

— New Bills coach Rex Ryan still might not want to kiss Bill Belichick‘s rings, but he also isn’t ready to pile on the Patriots coach regarding Deflategate.

Reporters caught up with Ryan on Thursday in Phoenix, and Ryan laughed when asked if he ever suspected that the Patriots deflated footballs.

“No, I never, you know, I don’€™t see that,” Ryan said (via MassLive.com). “And I think it’€™s unfortunate that this takes away. This is the biggest stage there is and here we’€™re talking about something like that. It is a black eye to the league and the league will handle it as they see fit. But they’€™re a great football team, and they’€™ve earned the right to get here. Same thing with Seattle.”

Ryan also said he doesn’t believe the legacies of Belichick and Tom Brady will be affected by this controversy.

“I don’€™t think that’€™s anything,” Ryan said. “I mean, when you look at, you’€™re going to have a guy that’€™s arguably going to end up being if not the best coach in the history of the game, at least in that conversation. Same thing about their quarterback. So I don’€™t think it’€™s going to be anything.”

Ryan also weighed in on the issue the Patriots have been having with the fire alarm in their hotel going off in the middle of the night.

“Let’€™s face it: Belichick probably did it himself,” Ryan joked. “He’€™s the one that pulled the thing and created a different story. Those things happen. You try to prepare your team in the offseason — training camps and all that kind of stuff. Would you pull a fire alarm or something? You may.”

Ryan claimed that alarms have gone off in his teams’ hotels during visits to New England, but he insisted he wasn’t getting his revenge this week.

“I was not there,” he said. “You can’t blame that one on me.”

— Nationals outfielder Jayson Werth is headed to jail for five days after pleading guilty Thursday to reckless driving for an incident in July in Virginia.

Werth admitted that he was driving his Porsche GT3 RS more than 100 mph on I-495 in Fairfax Country. A Virginia State Police trooper paced Werth driving at least 105 mph on an on-ramp, and Werth pulled way from the police cruiser on the highway, which has a posted speed limit of 55 mph.

Werth, who was cooperative after being pulled over and admitted he was “pressing his luck” by driving so fast, had been convicted of the charges in December. He appealed and was due for another trial next week before reaching a plea deal. He will serve his sentence on weekends.

“We are aware of the agreement reached today. It is clear that Jayson has taken this matter seriously and with great personal reflection,” the team said in a statement. “We do not condone reckless behavior, and we expect all members of the Washington Nationals organization to act in a responsible manner. We support Jayson, who is an integral part of the community and of the Washington Nationals family.

Werth, who declined comment after the hearing, is entering the fifth season of a seven-year, $126 million contract. He hit .292 with 16 home runs, 82 RBIs and a team-high .849 OPS in 147 games last season. He had arthroscopic shoulder surgery Jan. 9 and is expected to be ready to play in 2-3 months.

— One day after having season-ending shoulder surgery, Kobe Bryant said he intends to return in September for his 20th season.

“Yeah, that’s the plan,” Bryant told ESPN.

Bryant stopped by Staples Center to visit with former teammate Pau Gasol before Thursday’s Bulls-Lakers game, although Bryant said he wasn’t feeling well enough to go on the court.

Bryant will be heading into the final year of his contract in 2015-16, when he is slated to earn $25 million. The 36-year-old said he doesn’t pay attention to other people’s suggestions that he should retire.

“I don’t really listen much to what people have to say, to be honest with you,” he said.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Jan. 30, 1973, the Patriots had perhaps their best draft ever. Which three players did they select in Round 1?

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “His desire to be so competitive, I’€™ve never seen it. You could put him in the category of Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, just some of the great athletes in this world, and I’€™€™m talking different sports, too. He has the fight, the will and the determination to go out there and destroy anybody who’€™€™s in his way. You see the results on the field, he’€™€™s awesome.” Patriots cornerback Darrelle Revis on Tom Brady

STAT OF THE DAY: 25 – Percent decrease in recorded concussions in NFL games from 2013 to 2014, according to data released by the league Thursday

‘NET RESULTS (mobile users, check the website to see the videos): Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski and Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch play Mortal Kombat X on “Conan.”

Magic guard Victor Oladipo soars in for an impressive dunk against the Bucks.

Bulls forward Joakim Noah makes a nice behind-the-back pass to Pau Gasol for a layup against the Lakers.

TRIVIA ANSWER: Offensive lineman John Hannah (fourth), running back Sam Cunningham (11th) and receiver Darryl Stingley (19th)

SOOTHING SOUNDS: Phil Collins was born on this day in 1951.

Read More: Bill Belichick, Jayson Werth, kobe bryant, Rex Ryan
Friday’s Morning Mashup: Ray Rice reportedly reaches settlement with Ravens 01.16.15 at 8:12 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: Bulls at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Warriors at Thunder, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Cavaliers at Clippers, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Iona at Niagara, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: St. Francis at Robert Morris, 9 p.m. (ESPNU
NHL: Capitals at Predators, 8 p.m. (NHL Network)
College hockey: Boston College at Boston University, 7 pm. (NESN; WEEI-AM)
College hockey: UConn at Notre Dame, 7:30 p.m. (NBCSN)

AROUND THE WEB:

Ray Rice, who had been seeking more than $3.5 million for wrongful termination from the Ravens, reportedly reached a settlement with the team Thursday, shortly before his grievance hearing was to be held.

Rice, who had signed a five-year, $35 million contract in July 2012, was seeking back pay of his $3.529 million base salary for the season.

A source told The Baltimore Sun that the two sides reached a compromise that was “fair.”

Rice was released on Sept. 8, after video emerged of him knocking out his then-fiancee in a hotel elevator earlier in the year. The NFL, which had suspended Rice two games, extended his suspension to indefinite when the video become public. However, an arbitrator overturned the suspension and reinstated Rice, who became a free agent.

Rice, 27, apparently has received no interest from other teams since his reinstatement, although he continues to work out in hopes of getting a second chance.

A three-time Pro Bowler, Rice is the second-leading rusher in Ravens history.

— With the retirement of Kyle Orton, the Bills are in the market for a quarterback — either a starter or someone to back up EJ Manuel. In a radio interview Thursday, new coach Rex Ryan creatively implied that he wouldn’t rule out a reunion with Mark Sanchez.

“Well, I’ve still got the tattoo,” he told ESPN’s “Mike & Mike,” referring to the infamous rendering of his wife in a Sanchez No. 6 Jets jersey on his right arm.

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Read More: alex rodriguez, Mark Sanchez, Ray Rice, Rex Ryan
Bills confirm hiring of Rex Ryan 01.12.15 at 10:57 am ET
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The Bills on Monday confirmed that Rex Ryan has been hired to be their coach. Ryan agreed to a five-year deal worth a reported $5.5 million per year to remain in the AFC East.

Ryan, fired by the Jets after their 3-13 season, replaces Doug Marrone, who opted out of his contract Dec. 31.

“Following an extensive search, we are pleased today to announce that Rex Ryan is our new head coach,” Bills owner Terry Pegula said in a statement. “Rex brings a wealth of experience and enthusiasm to the position that we feel will be a tremendous benefit to our players and the entire Bills organization.

“He was very impressive during the interview process, as were many of the candidates to which we spoke, and we feel Rex is the best fit for our team,” added Pegula, who interviewed 12 candidates. “We look forward to his leadership and expertise in directing our team to the playoffs and bringing a championship to Buffalo for our fans.”

Ryan was rumored to be on the short list for the Falcons, but Atlanta apparently was not ready to commit while Buffalo was following a second interview Saturday night.

The Bills reportedly plan to hire 49ers offensive coordinator Greg Roman to run the offense. The Bills said they would like to retain defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz, although there are concerns about differences in his and Ryan’s defensive preferences.

Read More: Greg Roman, Jim Schwartz, Rex Ryan, Terry Pegula
Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Rex Ryan reportedly set to interview with Bills 01.08.15 at 7:51 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: Devils at Bruins, 7 p.m. (NESN)
NHL: Blackhawks at Wild, 8 p.m. (NHL Network)
NHL: Rangers at Kings, 10:30 p.m. (NHL Network)
NBA: Rockets at Knicks, 8 p.m. (TNT)
NBA: Heat at Trail Blazers, 10:30 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: Michigan State at Iowa, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: LSU at Missouri, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Radford at Gardner-Webb, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: George Mason at Richmond, 7 p.m. (NBCSN)
College basketball: Dayton at Saint Bonaventure, 7 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Stanford at UCLA, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Memphis at SMU, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Rutgers at Nebraska, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Arizona State at Oregon State, 9 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Pepperdine at BYU, 11 p.m. (ESPNU)

AROUND THE WEB:

— Following a five-hour interview with the Falcons on Tuesday, former Jets coach Rex Ryan reportedly will meet with the Bills on Thursday about their coaching vacancy.

According to an NFL Network report, Ryan will return to Atlanta for a second interview when the team puts together its list of finalists. He also has interviewed with the 49ers.

In the meantime, he’ll explore the possibility of remaining in the AFC East. Ryan was fired Dec. 29 after going 50-52 in six seasons (including postseason) in the Meadowlands.

Where will Rex Ryan land?

  • Falcons (42%, 182 Votes)
  • Bills (21%, 93 Votes)
  • Broadcasting (20%, 87 Votes)
  • 49ers (12%, 54 Votes)
  • Other (5%, 22 Votes)

Total Voters: 438

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Former Jets linebacker Bart Scott said Ryan can win with the right personnel.

“I think it depends where he goes. If he goes where there is a quarterback, he has a very great chance of winning. He showed what he can do with a decent quarterback and a below-average quarterback in terms of performance,” Scott told Yahoo Sports. “You send him to a place where there is a leader in terms of a quarterback, who commands respect not just from other teams but from the skill position players in that building, it’s dangerous. It’s dangerous.

“It is dangerous to give that man a lead. Last time I played in that system when we had a lead, we put up 60 sacks and teams were afraid to play us. Downright afraid of us.”

If he does not return to the sideline, Ryan is expected to spend next season in broadcasting. He reportedly has spoken with ESPN and CBS.

— J.R. Smith’s debut with the Cavaliers was one he won’t want to remember. Smith, traded from the Knicks this week, went 0-for-5 in 18 minutes off the bench in a 105-93 loss.

Asked before the game how he would do without yet learning the team’s plays, Smith said with a smile: “My motto is, ‘When in doubt, shoot the ball.’ So when in doubt, I’m going to shoot it, and hopefully that don’t catch nobody off guard.”

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Read More: J.R. Smith, Rex Ryan,
Woody Johnson confirms firing of Rex Ryan, John Idzik, ‘will consider all options to improve the Jets’ 12.29.14 at 9:10 am ET
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After weeks of speculation, Jets owner Woody Johnson made it official Monday morning, firing coach Rex Ryan and general manager John Idzik only hours after the conclusion of the team’s forgettable 4-12 season.

“After extensive thought and reflection about the current state of our football team, this morning I informed Rex Ryan and John Idzik that they will not be returning for the 2015 season,” Johnson said in a statement. “Both Rex and John made significant contributions to the team, and they have my appreciation and gratitude for their efforts and commitment. Over the years, Rex brought the Jets a bold confidence and a couple of great postseason runs, which all of us will remember.”

Johnson brought in former Super Bowl-winning NFL general managers Charley Casserly and Ron Wolf to help him determine the team’s future.

“We will consider all options to improve the Jets,” Johnson said. “Getting the Jets back on track is my top priority, and today’s decisions are important steps towards achieving our goals.”

Ryan lasted six seasons in New York, going 50-52 (including playoffs). His tenure ended with a victory over the Dolphins in Miami.

“Just understand that I’m not afraid of anything,” Ryan said after Sunday’s game. “I’m not afraid of what lies ahead, I can tell you that.”

Read More: John Idzik, Rex Ryan, Woody Johnson,
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Jets coach Rex Ryan ‘not afraid of what lies ahead’ at 8:24 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: Red Wings at Bruins, 7 p.m. (NBCSN)
NBA: Bucks at Hornets, 7 p.m. (NBA TV)
College basketball: UMass-Lowell at Boston College, 2 p.m. (WEEI-AM)
College basketball: Toledo at Duke, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: San Francisco at St. Mary’s, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College football: Liberty Bowl, Texas A&M vs. West Virginia, 2 p.m. (ESPN)
College football: Russell Athletic Bowl, Oklahoma vs. Clemson, 5:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College football: Texas Bowl, Arkansas vs. Texas, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: Premier League, Swansea City at Liverpool, 2:55 p.m. (NBCSN)

AROUND THE WEB:

Rex Ryan reportedly was to have a Monday morning meeting with Jets owner Woody Johnson, when the coach would be relieved of his duties after six seasons at the helm.

ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reported Sunday night that Johnson would move quickly to fire Ryan as well as general manager John Idzik.

“I think we all expect what’s going to happen is going to happen,” Ryan said Sunday, adding: “Just understand that I’m not afraid of anything. I’m not afraid of what lies ahead, I can tell you that.”

The Jets gave Ryan a nice sendoff with a 37-24 victory over the Dolphins in Miami, leaving his career record (including playoffs) at 50-52.

“Deep down everybody was playing for him,” linebacker Calvin Pace said. “It’s only right to send him out with a win.”

Said David Harris: “He is one of us. He makes it fun to come to work every day, no matter what the situation.”

On the Jets’ first play from scrimmage Sunday, Ryan called the same play that Joe Namath and the Jets used in their Super Bowl III upset of the Colts in Miami, a rush to the left side.

“That was a tribute to the real Jets fans out there,” Ryan said. “I told the team it would work for three yards and it went for seven. So who says I don’t know anything about offense?”

Jim Harbaugh is done in San Francisco, reaching a mutual agreement to leave the 49ers after the team’s disappointing 2014 season.

Harbaugh had one year remaining on his five-year, $25 million contract.

“Jim and I have come to the conclusion that it is in our mutual best interest to move in different directions,” CEO Jed York said. “We thank Jim for bringing a tremendous competitive nature and a great passion for the game to the 49ers. He and his staff restored a winning culture that has been the standard for our franchise throughout its history.”

Harbaugh ends his tenure with a 49-22-1 record, including a Super Bowl appearance after the 2012 season.

“It’s been the time of my life,” Harbaugh said after Sunday’s 20-17 victory over the Cardinals left the 49ers with an 8-8 record. “Been a lot of great memories, great moments. … It’s been a tremendous four years, it’s been a pleasure to work and serve for this organization. I feel great about what we accomplished.”

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Read More: Jim Harbaugh, Johnny Manziel, Josh Gordon, Rex Ryan
Friday’s Morning Mashup: LeBron James receives mostly positive welcome back from Miami fans 12.26.14 at 8:26 am ET
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Welcome to Friday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

FRIDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NBA: Nets at Celtics, 1 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Hornets at Thunder, 8 p.m. (NBA TV)
College football: Heart of Dallas Bowl, Illinois vs. Louisiana Tech, 1 p.m. (ESPN)
College football: Quick Lane Bowl, Rutgers vs. North Carolina, 4:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College football: St. Petersburg Bowl, NC State vs. Central Florida, 8 p.m. (ESPN; WEEI-FM)
Soccer: Premier League, West Ham at Chelsea, 7:40 p.m. (NBCSN)
Soccer: Premier League, Newcastle at Manchester United, 10 a.m. (NBCSN)
Soccer: Premier League, Queens Park at Arsenal, 12:25 p.m. (NBCSN)

AROUND THE WEB:

— The Heat welcomed LeBron James back to Miami on Christmas Day before sending him home to Cleveland with a loss.

James hugged and high-fived his former teammates, taking extra time to joke around with Dwyane Wade, then saw Wade score 24 first-half points en route to a 31-point night in the Heat’s 101-91 victory.

James, who finished with 30 points and eight rebounds, was the first player introduced of Cleveland’s starters, and the crowd wasn’t given much time to react before the next player’s name was called. However, he received an ovation when a video tribute was played during the first timeout of the game. There were some boos but mostly cheers for his first game in South Florida since his four-year stint there.

“We only play this game for so long,” James said. “You’ve still got life afterwards. For us we’re going to compete, we’re going to go about our business and do what we need to do in our profession. You’ll never let friendship come in between that.”

James expressed dismay that people criticize his decision to switch teams as a free agent.

“The question I have, which is kind of bothering me sometimes, is when a player decides to decide his own fate, there is always questions about it?” James said. “And, ‘Why did this guy do that, do that and do this?’ When an organization decides to go elsewhere for a player, it’s that they did what’s best for the team. Let’s figure that out some time.”

James said he has not had any contact with team president Pat Riley since announcing his plans to sign with the Cavs, but he spent Christmas Eve at Wade’s house.

“We didn’t have a bad breakup,” Wade said. “We played against each other for seven years, man. The weirdness just wasn’t there. It wasn’t like we played against each other our whole career and the breakup happened. We played against each other for seven years, then with each other for a period of time, then he went back to the same situation and I’m in the same place.”

Said Heat coach Erik Spoelstra: “Couple of the best in this generation. Spectacular. I wish I could sit back and enjoy it like a fan, because it’s just fantastic basketball. … However long these two guys play, you’ll get your money’s worth.”

Rex Ryan might soon be headed out of town, but Geno Smith believes he can be with the Jets for the foreseeable future.

“I see myself being the quarterback here for a long time,” Smith said. “I see myself helping this team turn things around. Obviously, I’m a part of the reason why we are in this position, so I’d love to be a part of the solution.”

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Read More: Curt Schilling, Dwyane Wade, Geno Smith, Johnny Manziel
Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Rex Ryan confident he’ll win a Super Bowl 12.24.14 at 8:29 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:
College football: Bahamas Bowl, Central Michigan vs. Western Kentucky, noon (ESPN; WEEI-AM)
College football: Hawaii Bowl, Fresno State vs. Rice, 8 p.m. (ESPN; WEEI-FM)

AROUND THE WEB:

NY Daily News 12-14-14Rex Ryan might be without a job a week from now, but his confidence remains high.

The embattled Jets coach insists he has a Super Bowl championship in him.

“I see myself winning it as a head coach,” Ryan said Tuesday. “I definitely see it. If that happens, I guess we’ll find out.”

Ryan acknowledged it’s been a trying season, with the Jets at 3-12 heading into Sunday’s finale against the Dolphins, but he said he remains confident in his ability to lead a team.

“I was given some gifts and obviously a lot less in other areas, but I can coach football,” he said. “And I know that. … I think that’s what gives me the belief that one day I’m going to win that thing.

“That’s how I feel. And that’s it. I guess that’s just the way I’m wired. I don’t look at myself as a three-win coach. I know I’m better than that, but this is where we’re at right now.”

Added Ryan: “People are going to say, ‘That’s crazy. You’ve won three games.’ Yeah, that’s right. We won three games and that’s one year. Sure, it hasn’t gone well. I always am a confident person.”

MASHUP POLL: Will Rex Ryan ever win a Super Bowl as a head coach?

  • No (85%, 801 Votes)
  • Yes (15%, 143 Votes)

Total Voters: 944

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Ryan said he’s focused only on Sunday’s game, and not meeting with owner Woody Johnson to discuss his future.

“We’ll see what happens,” he said. “I know it’€™s a broken record, but really, it’€™s just about the job that I have right in front of me. I want to be great. I want our team to be great. I want our team to be focused and myself to be focused on the job at hand. And that’€™s what I plan on doing. Whatever happens after that will happen.”

— The Knicks are showing no signs of breaking out of their season-long slump, and it’s giving guard J.R. Smith some sleepless nights.

“It’s a nightmare. We’ve just got to wake up from it,” said Smith, who has been out the past seven games with a partially turn plantar fascia in his left heel. “I mean, to be 5-25, we had a lot of expectations coming in here, so to be in the situations we’re in, it’s a nightmare for me, anyway.”

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Read More: Aldon Smith, J.R. Smith, Ray McDonald, Rex Ryan