Wakeup Call: Big Al could be the big chip on the NBA trade market


Wakeup Call: Big Al could be the big chip on the NBA trade market

Here's your wakeup call -- a combination of newsworthy andor interesting tidbits -- for Tuesday, January 22:

Democracy comes to NASCAR. (AP)

If you're wondering why Bud Selig's in Cincinnati in late January, it's because he's about to award the 2015 All-Star Game to the Reds. (NBC's Hardball Talk)

Marvin Miller's absence from the Hall of Fame is a travesty -- that's me talking -- and I agree with the retired players who urge that he be inducted. (AP)

So if you're left-handed, you can keep getting chances even if you're 35, haven't pitched in the major leagues since 2010, and had an 8.07 ERA in Triple-A last year. Would that all our opportunities be so bountiful. (Hardball Talk)

Was it really just a year-and-a-half ago that the Red Sox considered Erik Bedard to be their big midseason acquisition, the last piece of the puzzle? How far we sometimes fall . . . (CSN Houston)

There'll be a public visitation for the late Stan Musial in St. Louis on Thursday. (AP)

Georgetown's 63-47 win over No. 24 Notre Dame in South Bend left Irish coach Mike Brey speechless. (AP)

The Connecticut women slapped a 79-49 pasting on previously unbeaten Duke, meaning there are no longer any undefeated teams -- men's or women's -- in Division I. (AP)

Honey Badger's at the Senior Bowl, hoping to show NFL teams that he's changed his ways. (AP)

The nearly-two-year NCAA investigation of the U. is coming to a head. (AP)

Phil Mickelson says the increased federal and state taxes he's due to pay "don't work for me right now." So, uh, when will they work for you, Phil? (AP)

Keith Jones, like most hockey fans, loves fighting in the game. Mike Milbury thinks the staged brawls, the ones where the players drop the gloves to make a point or to try and inspire their team, are stupid. With the increased number of such fights in the season's first few days, they debate the issue -- spiritedly. (NBC's Pro Hockey Talk)

It appears Tomas Holmstrom will call it quits today. (Pro Hockey Talk)

Beware, Sabres opponents: Ryan Miller's back on his game. (AP)

Still pining away for Al Jefferson? He might be available. (NBC's Pro Basketball Talk)

If the NBA owners say yes, the Seattle SuperSonics will be back in business. (AP)

The Lakers are getting worse, not better, and eventually they're going to have to do something about it. (Pro Basketball Talk)

Kobe Bryant agrees. (AP)

And if trading Pau Gasol -- who's now coming off the bench in Mike D'Antoni's grand scheme -- is part of that something, then he's all for it. (Pro Basketball Talk)

How can it be that the Nets and Knicks, who are developing quite the rivalry, are done playing each other for the year? (AP)

Good news, Sixers fans: Andrew Bynum's slow and steady -- emphasis on slow -- return  is right on schedule. (CSN Philly)

As is Derrick Rose's in Chicago. (AP)

A blood clot in his lower right lung will keep the Cavs' Anderson Varejao sidelined for the rest of the year. (AP)

The Har-Bowl stuff hasn't even really started yet, and already Ray Ratto's sick of it. (CSN Bay Area)

It's come to this for David Akers: Jim Harbaugh's raving about the way he kicked in pregame. He kinda has to, since there's nothing to rave about during the game. (CSN Bay Area)

Looks like Jim Caldwell passed the on-the-job test. (AP)

The Raiders have spent 11 years, and counting, whining about their loss in the Snow Bowl. Now they've started up on something new. (NBC's Pro Football Talk)

Turns out there were 32 12 million reasons why Chip Kelly left Oregon for Philadelphia. (Pro Football Talk)

Kelly better hope Pat Shurmur makes a better assistant than he did a head coach. (AP)

The sprained shoulder he suffered at the end of the NFC Championship Game will keep Matty Ice out of the Pro Bowl. (AP)

Tom Brady never really gives much an excuse to duck out of the Pro Bowl -- this time around it's an "undisclosed injury" -- but his departure means Andrew Luck's getting a free trip to Hawaii in his place. (AP)

Talk about much Adu over nothing . . . (CSN Philly)

Maria Sharapova needed only 5 hours and 15 minutes to win five matches and make her way into the Australian Open semifinals. (AP)

Roger Federer has made it to the quarterfinals in 35 straight Grand Slam tournaments. (AP)

Those soul-piercing grunts that Victoria Azarenka emits each time she hits a shot are being put to music. (AP)

Elisabeth Shue, one of the co-stars of CBS's 'CSI', is a big tennis fan . . . which is why you'll be seeing Chris Evert, Lindsay Davenport and Justin Gimelstob in Wednesday's episode. (AP)

Despite Crowder's ties to Falcons, Celtics pulling for Patriots in Super Bowl

Despite Crowder's ties to Falcons, Celtics pulling for Patriots in Super Bowl

WALTHAM --  Go up and down the Boston Celtics roster and you won’t have any trouble finding players who will be cheering on the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LI.
But there are some Celtics who understandably have mixed feelings about the game.
Among them is Jae Crowder, who grew up in Villa Rica, Ga. which is about 32 miles outside of Atlanta.
“I’ve been cheering for the Falcons all my life,” Crowder said. “I’m here in Boston; I’ve been a Patriots fan.”
And within that fandom, Crowder has developed a friendship with New England players, among them being Patriots running back LaGarrette Blount.
Not soon after the Patriots punched their ticket to the Super Bowl, Crowder got a text message from Blount.
“He knows,” Crowder said of Blount. “Yeah, he knows I’m in between.”
Isaiah Thomas, whose hometown Seattle Seahawks were beaten by the Falcons, said Crowder didn’t become a Falcons fan until they made the playoffs.
“Bandwagon? But I just took his money though,” quipped Crowder, referring to the Falcons beating the Seahawks in an earlier round of the playoffs. “We did them Seahawks real dirty; bandwagon.”
He’s not the only Celtics player with ties to Atlanta.
Boston rookie Jaylen Brown grew up just a few minutes outside of Atlanta in Marietta, Ga.
Thomas said Brown is a Pittsburgh Steelers fan.
“I don’t know how that is,” Thomas said. “Don’t let him tell you he’s an Atlanta Falcons fan. Jae just started reppin’ them when they made the playoffs. They can do what they want; they might as well root for the Patriots.”
For Thomas, cheering for the Patriots is more than just supporting his fellow professional athletes. As he tries to continue growing as a player and a leader for the Celtics, the Patriots and the way they do things in many ways has been a blueprint of sorts for Thomas.
“They’re the team you want to be,” Thomas said. “Every year they give themselves a chance. From top to bottom, they’re 100 percent professional. They think championship every year. That’s how you should be. We want to model that. Hopefully the can go out and win it, and we can try to piggy-pack on what they did.”
Another Celtic with Atlanta ties is Al Horford, who made it clear which team had his support.
“Going to school in Florida, being in the south for so many years, college football is kind of my thing,” said Horford, who revealed that he never attended a Falcons during his nine seasons with the Atlanta Hawks. “I would watch them on TV and stuff like that. I know it’s exciting for them. It’s a big deal to be in the Super Bowl. But I’m here in New England now so I’ll be cheering for the Patriots.”

Andy Dalton named Tom Brady's Pro Bowl replacement

Andy Dalton named Tom Brady's Pro Bowl replacement

With Tom Brady spending this week and next preparing for the Super Bowl, Andy Dalton has been named his replacement in the Pro Bowl. 

This will mark Dalton’s third Pro Bowl appearance. He finished fourth in the AFC in passing yards (4,206) and tied for 10th with 18 passing touchdowns. Brady threw 10 more touchdowns in four fewer games. 

Though he’s often skipped the actual games, this was the 12th season in which Brady was named to the AFC’s Pro Bowl roster. He’s been named to the Pro Bowl in each of the last eight seasons.