Losing season makes Colts appreciate Manning

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Losing season makes Colts appreciate Manning

FOXBORO -- As if the Indianapolis Colts didn't appreciate Peyton Manning already.

Everyone knows just how good he is. And so far this season, everyone knows just how bad the Colts are without him.

Just ask Indianapolis center Jeff Saturday.

"It definitely makes me appreciate winning more," said Saturday in a conference call on Wednesday. "But Peyton, obviously man, you can't respect a player more than I respect him anyway. So, I've been with the guy 13 years. I know how hard he works. I know what a good player he is, and how valuable he is to our football team.

"On top of all that, to see a player face this type of injury, this isn't something you get over in a week or two. This has been a major process. And so, anytime you're watching a player goes through something as substantial as this, your heart goes out to him. This is the way God created us, to play this game. And he loves playing it, and he couldn't have more fun doing it. I feel for him in that regard, as much as a teammate."

The Colts enter Sunday's game in New England with an 0-11 record. It was supposed to be the Sunday night game of the week. Instead, it was flexed out to a local 1 p.m. start time.

Not because of the Patriots, of course. But because of, well, Curtis Painter.

It's made for a season that, without Manning, has been awfully tough to deal with.

"We've had a number of vets, myself included, who have encouraged the guys to understand that, you're putting your resume out there every time you walk on that field," said Saturday. "And every time you take this role, you better be playing as good football as you possibly can. That's what a professional does. Pros stand up, even when it's the worst times.

"And that's what we're in. We haven't won a game. We've done a lot to ourselves to hurt ourselves, with making mistakes, and we take full responsibility for that. Nobody in this league feels sorry for you. Nobody's going to help you get better. You've got to go out there and put forth an effort to win a football game. And that's what we're hoping we do."

Chances are, that won't happen on Sunday at Gillette Stadium.

The bigger question is, will it happen at all this season? Will the Colts win a game? And it's also apparent that an even bigger question is, will Manning return this season, which he's been reportedly wanting to do, if medically cleared.

"I sure hope so," said Saturday. "People ask me over and over. If he's healthy enough, he'll be on the field. I can guarantee you that. Records, put all that stuff aside. Because we all, every player in this game, we're made to play on Sundays. And so, if he's healthy enough, I think he'll be out there ready to rock and roll."

C's Mickey sent to D-League

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C's Mickey sent to D-League

Jordan Mickey, inactive in five of the Boston Celtics’ last six games, has been assigned to the Maine Red Claws of the Development League.

“He’s been inactive in a few of these games here,” Stevens told reporters prior to tonight’s game at Philadelphia. “And rather than being inactive and being here in a suit and tie, we knew there was a hockey game this afternoon and it was going to be unlikely to get much action on the court at all today. So it made a lot more sense to play for a couple days and fly down to Houston and meet us.”

Mickey has appeared in just eight games this season, averaging 2.2 points and 1.8 rebounds while shooting 47.1 percent from the field.

Tonight will be the former second-round pick’s 10th missed game this season, five in which he did not play (coaches decision) and another five in which he will be inactive.

The lack of playing time for the second-year player has more to do with Boston’s depth in the frontcourt than anything specific to his game.

“He’s done a good job,” Stevens said of Mickey. “It’s the same old thing that last year although we’re not quite as deep at that spot. But it’s still, at the end of the day we have to make a decision of, are we going to play more traditional or are we going to slide like a Jonas (Jerebko) or Jae (Crowder) over to the four (power forward) and play more spaced which limits the amount of bigs you can have in a game.

Stevens added, “he’s done a good job.  He’s made progress. I don’t think there’s any question we think he’s a guy that can help us not only down the road but this year.”

Mickey is in the lineup for the Red Claws’ game tonight against Santa Cruz and he’s also scheduled to play in Sunday’s game against the Raptors 905 with both games being televised via Facebook Live.

Rask stops 35 shots in Bruins' 2-1 win over Sabres

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Rask stops 35 shots in Bruins' 2-1 win over Sabres

BUFFALO, N.Y. - Tuukka Rask made 35 saves to help the Bruins hold off the Buffalo Sabres 2-1 on Saturday

David Krejci and Patrice Bergeron scored to give Boston a 2-0 lead and the Bruins improved to 3-0-1 in their past four.

Evander Kane scored his first goal of the season for Buffalo. Robin Lehner returned after missing one game with a hip injury and made 32 saves.

The Sabres combined for nine goals in their previous two wins but the NHL's lowest-scoring team reverted to form from the first 21 games, when star center Jack Eichel was out of the lineup with a high-ankle sprain.

Krejci got the Bruins on the scoreboard with 5:50 left in the first when he deflected Brandon Carlo's slap shot from the point off the right post and into the net.

The Sabres appeared to tie the game late in the second period but replays determined Brian Gionta kicked the puck into the net.

Bergeron made it 2-0 at 7:10 of the second at 7:44 of the third when he knocked on the rebound of his own missed shot. Bergeron initially hit the puck with his forearm on the left edge of the crease and skated around the net to chase down the puck and slip a backhand past Lehner.

The Sabres answered two minutes later, scoring on Rask for the first time in 109:12 this season. Sam Reinhart's feed off the rear wall set up Kane for a wrist shot from the slot that bounced in off Krejci. Reinhart has five points in his last four games.

NOTES: Bruins F Matt Beleskey was escorted to the dressing room in the final minute of the first period with a lower-body injury and did not return. ... Sabres D Josh Gorges did not play after injuring his foot blocking a shot in Thursday's win over the New York Rangers. With Dmitry Kulikov (lower back) and Zach Bogosian (MCL sprain) also out, the Sabres were down three of their top four defenseman and recalled 19-year-old Brendan Guhle from the minors to make his NHL debut. Guhle hustled back to thwart a breakaway by Krejci late in the third period. ... F Anton Blidh became the seventh Bruin to make his NHL debut this season after being recalled from the minors on Friday. ... The Bruins scratched F Jimmy Hayes. D Zdeno Chara, the Bruins' captain, missed his sixth straight game with a lower-body injury. ... Rask got a shutout in Boston's 4-0 win over Buffalo on Nov. 7.

UP NEXT

Bruins: Host Florida on Monday.

Sabres: At Washington on Monday.

 

© 2016 by STATS and The Associated Press.