Garnett: Davis is a 'freak of nature'


Garnett: Davis is a 'freak of nature'

BOSTON -- When is being referred to as a freak of nature a compliment?
When it comes from Kevin Garnett.
Garnett got his first glimpse of New Orleans Hornets rookie and first overall pick Anthony Davis on Wednesday night. Davis posted a 10-point, 10-rebound double-double as the Hornets snapped the Celtics six-game winning streak, 90-78. 
"That kid is long," said Garnett. "I think he makes me look like a midget, man. He's a freak of nature. The kid's going to be really good. The kid's going to be really good."
Davis said he grew up watching LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony, which means Garnett was already well into his career by the time the 19-year-old started tuning into hoops.
Growing up in Chicago, though, Davis heard people frequently talking about Garnett, who finished high school in the same city. Davis took an interest and began watching tapes of his game. He studied veterans like Garnett and Tim Duncan, familiarizing himself with their skillsets and moves. 
This season he is making his debut against the players he watched as a child. James and Anthony are in their tenth seasons, Duncan is in his 16th, and this is season number 18 for Garnett. 
Davis looked forward to facing Garnett (15 points, 4 rebounds) and wished he had more matchups with him during Wednesday's game. Davis liked Garnett's movement, how he got to different spots on the floor, and his communication with his teammates. 
The notes on Garnett in the Hornets scouting report were familiar to Davis, who has by this season watched hours of the veteran in action. 
"He looked to score the ball and he played hard the whole game," Davis said. "(My) expectations were the reality."
Now Garnett has expectations for Davis as well. It is not every day that he throws around a term "freak of nature" for teenagers who have only played in 26 NBA games.
"It's fun because it's going to make me better, see where my game is, see what I need to work on," said Davis. "But it's just fun, going against primetime guys. I just want to get better. Hopefully I can play well enough to help them get better."

Haggerty's Morning Skate: NHL teams aren't just making trades for themselves ahead of deadline

Haggerty's Morning Skate: NHL teams aren't just making trades for themselves ahead of deadline

Here are all the hockey links from around the world, and what I’m reading while feeling like Warren Beatty took the sneaky way out by handing that wrong Academy Award card to Faye Dunaway last night. Clearly he knew something was amiss and he let her step into it. Kind of a weasel move if you asked me.

-- An interesting letter from FOH (Friend of Haggs) James Mirtle about the pay wall involving The Athletic sports website in Toronto.

-- Dean Lombardi and the Los Angeles Kings dealing for Ben Bishop is about more than just an insurance policy for Jonathan Quick.

-- FOH Mike Halford has the Minnesota Wild going for it with their trade for Martin Hanzal, but also keeping him from the other teams in the West.

-- NHL commissioner Gary Bettman says the Penguins are in great shape after winning the Cup last spring, and it’s clear they’re in good hands after Mario Lemieux and Ron Burkle opted not to sell the franchise.

-- Kyle Quincey is being held out of the lineup in New Jersey because of pending trades, and the wonder is who else in New Jersey might be getting dealt.

-- Gabriel Landeskog and his Colorado Avalanche teammates know the trade deadline is coming. It would certainly be weird if they didn’t.

-- The San Jose Sharks feel fortunate for the timing of their bye week as it was clear that they needed a break.

-- For something completely different: Gronk was busy doing Gronk things at the Daytona 500 over the weekend.

Patriots promote coaching assistant Nick Caley to tight ends coach


Patriots promote coaching assistant Nick Caley to tight ends coach

As the Patriots so often like to do, they promoted from within to fill an open coaching position on Monday. 

The team announced that they've named Nick Caley as their tight ends coach, filling the vacancy left behind when Brian Daboll accepted the offensive coordinator position at the University of Alabama last week. 

Caley was a coaching assistant with the Patriots for the past two seasons after spending a decade in the college ranks at John Carroll (2005-06), Akron (2006-07), Auburn (2008), Iowa State (2009-11), Eastern Illinois (2012), Arkansas (2013) and Florida Atlantic (2014).

Caley is one of several John Carroll products -- including director of player personnel Nick Caserio, offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels and assistant quarterbacks coach Jerry Shuplinski -- working for the Patriots at the moment. He graduated from the Jesuit university situated just outside of Cleveland in 2006.