By A. Sherrod Blakely
CSNNE.com Celtics Insider
FOXBORO Bill Belichick had his team gather to watch some film Wednesday night . . . with a twist.
Instead of the usual set of shoulder-pad-wearing men running, pushing and hitting one another on the big screen, they got a chance to view a different set of characters.
Belichick and the Patriots gathered to watch the movie, "The Fighter," which is based on the life of local boxing legend Micky Ward.
Not only did the players get a chance to see the movie, but they also had a chance to meet Ward himself.
"We've been in camp for a long time; been watching a lot of film at night," Belichick said. "Practice film, opponent film. We decided to go to the movies, popcorn, candy out there, relax a little bit."
Belichick added, "Sometimes your team works hard, they deserve a break from the normal routine. They enjoyed it. It was a good night."
The movie was nominated for seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture. It also won a pair of Oscars for Best Supporting Actor (Christian Bale who portrayed Micky's older brother, Dicky Eklund) and Best Supporting Actress (Melissa Leo who portrayed Alice Ward, Micky's mother).
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She hadn't been able to get to a game all season, but Tom Brady had a feeling that his mom would be well enough to make it to the last one.
"He said, 'You'll be ready for the Super Bowl,' " Tom Brady Sr. told NFL Network's Andrea Kremer. "He told us that in the middle of the season. At the end of her five months was going to be two weeks before the Super Bowl."
Brady's mom, Galynn, was diagnosed with breast cancer in the summer of 2016 and was undergoing chemotherapy throughout that season. As she focused on her treatments (which were scheduled for Thursday mornings), Galynn and Tom Sr. spent Sundays watching their son's games from afar.
"Everything centered around 10 o'clock on Thursday morning," Tom Sr. said, "and then 10 o'clock on Sunday morning when we focused on the football games."
The Patriots continued to win, and the end of their season continued to be pushed back, making it possible for Galynn and Tom Sr. to attend their son's seventh Super Bowl. She was cleared for travel by her doctors on the day before the family's scheduled trip to Houston.
"I just wanted to be there for Tommy, and I wanted to be there with my family," she said. "Everybody was going to the Super Bowl, and I didn't want to miss that."
Kremer's piece aired Sunday on NFL Network's NFL GameDay Morning, as the league and the American Cancer Society work together this month on their Crucial Catch campaign. It's online now at NFL.com.