Patriots

Wakeup Call: The Philadelphia Story ends for Andy Reid

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Wakeup Call: The Philadelphia Story ends for Andy Reid

Here's your wakeup call -- a combination of newsworthy andor interesting tidbits -- for Monday, December 31.

BASEBALL
Odds are that Torii Hunter has had a gay teammate or two over his 16-year career. But he'd like them to stay in the closet, if you don't mind. (NBC's Hardball Talk)

COLLEGE BASKETBALL
It sure didn't take Kevin Ollie long to impress the powers-that-be at UConn. (AP)

COLLEGE FOOTBALL
The game is still a week away, but Notre Dame is all business as it prepares for its BCS Championship showdown with Alabama. (AP)

After playing Oklahoma Friday in the Cotton Bowl, Texas A&M's Damontre Moore is headed to the NFL. (AP)

Back in August, no one thought USC's season would be ending with a New Year's Eve appearance in the Sun Bowl. But -- to quote a great coach -- it is what it is, and the Trojans will try to make the best of it today. (AP)

GOLF
A skiing accident will sideline Miguel Angel Jiminez for five months. (AP)

Was that a ring on Caroline Wozniacki's finger? Sorry, she and Rory McIlroy aren't saying. (AP)

HOCKEY
The league is offering 100 million reasons for the NHLPA to agree to a new CBA by Thursday. (NBC's Pro Hockey Talk)

So are they close to a deal? Bill Daly says we'll find out today. (Pro Hockey Talk)

Looking for a team that might have the edge in a shortened season? How about the Oilers? (Pro Hockey Talk)

PRO BASKETBALL
December was a perfect month for the Clippers. (AP)

Phil Jackson? Stan Van Gundy? Jerry Sloan? Fuhgeddabout it. The Nets say P.J. Carlesimo's their guy. (NBC's Pro Basketball Talk)

Derrick Rose is getting closer to a return. (Pro Basketball Talk)

The troubled saga of Royce White and the Rockets continues, as he refuses an assignment to the D-League. (AP)

PRO FOOTBALL
For whatever reason, the Eagles won't say they're firing Andy Reid. But they are. (CSN Philly)

As coach, anyway. However, he might not be going anywhere. (CSN Philly)

There's no lack of potential replacements, that's for sure. (CSN Philly)

It's not drawing nearly the same amount of attention, but it looks like Pat Shurmur -- and GM Tom Heckert -- are out in Cleveland, too. (NBC's Pro Football Talk)

And so's Tony Sparano in New York. (Pro Football Talk)

What a run for the Redskins: Seven straight wins, a victory over Dallas in a winner-take-all matchup for the NFC East title. And when it was over, RGIII was "at a loss for words" to explain how he felt. (CSN Washington)

The Tony Romo Experience reaches new heights. (CSN Washington)

Adrian Peterson finishes nine yards shy of Eric Dickerson's single-season rushing record, but his 199 yards were enough to help the Vikings beat the Packers and get into the playoffs. (AP)

The 49ers were happy -- delirious, actually -- because Minnesota's win helped them secure a first-round bye. (AP)

Playoffs, schmayoffs. No matter what time of year it is, the 'Niners sound like they're about to change kickers. (CSN Bay Area)

Now they cheer him. (CSN Bay Area)

Not exactly the way you want to be playing heading into the postseason, is it, Texans? (CSN Houston)

Many teams try to motivate themselves with an "everybody's-against-us" mindset. But when the Ravens play Chuck Armstrong's Colts next Sunday, they might be right. (CSN Baltimore)

Not this time, Giants. (AP)

Pastrnak on B's loss: "We kind of stopped playing"

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Pastrnak on B's loss: "We kind of stopped playing"

BOSTON – At the end of the day, it was simply a game where the Bruins allowed themselves to get outworked in the third period and overtime. 

The B’s held a three-goal lead in the second period and still enjoyed a two-goal lead in the third period, but eventually dropped a frustrating, futile 5-4 overtime loss to the Buffalo Sabres at TD Garden on Saturday night. It was clear to most speaking after the game that the Bruins eased up on the gas pedal once they’d scored their fourth goal of the game in the second period, and simply watched as the Sabres stomped all over them in the game’s second half. 

“I think we might have been a little bit too scared to play [in the third period], you know? We tried to just flip the pucks away, and didn’t make any plays trying to get it in the zone. Instead we should have just kept going like we did in the first two periods,” said David Pastrnak, who scored a pair of goals early in the loss to allow the Bruins to build up the three-goal lead. “Obviously we’re disappointed. We got one point. I think we didn’t play our game in the third period. We kind of stopped playing and they were all over us, and you know, it’s on us. We were the ones that gave them their point, but the first two periods were good. It’s just another learning session.”

To Pastrnak’s point, the Bruins were outshot by a 15-6 margin in the final 20 minutes of regulation and 21-6 overall in the third period and overtime prior to Ryan O’Reilly’s game-winner during 3-on-3 play. It was at this point the Bruins certainly missed stalwart stay-at-home defensemen Adam McQuaid and Kevan Miller in the D-zone, and fell short of qualified penalty killers while trying to burn off a Brandon Carlo interference call at the end of the third period. 

All of that caught up to them once the Bruins loosened their grip on the Sabres, but certainly the feeling is that the loss should’ve been avoidable even if some of the circumstances made it difficult for the Black and Gold. It also should have been avoidable against a Sabres hockey club that was dreadful last season, and is again one of the doormats in the Atlantic Division in the early going thus far. 

“Those are the games you can’t lose. We obviously didn’t do the job there in the third and close it out, but we’re going to have to regroup and work on our game and be better for the next one,” said Brad Marchand. “We didn’t play the game we needed to play. We relaxed a bit and we started losing a few battles in the wrong areas, and you know, they just played better than we did.”

It’s mystifying that any team would need a crash-and-born loss like Saturday night in order to learn any lessons moving forward, and it certainly might have been a different story for the Bruins if they weren’t missing a few big defensive pieces. But that’s not how it went down for the Black and Gold as they sagged under rising pressure from the Sabres, and simply stopped working when the chips were on the table late in Saturday night’s game.