Daily Noontime (Wednesday, Nov. 11, 2020)

By Matt Noonan

Welcome to Wednesday, everyone.

Today is Veteran’s Day so please take a moment to thank those that have and continue to serve our great nation.

Let’s get to some news, beginning with yesterday biggest headline as Tommy Heinsohn, who played and coached for the Boston Celtics, passed away at his home in Newton, Massachusetts. Heinsohn was 86.

Heinsohn is also being remembered for his passionate and insightful color commentary – fans will certainly miss his insight this upcoming season as a broadcaster. The New Jersey native, who guided the Celtics to 10 National Basketball Association (NBA) championships and was inducted into the Hall of Fame as both a player (1986) and coach (2015), is someone his former colleague Mike Gorman believes will never be replaced.

Prior to coaching and playing for the Celtics, Heinsohn competed locally at at Holy Cross where he led the Crusaders to the 1954 National Invitation Tournament (NIT) championship. He earned a pair of first-team All-American honors with the Purple and White, and was inducted into the Holy Cross Varsity Club Hall of Fame in 1962.

Numerous Celtics players, both current and past, shared memories of Tommy Heinsohn on Twitter, including Marcus Smart and Cedric Maxwell.

Switching gears to football, the National Football League (NFL) could welcome two more teams to the postseason this winter, pending upcoming contests get canceled due to the coronavirus.

Speaking with owners during a Tuesday video conference, Roger Goodell, who is the league’s commissioner, said the NFL is “committed” to completing the league’s current schedule. The NFL was not impacted by the virus until the third week of the season concluded.

As of now, seven teams from each conference will compete in the upcoming NFL postseason, which is scheduled to kick-off next January, with the top seed securing a first-round bye.

Here are a few more stories to read either later this morning or afternoon:

That will do it for now, but as always, make sure to smile and think happy thoughts – have a great day, everyone!

Daily Noontime (Thursday, Nov. 5, 2020)

By Matt Noonan

Welcome to Thursday, everyone!

Hopefully everyone is doing well and thinking optimistically as we anxiously await the outcome of the election. Can it please end today?

Alright, let’s get to some news, beginning with the National Football League (NFL) as part two of the 2020 season begins tonight in Santa Clara, California with the San Francisco 49ers hosting the Green Bay Packers at 8:20 p.m. (eastern).

Here are some pregame reads to get you excited for tonight’s matchup:

Let’s switch gears to basketball – I prefer to call it hoops (ūüėČ)! – as we may know later today if the 2020-21 National Basketball Association (NBA) will tip-off next month or perhaps in mid-January.

As we all know, the 2019-20 season concluded last month in the Orlando, Florida, so the turnaround time would be much shorter than a typical offseason, but according to a few reports, the league is planning to play 72-game season instead of the typical 82-game season.

And finally, here are some additional news and links from the world wide web – have a great day, everyone!

  • According to Sportico‘s Anthony Crupi, ESPN is eliminating 500 jobs.
  • Apparently the first Mid-American Conference (MAC) football game of the 2020 season took place last night and featured a power outage – yikes!
  • While we anxiously await the outcome of the 2020 election, we did learn recently that three more states – Louisiana, Maryland, and Soith Dakota – will allow wagers “on sporting events,” which is good news for DraftKings and FanDuel.
  • Could Alex Cora become the next manager of the Boston Red Sox? It seems like a second stint is possible, according to multiple reports over the past few days, including MLBTradeRumors.com.

Enjoy a BRAND new Noontime Sports Podcast this morning (or afternoon) – today, we welcomed Darryl Konicki, who is the associate commissioner of the Little East Conference (LEC), to discuss the content he and his the league have produced over these past few weeks and months without games being played.

You can listen to today’s podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Anchor and wherever you get your podcasts!

Noontime’s Boston Sports Notebook: Will Tom Brady Return?

NSBostoNsportsEDIT

By Matt Noonan | @NoontimeNation 

It’s been just four days since the¬†New England Patriots¬†season concluded, but the setback to the¬†Tennesse Titans¬†doesn’t seem to be on the mind of many these days.

Instead, the biggest issue surrounding our beloved football team is the future of quarterback Tom Brady Рwill he really leave Boston as a free agent and sign with the Dallas Cowboys, Las Vegas Raiders or Los Angeles Chargers? Or will he stay in New England for one or two more seasons?

The speculation began quickly after the final whistle sounded last Saturday evening at¬†Gillette Stadium¬†as various reporters pressed the long-time signal-caller on his future with the team. Brady didn’t seem interested in discussing future plans. Instead, it appeared as if he wanted to go home and fall asleep. He also didn’t seem interested in reflecting on the entire 2019 season, too, which saw New England win eight-straight contests.

Will or will not, Tom Brady, return to New England will remain at the forefront of social media, blogs, websites, and media outlets going forward. But I have a hunch that Brady returns next season and concludes his career with the Patriots, not another team.

Watching Brady play for the Cowboys or Raiders would just seem strange in my opinion – I, along with other New England fans, would have a hard time seeing the six-time Super Bowl champion donning a different uniform.

I don’t know Brady – I have never covered any of his games, but have enjoyed watching him as both a fan and season ticket holder, and believe he will stick around the area and finish his impressive career as a Patriot, not a Cowboy or Charger. But for Brady to remain with the organization, New England is going to need to acquire some additional pieces on the offensive end so they can compete for a seventh championship next fall.

Brady, who just didn’t seem to have fun this season, needs help. And he certainly knows he can’t win games going forward with just¬†Julian Edelman¬†and¬†James White. He needs receivers and tight ends that are accustomed to winning, but also those that are willing to commit to the process (also known as the ‘Patriot Way.’).

We’re still weeks (and months) away from finding out where Brady is headed, but again, I just have a feeling – yes, a feeling – that he returns for one or two more seasons and leads New England to their seventh (and maybe eighth) Super Bowl.

If Brady wins seven or eight Super Bowls then it will be really hard to say he is not the greatest ever to play football, right?

Noontime’s Quick Thoughts on some Boston sports news (and notes):¬†

  • The¬†Boston Celtics¬†have been really impressive and fun to watch this season – I think this team is destined for a deep postseason run.

    But after observing some of their previous starts against the Atlanta Hawks and Washington Wizards, all I can say is the following: they need to play good basketball wire-to-wire, but also not allow mediocre teams dictate the pace of play following the opening tip.

    The Green and White host¬†San Antonio¬†this evening – the Spurs are currently eighth in the Western Conference – and should certainly provide the Celtics with a good test. But a win over the Spurs this evening followed by a victory tomorrow against the¬†Philadelphia 76ers¬†is a must for a team that didn’t play their best basketball against the Hawks and Wizards. Sure, they beat Atlanta (and the¬†Chicago Bulls¬†one night later), but if I am¬†Brad Stevens, my message would be the following: we dictate the pace of play, not our opponent.

  • Could¬†Alex Cora¬†get suspended for 81 games or the entire 2020 season due to the latest report of the¬†Boston Red Sox¬†stealing signs during their 2018 World Series run?

    I think it is possible – do others?

    This is a bad look for the local nine that did not qualify for the postseason last year and has seemed to take a backseat to bolstering their roster this offseason, so they can compete with some of the best in the American League this season, including the New York Yankees.

  • In case you missed it, the¬†Boston College¬†men’s basketball team scored an impressive (and exciting) win last night over 18th ranked¬†Virginia¬†– hope¬†Bob Whitney¬†enjoyed watching this particular game.

    The win bumps the Eagles record to 9-6 overall and should provide the Maroon and Gold with momentum heading into upcoming contests against Georgia Tech and Syracuse University.

    Duke University remains the top team in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) while the Eagles sit two spots below the Blue Devils with a 3-1 league record.


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