The Patriots will once again start next season with a new defensive coordinator, as Eric Mangini decided last night to leave his position with the team to take over as head coach of the New York Jets. John Tomase looks at he move by Mangini, whom some feel isn’t quite ready for this job yet. Nick Cafardo looks at what is next for both the Patriots and Mangini on the Jets. Albert Breer feels that Dean Pees, Pepper Johnson or Jim Bates could be candidates to replace Mangini on Bill Belichick’s staff. Dan Pires says that the Patriots are the official shopping destination for teams looking for coaches. There are also several articles on Mangini’s hiring in the New York Sports Pages.
Michael Felger says that the Patriots will need just a few tweaks here and there to return to a championship level for next season. Tomase looks at some of the top free agents this offseason in the Patriots positions of need. Alan Greenberg says that this offseason, the Patriots at least have a chance to make an early start in preparation for next season. Greenberg also examines some of the top personnel decisions facing the Patriots this offseason. Chris Kennedy also looks ahead to the offseason, while Hector Longo says that the team has a lot of work to do this offseason. Ian Clark notes that in some areas it will be back to the drawing board for Bill Belichick, Scott Pioli and company.
Gerry Callahan (subscription only) says that the Patriots dynasty isn’t dead yet, they won’t have the problems and issues that faced the 80′s 49ers or the 90′s Cowboys. Bill Reynolds notes that eventually, sports humbles everyone. Tomase has several Pats musing about what could have been for this week and this season. Jonathan Comey looks at the Patriots losing, and how it affects how we should view this team. Bob Halloran says that the Patriots run over the last few years was due in large part to a lot of good luck. Eric McHugh notes that it’s going to be awfully quiet around here for a few weeks now. He also looks at the Patriots roster to see who is signed for how long.
The Herald lists out the top five highs and top five lows of this season for the Patriots. McHugh’s notebook looks at David Givens and other offseason decisions facing the Patriots. We’ve also got a season ending Game Day Rear View Blog with a look at each unit as we head into the offseason.
Ron Borges feels that the road teams could pull upsets this weekend.
Andrew Marchand in the NY Post has a short report on Fred Smerlas causing a bit of a stir in New York after he went on WFAN and called Pete Carroll “light in the heels” and “fairy.”
Nancy Marrapese-Burrell and Stephen Harris look at the Bruins 4-3 Overtime win over the Mighty Ducks yesterday. Joe McDonald looks at Patrice Bergeron, who scored the game winner, and who is starting to really display his star qualities. The BSMW Power Play blog weighs in on yesterday’s win by the Bruins as well. Steve Conroy has more on Bergeron, who really showed his skills yesterday, especially on the game winner. Conroy also has Sergei Samsonov speaking out against Anaheim coach Randy Carlyle’s challenge of Samsonov’s stick curve, calling it a “gutless” challenge. Burrell’s notebook has more on the challenge, as does McDonald’s notebook. In the Herald, Harris’ notebook has a look at Dan LaCouture showing some fight for the Bruins.
Mark Murphy and Shira Springer examine the Celtics giving up a 14 point first half lead in a 94-84 road loss to the Detroit Pistons. More coverage on the game is available from the Detroit Free Press and the Detroit News. Murphy notes that Ricky Davis had easily his worst game of the season yesterday going scoreless, and the Pistons admitted after the game that a big part of their game plan was to shut down Davis. Springer’s notebook reports that the Celtics and Timberwolves are discussing a possible Michael Olowokandi for Mark Blount trade. Murphy’s notebook has Paul Piece making his case to be on the Olympic team in a talk with USA men’s basketball chief Jerry Colangelo.
Jeff Horrigan talks to Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek about the off season roster overhaul the team underwent, and Varitek sounds like he has a wait and see attitude about the upcoming season.
Jim Williams in the DC Examiner reports that PawSox voice and former WWZN co-host Dave Jageler is the top candidate to replace Dave Shea as a member of the radio team for the Washington Nationals.
NESN has BC/Holy Cross at 7:00. ESPN has Indiana/Illinois at 7:00 (HD) and Kentucky/Georgia at 9:00 (HD). ESPN2 has Charlotte/St. Josephs at 7:00 and Louisville/St. Johns at 9:00. ESPN Classic has Seton Hall/Villanova at 7:30. OLN has Devils/Blues at 8:00. NBATV/INHD has Suns/Kings at 10:00.