Welcome to Thursday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

THURSDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NHL: Canucks at Bruins, 7 p.m. (NESN)
NBA: Clippers at Cavaliers, 8 p.m. (TNT)
NBA: Spurs at Suns, 10:30 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: Hofstra at Northeastern, 8 p.m. (CSNNE)
College basketball: Iowa at Rutgers, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Kentucky at Arkansas, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Memphis at Cincinnati, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Ohio State at Purdue, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Belmont at Tennessee-Martin, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Arizona State at California, 9 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Rice at Alabama-Birmingham, 9:30 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Utah at Washington State, 11 p.m. (FS1)
Tennis: Australian Open, 3 p.m., 11 p.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

Kathryn Smith

Kathryn Smith

— A week after naming his twin brother assistant head coach, Rex Ryan made bigger news with his latest staff hiring. Kathryn Smith will be the Bills’ special teams quality control coach, making her the first full-time female assistant in NFL history.

Smith has worked alongside Ryan for the past seven years, including last season as an administrative assistant for Buffalo’s assistant coaches.

“She certainly deserves this promotion based on her knowledge and strong commitment, just to name a couple of her outstanding qualities,” Ryan said in a statement. “She has proven that she’s ready for the next step, so I’m excited and proud for her with this opportunity.”

Bills offensive lineman Richie Incognito, not known for his sensitivity, tweeted support for Smith, writing: Congrats Kathryn!! I know you will do a great job.

The Cardinals had Boston College product Jen Welter serve a six-week coaching internship during training camp last season, and Ryan said he consulted with Arizona coach Bruce Arians before promoting Smith. Ryan also noted how well Becky Hammon has done as an NBA assistant with the Spurs.

“You can see the success some of these young ladies are having in the coaching profession, such as the young lady that is an assistant to Coach [Gregg] Popovich at the San Antonio Spurs, and realize how exciting this is for women like Kathryn Smith as well as the Bills organization,” Ryan said.

Smith started working for the Jets in 2003 as a game day/special events intern. She became a college scouting intern two years later and the team’s player personnel assistant in 2007.

She replaces Michael Hamlin, who was not retained after this season.

— Relief pitcher Aroldis Chapman became a concern this offseason when news broke that Florida police were investigating an accusation of domestic violence against him.

While the Dodgers pulled out of a deal for the hard-throwing Cuban, the Yankees stepped in and acquired him. And Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner remains unapologetic about it.

“In this country, when allegations are brought against a person, that person is completely innocent until proven otherwise. Not the other way around,” Steinbrenner said Wednesday at baseball’s owner’s meetings in Coral Gables, Florida.

While Major League Baseball could discipline Chapman for the incident, Steinbrenner said the team did due diligence before sending four prospects to the Reds.

“We did as much research as we possibly could, and that’s what I’m going to do anytime I’m looking to get rid of some of my good young talent or spend $100 million signing a free agent,” Steinbrenner said.

— Lightning forward Jonathan Drouin took his dispute with the organization to a new level, as he refused to report to an American Hockey League game Wednesday and was suspended.

The No. 3 pick in the 2013 draft, Drouin was demoted to AHL Syracuse on Jan. 2. His agent, who asked for a trade in November, said Wednesday that Drouin is better off sitting out until his request is fulfilled.

“We proposed to Tampa that Jonathan not play in the next few AHL games but continue practicing with the club to avoid any potential injury from preventing an imminent trade,” agent Allan Walsh said. “Unfortunately, the Tampa Bay Lightning refused this reasonable request, however, Jonathan was not willing to accept this risk.”

General manager Steve Yzerman has said the Lightning would trade Drouin only if it improved the team.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Jan. 21, 1954, the NBA All-Star Game went to overtime for the first time. Which Celtic scored 10 points in the extra session and was named MVP after leading the East to a 98-93 victory?

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “There’s no player off our team that I have any more respect for than Peyton Manning. His preparation, his consistency, his skills. I would never ever, ever underestimate him under any circumstances.” — Patriots coach Bill Belichick, on the Broncos QB heading into Sunday’s AFC championship game

STAT OF THE DAY: 23 — Missed free throws by Pistons center Andre Drummond in Wednesday’s 123-114 victory over the Rockets — an NBA single-game record — as he was intentionally fouled 21 times and took 36 attempts

‘NET RESULTS (mobile users, check the website to see the videos): Jazz forward Rudy Gobert emphatically rejects Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony.

Old friend Rajon Rondo dunks on Lakers forward Ryan Kelly while being fouled during the Kings’ win.

NBC Sports Network sideline reporter Pierre McGuire mistakes Red Wings assistant coach Pat Ferschweiler for head coach Jeff Blashill.

TRIVIA ANSWER: Bob Cousy

SOOTHING SOUNDS: Edwin Starr, who died in 2003, was born on this day in 1942. He’s best remembered for his 1970 protest song, “War,” but this one’s pretty good, too.

Blog Author: 
Jerry Spar
Mikey's bringing it this week for the AFC Championship game against the Broncos
We argue it out amongst ourselves and the callers... what is the number one reason we can't stand Peyton Manning around here. Does it approach hate? Do we at least respect him?
We argue it out amongst ourselves and the callers... what is the number one reason we can't stand Peyton Manning around here. Does it approach hate? Do we at least respect him?
We discuss the Darius Fleming heroic tale of helping a woman at a car crash, then cover it live as the media botches the coverage when they attempt to confirm the story.
We discuss the Darius Fleming heroic tale of helping a woman at a car crash, then cover it live as the media botches the coverage when they attempt to confirm the story.
We go around the NFL with Peter King and get a full breakdown of the AFC Championship - Brady/Manning 17
We go around the NFL with Peter King and get a full breakdown of the AFC Championship - Brady/Manning 17

[0:01:17] ... because he just. You know they're kind of winning and we it's Peyton Manning being at best a complementary player and knowing that. The defense and special teams that have to play great for them the win. So I don't think Gary Kubiak is crazy so he would do whatever he could to give his team their best chance of winning which leads me to believe that he believes. Peyton Manning is a better quarterback right now the Brock also Weiler. That's one and I want to see if you grew with that too is is Peyton Manning and be back in Denver next year. I'll answer your second 11 Michael I'd be very surprised if meaning would be back ...
[0:04:45] ... the Denver Broncos locker room with that that's a team that wants Peyton Manning at quarterback or would prefer Brock cost Weiler quarterback. You know dale. I I have to plead ignorance on that because they ...
[0:07:47] ... to the madness. I I don't know icing. Sometimes. You know like Michael Bennett on the C talks is kind of famous purchase. Saying whatever comes into his head. And whatever comes into his head if ...
[0:11:23] ... ago you and in your Jerry going back and forth over the Peyton Manning HGH story. Since then Al-Jazeera has gone out of business in America. Ed Peyton Manning the story has died down and what you guys said you said you guys are working on something. Just don't know works ...






We compare and contrast Brady's NFL records vs the records Peyton Manning holds.
We compare and contrast Brady's NFL records vs the records Peyton Manning holds.

[0:01:05] ... about Brady and Manning today we're talking about the record books for Tom Brady and Peyton Manning that's today's horrible. Not long. That is pretty protected state city there's no quick. Yeah downfield throw open receiver fifth spot inside ...
[0:01:58] ... Brady broke it then Manning took it back. You guys in vision Tom Brady read breaking that record at some point in the next few years. No sir boy it's hard to picture that. I gotta admit I've I thought fifty was gonna stand up there for a little while and it did arrive. I can't even imagine how Manning was able to do that. After all those neck surgeries that he is is like no way you can actually Cabot normal discussion about Peyton Manning there. You are physically incapable of having a discussion about a march. I would have let it go fifth like this mean ...
[0:03:13] ... Dexter says typical for a for a four up 44 on horrible Peyton Manning songs. And another and says this makes the elements on sound like zeppelin. They crowd the line here they come up. Career. ...
[0:03:55] ... record breaking playoff touchdown he now has 5510. Ahead of Joseph Montana. Peyton Manning fourth on the all time list with 38 career playoff touchdowns gentlemen. Who we'll have more passing touchdowns on Sunday when they meet yet again. Is this a trick question I I mean I don't play the port side of history here well if if Peyton Manning matches this season long touchdown total for. You know passes at home and be one that's in line. And I think your ...