New York Knicks v Boston Celtics
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Good morning to everyone but especially to...


The New York Knicks are really good, and no, it's not just their really good point guard. Even with Jalen Brunson out, the Knicks went into Boston and beat the Celtics131-129, in double overtime last night.

  • It's the Knicks' ninth straight win -- the longest active winning streak in the league and tied for the team's second-longest in the last decade.
  • The Knicks are now 39-27 this season and only one game behind the Cavaliers for the No. 4 seed in the Eastern Conference.

Thrust into the spotlight with Brunson ruled out shortly before the game, Immanuel Quickley poured in a career-high 38 points. The explosive point guard is making a strong case for Sixth Man of the Year, writes our Brad Botkin.

  • Botkin: "Quickley flat out won this game for the Knicks... Quickley played 55 minutes -- a Tom Thibodeau special -- and down the stretch of regulation and both overtime periods, he still looked like he had more energy than anyone on the floor. In all that time, he committed just one turnover. He didn't rest for one second after halftime."

And no, this streak hasn't been the Knicks beating up on the league's bottom tier: All nine wins are over teams currently in a playoff/play-in spot.


We're giving out some Dance tickets. Welcome to the NCAA Tournament...

  • Kennesaw State
  • Southeast Missouri State
  • Fairleigh Dickinson
  • Drake
  • UNC Asheville

Let's start with Kennesaw State, because the Owls' turnaround is remarkable.

  • They won one -- one!!! -- game in 2019-20, their first season under coach Amir Abdur-Rahim.
  • Then came five wins in 2020-21 and 13 in 2021-22.
  • This year, their 67-66 win over Liberty in the Atlantic Sun Tournament championship gave them their 26th win and their first NCAA Tournament berth since joining Division I in 2010.

It was only the second-most exciting finish of those five teams above: Tennessee Tech's Diante Wood made a miraculous shot at the end of regulation that was initially ruled a game-winning 3-pointer but then overturned to a 2. Southeast Missouri State then pulled it off in overtime, 89-82.

And finally, for the strangest advancement, Fairleigh Dickinson hasn't won the NEC tournament, but the Knights are March Madness-bound because the team they'll face in the championship game -- Merrimack -- is ineligible while transitioning from Division II to Division I.

Here's our conference tournament tracker.

Honorable mentions

And not such a good morning for...

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Ja Morant's latest off-court incident is costing him and his team. The Grizzlies star is away from the team indefinitely after the NBA announced it is investigating a post of him appearing to brandish a gun at a club Saturday night.

This is troubling, and the time away from the team is needed and (hopefully) helpful. Ja Morant, the person, needs help so he can live up to the awesome potential of Ja Morant, the basketball player.

Morant is not the only player Memphis must move forward without. Brandon Clarke is done for the season after tearing his Achilles. The injury happened in Friday's loss to the Nuggets. With Steven Adams still out with a knee sprain, Memphis is short on dependable front-court bodies.

Not so honorable mentions

CBB notes: Duke sweeps UNC, Mark Adams suspended 🏀


It's officially the postseason everywhere across the country, and North Carolina is running out of chances. The reigning national runner-up collapsed late at home in a 62-57 loss to Duke, with the Blue Devils finishing the season sweep. North Carolina scored two points -- and made zero field goals -- over the final 4:21 of the game. Continuing a season-long aversion to making 3-pointers, North Carolina went an abysmal 5 for 23 from deep.

Texas Tech also got an "F," though that failure is for a different reason: Red Raiders head coach Mark Adams has been suspended for making an "inappropriate, unacceptable, and racially insensitive" comment.

  • Adams "referenced Bible verses about workers, teachers, parents, and slaves serving their masters," per the school's statement. Adams immediately apologized, per the statement, though the player who complained said Adams did not apologize. Adams also said he did not feel the comment was racist.
  • Per a report, there was another incident in which Adams spit on a player earlier this season. Adams said he accidentally slobbered on the player while dealing with a cough.
  • Texas Tech is 16-15 this season, Adams' second in charge in Lubbock, after going 27-10 and making the Sweet 16 last year. The Red Raiders face West Virginia on Wednesday in the first round of the Big 12 Tournament.

Here's everything else you need to know:

NFL Combine: Where will big winner Anthony Richardson land? 🏈

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Another NFL Combine has come and gone, and now we're really rolling in the offseason: the franchise tag deadline is tomorrow, free agency starts next week and before we know it, the draft will be here.

But before all of that, we have a lot to unpack from the combine. Let's start with the game's most important position. That conversation has to start with Anthony Richardson, the former Florida star who...

However, he's nowhere near the top of Ryan Wilson's latest mock draft. Instead, it's EDGE Will Anderson Jr. first to the Bears and then QB Bryce Young second to the Texans. Young measured in at just 5-foot-10-and-1/8ths-inches tall. Which leads us to...

C.J. Stroud was also terrific in quarterback drills. We have landing spots for him and for Richardson. As for other top highlights:

Our NFL writers did incredible work covering the combine. You can see it all here.

UFC 285: Jon Jones submits Cyril Gane for heavyweight title 🥊

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More than three years between fights? No problem. New weight class? No problem.

Jon Jones is the new heavyweight champion after submitting Cyril Gane in the first round of the UFC 285 main event. (Full results here). This result cements Jones at the top of the GOAT debate, Brent Brookhouse writes.

  • Brookhouse: "The ease with which he snatched the submission and looked natural in the division confirmed all beliefs that he could truly dominate in the land of giants. Despite being stripped of titles and having title wins overturned because of legal problems and failed drug tests, Jones' in-cage ability is still second to none. Beyond his top-shelf wrestling or his dynamic striking, Jones is capable of making in-fight calculations and adjustments better than anyone in the sport. ... Even if he never wins another fight, Jones has proven himself the best MMA has ever seen."

You can see Brent's all-time top 10 here and his takeaways from the night here.

So, what's next for Jones? With Dana White saying Francis Ngannou will never return to UFC, Stipe Miocic would be the next challenger. I can't wait.

As for everything else...

What we're watching Monday 📺

🏀 Hawks at Heat, 7:30 p.m. on NBA TV
🏀 BYU at No. 17 Saint Mary's, 9 p.m. on ESPN
🏀 Pelicans at Kings, 10 p.m. on NBA TV
🏀 San Francisco at No. 10 Gonzaga, 11:30 p.m. on ESPN2