NBA: Boston Celtics at Dallas Mavericks

Nov 24, 2018; Dallas, TX, USA; Boston Celtics center Al Horford (42) plays defense against Dallas Mavericks center DeAndre Jordan (6) in the first quarter at American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Shane Roper-USA TODAY Sports

Some Thanksgiving leftovers for your table as you wonder about Tom Brady's availability in the Meadowlands:

• Al Horford, who sat out the Celtics’ win Friday night at Atlanta, on his sore knee: “We’ve been dealing with this. It’s part of the season. It’s been a couple of weeks. We just got to the point where it’s smart (to rest). I don’t want to miss extended time, or anything like that. We’re just staying ahead of it.”

• Oklahoma is 7-0 against West Virginia after Friday night’s wild 59-56 victory — averaging 47 points per game, with 174 points in the last three games.

• No, I didn’t pay to watch Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson play golf Friday. Turns out, through a technical glitch, it was free to many on the Internet. Oh, and Phil won.

• The Hall of Fame ballot arrived in Friday’s mail. Just waiting for the knucklehead(s) who don’t vote for Mariano Rivera, keeping him from becoming the first unanimous choice ever.

• Through Friday, the Bruins’ David Krejci had gone 13 games since his last goal and had two on the season. But he did have 15 assists and was a plus-2 on the year.

• We had a Semi Ojeleye sighting Friday night in Atlanta. After logging 12 minutes in the previous four games, all in one game, he played 23:32, had eight points and five rebounds and was a plus-11.

• Old pal Jumbo Joe Thornton registered his 1,034th career assist Friday night, passing Mario Lemieux for 11th on the all-time list. However, Thornton did it in 1,507 games, while Super Mario needed just 915 for his 1,033.

Manny Machado is all-in on his damage control after his horrible behavior as a Dodger and his comment about hustling likely cost him some cash. More later.

Rob Gronkowski on his lengthy rest: “I feel good. I’m ready to go. Sunday afternoon in New York, it’s going to be a hostile environment. It always is. They’re a good team. They play hard. I mean, I can’t recall a game where I would say they haven’t played hard in my nine years playing them. So it’ll be a good one. It’ll be a tough one, but it’ll be a good one again.”

Kyrie Irving, who seems to say something people are talking about every day, will not play until he’s 40 and says, “My dad is the reason I wear 11. I want to be the reason no one else will. #justdoit”

• WBZ’s Dan Roche with some baseball thoughts: 1.) Adrian Beltre is without a doubt a Hall of Famer; 2.) Mariano Rivera should be a unanimous 1st ballot inductee; 3.) Edgar Martinez should go in this year; 4.) I’d put Curt Schilling in, too.” I agree on all four.

• The Bruins dropped from No. 4 to No. 7 in the latest ESPN Power Rankings, with each team assigned as a side dish. “The Bruins are sweet potatoes covered in marshmallows, a dish so divisive that the innocuous USA Today once asked, “Why is it a thing?” Loved by some for its fun, loathed by others for its alleged blasphemy. Truly, the Brad Marchand of side dishes. “

• Jets LB Brandon Copeland on Brady: “He’s one of the founding fathers of the league. “He’s going to make you pay if you leave people open. Brady’s Brady. I don’t know how to really describe it. ... He finds ways to make people around him great. He could line me up as a wide receiver and he’ll probably find a way to make me look good.”

• Speaking of Brady, Scott Kacsmar tweets, on QB records when their team scores 40 points: “Tom Brady 40-0; Peyton Manning 32-0; Steve Young 19-0; Jim Kelly 15-0; Philip Rivers 15-0; Joe Montana 14-0; Brett Favre 14-0; Roger Staubach 11-0; John Elway 9-0; Drew Brees 37-1; Aaron Rodgers 17-1 — COMBINED 204-2: Patrick Mahomes 2-2.”

• Former NHL GM Brian Burke, who recently slammed Brad Marchand’s “clown” act, doesn’t like the Carolina Hurricanes riding their hockey sticks from one end of the ice to the other after a win. “I think it’s absurdly amateurish, pee-wee garbage stuff,” he said. “They like it — terrific. Stay and watch it. Clap. Have another beer and stay and watch them swim or canoe or whatever they’re going to do next. I’m not watching.”

• Celtics fans will continue dreaming when they see their team play against Anthony Davis in New Orleans Monday. Keep dreaming.

Richard Justice of selected one player for each team to be thankful for — and, yes “Mookie Betts is the new face of the Red Sox. He was never the highest-rated prospect as he made his way through the Boston farm system. He was the guy who needed a shot to be completely appreciated. Only 26, he’s the reigning AL MVP Award winner and also a three-time Gold Glove Award winner and three-time All-Star, it’s Mookie Betts.”

Marcus Smart on his team before the win in Atlanta: “It’s the same old song,” he said after the Celtics fell to 9-9. “You know, it gets annoying. I don’t even know what to say at this point. You’ve already done heard it. I’m tired of talking about it. I don’t know.” Asked if he was confident of a turnaround, he told Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald: “I am, but we’ve got to stop sugarcoating things. That’s the problem. We’ve got to stop sugarcoating it. We’ve just got to call it what it is. We’re playing like punks; that’s just what it is.”

• Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy on his goalie tandem after Friday night’s Jaroslav Halak win lifted Halak to 8-2-2 on the season: “I mean we’re going to be a tough team to beat. Any team would be if both their goalies are going well. Let’s face it, we knew what we had in Tuukka (Rask) and (Jaroslav) Halak was a — we’ve said all along — we thought would be a very good backup. He’s been a starter in this league, so that’s an area we feel we have covered, goaltending on a regular basis. You need it in this league. All of a sudden you lose half your ‘D-corps’ and you need it more.”

• Column pal Dave Laurila of “Tom Yawkey is enshrined in Cooperstown despite having resisted integration and the Red Sox going without a World Series title in his 40-plus years as owner. Boston has won four titles since John Henry bought the team. Looking ahead, Henry’s Hall of Fame chances seem pretty good.”

• @BruinsStats on Steve Kampfer being responsible for both regulation goals against in the OT loss in Detroit: “Rather just play the next month or whatever shorthanded than have to watch Kampfer wear a Bruins jersey again.” Side note: what the Bruins have done with all these injuries on the backline is rather remarkable.

• Don’t look now, but if the Patriots win out and the Chiefs lose another game, New England has home field throughout the playoffs. There IS a game at Pittsburgh to worry about.

Bill Belichick on whether he can tell the McCourty twins apart: “No, they make it really hard.” Reminded the twins also dress alike, Belichick said, “Yeah, no kidding. I don’t usually look at numbers. I can usually tell just from looking at the guy who it is. I don’t really look at a number and register the player. I can just recognize him. It’s hard with those guys.”

• The Rays, clearing roster spots for prospects, didn’t tender 30-homer guy C.J. Cron a contract.

Steve Pearce is coming back to where he feels he belongs. “It’s easy,” the World Series MVP said on a conference call. “The team that I was on and the run that we had, I’m really anxious to get back there next year. It was a very easy decision … this was the place I wanted to be. The team that I was on, how everything was done there, bringing everybody back, it was a no-brainer for me. This is where I wanted to play. ... The chemistry that we had on and off the field. Wanting to defend a title, that’s a big deal. And I can accomplish all of that by going back to the Sox.”

• Combined, the Chiefs and West Virginia, in pro and college shootouts this week, combined for 107 yards and 1,250 yards of offense — and both lost.

• Thanks to column pal Chris Smith of MassLive for pointing out: “New Yankees pitcher James Paxton is 2-0 with a 2.49 ERA, 0.91 WHIP, 22 strikeouts and three walks in four career starts (25.1 innings) vs. the Red Sox.”

• Gronk on if he saw the New York Daily News “Weekend at Gronkie’s” cover: “No. Heard there was some like crazy weekend though at my house. It gets crazy.” Does stuff like that bother the big fella? No, it is what it is,” he said. “We’ve got a big game Sunday, that’s all that matters. I’ve got to get ready, got to get prepared and just focus on Sunday.”

• Machado on not being “Johnny Hustle” comments: “When I was asked that question, I was definitely on the defensive, and I was wrong to answer it the way that I did, because looking back, it doesn’t come across how I meant it,” Machado told’s Mark Feinsand. “For me, I was trying to talk about how I’m not the guy who is eyewash. There’s a difference between fake hustle for show and being someone who tries hard to win. I’ve always been the guy who does whatever he can to win for his team. But I know how I said it and how that came across, and it’s something I take responsibility for. I look forward to talking with each GM and owner that we meet with about that, or any other questions they have.”

• Belichick on his takeaway from that crazy Rams-Chiefs game Monday night: “We have the Jets. That’s my takeaway.”

• Laurila on Beltre’s home and away consistency: “Adrian Beltre batted .286 with 237 home runs and an .820 OPS in home games. He batted .286 with 240 home runs and an .818 OPS in road games.”

• More on Beltre, from The Athletic’s Jayson Stark: “Here’s every player in history with at least 3,166 hits, 477 HR, .819 OPS & 5 Gold Gloves: Willie Mays; Adrian Beltre. That’s all, folks!”

• Finally, James White on the Pats’ bye week coming at the right time: “I think the rest kind of came at a good time for us to evaluate ourselves, get some rest, recover up, just come back and get ready to go for this last six-game stretch. Lot of division games, big, tough one against the Jets this week so we’ve just got to come out ready to go from the start to the finish. It’s tough every time we play those guys. It’s never easy.”

Mike Shalin covers Boston pro sports for the New Hampshire Union Leader and Sunday News. His email address is