Morning sports update: Mike Vrabel credited his ‘good friend Tom Brady’ for providing a Titans nickname

"And I'm like, 'You know what? That's a great compliment.'"

NASHVILLE, TN - AUGUST 17:  Head Coach Mike Vrabel of the Tennessee Titans talks with Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots before a week two preseason game at Nissan Stadium on August 17, 2019 in Nashville, Tennessee.   (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Tom Brady and Mike Vrabel talk during the 2019 preseason. –Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

The Bruins beat the Penguins at TD Garden on Thursday, 4-1. Patrice Bergeron led the way, scoring his 20th goal of the season.

And the Celtics lost a thrilling game against the Bucks in Milwaukee, 128-123. Kemba Walker topped all scorers on the night with 40 points.

Mike Vrabel cited Tom Brady’s Instagram video: Titans head coach Mike Vrabel is no stranger to having a little fun with former teammate Tom Brady. During training camp, Vrabel — during a joint practice with the Patriots — presented Brady with a tiny trophy in which he had the score of a 2018 Titans-Patriots matchup inscribed (Tennessee defeated New England 34-10).


As Vrabel prepares the Titans for the AFC Championship Game against the Chiefs on Sunday (3:05 p.m. kickoff), he had a little more fun at Brady’s expense in his explanation for why he calls his team “hyenas.”

“We were street rats. I used to call them street rats,” Vrabel explained. “And then I woke up before the playoff game against the Patriots and Tom, my good friend Tom Brady, put out a really cool — Instagram, Facebook, whatever he’s on — post of him being this lion or something and then these hyenas. And I’m like, ‘You know what? That’s a great compliment.’ Because that’s what we want to be. We want to be hyenas. We want to be street rats that live in the jungle that hunt in packs, as a team.”

Vrabel’s Titans have pulled off consecutive upsets in the playoffs so far in 2020. Tennessee defeated Brady and the Patriots in the wild card round before stunning the top-seeded Ravens in the divisional round. Asked if they can do it again against the heavily favored Chiefs, Vrabel had a simple reply.

“That’s why we come to work every day.”

Trivia: Tacko Fall and Vincent Poirier are officially listed as players who are at least 7-feet-tall (7-foot-5 in Fall’s case). Before them, who was the last 7-foot-tall Celtics player?


(Answer at the bottom).

Hint: He played college basketball for UNC.

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On this day:  In 2001, Antoine Walker dropped 47 points on the Sacramento Kings in a 111-106 loss. Just days after the departure of Rick Pitino as coach, Boston showed its potential despite the loss to one of the league’s best teams at that the time.

Sacramento Kings’ Chris Webber goes for a basket against Antoine Walker and the Celtics in January, 2001. —AP Photo/Max Whittaker

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And one more:

Trivia answer: Tyler Zeller.