Morning sports update: Alex Cora referenced Isaiah Thomas while discussing Dustin Pedroia

Also: Quick thinking saved a Babson skier's life, a "dumpster fire" in New Orleans, and the anniversary of Bill Belichick being fired by the "Baltimore franchise."

Dustin Pedroia in 2018.

NBA All-Star weekend is here, with a full schedule of events to accompany Sunday’s Team LeBron vs. Team Giannis matchup.

Elsewhere, the Bruins face the Ducks tonight at 10 p.m. in Anaheim, then they’ll take on the Kings at 10:30 p.m. Saturday in Los Angeles.

Alex Cora compared Dustin Pedroia’s return to Isaiah Thomas: Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia is attempting a comeback after missing all but three games in 2018 due to injury.

While discussing Pedroia on Thursday, Alex Cora referenced former Boston Celtic Isaiah Thomas, who has been immersed in a comeback of his own. The Red Sox manager even used Thomas’s frequently used phrase: “slow grind.”

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“It’s funny because I was watching some highlights from the NBA yesterday and Isaiah Thomas comes out and I thought about Pedey,” Cora told Christopher Smith of MassLive. “You know, it’s a slow grind I guess. Hopefully, it pays off.”

Cora remains optimistic about the 35-year-old’s chances of a successful 2019.

“Hopefully, he’ll be leading off in Seattle the first game of the season,” Cora said.

On Friday morning, Pedroia offered a funny offseason story while speaking to the media:

More from Boston.com:

Quick thinking likely saved a Babson skier’s life: During a college ski race in early February at West Mountain in New York, Victor Wiacek fell on the course. One of his skis popped out of its binding, and the fall was so violent that it severed an artery in his upper leg.

Luckily for Wiacek, his fall placed him only feet away from Kurt Mackie, father of his friend and fellow racer, Kylie Mackie. Along with Kylie’s friend Linn Ljungemo, the trio acted quickly to attend to Wiacek and contain the bleeding before ski patrollers arrived and quickly transported him to a nearby hospital. Their actions likely saved Wiacek’s life. [The Boston Globe]

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Trey Flowers reminded everyone of an important fact on Thursday.

Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry called the Anthony Davis situation a “dumpster fire.”

Magic Johnson is done getting fined for tampering.

On this day: In 1996, news broke that Bill Belichick would not coach the newly created Baltimore Ravens. The team’s owner, Art Modell – who would later tell Robert Kraft that hiring Belichick was the greatest mistake he would ever make – dismissed the man who had coached the Browns in the previous five seasons.

An odd historical discussion was jumpstarted a few years ago over whether Belichick was fired by the Browns. An ESPN social media post in 2017 erroneously said Belichick was fired on this day as the “HC of the Browns.”

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As was later pointed out, however, the Browns ceased to exist a week earlier on Feb. 8, 1996, when NFL owners voted to let Modell’s team formally move to Baltimore to become the Ravens. In fact, when the Belichick’s news was announced, the team didn’t even have a new nickname. Belichick was technically fired as the coach of the “Baltimore franchise.”

In 2004, the Yankees completed the trade for Alex Rodriguez.

Also on this day a year ago, Mikaela Shiffrin won the gold medal in giant slalom at the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics.

Daily highlight: Watch as Terrence Ross “slithered and slices” his way to a fantastic dunk.

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