Coach Bill Belichick will have to guide the New England Patriots without injured quarterback Mac Jones. AP Photo/Michael Dwyer

It’s been a rough couple of days in Boston sports. The “City of Champions” is reeling from a flurry of blows that has fans gnashing their teeth and wailing about the state of their teams.

On Monday, the Boston Celtics hosted their annual preseason media day. When it was originally scheduled months ago, the day was supposed to be the starting line for coverage of a season brimming with optimism. The Celtics shocked the basketball world last season with a stunning second half and a run to the NBA Finals. Their young core intact, the team should be a favorite to repeat as Eastern Conference champs.

Instead, the Celtics are reeling from the year-long suspension of disgraced head coach Ime Udoka after an investigation determined he had engaged in a reportedly consensual relationship with a team staff member in violation of team policies.

“It’s an unfortunate situation for everyone involved,” said interim coach Joe Mazzulla. “You have to give people the time and space to feel and the time and space to heal.”

While the Celtics were answering questions about Udoka, the New England Patriots were reeling from an injury suffered by quarterback Mac Jones in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s ugly loss to the Baltimore Ravens.

“Nothing definitive at this point,” is all coach Bill Belichick would say in his meeting with reporters on Monday. Reports said Jones suffered a high ankle sprain and would have to miss time.


That means Brian Hoyer — closing in on his 37th birthday — is likely to be the starting QB when the team travels to Green Bay this weekend. It would be Hoyer’s first start since 2020.

Having Hoyer standing over center is not the ideal scenario for a team that self-destructed against Baltimore on Sunday. Fumbles and interceptions killed off any chance of a win in the home opener at Gillette Stadium.

Losing Jones won’t help the Patriots win, but the bigger loss might be in the development of a second-year quarterback who has shown potential. Jones has been inconsistent at best in the first three weeks of the year, and losing him for any significant period of time will undoubtedly set him back.

In the midst of all this was the Boston Red Sox being eliminated from the playoffs after being swept in a four-game series at Yankee Stadium in New York. A knockout blow from the Yankees would usually be headline news in Boston, but the late-night loss on Sunday was barely a blip on the local radar.

Elimination was a foregone conclusion for the Red Sox, who are destined for their second last-place finish in three years. Most fans were probably surprised that the team was still mathematically alive in the playoff chase when it took the field. Postseason hopes were officially extinguished after a one-hour, 38-minute rain delay.

The game was officially called at 10:45 p.m., with Aaron Judge on deck with 60 home runs this season. He never got that next at bat and will now try to tie Roger Maris’ American League record in Toronto.

It was small solace that the Red Sox were able to keep Judge in the yard over the four-game series. Yet that’s what it’s come to in the waning days of this last-place season. Losing four straight but keeping the home run leader from making history is the closest thing the Sox have to winning.

It was another dose of disappointment, but one we all saw coming. And not nearly as crushing as the disappointment oozing from the parquet and the gridiron as we close in on October.

Tom Caron is a studio host for the Red Sox broadcast on NESN.

Related Headlines

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login first for digital access. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.

filed under: