The opening weekend of the NFL season brought with it some controversy over the frequency of commercials hyping fantasy sports sites during telecasts. Frank Pallone Jr., a New Jersey congressman, wants an investigation into whether these sites are breaking anti-gambling laws. . . . Meanwhile, in Canada, we watch CTV promos and some guy in a Toyota chasing an ice cream truck. No investigations needed here. . . . When an NFL team calls timeout, someone runs around the field squirting water into the mouths of the players. Just wondering, but what does that person put on their income tax return under Occupation? . . .
“Howard was not charged and was allowed to board a later flight,” Scott Ostler of the San Francisco Chronicle wrote after Houston Rockets centre Dwight Howard was found to have a loaded handgun in his carry-on bag at a Houston airport. “Officials reasoned that even if Howard shot, he wouldn’t have hit anything more than three feet away.” . . . Ostler has a terrific idea for NFL coaches: “Hey, you coaches of Patriots’ opponents who are worried about Bill Belichick’s Bandits stealing your signals: Send dummy signals and let your quarterback call his own plays.” . . .
“When did Toronto Blue Jays announcers Buck Martinez and Pat Tabler become such homers?” wonders Cam Hutchinson of the Saskatoon Express, and he isn’t alone. “I’ve recently heard Tabler using the ‘we’ word.” . . . Hutchinson again: “With Brendan Shanahan at the wheel, Mats Sundin sees better days ahead for the Leafs: ‘I think Leafs fans are going to have their Stanley Cup. It’s just a matter of time.’ I’m guessing someone told Cubs fans something similar in 1956, 48 years after their last World Series win.” . . .
The San Francisco 49ers opened at home on Monday night while wearing black sweaters with red numbers, name bars and trim. “After this game,” tweeted Vancouver comic Torben Rolfsen, “the 49ers will donate these uniforms to the Ottawa Redblacks.” . . . “Satellite-based imaging shows the retreating Jakobshavn Glacier in Greenland moves at a speed of 12 feet per hour,” reports RJ Currie of SportsDeke.com. “Or slightly faster than David Ortiz.” . . . “I’m thinking Gary Bettman will only award an NHL franchise to Las Vegas,” Currie reasons. “If Quebec City gets a professional hockey team, then Toronto will want one.” . . . One more from Currie: “Did you know Grand Slam curling will now be played in nine months of the year? Who do they think they are, the NHL?” . . .
How long do men like Mike Ditka and Bill Cowher have to be out of the coaching game before they no longer are referred to as Coach Ditka and Coach Cowher? . . . With the Baltimore Ravens having lost Terrell Suggs for the rest of this season, Jack Finarelli, aka The Sports Curmudgeon, notes: “Suggs is 32 years old. . . . In his 12-year career up until last weekend, he only had missed 11 games and he is going to miss 15 this season alone. Unless, of course, his former teammate, Ray Lewis, still has some of that magic deer-antler spray left over.” . . .
“Ronda Rousey will reprise Patrick Swayze's role of Dalton in a remake of Road House,” writes Bill Littlejohn, our South Lake Tahoe, Calif., correspondent, “although the project is targeting a 2016 release date and a script hasn't even been written. Road House needs a script?” . . . Littlejohn also reports: “A Massachusetts middle school has temporarily named itself after Tom Brady. I hear it's temporary in case the NFL wins its appeal.” . . . Littlejohn, again: “Miami’s Ndamukong Suh bought recliners for the Dolphins defensive line’s meeting room. He hasn't been suspended lately, so had money left over.” . . .
A cheery note from Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times: “The next Sunday without NFL football falls on Valentine’s Day.” . . . The visiting Colorado Rockies and the Los Angeles Dodgers went 16 innings on Tuesday night and Vin Scully, working solo, as usual, sounded as fresh at game’s end as he did at the first pitch. If you are a baseball fan, stop for a moment and think about how fortunate we are to live in a time when Scully’s work is so accessible. . . . BTW, it’s Vin Scully Bobblehead Night at Dodger Stadium on Wednesday. I know. You’re wondering what took them so long. . . . Actually, this is the second Scully Bobblehead promotion. They also did it in 2012. . . .
“Montreal Canadiens defenceman P.K. Subban made a $10-million contribution to Montreal Children’s Hospital,” writes Ray Ratto of CSNBayArea.com. “As a reward, his first bad pass of the season will be rewarded by cries of, ‘If he really loved children, he’d have given $10,000,001.’ ” . . . Ratto, again: “Some people on Twitter noticed that the Dodgers’ 16-inning game with Colorado was cutting into Vin Scully’s well-earned sleep, which reminds us that Scully is the only person ever to avoid criticism on Twitter ever.” . . .
In a football game featuring two western Pennsylvania football teams earlier this month, Dubois quarterback Matt Miller threw for 741 yards and his Beavers somehow managed to lose. Meadville’s Journey Brown rushed for 722 yards and 10 touchdowns as the Bulldogs won, 107-90. . . . A recent CFL game between the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Toronto Argonauts was a bit chippy and included nine penalties for unnecessary roughness. Hamilton offensive lineman Peter Dyakowski explained it this way to the Toronto Star: “You know, sometimes roughness is necessary.” . . .
Janice Hough, aka the Left Coast Sports Babe, reports: “In Denver, a popular park and trail that is home to many foraging bears and their cubs has been closed for two weeks because of too many people trying to take selfies with the animals. Really?! Can’t we just open it again with the goal of culling the herd?” . . . You may have seen a video clip from Cleveland where the guy responsible for setting off fireworks after Indians home runs actually pushed the button following a blast by Alex Rios of the Kansas City Royals. Later, Indians manager Terry Francona said: “I hope that guy's not in charge of the Fourth of July fireworks. It might be in August.”
(Gregg Drinnan is a former sports editor of the Regina Leader-Post and the late Kamloops Daily News. He is at email@example.com and twitter.com/gdrinnan. Keeping Score appears here on weekends, except when it doesn’t.)