We’re back after a prolonged absence. . . . So let’s begin with some catching up from Rio. . . . Here’s NBC’s Seth Meyers with a final check of Team USA at the Rio Olympics: “The U.S. brought home 46 gold medals, 37 silver and four idiots.” . . . And then there was TBS’s Conan O’Brien, with his take on the most touching thing about the closing ceremony: “When they extinguished the Olympic torch by having Ryan Lochte urinate on it.” . . . In the entire world of sports, there is nothing better than baseball in late September and October, which is why I wasn’t able to watch even one second of the World Cup of Cash Grab. . . .
“Two Las Vegas sites are preferred for an NFL stadium,” notes Bill Littlejohn, our South Lake Tahoe, Calif.-based correspondent, “but first infrared cameras had to make sure there weren’t any bodies buried in them.” . . . “In Boston,” Littlejohn adds, “Big Papi could be getting his own bridge. It’ll replace the ones that were burned by Curt Schilling.” . . . Ian Hamilton, in the Regina Leader-Post: “During his NFL-imposed ban, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady was seen sunbathing on a nude beach in Italy with his supermodel wife, Gisele Bundchen. That’ll teach him for trying to cheat the NFL.” . . . Comedy writer Alex Kaseberg: “In a related story, players all over the league began deflating footballs.” . . .
“Ferrari claims it’s coming out with the fastest convertible ever,” reports Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times. “No word about top-end speed, but your wallet goes from $2.2 million to zero in just 3.5 seconds.” . . . One more from Perry: “The Miami Marlins fired hitting coach Barry Bonds after just one season. Probably not the kind of intentional walk he had in mind.” . . . “ESPN NBA Insider Tom Haberstroh says players are 3.5 times more likely to get injured on road back-to-backs than at home,” notes Torben Rolfsen, the host of The Rolfsen Report on TSN Vancouver on Saturdays. “Is that in the game or at bars/nightclubs?” . . .
Major League Baseball limited the playoff game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs on Saturday night to MLB-TV. Yes, it was a blatant attempt to get fans to subscribe. Instead, I found the game on ESPN Radio and what a treat. It was Dan Shulman calling the play, with Aaron Boone riding shotgun. Two voices. No one talking over anyone else. Baseball heaven. . . . If you’re a football fan, you may not be aware that while Saskatchewan was losing the Banjo Bowl to the Blue Bombers in Winnipeg last month, a former Roughriders linebacker was laughing all the way to the bank. Dan Rashovich won the 50/50 draw, pocketing a neat $101,688. . . .
A note that will have you choking on your morning coffee: The Philadelphia Eagles are paying quarterback Sam Bradford US$647,059 per week this season. Of course, he no longer players for the Eagles. He is with the Minnesota Vikings, who are paying him $411,765 per week. You can do the math. . . . Mike Bianchi of the Orlando Sentinel notes that Rory McIlroy added $10 million to his bank account when he won the FedEx Cup Playoff grand prize. In his career, Arnold Palmer earned $1.86 million on the PGA Tour. . . . As far as Bianchi is concerned, NBA exhibition games are “as useless as a white crayon.” . . .
“Serena Williams and her party were comped a $400 meal and never said thank you or left a tip,” writes TC Chong, the funniest blogger in Richmond, B.C. “A spokesperson for the tennis star said she did leave a tip for the waitress — ‘don’t step on the line while serving.’ ” . . . A question from Chong: “Is Pokemon Go finally gone?” . . . One more question from Chong: “Why is there a Cape Cod on the East Coast, but no Cape Salmon on the West Coast?” . . . After the Washington Nationals got pitcher Marc Rzepczynski from the Oakland A’s, Eric Kolenich of the Richmond, Va., Times-Dispatch offered: “Make sure you spell his name right. It’s Marc with a C.” . . .
Headline at SportsPickle.com: NFL’s new Anthem Participation Reports to list players each week as: Out, Doubtful, Questionable and Probable. . . . Headline at TheKicker.com: Cubs community unites to send Bartman on seven-week tropical vacation. . . . One more from TheKicker.com: 49ers kneel to protest Blaine Gabbert continuing to play. . . .
Tweet of the week, from @jacktodd59: “Kim Kardashian claims she was held at gunpoint by men dressed as cops. Then Ryan Lochte came to rescue her and they got away by rocket ship.” . . . “I've been reading Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield's book where he describes living in zero-gravity,” writes RJ Currie of SportsDeke.com. “It's hard to put down.” . . . Currie, again: “The Winnipeg Blue Bombers signed receiver Tori Gurley after the Toronto Argos cut him. Are his video highlights considered Gurley movies?” . . .
The U of Michigan lost a football recruit — defensive tackle Aubrey Solomon — because both of his names were misspelled in a communication from the school. Brad Dickson of the Omaha World-Herald: “I think I now know why T.J. Houshmandzadeh didn’t play for Michigan.” . . . Food for thought from Cam Hutchinson of the Saskatoon Express: “I wish one of Toronto’s sports columnists, preferably one who isn’t a fan, would write a piece explaining why the Jays are the most disliked team in baseball. It certainly appears opposing teams don’t care much for Bautista, Donaldson and Stroman. Then again, I don’t either.” . . . Hutchinson, again: “When I heard the alleged beer-can thrower was a Postmedia employee, my first thought was ‘Why is Paul Godfrey playing left field for the Orioles?’ ”
(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.)
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