The first-ever National Fantasy Football Convention, scheduled to take place at the Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas next month, has been canceled and rescheduled for 2016 in Los Angeles. The event was “organized” by Tony Romo, and other current NFL players like Rob Gronkowski, Le’Veon Bell, and DeMarco Murray were expected to appear. But in a statement to Fox Sports, the NFL said that “players and NFL personnel may not participate in promotional activities or other appearances at or in connection with events that are held at or sponsored by casinos,” even though the Sands Expo itself doesn’t allow gambling.
Even more interesting than the NFL shutting down an event related to fantasy sports—which has played a major role in making the NFL by far the most popular sport in the country—is how they did it. According to Fox Sports—but denied by the league—the NFL got players to drop the event by tattling to their mommies and daddies:
A source connected with the National Fantasy Football Convention told FOX Sports that NFL representatives were calling players and even the parents of some players threatening that participants could be suspended. An NFL spokesman denied that has happened.
Fox Sports reports that, despite the suspension threat, the punishment would more likely have been a fine. Still, it was enough to get players to pull out of the event, and convince the NFFC to cancel and reschedule it in a location unconnected to gambling.
It would be pretty strange if the NFL really did call the parents of grown-ass men, but then again, it wouldn’t be that out of character for a league that desires to fully control every part of its players’s lives.