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Morning Brew: Smitherman endorses Chow for mayor, Rob Ford's football team gets the boot, Conrad Black interview airs today, and Ford video game gets a sequel

Former mayoral candidate and Ontario deputy premier George Smitherman is endorsing Olivia Chow's unannounced bid for mayor, becoming the first high-profile figure to back the MP for the top job. Smitherman told the Globe and Mail Chow would right the ship after the scandals of Rob Ford. "Somebody who knows city hall but has not been part of this charade would be a good re-start point," he told the paper.

Rob Ford spent part of the weekend at the Etobicoke Santa Claus parade. The mayor handed out candy canes and posed for photographs, eliciting a mixed reaction from the crowd. "I've never seen a politician get a 100 per cent, but I'll take 90 per cent," Ford told CBC News. "I'm happy with 90 per cent of the support." Ford was asked not to attend the Toronto parade amid the ongoing drug scandal.

Meanwhile, Rob Ford's football team has been booted from its league for failure to pay several fees and fines. The Rexdale Raiders, founded by Ford, owe $1,950 to the Ontario Minor Football League. The team was embroiled in controversy earlier this year after it emerged Payman Aboodowleh, a man with a history of violent crime, was employed as a coach.

Conrad Black's interview with Rob Ford will air tonight, a week ahead of schedule due to "overwhelming interest and demand," VisionTV says. The conversation between the disgraced media baron and the embattled mayor will run between 8 and 10 minutes on Rogers channel 60 or Bell 261 in Toronto.

The Ontario company responsible for the deadly Sunrise Propane explosion will be sentenced later today. A court found the company failed to provide a safety training and a safe working environment prior to the blast that killed worker Parminder Saini and an off-duty firefighter in 2008.

A producer on the Dean Blundell show is in hot water for ridiculing several gay men he helped convict as foreman of the jury. Derek Welsman made a series of controversial remarks on the 102.1 The Edge show weeks after he had sworn no bias toward homosexuals. It's possible his comments could lead to a judge declaring a mistrial. Welshman has not been charged as a result of the incident.

Finally, "Stay Mayor," the iPhone and Android game released this summer that challenged players to dodge crack pipes and reporters as Rob Ford, is getting a sequel. Stay Mayor 2.0 will see Ford running across the city collecting votes with a police Cessna on his tail. "At one point in the game, the mayor will transform into a giant subway car (tentatively called "Gravy Train mode") and shout "Subways, subways, subways!," The Star reports.



Chris Bateman is a staff writer at blogTO. Follow him on Twitter at @chrisbateman.

Image: Daniel Delidjakov/blogTO Flickr pool.

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