Bill Simmons: Valuing Trades More Than Friendships

ipol

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JBill said:
Cousin Sal's Simmons impersonation always makes me laugh.
 
And then he always goes with, "Over and out," which, I'm pretty sure, Simmons has never used. 
 
I'm unnervingly excited for these guys to be back in my ears.
 

Drocca

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Not that he didn't already, but untethered from ESPN, he is going to be excellent radio, a weekly (twice-weekly) must-listen. 
 

DLew On Roids

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Good to hear that Joe House is going to be on regularly. He not only seems to be the FOB you'd most like to have a beer with, he gets Bill off schtick and sounding more natural. Basically the un-Jacko.
 
He's back! With a Cousin Sal/JackO doubleheader, no less - no theme music and two sponsors, MeUndies (?) and Squarespace. Just started listening to Episode 1, and in the first two minutes he says "America has a lot of questions, and I'm not sure I'm going to answer them right now - I have a lot of thoughts about things, but I don't think this is the time or place." So he and Sal go straight into football talk and making fun of Chris Berman.
 

Number45forever

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Listened to the first 30 minutes of the Cousin Sal pod on my way to work.  Good stuff outside of Bill still mentioning how deflategate was about balls that were 10% lighter (weight wise).  Instead of the imperceptible difference the amount of air in the balls has on the weight of the ball.  He used same terminology when this all broke. 
 
But, fuck it.  They're back!  I have a 5 hour drive to NYC tomorrow and will listen to the rest of Sal, Jack-O and then the two more pods he's releasing tomorrow.  Can't fucking wait!
 

edmunddantes

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Wow... just getting into this second one on deflategate is horrible. He can't even answer something that is a complete misrepresentation of what happened with Berman and CBA being disregarded from his guest. 
 

ifmanis5

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Simmons: 
“The way everyone else was covering Goodell's role in this whole story versus the way ESPN covered it, it was embarrassing," Simmons said. "I couldn’t believe nobody called out ESPN about it.”
 
Well, I guess he doesn't read this website anymore.
 

JimD

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So much for the idea of a non-disparagement agreement in his contract. 
 

JBill

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Great podcast today, reunited with Wesley Morris.

Simmons is convinced ESPN didn't support Grantland like they should have, marketing and ad wise. Lots of bitterness there from Simmons. I can't wait until Klosterman is on, I think it's going to be a therapy session.
 

DLew On Roids

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Simmons and Morris:
 
"I was told repeatedly for years and years and years that [generating income from a podcast] wasn't a possible universe."
"Who was telling you that?"
"People who don't know jack shit.  Most of the people there."
 
 
I love it when people go into IDGAF mode.
 

allstonite

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His stuff on Brady v. Goodell was disappointing. I was hoping either he'd just not even touch on it because it's over with now, or come out guns blazing with well researched and thought out points. Instead he kind of half-assed it and let JackO (who gets his Boston sports takes from the boston.com comments section and WEEI) control the narrative. Berman completely retried the case? What was he talking about?
 
The rest was pretty standard Simmons and I'm glad he's back. The Morris one was great and he's starting to touch on some of the ESPN politics so he must be allowed to go there. I hope he fully fleshes it out sometime in the near future. I find it fascinating. 
 

Vinho Tinto

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Based on how sensitive he is, his claim that he knew Chris Connelly would replace him as Editor In Chief has to have ended any relationship they had. Would have assumed that regardless, but that comment confirmed it. It also sounded like what was written about his time on NBA Countdown was true. 
 
I agree with his general point that ESPN never did a good job at cross promoting Grantland. 
 

Eddie Jurak

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allstonite said:
His stuff on Brady v. Goodell was disappointing. I was hoping either he'd just not even touch on it because it's over with now, or come out guns blazing with well researched and thought out points. Instead he kind of half-assed it and let JackO (who gets his Boston sports takes from the boston.com comments section and WEEI) control the narrative. Berman completely retried the case? What was he talking about?
 
The rest was pretty standard Simmons and I'm glad he's back. The Morris one was great and he's starting to touch on some of the ESPN politics so he must be allowed to go there. I hope he fully fleshes it out sometime in the near future. I find it fascinating. 
I wish he'd have Steph Stradley on.
 

ifmanis5

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allstonite said:
His stuff on Brady v. Goodell was disappointing. I was hoping either he'd just not even touch on it because it's over with now, or come out guns blazing with well researched and thought out points. Instead he kind of half-assed it and let JackO (who gets his Boston sports takes from the boston.com comments section and WEEI) control the narrative. Berman completely retried the case? What was he talking about?
So true. Bill was out at sea for a lot of that.
 
For Bill, a self proclaimed Deflategate Truther and a huge Pats fan who had plenty of time to examine the details of the decision (and even read Wetzel and Jenkins quite a bit), he somehow missed most of the Berman decision key points when talking with JackO. It wasn't that Goodell merely overstepped his boundaries, it was that RG didn't follow the rules of his own shop and didn't allow Brady's lawyers access to documents they were entitled to view.
 
EDIT: agreed with above, maybe if he has Stradley on she can coach him up.
 

nattysez

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ifmanis5 said:
So true. Bill was out at sea for a lot of that.
 
For Bill, a self proclaimed Deflategate Truther and a huge Pats fan who had plenty of time to examine the details of the decision (and even read Wetzel and Jenkins quite a bit), he somehow missed most of the Berman decision key points when talking with JackO. It wasn't that Goodell merely overstepped his boundaries, it was that RG didn't follow the rules of his own shop and didn't allow Brady's lawyers access to documents they were entitled to view.
 
EDIT: agreed with above, maybe if he has Stradley on she can coach him up.
 
I listened to the first two podcasts and mostly enjoyed them.  
 
As you said, it is fascinating that he could care so deeply about Ballghazi that he essentially lost his job over it, yet he is still incapable of addressing some basic factual points about it. I think this is partly out of a lack of intellectual curiosity, partly out of being too busy to invest time in studying, and partly out of an unwillingness to do things (like reading legal analyses) that he finds boring.  Anyway, I've kind of come to peace with the idea that I cannot expect him to provide any meaningful analysis of anything that requires (1) more than 15 minutes of reading on his part or (2) any kind of careful consideration (which I think is why I find his baseball opinions so mind-numbing).  
 
This is kind of like when I hated Jerry Trupiano until someone suggested listening to him as you would a drunken uncle having fun calling the game.  Keep expectations low and focus on enjoyment rather than accuracy.
 

shlincoln

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The podcast with Wesley Morris was great, but if I worked at Grantland I'd be pretty annoyed with them for writing the site's obituary while it's still in operation.
 

Foxy42

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shlincoln said:
The podcast with Wesley Morris was great, but if I worked at Grantland I'd be pretty annoyed with them for writing the site's obituary while it's still in operation.
 
It seemed like they know a mass exodus is coming...
 

ifmanis5

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Bill's the only guy I know of who constantly says the word 'woman' when he should say 'women' and also vice versa. Weird, vaguely frattish verbal tick.
 

Dehere

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“When I did my best stuff there, there were better people than there are now,” he said. Simmons also believes that unbundling will end up costing ESPN, too: “I think they hit their peak already.”
 
Good god, what a blowhard. "When I did my best stuff there." Who says something like that? Get over yourself. The guy who ran a money-losing website with no readership is of the opinion that the company generating more than $10bn/yr is past their peak. Good to know.
 

Alcohol&Overcalls

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allstonite said:
Bob Ley has lost all credibility. Him writing the first sentence while referencing the DVN piece in his second sentence is hilarious. 
 
Are you sure Ley isn't referencing this piece, which fits MUCH more in line with Simmons' actual criticisms in the VF piece (and is much more in line with Van Natta's usual work, compared to the deflategate shitshow)?
http://espn.go.com/espn/otl/story/_/id/11551518/how-ray-rice-scandal-unfolded-baltimore-ravens-roger-goodell-nfl
 

allstonite

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Alcohol&Overcalls said:
 
Are you sure Ley isn't referencing this piece, which fits MUCH more in line with Simmons' actual criticisms in the VF piece (and is much more in line with Van Natta's usual work, compared to the deflategate shitshow)?
http://espn.go.com/espn/otl/story/_/id/11551518/how-ray-rice-scandal-unfolded-baltimore-ravens-roger-goodell-nfl
 
I'm pretty sure because he referenced "months of reporting" which was also often referenced by DVN when defending the piece and I'm not sure why he'd bring up a Rice piece when going at Simmons. Also, Simmons complemented the Rice piece at the time and yesterday in responding to Ley. 
 

SuperManny

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Dehere said:
The guy who ran a money-losing website with no readership is of the opinion that the company generating more than $10bn/yr is past their peak. Good to know.
 
I'm not sure I get the outrage here, isn't it generally accepted that ESPN has been losing subscribers and are projected to lose more in the coming years? They can still be profitable while being lower than their peak.
 

GeorgeCostanza

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SuperManny said:
I'm not sure I get the outrage here, isn't it generally accepted that ESPN has been losing subscribers and are projected to lose more in the coming years? They can still be profitable while being lower than their peak.
Given him a break. He must be a seton hall fan with that screen name.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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Dehere said:
“When I did my best stuff there, there were better people than there are now,” he said. Simmons also believes that unbundling will end up costing ESPN, too: “I think they hit their peak already.”
 
Good god, what a blowhard. "When I did my best stuff there." Who says something like that? Get over yourself. The guy who ran a money-losing website with no readership is of the opinion that the company generating more than $10bn/yr is past their peak. Good to know.
 
I'm no Simmons apologist, but you can also look at this quote as him saying that he realizes (what others here have said) that his stuff was going down hill and that he knows that he needs people to help him along. And that isn't a slight, most writers really need a good editor or someone to bounce ideas off of.
 
This is one instance where Simmons is being humble.  
 

Dehere

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Not really outrage. It's not my company and other than a stray post on SOSH it doesn't really matter to me. Just find it a bit rich that Simmons, who couldn't turn a profit despite being subsidized and promoted by the most successful sports media company on earth, has something to say in public about the future health of that company.
 
Just walk away and wish them well. They made you rich and famous. It's not that hard to move on gracefully.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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Just walk away and wish them well. They made you rich and famous. It's not that hard to move on gracefully.
 
 
The way he was publicly fired? Simmons is pretty thin-skinned but the way that ESPN went about getting rid of him was pretty shitty. 
 

Alcohol&Overcalls

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allstonite said:
 
I'm pretty sure because he referenced "months of reporting" which was also often referenced by DVN when defending the piece and I'm not sure why he'd bring up a Rice piece when going at Simmons. Also, Simmons complemented the Rice piece at the time and yesterday in responding to Ley. 
 
Simmons attacked how ESPN handled the Ray Rice investigation specifically, and (at least the VF article) says nothing about Deflategate:
 
 
On Wednesday, Simmons renewed his criticism of his former employer, saying that he “absolutely” believes ESPN avoided overtly criticizing the N.F.L. “The way ESPN has covered the N.F.L. for the last year has been really shaky,” Simmons said. When it comes to coverage of Ray Rice and Goodell, he said, “You didn’t really see it on ESPN. You saw it everywhere else. You start to say, ‘Wait a minute, this is their biggest partner. Are they holding back a little?’”
 

jimbobim

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Interesting take from AA.
 
http://awfulannouncing.com/2015/simmons-cowherd-whitlock-former-espn-stars-will-not-stop-ripping-the-worldwide-leader.html
 
There are some in our industry who lather at the thought of Simmons or Cowherd or Whitlock or Patrick or Olbermann going full-on assault on ESPN. There are some who hate ESPN so much they don’t see that names like those are such a part of ESPN’s recent history that it’s all one big echo.
They are better than that. Certainly Simmons is. And it will be good if and when he gets back to focusing more on reminding us what he was, and less on where he was.
 
I don't really get the notion that their is a high road that Simmons should take. It's not his personality to shrug and move on. Further, ESPN hasn't had an ombudsmen in years because they constantly can't get out of their own way when it comes to interfering in editorial control at NFL's behest. 
 
Sure ESPN funded and built Simmons up into what he is today. The Evil Empire theory advanced by AA is interesting, but ESPN is something you have to live with due to it's live rights monopoly. 
 
If you don't like Simmons arrogance, ungratefulness, or opinions about the WWL it's pretty simple to ignore him. 
 
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0rNBBU_77og
 
here is 1/2 the discussion among Cory Johnson, BS and John McEnroe at the Vanity Fair Summit this week
 

nattysez

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Jim Miller tweeted that 4 high-profile Grantlanders just quit to join Simmons. Doesn't say who. I assume Rembert is one.
 

JBill

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To join his show? Or a writing venture like Grantland? Need more details Jim Miller.
 

luckiestman

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What's Bill pulling down per live read? Any idea? On the podcast "start up" the number 6000 came out as the revenue from a podcast ad. Bill is doing like 4 live reads a show 3 times a week. That's 72000 a week and 96000 if he does 4 shows. That's a lot of bread and I can't imagine the costs are very high. Is he tossing cash to his guests?
 

bbc23

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Mark Titus just rt'd the Jim Miller tweet which is interesting.  Not sure if he fits the bill of high profile but he still has Grantland in his Twitter bio and hasn't written anything for Grantland since April (albeit all of his stuff is college basketball based and the last piece was recapping the end of March Madness). 
 

ifmanis5

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luckiestman said:
What's Bill pulling down per live read? Any idea? On the podcast "start up" the number 6000 came out as the revenue from a podcast ad. Bill is doing like 4 live reads a show 3 times a week. That's 72000 a week and 96000 if he does 4 shows. That's a lot of bread and I can't imagine the costs are very high. Is he tossing cash to his guests?
The Bill Simmons Podcast is already the #2 podcast on Apple's list (#1 is This American Life). I'm guessing he grabbed Klosterman and Lowe from G'Land as well. He'll not be writing any columns, just podcast and a show on HBO. I could possibly see a book from him since a publishing company would make him a great offer.
 

Papelbon's Poutine

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I hope this moves gives him some inspiration, but God I hate the pilgrimage to podcasts over sitting down and typing. It's lazy and sloppy and frankly I could read a transcript of a podcast in less than half the time it takes to watch it.