Bill Simmons

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ESPN suspended Bill Simmons today. He’s voiceless for three weeks over podcast comments he made, RE: Roger Goodell and the Ray Rice situation. According to Deadspin, these are the words he uttered …

“Goodell, if he didn’t know what was on that tape, he’s a liar. I’m just saying it. He is lying. I think that dude is lying. If you put him up on a lie detector test that guy would fail. For all these people to pretend they didn’t know is such fucking bullshit. It really is—it’s such fucking bullshit. And for him to go in that press conference and pretend otherwise, I was so insulted. I really was.

“I really hope somebody calls me or emails me and says I’m in trouble for anything I say about Roger Goodell. Because if one person says that to me, I’m going public. You leave me alone. The commissioner’s a liar and I get to talk about that on my podcast.”

God, I hate ESPN. I really, really do. Why, in this case? A few reasons …

A. Simmons is your brand. Love the guy or hate the guy, he’s carried that company from strictly a TV network to a web-based powerhouse. ESPN is ESPN because of Simmons’ Sports Guy column, which drove millions of readers to, at the time, a newish website. Suspend him? You should give him a raise.

B. What did Simmons say that was so bad? Goodell is full of shit. He would fail a lie-detector test. He blew this whole thing really badly. No secret.

C. Are you a news network, or an entertainment venue here to stroke the NFL’s erection? The answer is obvious.

Simmons’ take was terrific.

This is crap.

4 thoughts on “Bill Simmons”

  1. I don’t get it. In the context of the podcast, it didn’t raise your eyes at all other than the vulgarity and maybe daring his bosses to punish him (didn’t think much of it when I heard it or that ESPN would do anything). And it wasn’t any different from how much the league was being hammered by ESPN with former players/commentator’s calling out Goodell and the ESPN report that crapped on the Ravens immediately after Goodell’s press conference. It was completely earned. Simmons’ opening week NFL column shit on Goodell so the anger with Goodell has been brewing from everybody.

    It just gives more fodder to Deadspin and makes them look petty and completely out-of-touch. It’s been said: Stephen A Smith got 1 week for his comments, Ray Rice/Adrian Peterson were initially suspended the combined length of what Simmons was. I do think Simmons is irked in ways he can’t really say (ESPN shutting down a concussion documentary because it conflicted with the NFL; the Playmakers series)

    Predictably, the internet is backing Simmons in something they can get behind. Maybe they couldn’t with past stuff because it was small stuff with blowhard Boston radio hosts and First Take. But this runs far deeper with free speech, domestic violence, so-called ‘journalstic standards’ that ESPN citied. The name of Simmons’ podcast is ‘the BS Report’ standing for ‘Bullshit Report’ which is what he called Goodell out for.

    …also, I got to ask: as big fans of both you and Simmons, it makes no sense that you haven’t ended up on his podcast. Is it because of your open hate for ESPN that won’t allow it? I can’t imagine him not having read your Lakers book after praising your previous books or having you on to promote it.

    I also loved that you ended up on the Short Corner Podcast with Justin Halpern and Paul Shirley. Really funny podcast. Paul calling out Reggie Evans for being the dirtiest player he ever played with on this week’s podcast made me nearly crash my car (Reggie would get rebounds by purposely sticking his fingers in guy’s butts all the time; but the opponent couldn’t overreact to that because it was unseen). Anyways, I was waiting for it to be mentioned in that podcast the one time you REALLY shit on Paul Shirley because of the dumb article he wrote on Haiti.
    https://jeffpearlman.com/worlds-dumbest-athlete/
    Never was but I was glad you did appear on that podcast months back. He deserved to get hammered for it. But fired? You can’t point out a consistent track record of being an idiot with him the way you could with countless other guys. That’s kind of the issue I’m seeing with Simmons, Shirley, and others: it’s just inconsistent how some guys get passes. I don’t think anything would have happened with Stephen A Smith if Michelle Beadle spoke out. Who was really irked with what Simmons said? They were right on with him

  2. Journalist he is not. He stated something as fact without evidence. Yes it was his opinion, shared by many, and he should have couched it as such. And never call your bosses out publicly like that!

  3. Peyton is Da Man-ning

    Hey Jeff! Nice work on the ROME show. The writing is on the proverbial wall. ESPN and the NFL are in bed together over the multi-billion dollar professional football biz. While I agree with everything Bill Simmons said, he bit the hand that feeds his company and for that he had to pay in order to please Goodell and the Shield.

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