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Bill Simmons: A Debate


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#1 Tactical Bear

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Posted 30 August 2011 - 03:07 PM

I'm on record as being a bit of a Simmons hater, and extremely anti-Grantland. I was just about to post something in the only Music thread I read ("What Music Are Guys Listening To?"), and decided to move it here, instead. Because, you know: more appropriate.I really, really hate Grantland. Most of it is useless or poorly-written; all of it could use a real editor. Here's an example from today:http://www.grantland...esmond-jenningsThis is an email exchange between Jonah Keri and Bill Simmons, posted on ESPN.com's front page. Somebody, anybody, argue thata) Simmons makes senseb) This article was deserving of publicationPlease.
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#2 El Guapo

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Posted 30 August 2011 - 03:18 PM

Bill Simmons for me has entered the Dennis Miller zone. He is utilizing abstract pop culture references for affect rather than working it into a story in which it makes sense. BS has done this format before, where he and a colleague e mail back and forth then they turn it into a running blog of sorts. I think the format can work if executed properly and about a subject matter which people care.I can't seen anyone caring enough about this player to read all of that. I read the first couple paragraphs, then skimmed.

#3 Tactical Bear

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Posted 30 August 2011 - 03:21 PM

View PostEl Guapo, on Tuesday, August 30th, 2011, 7:18 PM, said:

Bill Simmons for me has entered the Dennis Miller zone. He is utilizing abstract pop culture references for affect rather than working it into a story in which it makes sense. BS has done this format before, where he and a colleague e mail back and forth then they turn it into a running blog of sorts. I think the format can work if executed properly and about a subject matter which people care.I can't seen anyone caring enough about this player to read all of that. I read the first couple paragraphs, then skimmed.
Baseball is my favorite sport, and I have had Deezy on my fantasy team since 2009. In terms of subject matter, I actually care a great deal about the rationale behind the decision to leave Desmond Jennings in AAA for so long.Even so: I find the exchange to be useless and retardedEDIT: Also: gay
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#4 CindyLou

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Posted 30 August 2011 - 03:23 PM

I read the whole thing earlier today and actually thought, "Wow, Wang would hate this." I didn't post it because I like Grantland and didn't want more ammo against it.But it was pretty awful.I kept waiting for the punchline from Simmons. He gets: easily entrenched. I still usually enjoy him.

#5 CindyLou

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Posted 30 August 2011 - 03:26 PM

And another thing...I don't like how the writers will sometimes refer to Simmons as "the boss." I thought the point of the website was simply to bring a bunch of good writers to one place and let them write. I don't like the idea of him directing input or anything like that. I think Jonah Keri would've been more insulting towards him if he wasn't the boss.I've read a lot of Keri and I don't actually have any evidence of him being insulting to other writers. Maybe I was projecting. Ken Tremendous should lay into some of that garbage.

#6 Tactical Bear

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Posted 30 August 2011 - 03:45 PM

View PostCindyLou, on Tuesday, August 30th, 2011, 7:23 PM, said:

I like Grantland [b]ut it was pretty awful.He gets: easily entrenched.
Can I ask why you like Grantland? I've done very little in the way of explaining why Grantland sucks, but I promise I'll get to it eventually. (That's what this thread is for.) A lot of people really, really love Grantland, and I think it is, for the most part, a steaming pile, and I really don't get what people love. I am totally willing to admit that I could be missing something, so I'd like someone to show me what I'm potentially missing, or explain why I'm being unfairly critical. Which brings me to......the second line, above, which is a perfect, four-word summary of exactly why Simmons pisses me off. He gets: easily entrenched. I hate that about him. Just say you're wrong. Just say it. Say: "I'm wrong." Everything doesn't have to be a pissing contest. Sometimes it's okay to start a column with "I'm curious" and just explore. You don't have all the answers all the time, and pretending to is just... it's so immature and pathetic. Nobody expects you to be a legitimate analyst, so stop going toe-to-toe with people who can run circles around you. It makes you look small and sad and petty and I'm embarrassed for you, Bro.

View PostCindyLou, on Tuesday, August 30th, 2011, 7:26 PM, said:

Ken Tremendous should lay into some of that garbage.
I miss him so much. I watch Parks and Recreation just to feel closer to him.
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#7 CindyLou

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Posted 30 August 2011 - 03:58 PM

View PostTactical Bear, on Tuesday, August 30th, 2011, 6:45 PM, said:

I miss him so much. I watch Parks and Recreation just to feel closer to him.
Have you listened to any of the Poscasts with him? He's a regular on there. At the end of each podcast they do a draft of something. Most exciting play in sports, best balls, best sports books, etc. I agree with Michael Schur a lot, but he has a really annoying laugh.I'll try to get to why I like Grantland, but I won't promise that it will be compelling.

#8 Poppy_Hillis

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Posted 30 August 2011 - 04:36 PM

I've pretty much stopped enjoying Simmons for a couple years now, even though I still read the majority of his stuff. My favorite Simmons things now is when Chuck Klosterman is involved and makes Bill backtrack and contradict himself, and basically make him sound like a moron. I swear Chuck only does those podcasts for that reason alone.

#9 Tactical Bear

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Posted 30 August 2011 - 05:59 PM

Dear Bill Simmons:You must learn to say "no."Exhibit 1:Wedded Blitz! Breaking down the August wedding season and the New York TimesQED
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#10 CindyLou

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Posted 31 August 2011 - 07:24 AM

View PostCindyLou, on Tuesday, August 30th, 2011, 7:58 PM, said:

I'll try to get to why I like Grantland, but I won't promise that it will be compelling.
First of all, I really only read ~20% of the stuff on there (whereas Cracked is hovering around 85%) and I'll check out of an article pretty quickly if it doesn't grab me. And I certainly don't go there for in-depth analysis. You know what just occurred to me? Grantland is Sports Illustrated online. It does the personal and historical stories really well and the Hollywood Prospectus and The Triangle sections give you a decent amount of interesting tidbits (like George Lucas is making Ewoks blink in the blu-ray edition). Grantland gives you: good stories and fun facts. Grantland does not give you: quality analysis or laugh-out-loud humor.That's good enough for me to keep coming back.

#11 CindyLou

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Posted 31 August 2011 - 10:52 AM

Today in Morons: Bill Simmons

#12 Tactical Bear

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Posted 31 August 2011 - 11:15 AM

View PostCindyLou, on Wednesday, August 31st, 2011, 2:52 PM, said:

You read "Drunk Jays Fans?" Really? I... thought I was the only non-Jays fan in the world that read them regularly. (Except, obviously, they've been pretty widely-linked for years.)The criticism that Stoeten levies at Simmons in the linked article is one of the primary reasons I hate Simmons so God damned much. "Hey, let's never let the facts get in the way of a good narrative, amirite?"(see: all sports commentary)
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#13 CindyLou

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Posted 31 August 2011 - 11:39 AM

I wouldn't say I read it regularly. There's a handful of sites where I just sort of read them when I remember them.Did you link to them when you told the Boggs story? I have zero interest in the Jays, but I used to read Rob & Rany on the Royals religiously, so that's never stopped me before.

#14 Tactical Bear

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Posted 31 August 2011 - 11:52 AM

View PostCindyLou, on Wednesday, August 31st, 2011, 3:39 PM, said:

I wouldn't say I read it regularly. There's a handful of sites where I just sort of read them when I remember them.Did you link to them when you told the Boggs story? I have zero interest in the Jays, but I used to read Rob & Rany on the Royals religiously, so that's never stopped me before.
Yeah, I think so. I've pasted that story like 3 times, so I'm sure one of the times I read it I posted a link to them, too. "Yeah, ole Wade huh." I have thought about that story five times a week every week since the first time I saw it. I still dream about the BoggsHead in the upper right corner of the website almost every time I sleep.
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#15 Dubey

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Posted 31 August 2011 - 12:10 PM

yeah I probably hover around 15-20% for number of stories I read on Grantland. That number has been steadily dropping since the site first opened, and 9 of the first 10 articles were outstanding.Cindy nailed it with the Sports Illustrated analogy, that is exactly what it is. It's really the only site online that does magazine length sports stories. There is a lot of crap there, especially recently, but there are some really fantastic pieces of writing sprinkled in as well.

#16 Dubey

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Posted 31 August 2011 - 12:14 PM

View PostCindyLou, on Wednesday, August 31st, 2011, 10:52 AM, said:

haha, I enjoyed this.

#17 speedz99

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Posted 31 August 2011 - 12:18 PM

View PostTactical Bear, on Tuesday, August 30th, 2011, 5:59 PM, said:

Well clearly the point of Grantland is to appeal to a wider audience than just hardcore sports fans. For example: I've sent my girlfriend, who has no interest in sports whatsoever, a few links from the site, including an article on women in movies (prompted by Bridesmaids), and one of the youtube compilation articles that included a lot about music. She now browses through the site now and again, and will even tolerate pop culture articles that include some spins on sport-related topics. Personally, I think the site is fine. There have certainly been a handful of huge winners in terms of articles, and as long as you're willing to pick around the complete losers (like on any site), there's a solid rate of articles that are at least palatable in order to find some gems (which have become increasingly rare, but it may be a cycle). As for Simmons himself, my biggest complaint revolves around his constant pop culture references. It's not so much that the shtick is getting old, it's that he seems to be pressing for new ways to include them, so it feels really forced sometimes. The email exchange article is a good example...Simmons really just isn't that funny, especially when he's trying so hard (sorry Wang, I know you hate that phrase). I'm guessing he left the Kimmel show because he absolutely tanked as a straight up comedy writer.
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#18 speedz99

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Posted 31 August 2011 - 12:26 PM

I'm not sure why I still read everything Simmons writes. Probably for the same reason that I watch every episode of Entourage, whatever that may be. I guess I'm an eternal optimist, always hoping that former favorites will return to their previous days of being moderately above-average.
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#19 Theraflu

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Posted 31 August 2011 - 06:23 PM

The soccer stuff is pretty good.Molly Lambert is a cunt.
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#20 brvheart

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Posted 31 August 2011 - 08:46 PM

View PostTactical Bear, on Wednesday, August 31st, 2011, 2:15 PM, said:

I hate Simmons so God damned much.
But you think he's a great, not just good, writer? I'm confused.Have you changed your opinion since last week or do you hate him AND think he's a great writer?
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View PostSuitedAces21, on 20 August 2012 - 11:14 AM, said:

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