Two days after Bill Simmons got a ton of people behind him, myself included, for going after Roger Goodell and daring ESPN to come back at him, ESPN decided to do just that by suspending the Sports Guy for 3 weeks.
There’s a reason that the decision took 2.5 days. While it’s fair to say that an employee shouldn’t be allowed to run a business, and while Simmons shouldn’t have challenged the higher ups at ESPN should have just ended the rant with his opinions on Roger Goodell, ESPN really suspended Simmons because they carry the NFL’s water no matter how despicable the league and its commissioner acts. It’s too important for ESPN to know that Adam Schefter will be the first guy reporting everything than to allow one of their employees to have an independent mind.
Also, this is a classic dick swinging contest at this point. Simmons feels that he has a ton of leverage after all he’s done for ESPN, which includes making Page 2 what it was, beating the crap out of Rick Reilly when Reilly was brought in and got paid more, and starting Grantland. ESPN feels that Simmons can’t and won’t go up against the Worldwide Leader, and I’m guessing that all of their assumed leverage comes from Grantland specifically. Grantland allows Simmons to be who he wants (for the most part) and run his own site, and ESPN doesn’t think that BS will give that up. Here’s to hoping that Simmons doubles down and either moves on or comes back stronger than ever after swinging his dick a little bit farther than Bristol’s finest.