I wish I could take Bill Simmons side on this one. He loves the Celtics, and I’ve enjoyed wasting many an hour laughing through his columns and forwarding them to friends. I wish he wasn’t becoming such a tool before all of our eyes. I wish he’d write a column about himself from the perspective of his new self. And I wish I thought he was sincerely concerned about violence against women and sexism, but as Emma Span has pointed out a while back at bronx banter, I have reason not to be. He’s not headed to FOX news, and the writers he’s accumulated at Grantland include a fair number of diverse and critical voices. But I don’t buy that he’s speaking truth to power either. As Jeb Lund pointed out at the Guardian, he’s the epitome of the football bro culture that provides the baseline for all the misogyny that the NFL and college football are built on.
A lot of people are complaining that he was suspended for longer than Ray Rice was initially suspended. Fair enough. But independent of how Rice was handled (not by ESPN but the NFL), his suspension isn’t keeping me up at night out of concern for his well-being. He baited ESPN, he’s openly attacking and challenging his employer. He didn’t say anything so many others didn’t already say, and say more smartly. He’s likely doing it for more attention, which he accomplished, and he’s only going to benefit from his action.