Our Boy Bill Simmons gets a lot of gruff from old-school sports journalists for being too much of a "fan" and not enough of a "reporter," or, when he does do deign to do interviews, ends up crawling a little too high up the subject's nether regions. We've never really agreed with the former criticism — it smacks of jealousy (particularly now that Simmons is officially a best-selling author) and, mostly, misses the point of why Simmons is popular and such a compulsively readable writer — but those who fling the latter charge might be chuckling to themselves this morning, if you can find it possible to "chuckle" when you hear a story about a woman being punched in the face.
Former Clippers/now Bucks forward Bobby Simmons, most famously smooched by Bill in a "Simmons On Simmons" profile, was arrested yesterday after a woman accused him of fondling a woman in his car outside a club at 2 a.m. and then punching her in the face. The police report the incident involving Bobby Simmons, whom Bill called "the guy everyone wants to play with" and his "favorite player on the [Clippers]," happened outside The Jungle club Saturday night/Sunday morning, and the woman reported it a few hours later.
In incidents like this, one has to realize that Bobby Simmons has been convicted of nothing, one has to hope the woman — if actually assaulted — is OK and one has to not jump to conclusions. But needless to say, Bill is being reminded this morning of the dangers of getting too close to the players he "covers." He's hardly the first journalist to have been potentially schnookered by a source looking for good PR, but as of this second, he's certainly the most high-profile.