Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise

The Olbermann-Simmons Feud Is Getting Feisty

Illustration for article titled The Olbermann-Simmons Feud Is Getting Feisty

Wherever you come down in the Keith Olbermann-Bill Simmons blood feud, you can surely agree that the former just drew a helluva line in the sand by calling Simmons "the most uncontrollable, unmanageable talent in the history of ESPN."

If you're scoring at home, this is Olbermann's response to Simmons's response to Olbermann's response to Simmons's ahistorical foolishness concerning Tiger Woods's comeback and Muhammad Ali's.


On Friday, Simmons tweeted: "KO, please know the feeling is mutual. You're my worst case scenario for my career in 12 yrs: a pious, unlikable blowhard who lives alone." To which Olbermann now responds:

This assumes that Mr. Simmons' career now is where mine was twelve years ago (anchoring SportsCenter, then my own MSNBC political show, anchoring NBC Weekend Nightly News, writing a best-selling sports book, etc). In fact, this assumes that this is Mr. Simmons' career, which is remarkable. Also, anybody who could write as many words without saying anything of consequence really should throw around the word "blowhard" as frequently as he would a street sewer cover.

Also, I don't think "pious" necessarily means what he thinks it does


I am surprised, however, to be able to shed some light on something that has been a prominent topic of late around the internet: the prospect that Mr. Simmons is leaving ESPN. Admittedly I am something of an authority on this process. Nonetheless, I was stunned to receive several emails from some of Mr. Simmons' bosses there, thanking me for pointing out the absurdity of, and the embarrassment to ESPN provided by, the Woods/Ali comparison.

About five years ago, I guess, somebody said Tony Kornheiser was the most uncontrollable, unmanageable talent in the history of ESPN. I was, of course, crushed (although I believe I got honorable mention). When ESPN bosses are writing me for helping them about somebody they claim has now lapped Tony and myself, I am left to conclude only that if Mr. Simmons does leave ESPN, it may not be entirely of his own choosing.

It eludes me why these ESPN suits nodding so vigorously at Olbermann's frisking of the Sports Fella are entirely powerless to prevent (or at least discourage) Simmons from cannonballing into adult swim and making an ass of himself in the first place. Not that it's surprising. This is ESPN. They run their house the way the Borgias ran theirs. Yup, Bill, these are your bosses.

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