LA Times

Controversial ESPN Personality Lands at HBO

Jul 22, 2015  •  Post A Comment

An ESPN veteran who exited the company amid cloudy circumstances in May has landed a new TV gig. The Los Angeles Times reports that Bill Simmons signed a new multiyear deal with HBO that will include a weekly series.

Simmons, who founded the pop culture website Grantland while at ESPN, will also develop long-form and documentary programming for HBO digital platforms. His HBO series is set to launch next year.

“Dubbed as ‘The Sports Guy,’ Simmons was a major star during his run at ESPN, which began in 2001,” the Times notes. “His irreverent style enabled him to develop a significant following among younger sports fans. He has nearly 4 million followers on Twitter.”

But the often provocative Simmons also became embroiled in controversy at ESPN, which suspended Simmons last year after Simmons criticized NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell’s handling of the Ray Rice domestic violence case.

ESPN and Simmons failed to reach terms on a contract renewal back in May, with ESPN President John Skipper saying at the time that the issues were “about more than money.”

Terms of the HBO deal were not revealed.


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