Bill Simmons is an American sports columnist, analyst, author and Boston sports fan. Now living in Los Angeles, he is the editor-in-chief for Grantland.com, which is affiliated with ESPN.com. Simmons also contributes columns and podcasts to the website. He is a former writer for ESPN The Magazine and Jimmy Kimmel Live!. Nicknamed The Sports Guy, formerly The Boston Sports Guy, Simmons gained the attention of ESPN with his website, BostonSportsGuy.com, which earned him a job offer in 2001. Since joining ESPN, he has also hosted his own podcast on ESPN.com titled The B.S. Report, appeared as a special contributor on the TV series E:60, and serves as an executive producer of ESPN’s documentary project, 30 for 30. He also has written two books, Now I Can Die in Peace (2005) and The Book of Basketball (2009). Simmons was born on this day in 1969.
Coincidentally, yesterday ESPN suspended Bill Simmons for three weeks for repeatedly calling NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell a liar on his Grantland.com podcast. Simmons condemned Goodell’s handling of the Ray Rice domestic violence case, particularly his claim that he had not seen the elevator video of Rice punching his fiancée. And so, for those who think the NFL (and ESPN) is a joke, here’s a Twitter hashtag: #FreeSimmons. On another topic, I generally agree with the Bill Simmons Hall of Fame Pyramid, a five-level Egyptian-style pyramid of the 96 greatest NBA players ever, last published in the revised 2010 edition of The Book of Basketball. Though, at this point, the rankings are four years out of date. According to a 2014 interview with Simmons, Lebron James has now ascended to sixth greatest in his Hall of Fame Pyramid, while Dirk Nowitzki has jumped into the top 20 and Kevin Durant has cracked the top 50. To date, I have created 8-bit pixel art of 20 of the top 25 NBA players of all time, including the top 14.