Bill Simmons: (1:01 PM ET) And we’re off!
Dan, Philly: Sports Guy, on a scale of 1 to 10, how little does Reggie Bush care about this scandal?
Bill Simmons: (1:04 PM ET) I’d give it a solid 1. Unless they try to repossess his Heisman, which would be kinda funny. What would happen if they voted to take it back, only he didn’t want to give it back? You could see at least 50 Skip Bayless columns about this if it happened.
Jack (Virginia): So am I wrong in saying that last Saturday night was one of the most legitimate Keith Hernandez moments ever?
Bill Simmons: (1:06 PM ET) Absolutely … and obviously, I was delighted. But the whole saga brings up a deeper issue: I hate what is happening to this country. Seriously, we need to remove “freedom of speech” from the Constitution and get it over with. I’m not saying I agree with Hernandez or anything, but he was clearly joking and the comments were totally harmless. Just once I want to hear someone who allegedly *crossed the line* and gets asked to apologize by his bosses say, “If you want to fire me over an innocuous comment in which I was clearly joking, go ahead. Otherwise, go bleep yourselves. I’m not apologizing for anything.” And who would be a better candidate for that than Keith Hernandez, the NL MVP in ’79? I’m disappointed.
Scalabrine’s Baby: What do you think of the rumors of Zach Randolph heading to the Celtics in exchange for perhaps a draft pick or LaFrentz? More specifically, what do you think the odds are the Randolph and Tony Allen team up for a crime of the century by the end of training camp?
Bill Simmons: (1:08 PM ET) I think the Celtics have made a conscious decision to shy away from people of Zach’s, um, character. I think a trade for somebody like Carlos Boozer would be much more realistic.
Tell (Las Vegas): I know it’s been less than a week, but are you starting to feel silly about the Lakers and Dallas in the West finals?
Bill Simmons: (1:09 PM ET) Hell no! The Lakers should have won that game on Sunday — Kobe played like crap, they missed about 10-12 close shots and Tim Thomas played the game of his life. Plus, that no-call on Kobe could have cut it to 2. I think any Lakers fan should be extremely encouraged by that game. Also think LA wins tonight.
Kevin (Cleveland): LeBron said he doesnt believe in pressure. So is it safe to assume he’ll bounce back in game 3? He made some stupid mistakes yesterday.
Bill Simmons: (1:11 PM ET) He was absolutely atrocious last night, but he’s still the best 21 year old player ever, and he’s still ahead of MJ at the same age, My biggest problem with LeBron was that he seems to play differently after he gets whacked a couple of times, seems like you can take him out of his game. Cleveland needs to find him an enforcer like what MJ had with the Bulls in the 80’s (Oakley). or else. Bron Bron seems like he’s too nice of a guy.
Christian (High Point, NC): Sacramento had been routed in Game 1 and lost Artest for Game 2. Then they almost win last night before folding in overtime. Where does Barry’s in-and-out 3 rank? Are we talking stomach-punch game?
Bill Simmons: (1:13 PM ET) It would have been except that Rick Adelman was involved, so the possibility of an incredible collapse was always there. That game couldn’t have been more entertaining, and that’s even before we discuss Jalen Rose, who was 3x-4x more entertaining than I thought he would be. It’s now clear that all sideline reporters should be current NBA players. It’s a stupid job, anyway, why not have a real player trying to pretend he’s a broadcaster?
Drew (Philly): Is there any connection between the show “24” and Kobe switching to that number next year?
Bill Simmons: (1:15 PM ET) Interesting … maybe he’s going to drop the Mamba gimmick and go for some sort of Jack Bauer gimmick next year. I thought that was extremely weird that he’s switching numbers, unless the NBA offered him like $10 million to do so (for the merchandising money). I don’t like when players switch numbers; it’s like when a wrestler switches gimmicks, it’s too disorienting.
Rafae (Vermont): There’s a headline on the front page of ESPN.com that says Nash is rumored to win the MVP. Right now I have him behind Kobe, LeBron, and even Dirk. How on earth could Nash win this thing?
Bill Simmons: (1:17 PM ET) I don’t know what to say anymore … he has been no more or less valuable over the past 2 years than Jason Kidd was for the 2002 and 2003 Nets … and yet, he’s a back-to-back MVP. It’s ridiculous. LeBron and Kobe were the 2 best players in the league this season. It’s not even an argument. I would NOT want to be against Kobe tonight.
Kimberly, NJ: Do you think Secretary Heller is really dead on 24?
Bill Simmons: (1:20 PM ET) ***SPOILER ALERT!***
My answer: Of course not. Here’s my question though — this guy was a powerful man, and he had to have had a huge ego to rise to such a high position … and he also had the gall to chop Jack Bauer in the neck. So because a helicopter is flying over him, he’s suddenly going to say, “Uh-oh, tell my daughter I love her” and drive off a cliff? Really, he wouldn’t have tried to do some crazy driving to escape? This is the same man who chanted “Let them play!” as Tanner ran around the Astrodome — he was really going to give up that easily? I thought that was the most far-fetched moment of the season, and that’s saying something.
***END OF SPOILER ALERT!***
Ben (Phoenix): What is your definition of MVP? Someone that throws up the ball everytime they get it to average 35 or someone that gets their whole team involved to have a much better record.
Bill Simmons: (1:23 PM ET) I already covered this in my MVP column — LeBron did many of the same things for Cleveland that Nash did, with a similar supporting cast. If you’re going to use the “get the whole team involved” argument, he should have won it. I’m tired of talking about this.
Greg (Brookline, MA): Bill, how long will this chat last … do I need to block of the rest of the day or will you be here for only 1 hour??
Bill Simmons: (1:23 PM ET) As always, it depends on the quality of the questions …
Rick (Battle Creek, MI): Why on earth would you run a chat AT THE SAME TIME AS MEL KIPER?? DURING THE NFL DRAFT SEASON!!! I can see office productivity slowing to a near stand-still. … this is a historic time! This is like the Pope and Ghandi holding court at the same time, in rooms right next to each other. I’m not sure which you would be. I guess Kiper’s hair is kinda like that funny hat the Pope wears. Okay, you are Ghandi.
Bill Simmons: (1:27 PM ET) I wanted to chat against him because the NFL Draft is receiving WAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY too much attention this year and I’m not really sure why. Since when did this become a 3-week event? Really, I’m supposed to have an opinion on Jay Cutler, who played on freaking Vanderbilt and is now supposed to be better than Leinart and Young? And why would anyone try to follow a draft that changes so wildly by the day, especially when all the GM’s are lying to the writers? What about just watching it on Saturday and seeing what happens? I love the actual draft, but I think the leadup is incredibly boring — my favorite is when they show clips of o-lineman. “Watch him hold this block!” Gimme a break. I watched the entire first round last year and the Pats ended up taking a guard with the last pick … it was like 5 hours of buildup to see somebody throw a pancake block. I felt used.
Dan Ribolzi (Minneapolis): How long before Selig calls Stern and asks “Remember that time you had MJ retire to avoid the gambling scandal? I need to get Bonds out before he breaks Aaron’s record. How do I do it?” Has this conversation already happened?
Bill Simmons: (1:29 PM ET) I think the Bonds situation is going to resolve itself. Have you seen him? He’s limping around like Fred Sanford. Any ball hit to left field is legitimately embarrassing to watch — I don’t think there’s any way he will break Aaron’s record unless he gets traded to the AL so he can DH. He’s the slowest, gimpiest outfielder in the history of baseball — even a hobbled Mickey Mantle with 9 ACL surgeries and a .34 blood alcohol level was a better bet to reach a flyball in the gap.
Jeff (Helena, MT): I’m a Royals fan. Joe Posnanski has already written his annual “the season’s over” column. Any advice on how to spend my summer?
Bill Simmons: (1:29 PM ET) I read it and loved it — he shot the gun by 2 weeks. you KC fans are lucky to have Joe, by the way, he’s one of the best.
Robert (Portland, OR): How do you feel about Anna’s return on the OC? Is it sign of the end? Are they just digging up all the old characters so they can end the show with some sort of crazy reunion where the hot lesbian falls in love with Oliver?
Bill Simmons: (1:30 PM ET) I’m more surprised that they fired the actress who used to play her and replaced her with a transvestite. Odd casting decision.
Chad Day, Charlottesville, VA: Could the Barry Bonds from 10+ years ago who couldn’t throw out Sid Bream throw out the Barry Bonds from today?
Bill Simmons: (1:30 PM ET) No, I think the throw is still wide to the right.
Joe (New Jersey): Could you tell “BondsCenter” that I don’t care about Barry’s every at-bat. Please stop leading off the show with Barry Bonds when the NBA playoffs are going on and LeBron debuts with a triple-double. To quote SNL when it was still half-decent, “Who are the ad wizards that came up with that one?”
Bill Simmons: (1:31 PM ET) I agree … ESPN has gone loco. There’s no question. Between Bonds, LeBron and the NFL Draft, the Worldwide Leader has lost its mind. I keep waiting for them to have a mock draft where Bonds and LeBron go head to head and pick the first round as Mel Kiper looks on dressed like the Gimp from Pulp Fiction.
Panos (Toronto, ON): 10 NBA questions into this chat and no mention of your adopted Clippers?!? Where was the running diary from Game 1 and the metion of the sighting of Shane from surivor near the Clipper bench, Simmons, step up your game!
Bill Simmons: (1:33 PM ET) I didn’t see Shane! I want to see him film a reality show where he lives in a house with the bulimic lunatic from the Real World and Tonya from Real World Chicago — like a modern-day Three’s Company. And Shane could be the Jack Tripper part. I would also hire Johnny Fairplay as the Larry character. I really don’t think this could miss.
Mike (Portland, ME): Bill, what kind of job offer (or any other kind of offer) would make you move back to Boston?
Bill Simmons: (1:33 PM ET) GM of the Celtics.
Derek (Denver): I hate Clemens as much as you do but the thought of Clemens>Shilling>Beckett is too enticing … I want to know what you and your Dad think about this?
Bill Simmons: (1:35 PM ET) I am like JFK during the Cuban Missile Crisis with this … proceeding cautiously, hoping this works out itself and he plays for the Yankees, dreading the consequences if things go wrong.
Dave (Albany, GA): Did you know Amanda Righetti from the OC was in soft core porn before making the big splasho on the OC? You have to love when actresses bare it all BEFORE making it to the top, only to come back to regret it later in life (ala Alyssa Milano).
Bill Simmons: (1:36 PM ET) Did not know that. Interesting. I always assumed she would do the OC, Reunion, and THEN softcore porn. By the way, I think my readers just crashed Google.
Tom (Columbus, OH): If you were GM of the Celtics what is ts the first trade you would propose to Isaiah?
Bill Simmons: (1:38 PM ET) I would offer him Raef LaFrentz, Tony Allen and a future No. 1 for Jamal Crawford. I actually like Crawford, I think he could be good on the right team.
Angelo (Toronto): It’s obvious that there is a clear bias against nash as MVP because he is Canadian. This would not bee apparent if it was an American MVP. Imagine any other American player winning and how much more celebrated the announcement would have been. Just an opinion from a proud Canadian. Thanks
Bill Simmons: (1:38 PM ET) Are you kidding me? I love Canada! Canada and Australia are my 2 favorite countries. That hurts, Angelo, That really hurts.
Philly, PA: Is there any possible way that you could construct a way for Billy King to save our team?
Bill Simmons: (1:39 PM ET) Yes: By asking for Billy King’s resignation.
Sip, Chicago, IL: Why is Schilling throwing 133 pitches in a game played in the middle of April?
Bill Simmons: (1:40 PM ET) Because Terry Francona is trying to kill my Dad. I’m convinced. Between removing Foulke with 2 outs in the 12th to bring in Rudy Seanez, continuing to bring Timlin in in the middle innings and inserting Wily Mo as a defensive replacement, he’s out for my Dad’s life. I just want to know why.
Ryan (New Orleans): Hey Bill, who is going to play Barry Bonds in the TV movie (that we all know is going to be made), and what will the name of the movie be? I vote for Omar Epps in “No Balls and 3 Strikes.”
Bill Simmons: (1:42 PM ET) Well, you need three actors, one to play Skinny Bonds, one to play HGH Bonds, and one to play Overweight/Limping Bonds. I would go with Omar Epps for Skinny Bonds, since he’s in every sports movie anyway. He needs to be involved. For HGH Bonds, I would pick Vin Diesel and have him just wear a lot of dark makeup — contriversial casting, could get some buzz for the movie, plus, it would be fun to watch Vin Diesel swing a bat. And for Overweight/Limping Bonds, I would hire Dennis Haysbert and ask him to gain 35 pounds. Could win him an Oscar.
CR (Summit, NJ): Who is the worst ex-NBA player sportscaster currently doing games (my choice: Mark Jackson doing the Nets games … painful)
Bill Simmons: (1:44 PM ET) Are you kidding? I think Jax is the best local guy out there — I don’t even think it’s close, actually. Him and Marv were like listening to a network team. I’m a big Mark Jackson fan, I think he’s really good.
NS (SF, CA): Don’t you think if the MVP was supposed to be taken so literally that the NBA would also have an award for Most Outstanding Player? Nash is a great player in his own right, but shouldn’t the MVP award be reserved for players that could also be considered the MOP? I never heard John Stockton get much consideration in the Jordan, Magic, Bird era, and Nash has far to go to even be Stockton’s equal, yet he is in the MVP discussion with Kobe and LeBron. Who is to blame for this travesty?
Bill Simmons: (1:45 PM ET) In retrospect, Stockton should have just grown out his hair and stopped playing defense — then, he could have won back-to-back MVP’s. The weird thing is, even if they DID add a Most Outstanding Player, Kobe should have won that and LeBron should have won the conventional MVP. I think we need to add a Best White Player Award as well.
Bill Simmons: (1:46 PM ET) This way, Nash could be covered.
Blain: (Napa, CA): Is anyone else as irked as I am that the Paul Mcguire/Joe Theismann Sunday night football duo is being broken up. C’mon they’re Stockton and Malone in their prime. I never thought I’d be able to watch a football game and know substantially less about football when I was done watching. Who’s gonna fill that void now.
Bill Simmons: (1:47 PM ET) I’m hoping that the 3-man team on Fox that has Tony Siragusa can fill some of the void … but you’re right, it’s a huge loss.
Jason (Santa Monica): Bill, are the Clippers really that much better than the Nuggets? Should they re-sign Sam Cassell?
Bill Simmons: (1:49 PM ET) Yeah, they’re that much better. The Nuggets stink. Any playoff team that has Earl Boykins playing more than 10 minutes stinks in my opinion. Plus, take out Carmelo and they’re useless. They were even getting every call from the second quarter on in Game 2 (just a classic one-sided performance by Joey Crawford) and couldn’t even come within 10. And now they have the whole Kenyon Martin fallout happening. They stink. Seriously, how far did you expect a team with three Cincinnati alums to go?
Blofeld (San Antonio, TX): Hey Simmons, what’s up with your hate for the Spurs? You must know that we San Antonians are rabid for this team down here, so we take any slight personally. Come on Simmons, don’t be scared to answer this question. Mercy is for the weak, the weak deserve no mercy, what is the problem Mr. Simmons?
Bill Simmons: (1:50 PM ET) That couldn’t be further from the truth — I really admire the Spurs and think they have the best coaching staff in the league. That play they ran to set up Barry’s game-tying 3 was absolute genius, that was the highlight of the playoffs so far. I just don’t think they can win a title with Duncan putting up 13-10’s.
Kevin NY: Being a Mets fan I am loving our Pedro Era. It isn’t like yours with the domination of being one of the greatest pitchers ever. I have the Pedro that throws 75 and smirks the entire time he is on the mound. It is like he realizes he is throwing garbage and can’t belive no one is hitting him. I was at his 200th win and when Wille pulled him after 6 and 2/3s He smiled and waved and did the double point to the crowd. He is like the Mayor of Metville. Do you think Pedro could have pulled this off in Boston or did he have to come to the Mets to be this way?
Bill Simmons: (1:52 PM ET) I think Pedro needed a change of scenery. I really do. I have no bitterness whatsoever about it … very happy for the Mets fans, they are lucky to get to watch him pitch every 5 days.
Erika (Phoenix): What is with your hostility towards Nash?
Bill Simmons: (1:54 PM ET) I have NO hostility towards him. He’s a very good point guard who benefitted from 2 rule changes — 1.) hand-checking is no longer allowed, and 2.) moving picks are now legal — and has taken advantage accordingly. He’s very fun to watch. I just don’t think he’s the most valuable player in the league.
Bill (Philly): Don’t you have to GRADUATE to be an Alum of Cinci??
Bill Simmons: (1:54 PM ET) This is true
Jason (Evanston, IL): Have you had a chance to see the recreation of Game 6 of the 86 World Series using Nintendo’s RBI Baseball yet? I’m suprised you haven’t commented on it … Another misty-eyed moment for the internet in my opinion.
Bill Simmons: (1:56 PM ET) It was like the “Lazy Sunday” sketch — very cool at first, and then, the subsequent overkill on the internet made me not like it. By the way, I couldn’t even make it for 15 seconds watching that thing without turning it off and repeatedly slamming my head against my desk.
Matt (Baltimore): “Snakes on a Plane,” Bill! You haven’t given your thoughts yet on this phenomenon. What do you think?
Bill Simmons: (1:56 PM ET) My thoughts … sheer delight … overwhelming anticipation … utter happiness …
KOD, Danvers MA: Bill, Who wins in a pick-up hoops game of 2-on-2: you and cousin Sal vs Kimmel and Carolla? Give us a quick recap of how it would play out.
Bill Simmons: (1:58 PM ET) Sal and I would win — Carolla is a bigger gunner than Eddie House. His teams never win. Kimmel would never get the ball and they would start fighting within 5 minutes.
Dave (Baldwin): How much of Jonathan Paplebon’s early success can be attributed to Al Nipper’s mustache?
Bill Simmons: (1:58 PM ET) Maybe like 20 percent.
Jess (New York, NY): How can you have such a long discussion with the writers of Rounders, and not ask what KGB was holding in the last hand of the movie?
Bill Simmons: (2:00 PM ET) Because that’s the one question they refuse to answer. It’s like the suitcase in Pulp Fiction for them. My goal is to get both of them drunk one night, find out the answer, then write about it the next day.
Etan (Washington Heights, NY): Where does the Heat getting all their fans to wear white rank on all time lame-o sports gimmicks? I am putting it right between the Rally Monkey and the YMCA.
Bill Simmons: (2:01 PM ET) The Heat fans need to give it up — they are the lamest fans in the NBA. How many times have we seen a close playoff game with empty seats at midcourt? They are almost like watching 18,000 foreigners attending their first American game.
Ryan Lancaster, PA: I think that Jalen Rose should be the sideline reporter for every game in the playoffs. Did you see how he just kept going after Nick Van Exel (another Cincy partial alum) threw 2 towels on his head while giving a report? And actually asked some good questions and didnt get that deer in the headlights or stupid comment disease that some athletes do. I think it was all those years of trash talking at Michigan with he Fab 5.
Bill Simmons: (2:03 PM ET) I agree. For instance, TNT used David Aldridge for Game 2 of the LAC-Den series. Who would you rather see as a sideline reporter — David Aldridge … or Mark Madsen? David Aldridge … or Dikembe Mutombo? David Aldridge … or Darius Miles? Come on.
Chris (Seattle, WA): I’m thinking Ving Rhaymes for the overweight Bonds..
Bill Simmons: (2:03 PM ET) Excellent call. Forgot about him.
Luis (Tempe, AZ): Any chance you’ll buy season tickets for the Dodgers and join their bandwagon as well? Maybe seeing Nomar, Lowe, and Grady together again may be an incentive.
Bill Simmons: (2:05 PM ET) Nahhhh … the National league is excruciating to watch. I am thinking about my next salvation project though, I feel like my work is done with the Clips after I convinced everyone in my section to yell at Joey Crawford during Game 2. I am like the Sam Cassell for the fans. But I need a new challenge. I’m thinking about moving to San Fran and turning Golden State around — I think they need me.
Travis (Sac, CA): Hey Bill, As a pseudo Clippers fan, aren’t you tired of these interviews of Billy Crystal? I find my enjoyment of a basketball game ripped from me when I hear the words “and now we go to the sidelines with Jim Gray/David Alderidge”, only to see them talking to Crystal. I can only hear the “I actually played in three games” joke once. Thanks “Shooter”, it was funny the first time I heard it. Go back to whoring your Yankees.
Bill Simmons: (2:09 PM ET) Couldn’t agree more. I actually like him because he’s a real fan — he was going to the games when they stunk. But it’s the same interview every time. Did we really need to hear from him on back-to-back games? The best part is watching guys like Jim Gray kiss his butt — that kills me. Jim Gray approached him for Game 1 with the same look in his eye that a 13 year-old WWE fan wearing an Undertaker shirt has when they’re approaching the Undertaker in a Denny’s or something.
Mike (Braintree, MA): Bill … what do you think the Celts should do with their upcoming lottery pick??
Bill Simmons: (2:12 PM ET) Glad you asked. They need to make a big move and get a veteran player — the Pierce Window only has 2-3 more years. My favorite guy in the draft is Brandon Roy, would love to see them take him, then package Gerald Green, Al Jefferson and Raef to get Jermaine O’Neal. That would be my dream Celtics summer. Other than them spiking Scalabrine’s Gatorade with one of the NBA’s banned substances so they could get him off the cap. But I like this draft a little more than most — it’s top-heavy, but Ty Thomas will be good, and Noah (if he comes out), and so will Morrison and Roy, and I think the two foreigners (Splitter and Bargnani) are better than people realize. Plus, you know some of the teams in front of them will take stiffs like Aldridge and Rudy Gay, so good guys will drop down. And Minny is picking right in front of them — you know McHale will screw that pick up. I think they’re in good shape.
JS (Boston, MA): Don’t you think you should change your name to Mainstream Sports Guy as you don’t talk about anything other than basketball, football and baseball?
Bill Simmons: (2:13 PM ET) Um, that’s been the case since I started my old website in 1997.
Greg Atlanta, GA: Bill, Did you see the ridiculous outfit Kareem was wearing Sunday during the Lakers/Suns game? It was this leather/American Indian thing with tons of tassels. I have no other way to describe it. Thoughts? Does this jacket make it official that Kareem is absolutely crazy?
Bill Simmons: (2:15 PM ET) I saw it … I think Kareem has quietly entered a benevolent version of the Tyson Zone. Nothing he does surprises me. The camera could have panned back and revealed that he was nude from the waist down and I wouldn’t have been shocked. I think he should start wearing his old goggles in public at all times.
Matthew (Montreal, Quebec): Hey Bill, I know you love the NBA and the NBA playoffs, but can you agree that the NHL playoffs are offering the best show in years in terms of hockey and we are having one of the best NHL playoffs in a long time? Too bad the Bruins are out, maybe you would talk about it a little bit more … Maybe the NHL should introduce a 9th team in the playoff you could pick so we could have some lines about it.
Bill Simmons: (2:15 PM ET) Sorry, I’m done with hockey. No regrets.
Walter (New Hampshire): Glad you’re not the Cetics GM, Bill. That would be a stupid trade. Have you been watching O’Neal play? Get over trying to build a championship around Paul, it won’t happen.
Bill Simmons: (2:17 PM ET) JO needs a change of scenery and he needs to get healthy — he’s still in his mid-20’s, and he was the best guy on a team that almost made the Finals 2 years ago. Remember, teams aren’t going to trade an A-list guy unless there’s some sort of reason … everyone forgets, Barkley was traded once. So was Oscar. So was Earl Monroe. Wilt was traded twice. Etc etc …
Ronny B. (DC): How about some Sports Guy love for the Detroit Tigers?
Bill Simmons: (2:18 PM ET) Not until they make the Barry Bonds trade … and you know it’s coming, between Leyland and the DH, that seems like the logical spot for him.
Frank B (Bethlehem): How in the world could Neil Diamond Storytellers be omitted from BOTH SNL Best of Will Ferrell DVDs? This is a travesty. Like omitting the Molestation of Canteen Boy from the Alec Baldwin and Adam Sandler ones. You know what I can’t stand, Sports Guy? Underpants.
Bill Simmons: (2:20 PM ET) A fantastic question. I think there are some rights issues with a couple of the songs — my guess is that Neil Diamond didn’t appreciate the sketch too much since it had him admitting that he killed a drifter to get an erection and all that other good stuff, so when they needed him to sign off so they could run the songs on DVD, he said no. That’s the same reason why they changed the “Schmitt’s Gay” song from Van Halen to a generic heavy metal song — the Van halen song was much funnier.
Scott S. (Pelham, NY): Feeling good about your “Curious Guy” prediction that Schilling’s the pitcher to get for your fantasy team?
Bill Simmons: (2:21 PM ET) He’s been great — pitching even better than he did in 2004. With that said, would I keep him in there for 133 pitches? Hell no. That was dumb.
Jimbo, Seattle: How big is your Papelboner now?
Bill Simmons: (2:22 PM ET) Humongous. I feel like I overdosed on Cialis.
Ryan; Ft. Collins, CO: Bill, What’s your planned writing schedule like? The footer at the end of your columns says two per week — is that a decrease? Will you be updating “More Cowbell?” Also, any plans for the Daily Links? Keep up the good work.
Bill Simmons: (2:24 PM ET) I’m writing Wednesdays and Fridays for Page 2 and that’s it. Wish I had better news for you.
PAUL (StL, MO): Got a comment about Favre returning?
Bill Simmons: (2:25 PM ET) No … was too busy reloading my online gambling account and getting ready for his first game.
Erik (Chicago): Bill, any theories on Lost? Couple people I know think they are in purgatory or are part of an experiment? What do you think?
Bill Simmons: (2:26 PM ET) I think they’re in purgatory …
John, St Louis, MO: Sports Guy, Whats your take on the scrawny girl from the Real World? Sometimes she apears attractive, yet 90% she seems like Manny Alexander on a ‘Roid rage. What are the chances that this girl is just an LPGA golfer with too much tobacco in her?
Bill Simmons: (2:27 PM ET) I think she’s an out-and-out apocalyspe. It’s one thing to have crazy roommates on the show, it’s another thing to have someone who’s mentally imbalanced. She only belongs on shows with other mentally imbalanced people. Which is fine with me — as we saw with MTV’s True Life “I’m a reality TV Star” show, there’s a place for this.
PJ (Dallas, TX): Bill … are you going to get another intern? I thought Kevin did a fantastic job, he is a great writer. I think your idea was a success in having that.
Bill Simmons: (2:28 PM ET) Thanks PJ, I appreciate that. Kevin did a fantastic job, I was really proud of him. We’re not hiring another intern.
Kevin(Villanova): What would you do if your daughter grew up a Yankee fan to spite you?
Bill Simmons: (2:29 PM ET) I would never allow it to happen. It’s an impossibility. It’s too easy to brainwash your kids at an early age.
Lou Pickney (Alabaster, AL): Who do you think the Patriots will take at the #21 spot in the first round of the draft on Saturday?
Bill Simmons: (2:32 PM ET) They desperately need a linebacker … that’s what we’re all hoping for. Although, if the right RB dropped to them at No. 21, I wouldn’t be upset about it. It’s weird to be a Pats fan right now because Belichick has earned a certain level of trust with his personnel moves, so no matter what he does, you just kind of have to agree with it. In a way, it’s more fun to be a fan of a crappy team during the NFL Draft. Like, if you’re a Lions fan, no matter who they select, you can flip out about it and pretend you could have done better. For Pats fans, we just have to nod passively and say, “Okay, he sounds good, I like it.”
Duane (Minneapolis, MN): How many MTV producers will lose their jobs over the decision to green light “Yo Momma”?
Bill Simmons: (2:33 PM ET) Are you kidding? What’s better on TV right now than Wilmer Valderama trying to host that show? Seriously, name me one thing.
Keith (Madison, WI): Did you see/hear Kenny Smith calling you out the other night when they reviewed the fantasy basketball season? Something to the effect of challenging you to a game of one-on-one. Isiah and now Kenny, who’s next, Scalabrine?
Bill Simmons: (2:36 PM ET) I didn’t see it but I heard about it. Here’s what I don’t get: OF COURSE Kenny would kick my butt in a game of 1-on-1. He played in the NBA for like 12 years. So what would that prove? I still destroyed him in the fantasy league, and even better, so did people like Star Jones. His challenge confused me. For instance, if I proved that I knew more than Barkley about restaurants, would the fact that he could kick my ass in an eating contest change that fact? Of course not. Kenny needs to suck it up, admit that he got his lunch handed to him, and figure out a way to pass Star Jones next season in the celeb league.
Matt (Long Island): Is there some way we can get Matt Millen to draft Chad Jackson or Santonio Holmes? It would easily climb into the top 10 funniest moments in sports history, particularly the 60 seconds of silence from the ESPN roundtable before Mel Kiper tries to reason the pick with “Jackson, interesting choice: Great hands, blazing 40 time, we’ve seen his stock climb since the combine…”
Bill Simmons: (2:38 PM ET) We’re all rooting for this. I think it would be the ballsiest move in the history of GM’s — he’s going to get fired, anyway. Why not?
J.R. (Pittsburgh, PA): Last night gave us yet another chapter to the “Rick Adelman’s Playoff Collapses” DVD collection. How many discs will this thing be by the time he is done coaching and does this one even make the cut? Also, have you seen this interview with Darius Miles. Among other topics, he talks about smelling of alcohol at practice because he was sweating it out from the previous night’s dinner and how hurt he was about not being featured as a bobblehead doll (actual quote: “It’s like you are telling me I’m this franchise player, but hey, once I noticed it, and I was like dang, I don’t have no bobble head? They tried to get me one at the last minute, and I was like, “No, I’m fine.'”) Weren’t the Blazers supposed to be cleaning up their image?
Bill Simmons: (2:39 PM ET) Glad you brought this up — the Miles interview was the funniest piece of journalism of the year. Everyone who hasn’t read it yet needs to read it. It’s otherworldly.
Matt (Lakewood, CO): Should I work and be productive for my employer, or should I continue reading this chat?
Bill Simmons: (2:40 PM ET) Come on, keep reading …
Matty (Eugene): Now that you’ve spent significant time on the left coast, is there an L.A./SoCal equivalent to Worcester? My guess would be Culver City is a decent match …
Bill Simmons: (2:40 PM ET) I would go with Anaheim, only if Disneyland and the Angels were removed from the equation.
William (Detroit, MI): Is it just me or does Larry Merchant now talk like a drunken Hubie Brown?
Bill Simmons: (2:41 PM ET) “Now”?
Phil (Glen Ellyn, IL): How about Kevin Mench figuring out his shoe size was actually a 12.5 and not a 12. Since then he’s cranked like 6 home runs and 15 RBI’s. Why aren’t people mocking this idiot? Who doesn’t kwow their own shoe size? Can you imagine what your boss would say if you told him you were using a type writer? Is that even an appropriate comparison? What is the real world work comparison?
Bill Simmons: (2:42 PM ET) Couldn’t agree more — how do you not know that your shoes are too tight? They need to have a comprehensive game show to figure which league has the dumbest players — NFl, MLB, NBA or NHL. I really want to know. I’m convinced that baseball players are twice as dumb as anyone in any other sport.
Suri Cruise (Hollywood): Do I have a chance?
Bill Simmons: (2:43 PM ET) No. You don’t. I’m sorry.
Rick (Watertown, MA): Which professional athlete do you think is actually most older than they claim to be — Michelle Wie? LeBron? Pujols? Freddy Adu? Someone else?
Bill Simmons: (2:44 PM ET) I think Freddy Adu is in his late-30’s.
Jack (Minneapolis, MN): How are you dealing with ABC’s choice of Tom Petty’s Runnin down a Dream?
Bill Simmons: (2:46 PM ET) Poorly. I just don’t get it. For instance, TNT’s music makes me feel like I’m watching the NBA, between their theme song and the rap song they’re using for this year. What does Tom Petty have to do with the NBA? Completely inexplicable.
Mike (LA, CA): Do you have a favorite LA sports radio show or personality? For such a big city, I think local sports radio here is pretty poor.
Bill Simmons: (2:48 PM ET) I concur. I don’t listen to any of the shows out here except for Jim Rome sometimes — also like Matt Smith’s show on 570, although I wish it was just him. All these shows just feature a ton of guys screaming incoherently at one another, followed by steady overlaughing. I wouldn’t even call it sports radio.
Jonathan Papelbon (Boston): Do you like my haircut?
Bill Simmons: (2:49 PM ET) You forgot the thick black glasses.
Max (L.A.): Is it now safe to say that the Elton Brand for Tyson Chandler trade is among the worst all time, in NBA history?
Bill Simmons: (2:50 PM ET) It’s probably in the top-10. I still think the Eddy Curry trade will go down as the worst trade of all-time before everything’s said and done.
Steve (Boston): They say Beckett has tried everything to avoid blisters. Do you think he has let Alou pee on his hands? It seems works for Moises.
Bill Simmons: (2:50 PM ET) I was waiting for someone to suggest this! Beckett should pee on his hands 4-5 times per day.
Stoke, Cottage Grove, Oregon: Have you had the Larry Bird wine yet?
Bill Simmons: (2:51 PM ET) The Larry Bird wine is up there with Fletch 2, Godfather 3, the third season of White Shadow and everything else for me … actually, I don’t know what you’re talking about.
John Esposito (San Fernando Valley, CA): You’re the best, around.
Bill Simmons: (2:52 PM ET) Nothin’s ever gonna keep you down!
Jim, Philthy PA: What can the Sixers get from the Knicks for Iverson? This has to happen.
Bill Simmons: (2:55 PM ET) I’m excited for this — the first ever Billy King-Isiah trade. And the teams kinda match up. For instance, what if the Knicks offered Francis (who could give Philly 60-70 percent of Iverson’s stats) and Jalen Rose’s expiring contract in 2007 for Iverson and C-Webb’s poison pill deal. Wouldn’t Isiah do that immediately? Then Philly could stink for a year and rebuild around their cap space in 2007. Too bad Billy King won’t figure this out.
John (Temple City, CA): Are you ready to tell your readers why Elgin no longer considers you a “bassbowl”? Sounds like a great story.
Bill Simmons: (2:59 PM ET) It’s not really that exciting. We got together at halftime of a game this season and just talked hoops for 10-12 minutes. He said one of his family members thought that I had something against him, and I told him that wasn’t the case, as evidenced by my praise for the Cassell trade and the Livingston pick. And that was that. He’s a very nice guy. But if he lets Cassell and Radman go this summer and doesn’t replace them, I will absolutely criticize him again. They have a foundation in place now to contend through the decade.
Rob Babcock, Toronto: I take exception to you mentioning the worst trades in NBA history without any bringing up Vince Carter.
Bill Simmons: (3:00 PM ET) You’re right — that’s currently the 3rd-worst trade ever behind McHale and Parish for Joe Barry Carroll and Dennis Johnson straight up for Rick Robey. But the Curry trade could result in the Knicks paying Curry $60 million AND them losing a top-3 pick in consecutive drafts. How can you top that?
Malcolm (Philly): Vince Carter trade is still not even close to the Barkley trade. I think you are showing your anti-Isiah bias.
Bill Simmons: (3:01 PM ET) The Barkley trade was bad, but it wasn’t totally one-sided — Jeff Hornacek was one of the best 2-guards in the league at the time, a borderline All-Star. Everyone forgets this.
Brian Mitchell (Leesburg, VA): Here I am still fuming over the decision to pick Steve Nash as MVP. It’s obvious to anyone that paid any attention to the NBA this season that, while a great player who had a good season, there is no way he could be considered more valuable then Kobe, LeBron or hell, even Dirk. I would even be tempted to go with Marion being a more valuable player to his team then Nash was, much like Amare was last season. I find it funny that the only people defending the pick are from Phoenix. They seem to be awarding Nash extra points because of his skin color, and as a white guy this offends me; we all know the NBA would like to see another great white player, and with this they are basically saying, “this is the closest we are probably going to get to another ‘elite’ white player, so we might as well hype it up as much as possible.” Please, that is a slap in the face.
Bill Simmons: (3:03 PM ET) I would call you crazy except that Jason Kidd (who isn’t white) had a similar effect on the Nets in 2002 and 2003 — right down to the wins and the success — and didn’t win the MVP either year.
Patrick (Guelph, Ontario): Hey Bill, give us some of your must-read columnists.
Bill Simmons: (3:09 PM ET) Sure. Joe Posnanski. Peter King. Gammons. Joe Sheehan. John Hollinger and the Daily Dime guys are always interesting. I like JA Adande’s NBA stuff. Buster Olney’s daily baseball blog is absolutely fantastic, that’s my first stop every day. Really like Dan Rafael’s boxing stuff — same with Ron Borges in the Boston Globe. Peter Vescey’s NBA column will always be a must-read for me, he’s so bitter at this point that you never know what will be in there. Always liked Gerry Callahan’s column in the Boston Herald, as well as anything Jackie macMullan writes for the Globe. Len Pasquarelli’s NFL notes column is a must-read. I really like Tim Goodman’s TV column in the SF Chronicle, he always puts some thought into it. Mark Cuban’s blog is always interesting. Whenever I need a wrestling fix, I always check out Rick Scaia’s column on Online Onslaught. That’s all I can think of right now … I know there’s more.
Ray (Denver): Is this not the worst Sopranos season ever? I can’t believe the show is going out this way. The final season is entering Rocky V territory of “never happened”.
Bill Simmons: (3:12 PM ET) Yeah, but you knew everyone was going to be let down by Season 6 — they waited too long since the last season and everyone was just watching the best of the old episodes, so the quality in their heads was higher than it actually was. I really liked the last 3 episodes, I thought they were all good. And the Italian in me loved the Artie/restaurant plot because my Mom and stepdad always drag me to these restaurants where the host knows them and comes over and interrupts our conversations, it might be my single biggest pet peeve in life. It’s still the best show on TV other than MAYBE “Lost,” I don’t know how anyone can say differently. I think people get burned out on TV shows after a few years and start looking for reasons why they jumped the shark.
Bill Simmons: (3:13 PM ET) And by the way, people seem split on Chris punching Lauren Bacall in the face … I thought it was off the charts funny. That killed me.
C. Barkley (Phoenix,AZ): Have you decided how long you’re going? What’s for lunch today?
Bill Simmons: (3:13 PM ET) We hit 20K questions — think I’m wrapping up soon. Need to eat lunch. Mmmmm … lunch …
Slim (ATL): I am about halfway through this thing, and read 2 references to Joey Crawford. I went to a Grizzlies game in Memphis and watched in utter shock/awe as Crawford absolutely lost it. He singlehandily took over the game, like a young MJ, tossing out technicals at every player that even remotely looked at him. I am not lying, it was unbelievable. My friends and I now hate him. To top it off, who was it that tossed out Udonis Haslem (when a simple tech would have been more than suffice) he threw his mouthpiece?? Yep, you guessed it. My anger is growing as I type this. Can you use your contacts to get his address??
Bill Simmons: (3:15 PM ET) The crazy thing about Joey Crawford is that he honestly thinks everyone in the crowd is there to see him. He really does. He thinks that I went to Monday’s Clips-Nugs game saying to myself, “Man, I hope Joey Crawford is reffing tonight — maybe he’ll make a bunch of ridiculous calls and completely kill the flow of the game!” He should be banned from the playoffs.
Anna Benson (Baltimore, MD): Can I have 16 minutes … please
Bill Simmons: (3:16 PM ET) No. Either go away or leak the obligatory porn tape on the internet and get it over with.
Mike (Tacoma, WA): Did you happen to see Stephen A. Smith on Real Time with Bill Maher? Did you get the feeling that Bill wasn’t trying to play Stephen like Jon Stewart did to those guys on CNN? Not a shining moment for STEPHEN A. SMITH!
Bill Simmons: (3:17 PM ET) Yeah, I don’t think he’ll be back. the best part was the look on Maher’s face — he looked like Mike Dunleavy responding to some of Joey Crawford’s calls during that Nuggets-Clips game.
Franklin (The OC): Who’s your pick for survivor?
Bill Simmons: (3:18 PM ET) I think it’s going to be Terry, Danielle and Danielle’s breasts in the Finals, with Terry winning.
Bronson Arroyo (Cincy): I’m about to go 4-0 (1-hit shutout into the 8th), do you miss me?
Bill Simmons: (3:21 PM ET) Yes. I actually liked that deal at the time … but I was under the mistaken impression that A.) Wells could pitch, and B.) Wily Mo wasn’t a train wreck in the OF. The best way to determine whether you made a good deal or not is to ask one question: “If I could un-do the deal right now, would I do it?” So would I rather have A.) Arroyo in the rotation and Dustin Mohr platooning with Trot, or B.) no Arroyo and Wily Mo platooning with Trot? I’d go with A. Then again, Bronson IS pitching in the vastly inferior NL, so you never know … maybe he would have been mediocre this season.
Phil, Los Angeles, CA: What’s funnier than Wilmer Valderamma on some MTV show? As far as unintentional comedy — nothing, I’m sure. But as for straight up intentional comedy, have you seen South Park this season? Are you aware of last week’s extended dialogue between Oprah’s “minge” and ass? Maybe this show’s not your bag, because I don’t think I’ve seen you mention it, but they knock it out of the park with the best combination of real social satire (not the Bill Maher brand) and week after week of “Did they just do that?” moments. Funniest show on TV. Has to be said.
Bill Simmons: (3:22 PM ET) Agreed. I love the South Park guys, they reached “I’m Keith hernandez!” status about 4 years ago. The episode with the Chef becoming a molester was up there with the Larry Sanders roast for me.
Tom (Cincinnati, OH): 20K questions?!? Does Greenberg get that many when he does these things?!?
Bill Simmons: (3:23 PM ET) Who’s Greenberg?
Fred (Bossier City, La.): Why do you knock the NL so much? The DH is the only reason the AL is more “exciting”.
Bill Simmons: (3:25 PM ET) The NL is awful — come on. They are bordering on Triple-A at this point. Just the fact that a clearly declining Pedro and Arroyo can both switch leagues and suddenly compete for the Cy Young this season should tell you something. or what about Edgar Renteria’s career? Don’t defend the quality of the NL, it just makes you look obtuse.
Bill Simmons: (3:25 PM ET) (By the way, that was my “Mike Lupica on the Sports Reporters” impersonation.
Mike, Seattle: End this thing, I’m about to get fired!! I’ll end it for you … I’m going to print this out and read it while I poop.Bill Simmons: Yep, these are my readers.
Bill Simmons: (3:25 PM ET) Five more minutes …
Jason, New York: So I suppose that this chat marathon means we shouldn’t expect a column for a week or so huh?
Bill Simmons: (3:26 PM ET) I can’t win. But you’re getting a new column on Friday. And there’s one up right now.
Douglife (denver): I have seen several of your comments stating that the AL is superior to the NL. Can you list some reasons why, I hate listening to people who defend the NL just because there is no DH.
Bill Simmons: (3:27 PM ET) Um … the AL wins the World Series and the All-Star Game every year?
Andrew (Kansas City): “Obtuse? That’s another month in the “hole” for you Duphrane!”
Will (Boston): I was at the Sox game last week and Papelbon entered the game to the Ultimate Warrior’s entrance music. Your thoughts?
Bill Simmons: (3:29 PM ET) My thoughts were “Wait a second, what’s that? Good God, that’s the Ultimate Warrior’s music! My God, Jonathan Papelbon just came out to the Ultimate Warrior’s music! And this place is going CRAZY!” And I’m not even kidding.
Bill Simmons: (3:30 PM ET) All right, I’m done. Good work everyone — almost 22,000 questions, thanks to everyone who posted one. Enjoy Kobe’s 65-point performance tonight …
Bill Simmons writes two columns per week for Page 2 and ESPN The Magazine. You can reach his Sports Guy’s World site here. His book “Now I Can Die In Peace” is available on Amazon.com and in bookstores everywhere.