We cannot fully evaluate Bill Simmons' post-ESPN plans until we learn where he will take his written work - the skill that made him famous and where he still is at his best - now that HBO has landed his TV rights.
But at the very least, this should be interesting. Simmons is sure to test his new-found freedom in HBO's more freewheeling culture compared to that of Disney-owned ESPN.
One juicy subplot is Simmons working on documentaries for HBO, whose approach he criticized when he helped ESPN create its "30 for 30" series as a hipper alternative.
"I think it's consistently good, but I think it's really predictable," he said of HBO's docs when we chatted in 2009. "I think it's a bunch of older sports fans making decisions based on what maybe they think people in their age range want to see . . . People under 30 don't care about Ted Williams.''