The Bill Simmons Thread

nattysez

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Bill's interview with Eddie Vedder and Jeff Ament from Pearl Jam is up now. I'll try to give it a listen over the weekend.
I just got an email from PearlJam.com highlighting not just the new Simmons interview, but also linking to their prior interview with him. They must feel like they went well.
 

Auger34

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I think Russillo actively avoids watching the Celtics. Every single time he’s talked about them it’s seemed like an old take or something recycled from last year
 

jose melendez

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I'm a little tired of the Knicks love. I guess the Knicks suck so much that Brunson could get into their pantheon by making the ECF, but that's pathetic.

Also, I guess its conceivable that this team could win the East, but there is no damn way they can win the finals.
 

nattysez

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The level of bile Lombardi sends toward the Falcons' front office during his bit with Simmons on the latest podcast is pretty hilarious. Definitely still carrying BB's water.
 

ifmanis5

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Does he ever leave the house?
Hahah, I wonder the same sometimes.

On the Sunday pod Bill asked Rusillo for some advice on how to convince his wife to watch the Celtics on Mother's Day. Rusillo suggested that if Bill didn't get to watch the games she'd be homeless. Just awful takes as usual from him.
 

8slim

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When discussing the looming schedule release, Lombardi claimed that "cold weather" team Buffalo will be at a disadvantage having to play warm-weather Miami on the road in September.

That might have been the dumbest fucking thing I've heard come out of the mouth of a respected NFL insider.
 

luckiestman

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When discussing the looming schedule release, Lombardi claimed that "cold weather" team Buffalo will be at a disadvantage having to play warm-weather Miami on the road in September.

That might have been the dumbest fucking thing I've heard come out of the mouth of a respected NFL insider.
How so? I used to watch non-South teams melt in Tallahassee early in the schedule. Utah melted in the Swamp a year or two ago early in the season. Is the idea that practicing in Summer in Buffalo will have them ready?
 

8slim

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How so? I used to watch non-South teams melt in Tallahassee early in the schedule. Utah melted in the Swamp a year or two ago early in the season. Is the idea that practicing in Summer in Buffalo will have them ready?
Yes, they will be practicing for 8 weeks in the oppressive, ultra-humid ickiness that is Upstate New York in July and August. Plus, I suspect half or more of the team lives in the south anyway.
 

chrisfont9

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How so? I used to watch non-South teams melt in Tallahassee early in the schedule. Utah melted in the Swamp a year or two ago early in the season. Is the idea that practicing in Summer in Buffalo will have them ready?
Ha! I watched that game (my son goes to UU). It's like 100 in SLC all summer, you would think the Utes could handle the heat. But of course it's just not the same heat.
 

johnmd20

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Yes, they will be practicing for 8 weeks in the oppressive, ultra-humid ickiness that is Upstate New York in July and August. Plus, I suspect half or more of the team lives in the south anyway.
Teams have been wilting in Miami in September for decades.

Buffalo weather isn't the same, even if it's August, where all the players practicing are moving at half speed. And the great players are moving at quarter speed. Or not moving at all. You can't replicate the Miami humidity or the game speed.

So yes, it's an advantage for Miami. Buffalo famously wilted in the heat in Miami a couple of years ago when Buffalo ran like 3 times as many plays as the Dolphins and lost. And the OC had a meltdown in the pressbox.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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Teams have been wilting in Miami in September for decades.

Buffalo weather isn't the same, even if it's August, where all the players practicing are moving at half speed. And the great players are moving at quarter speed. Or not moving at all. You can't replicate the Miami humidity or the game speed.

So yes, it's an advantage for Miami. Buffalo famously wilted in the heat in Miami a couple of years ago when Buffalo ran like 3 times as many plays as the Dolphins and lost. And the OC had a meltdown in the pressbox.
I know that this is "prevailing wisdom", but I'd love to see the numbers of outdoor northern teams playing on the road against outdoor southern teams in temps over (IDK) 80 degrees. And I'd like to see the inverse, outdoor southern teams playing on the road against outdoor northern teams in temps under (again IDK) 30 degrees. If you want to narrow it even further maybe the two teams have to be over .500 so that a juggernaut northern team isn't destroying a bottom feeding southern team (or vice versa).

My guess is that this is one of those things that turns out to be more of a coin flip than anything.
 

tims4wins

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I know that this is "prevailing wisdom", but I'd love to see the numbers of outdoor northern teams playing on the road against outdoor southern teams in temps over (IDK) 80 degrees. And I'd like to see the inverse, outdoor southern teams playing on the road against outdoor northern teams in temps under (again IDK) 30 degrees. If you want to narrow it even further maybe the two teams have to be over .500 so that a juggernaut northern team isn't destroying a bottom feeding southern team (or vice versa).

My guess is that this is one of those things that turns out to be more of a coin flip than anything.
IIRC Brady and the Pats always said it was tougher to play in Miami in December than September. While it's blazing hot in September, the players are somewhat used to the heat and humidity from summers in Foxboro. But come December, they're used to 40 degrees and dry, so going down and playing in 80 degrees is a huge adjustment.
 

ManicCompression

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I know that this is "prevailing wisdom", but I'd love to see the numbers of outdoor northern teams playing on the road against outdoor southern teams in temps over (IDK) 80 degrees. And I'd like to see the inverse, outdoor southern teams playing on the road against outdoor northern teams in temps under (again IDK) 30 degrees. If you want to narrow it even further maybe the two teams have to be over .500 so that a juggernaut northern team isn't destroying a bottom feeding southern team (or vice versa).

My guess is that this is one of those things that turns out to be more of a coin flip than anything.
Aren't there other factors to playing in Miami outside of strictly the heat and humidity? The way their stadium is set up, the home team's bench is in the shade while the away team is baking in the sun during day games. It's not so much that Miami heat is "different" September, but that teams get no break from it at that specific stadium.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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IIRC Brady and the Pats always said it was tougher to play in Miami in December than September. While it's blazing hot in September, the players are somewhat used to the heat and humidity from summers in Foxboro. But come December, they're used to 40 degrees and dry, so going down and playing in 80 degrees is a huge adjustment.
Yes. I absolutely remember that and I also remember the Pats having a really tough time against middling Dolphins teams in that type of weather. But I also recall them having tough times against not-so-great Miami teams in the late fall too. Miami always seems to play the Pats tough no matter what the records are.

Aren't there other factors to playing in Miami outside of strictly the heat and humidity? The way their stadium is set up, the home team's bench is in the shade while the away team is baking in the sun during day games. It's not so much that Miami heat is "different" September, but that teams get no break from it at that specific stadium.
I had no idea about that. I know that Miami likes to wear white at home in September and October and makes the visiting teams wear their dark uniforms too--which is supposed to have an affect on game play.

I honestly don't know what the answer is to this question, there is definitely an advantage--I'm not disputing that, I just wonder how much.
 

8slim

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Teams have been wilting in Miami in September for decades.

Buffalo weather isn't the same, even if it's August, where all the players practicing are moving at half speed. And the great players are moving at quarter speed. Or not moving at all. You can't replicate the Miami humidity or the game speed.

So yes, it's an advantage for Miami. Buffalo famously wilted in the heat in Miami a couple of years ago when Buffalo ran like 3 times as many plays as the Dolphins and lost. And the OC had a meltdown in the pressbox.
JMOH took the baton from me. Sure, that's our collective recollection, and that's what anecdotal evidence suggests. But if anyone has real data on that dynamic I'd love to see it.

Yes, the Bills lost in Miami 2 seasons ago in September. They year before they drilled the Phins in Miami in September. Soooo.... the weather was to blame in 2022, but made no difference the year prior?

The Dolphins are 3-0 at home in September in 2022 and 2023. Weather advantage! Oh, but they were 0-5 at home in September in 2021 and 2020. Must've been unseasonably cool and dry those 5 Sundays?
 

luckiestman

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If he were as good as he acts you'd think he'd have a GM job now. Like I doubt even Theo* is this arrogant.

*Best GM I could think of.
What is the arrogance, btw? I like his show, he is a straight shooter, when he is wrong he owns it.
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

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I had no idea about that. I know that Miami likes to wear white at home in September and October and makes the visiting teams wear their dark uniforms too--which is supposed to have an affect on game play.

I honestly don't know what the answer is to this question, there is definitely an advantage--I'm not disputing that, I just wonder how much.
The stadium was deliberately built so that visiting teams are in the sun all game long while the home sideline is in the shade.
 

The Napkin

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IIRC Brady and the Pats always said it was tougher to play in Miami in December than September. While it's blazing hot in September, the players are somewhat used to the heat and humidity from summers in Foxboro. But come December, they're used to 40 degrees and dry, so going down and playing in 80 degrees is a huge adjustment.
You're also not worn down from a year of playing games in Sept. Which of course so is the other team but still, one more thing that makes it harder to get the extra boost that might be needed for a visiting team going in to hot/humid environment when you don't have that base energy to begin with.
Or I could be full of shit
 

Average Reds

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FWIW, some quick google work tells me that the Dolphins all-time record at home is 286-160-3, for a winning percentage of 63.7%.

Dolphins all-time record at home in September is 53-30, for a winning percentage of 63.9%.

This can obviously be sliced further, but my guess is that the impact of where the opponents are located (cold vs. warm-weather teams) in the month of September is anecdotal rather than real.
 

tims4wins

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FWIW, some quick google work tells me that the Dolphins all-time record at home is 286-160-3, for a winning percentage of 63.7%.

Dolphins all-time record at home in September is 53-30, for a winning percentage of 63.9%.

This can obviously be sliced further, but my guess is that the impact of where the opponents are located (cold vs. warm-weather teams) in the month of September is anecdotal rather than real.
Good stuff thanks for pulling. What about December and January?
 

SirPsychoSquints

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Some baselines for this - in 2023, home teams went 151-121, a 55.5% winning percentage.

Over 2021-2023, Miami went 19-7 at home and 10-15 on the road. 73.1% at home, 40% on the road. Obviously, they have shown a greater home field advantage than the league, at least recently.
 

Average Reds

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Good stuff thanks for pulling. What about December and January?
The claim was that “teams wilt in Miami in September.”

I didn’t check beyond this because, quite honestly, I don’t really have the time to pour through the data and carve it up. I mostly did the macro cut because the claim itself seems more urban legend than fact, and the aggregate data doesn’t seem to back it up.
 

SirPsychoSquints

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FWIW, some quick google work tells me that the Dolphins all-time record at home is 286-160-3, for a winning percentage of 63.7%.

Dolphins all-time record at home in September is 53-30, for a winning percentage of 63.9%.

This can obviously be sliced further, but my guess is that the impact of where the opponents are located (cold vs. warm-weather teams) in the month of September is anecdotal rather than real.
So their franchise home winning percentage is 64.1%, and franchise road winning percentage is 46.8%, showing a greater home field advantage than teams currently show. It's possible home field advantage has shrunk over the years, but this career math is consistent with their last three years.
 

tims4wins

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The claim was that “teams wilt in Miami in September.”

I didn’t check beyond this because, quite honestly, I don’t really have the time to pour through the data and carve it up. I mostly did the macro cut because the claim itself seems more urban legend than fact, and the aggregate data doesn’t seem to back it up.
Fair, didn’t realize you had to manually pull. I was asking because of my theory that they get more of a boost when it’s winter everywhere else but still hot in Miami.
 

SirPsychoSquints

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Fair, didn’t realize you had to manually pull. I was asking because of my theory that they get more of a boost when it’s winter everywhere else but still hot in Miami.
It's going to be hard to pinpoint anything, but I think the obvious high level conclusion is that they're probably getting an extra home field advantage over most teams AND have a worse road deficit than most teams. Any logic for one thing (visiting teams can't handle the heat in Miami) will hold true for the opposite (Miami teams aren't ready for the cold on the road). Plus, Miami's always in-division with NE/NJ/BUF. Sometimes BAL/IND, sometimes HOU, but ALWAYS the very stark weather contrast with three rivals, which goes both directions.
 

tims4wins

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It's going to be hard to pinpoint anything, but I think the obvious high level conclusion is that they're probably getting an extra home field advantage over most teams AND have a worse road deficit than most teams. Any logic for one thing (visiting teams can't handle the heat in Miami) will hold true for the opposite (Miami teams aren't ready for the cold on the road). Plus, Miami's always in-division with NE/NJ/BUF. Sometimes BAL/IND, sometimes HOU, but ALWAYS the very stark weather contrast with three rivals, which goes both directions.
Completely agree.
 

dynomite

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It's going to be hard to pinpoint anything, but I think the obvious high level conclusion is that they're probably getting an extra home field advantage over most teams AND have a worse road deficit than most teams. Any logic for one thing (visiting teams can't handle the heat in Miami) will hold true for the opposite (Miami teams aren't ready for the cold on the road). Plus, Miami's always in-division with NE/NJ/BUF. Sometimes BAL/IND, sometimes HOU, but ALWAYS the very stark weather contrast with three rivals, which goes both directions.
Right, I think this is hard to prove. Given that Lombardi was in the NFL for so long, I imagine he's not just making this up -- he probably heard it from players/coaches/execs, so whether it's true or not I think it's interesting he said it.

The game this made me think of was Pats @ Jaguars in September 2018 (Jags won 31-20, their revenge for the '17 AFCCG game), which had a heat index of 107 (apparently one of the hottest games this century, at least since '03: https://www.espn.com/nfl/recap/_/gameId/401030733). I think it's hard to conclusively say that the Patriots lost because of the heat (both teams had to play in it, obviously) I just remember watching and being truly grateful I was not playing in that game or sitting in that stadium. It looked miserable.
 

SirPsychoSquints

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Right, I think this is hard to prove. Given that Lombardi was in the NFL for so long, I imagine he's not just making this up -- he probably heard it from players/coaches/execs, so whether it's true or not I think it's interesting he said it.

The game this made me think of was Pats @ Jaguars in September 2018 (Jags won 31-20, their revenge for the '17 AFCCG game), which had a heat index of 107 (apparently one of the hottest games this century, at least since '03: https://www.espn.com/nfl/recap/_/gameId/401030733). I think it's hard to conclusively say that the Patriots lost because of the heat (both teams had to play in it, obviously) I just remember watching and being truly grateful I was not playing in that game or sitting in that stadium. It looked miserable.
Jacksonville will be lesser than Miami in all respects, as it has a somewhat less extreme climate (right?) and has been paired up with less extreme north opponents (Total of 27 seasons in TEN, 24 in HOU, 22 in IND, 7 in PIT, 7 in CIN, 6 in BAL, and 4 in CLE).
 

dynomite

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Jacksonville will be lesser than Miami in all respects, as it has a somewhat less extreme climate (right?) and has been paired up with less extreme north opponents (Total of 27 seasons in TEN, 24 in HOU, 22 in IND, 7 in PIT, 7 in CIN, 6 in BAL, and 4 in CLE).
Good points, and definitely beyond my level of meteorological knowledge (although a quick glance at weather averages indicates it's pretty similar in September). In addition, the Colts play in a dome (and while the Texans are a warm weather team, they apparently mostly close their roof as well).
 

Kliq

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Simmons random rant about the NHL was hilarious and a glimpse of the side of him that doesn't have to be worried about being aggregated for any comment he made.
 

JCizzle

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Simmons random rant about the NHL was hilarious and a glimpse of the side of him that doesn't have to be worried about being aggregated for any comment he made.
I kinda enjoyed it. It reminded me in a much lesser light of the Ringer dude that went off on Embiid a couple weeks ago. Just compelling hate that I totally bought into.
 

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Simmons on Ant: “I can’t think of a 22 year old that led his team to a title.”

I immediately thought of a 21 year old who did, because he scored 42 points,15 rebounds, 7 assists and 3 steals against my team when he did it in 1980.
He wasn't even 21. At least not for another two months after the finals ended.
 

8slim

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At least he said "Maybe Bill Russell" since, indeed, Russell won a title at 22.

Bill and Russillo entertain me, but needless to say some of their takes are outlandish.
 

snowmanny

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I guess Tim Duncan was 23 and two months when the 1999 playoffs ended.

Also: the Knicks averaging 79.8 ppg in a Finals series sucks.
 

jose melendez

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The extent to which they're treating Denver-Minnesota as the Championship series is making me nuts. It's conceivable MN would be favored over the Cs, but only slightly.
 

m0ckduck

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The extent to which they're treating Denver-Minnesota as the Championship series is making me nuts. It's conceivable MN would be favored over the Cs, but only slightly.
Well, Simmons keeps caveating it with "as long as we have no idea what Boston will be getting out of Porzingis," which is a sneaky/lazy way of having it both ways.

I'm generally enjoying Simmons a lot less this year than in previous NBA postseasons, when I found his podcasts a reliable forum for digesting what had just happened on the court. This year, it feels like a lot more warmed-over conventional wisdom, a lot more predictable. I don't know if he's worse, if the games have been worse in terms of yielding good insights, or if its that I'm paying a bit more attention personally than in some previous years and so am unconsciously holding him to a higher standard.
 

Kliq

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I think I just need a break from the Simmons/Russilo dynamic--it's the same talking points every week.
 

jezza1918

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I think I just need a break from the Simmons/Russilo dynamic--it's the same talking points every week.
Im here too. And Im generally pro both of these guys (for entertainment value, at the very least). But halfway through part 1 yesterday I realized I knew like 90% of what they were going to say.
 

luckiestman

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Im here too. And Im generally pro both of these guys (for entertainment value, at the very least). But halfway through part 1 yesterday I realized I knew like 90% of what they were going to say.
There is nothing to talk about. I haven’t been enjoying it that much, or any NBA pod. I normally also listen to Zach’s show but I’ve been skipping that too