ESPN Abruptly Shutters Grantland

All writers' contracts will still be honored.


ESPN has pulled the plug on Grantland, brainchild of once and future Boston Sports Guy Bill Simmons, who left the network in May.

The Worldwide Leader in Sports announced the decision in a statement issued Friday afternoon:

Effective immediately we are suspending the publication of Grantland.  After careful consideration, we have decided to direct our time and energy going forward to projects that we believe will have a broader and more significant impact across our enterprise.

Grantland distinguished itself with quality writing, smart ideas, original thinking and fun.  We are grateful to those who made it so.  Bill Simmons was passionately committed to the site and proved to be an outstanding editor with a real eye for talent.  Thanks to all the other writers, editors and staff who worked very hard to create content with an identifiable sensibility and consistent intelligence and quality. We also extend our thanks to Chris Connelly who stepped in to help us maintain the site these past five months as he returns to his prior role.

Despite this change, the legacy of smart long-form sports story-telling and innovative short form video content will continue, finding a home on many of our other ESPN platforms.

Simmons, who is expected to unveil his new project for HBO in the near future, weighed in on Twitter.

Grantland writers, whom ESPN says will be used across other platforms, reacted with equal parts shock, wit, and gratitude that a place like Grantland could exist in the first place, if only for four years.

Unsurprisingly, the untimely death of a site that truly valued quality content had more than few writers deeply upset and disenchanted.

Goodnight, sweet prince.