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Four Grantland editors have resigned from ESPN to work for HBO’s Bill Simmons.
In a tweet posted Friday, writer James Andrew Miller first broke the news that four “highly regarded staffers” of the site had turned in their resignation letters and would be reuniting with their former editor-in-chief and Grantland founder, Simmons.
— James Andrew Miller (@JimMiller) October 9, 2015
Sports Illustrated reports that the staff members who have left Grantland are Sean Fennessey, Juliet Litman, Mallory Rubin and Chris Ryan. Dan Fierman, Grantland’s editorial director who co-founded the site with Simmons, has also left the site to oversee MTV News, where he will serve as vice president and editorial director.
“We’re grateful for Dan’s many contributions to Grantland and we wish him the best,” ESPN said in a statement.
Simmons, formerly one of ESPN’s biggest media personalities, parted ways with the network in May after ESPN decided against renewing his contract. He was subsequently forced to leave Grantland, the sports and pop-culture site he oversaw and launched in 2011.
In a recent episode of his podcast series, Simmons criticized the sports network for failing to give Grantland the support it needed to succeed during his time there. “I think all of us felt like these guys weren’t trying to make us [at Grantland] succeed, which is a weird feeling when everyone is busting their ass,” he said.
Simmons, who signed a megadeal with HBO in July, will launch his own weekly talk show in 2016 and produce content for the network and its digital platforms. It is unknown which upcoming projects Fennessey, Litman, Rubin and Ryan will joining as staff.
Oct. 12, 10:54 a.m. — Updated with ESPN’s statement regarding Dan Fierman’s leave.
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