The peanut butter and chocolate of sports analysis
Dec 19, 2009
This wide ranging conversation (written) between Malcolm Gladwell and Bill Simmons is a must read for a sports analysis junkie. You can find it here: http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=simmons/two/091218 They cover Kobe Bryant, Tiger Woods, the increased career span of modern athletes, Tim Donaghy, how David Stern sabotaged the NHL, capitalization rates and sports potential, how and whether football can be fixed, and how we judge celebrity scandals (especially in regard to sports).
I generally find Bill Simmons interesting, but the combination of him and Malcolm Gladwell is just brilliant. Malcolm Gladwell (author of Tipping Point and Blink) has an extremely wide ranging knowledge of a lot of different, very serious topics, but is still also a sports junkie. I actually don't like his books all that much, but this conversation was fantastic. Without being boring, they pull in economic theory, cultural analysis, and sports history during their discussion.
This particular conversation ends extremely well, but starts fairly weak. They do the usual shameless cross promotion of each other's books, and just generally aren't that interesting for the first 20% of the conversation. But it definitely picks up pace, and gets increasingly fascinating over time. I highly recommend reading through it.
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About the reviewer
Ari Miller (ari1974)
I mostly write about my main obsession, tennis. When I'm not experimenting with new tennis racquets, I love to watch a good movie or read a great book. I'm a fan of both non-fiction (especially books … more