ESPN is cutting ties will Bill Simmons, electing not to renew his contract on Friday.
Here is Worldwide Leader in Sports President John Skipper's statement:
"I decided today that we are not going to renew Bill Simmons' contract. We have been in negotiations and it was clear it was time to move on. ESPN's relationship with Bill has been mutually beneficial – he has produced great content for us for many years and ESPN has provided him many new opportunities to spread his wings. We wish Bill continued success as he plans his next chapter. ESPN remains committed to Grantland and we have a strong team in place."
Simmons, while a huge draw over the years for ESPN, had become somewhat of a thorn in the Disney company's side. He somewhat often criticized members of his company and at times dared his bosses to retaliate.
Bill Simmons, ESPN sever ties: 'Time to move on,' President John Skipper says
William 'Bill' Simmons, editor-in-chief of Grantland.com, speaks during a panel discussion at the South By Southwest (SXSW) Interactive Festival in Austin, Texas, U.S., on Saturday, March 8, 2014. The SXSW conferences and festivals converge original music, independent films, and emerging technologies while fostering creative and professional growth. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images
NEW ORLEANS, LA - FEBRUARY 14: Jalen Rose and Bill Simmons of ESPN pose for a photo during the Sprint NBA All-Star Celebrity Game at Sprint Arena as part of 2014 NBA All-Star Jam Session at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center on February 14, 2014 in New Orleans, Louisiana. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2014 NBAE (Photo by Juan O'Campo/NBAE via Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS, LA - FEBRUARY 14: LeBron James #6 of the Miami Heat speaks with sports analyst Bill Simmons during the NBAE Circuit as part of 2014 All-Star Weekend at the Hyatt Regency Hotel on February 14, 2014 in New Orleans, Louisiana. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2014 NBAE (Photo by Bruce Yeung/NBAE via Getty Images)
NEW YORK - OCTOBER 02: Sports writer Bill Simmons speaks at the 2010 New Yorker Festival at DGA Theater on October 2, 2010 in New York City. (Photo by Amy Sussman/Getty Images the New Yorker)
NEW YORK - APRIL 24: Writer Bill Simmons speaks at the panel and screening of 'Beyond Playing The Field' during the 2010 Tribeca Film Festival at the School of Visual Arts Theater on April 24, 2010 in New York City. (Photo by Rob Loud/Getty Images for Tribeca Film Festival)
HOLLYWOOD - FEBRUARY 18: *** EXCLUSIVE *** Bill Simmons and Jimmy Kimmel attend the ESPN Magazine's After Dark NBA All-Star Party at My House on February 18, 2011 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Tiffany Rose/WireImage)
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - OCTOBER 07: HBO's Bill Simmons speaks onstage during 'Ahead of the Curve - The Future of Sports Journalism' at the Vanity Fair New Establishment Summit at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts on October 7, 2015 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Mike Windle/Getty Images for Vanity Fair)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - MAY 06: Producer Bill Simmons (R) attends the premiere of Disney's 'Million Dollar Arm' at the El Capitan Theatre on May 6, 2014 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)