Reports: Absent LA Times columnist TJ Simers is Register bound

Thumbnail image for simers-howard-grab.jpgThe LA Times doesn't describe its longtime sports columnist TJ Simers as on vacation, suspended or even the all-purpose "has the day off." He hasn't written since June, though, amid some controversy with his bosses over a stunt with Dwight Howard. But on Friday, my sources and a lot of other media types' sources erupted with gossip that Simers has been seen at the Orange County Register and will become a columnist there. The reports are that some details have yet to be finalized, but that Simers will take his combination of observation, humor, athlete harassment, fandom and good sources to the Register. The move is being talked about on, and has been reported online by the likes of NBC 4's Fred Roggin, blogger Larry Brown and, oddly, the Times' own deputy arts and culture editor, Sherry Stern. Roggin says it's devastating news for the Times. I disagree. Simers has fans to be sure, and I'm sure the paper has heard from some of them during the three months he has been missing, but he's also often an embarrassment. There are a lot of readers, and I tend to be one, who don't enjoy or respect Simers' style of faking controversies to create a column. He also doesn't get hockey — and that's a deal breaker!

Also: The Register's Lakers columnist, Kevin Ding, is leaving for the website Bleacher Report.

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