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  • Hadley

    Tuesday, March 2
    16:06:46 CST


    THE SPORTING NEWS: My boys at TSN have an awesome selection of preseason material available for the baseball fan.

    How good? My collection of TSN baseball material was ripped-off (another story for another day).

    Anyhow, TSN and Stats, Inc., have published the best reference sources from the Baseball Register to The Baseball Guide, to the MLB Scouting Book, to a handful of sweet annuals.

    With the season around the corner and fantasy drafts looming... do yourself a favor and stop by a newsstand (World News at Westport or Clayton are my suggestions) and choose from an awesome selection of TSN material.

    Don't forget the weekly, The Sporting News, it is the best weekly source for all-sports in all the land, I even read the auto racing stuff.

    Seriously, The Sporting News, a St. Louis-based company, is a weekly must-read with an array of must-have reference material... do yourself a favor and check it out.

    FANTASY BASEBALL: As mentioned in the past, the best fantasy games in the universe are produced by CDM Sports. Check out the site (

    CDM Sports offer a variety of sports fantasy games that covers the spectrum between their own games, USA Today, The Hockey News and so on.

    As mentioned previously, The Roto Times has published a superb preseason Fantasy Baseball magazine and is a legit source for sports (

    MIKE KITCHEN: I have no desire to continue answering questions about his contract or background.

    Simply stated, he is revered by his peers, and is more than worthy of strolling behind the bench as a head coach.

    As I've stated before, based on the "what has he proved" queries... what has Lovie Smith proved? Smith didn't win the Super Bowl, in fact, he was the coordinator for a defense that was shredded in the media much of the second half of last season... but he received a long-term deal to be the head coach for the Chicago Bears.

    Detroit Red Wings head coach Dave Lewis received his break after 14 years as an assistant. Bill Callahan led the Oakland Raiders to the Super Bowl in his first season as a head coach after waiting nearly 20 years for his first head-coaching position.

    I can list a lineage of coaches that succeeded after lengthy waits to reach the top of the mountain.

    The topic of Kitchen's contract is also overblown.

    Kitchen has a one-year deal. That being for next season.

    Why judge Kitchen this season considering the injuries and burden already present. He deserves a chance to prove himself. The 2005-2006 portion of his contract is a club option. Hence, I have no issues with the contract. The Blues are obligated to a full year under the terms... what is the big deal?

    LARRY PLEAU: While I admit not being completely sure that I've read all of stories printed in the P-D or written by The Bernie because of my travels... to have to disagree with the Blues haven't done anything again claims.

    The Blues have been very active for four seasons... and most importantly, the trading deadline is a week away, hence until they turn-up the lights, the party is still going. Check back with me in a week to determine if the Blues "didn't do anything."

    If winning Stanley Cups is the only barometer for success between the pipes, the Blues are part of a large NHL gathering.

    One simple fact that continually goes overlooked is the fact that the Blues had worked a deal for Dom Hasek only to have him nix the deal. The Blues had offered Hasek a better financial package; they had offered a better deal with Buffalo, all of this admitted by Hasek in print.

    When an athlete stays in St. Louis we slap each other on the back, however can never come to grips with an athlete spurning the STL... it must be the fault of somebody.

    Nope, Larry Pleau had won, he had a financial package on the table superior to competitors, he had personnel compensation package that Buffalo desired, and however it was Hasek that said, "Nope I want to play in Hockeytown."

    Welcome to the real world folks, we brag about being a great sports city, however when lady luck and loyalty prevail for the opposition, failure must be placed to smooth over the damage to our collective sports ego.

    Save Hasek, Patrick Roy and Martin Brodeur, there hasn't been a consistent answer. Hasek was the only member of the elite trio on the market since Pleau took over and despite winning the battles, circumstance cost him the war.

    The rest of the goalies desired by militant hockey fans, media members, etc., have proven to be failures elsewhere. This season, we'll learn whether Sean Burke is the missing piece to the puzzle. We'll find out if Ed Belfour is the real deal.

    Frankly, I've all but given up on judging and forecasting goalies.

    For the layman, like moi, judging NHL goalies is akin to going to the restroom servicing yourself in order to decide how good of lover you'll be.

    I think some must be overreacting to what has been written because I know that The Bernie praised Pleau big-time and praised Blues management for inking Pleau to a new deal back in November.

    JIM HENZLER: Many have written to ask who is Jim Henzler.

    I don't know Henzler, but I know of him, and he is considered a superb researcher and statistician.

    He works for Stats, Inc., a superb company that offers the best statistical breakdowns known to mankind.

    I'm a huge fan of Stats, Inc., and can inform that Henzler is highly regarded by peers within the industry.

    ADAM TIMMERMAN UPDATE: For the sake of accounting... the terms of his new deal is roughly two million a year, however in the big picture he won't likely see more than two years of contract and will simply draw on the signing bonus slightly north of $5 million.

    He will count roughly $1.7 for this season.

    GRANT WISTROM: For those filling my e-mail, if Wistrom doesn't return to St. Louis, my guess his top five possible destinations would rank as follows: 1. Seattle; 2. Dallas; 3. Denver; 4. Arizona; 5. Oakland.

    As mentioned previously, K.C. currently has no intention to pursue Wistrom and a source with the Chicago Bears said no visit was scheduled and no interest has been bandied about at point this point.

    KURT WARNER PART II: It was interesting to hear a source with the Cleveland Browns mention his name.

    I made the call in regards to the Orlando Pace rumors. The response was mixed. My source indicated that the Browns bigwigs had discussed Pace in meetings however to the best of his knowledge has never formulated a game plan to execute an offer for Pace.

    The conversation quickly switched to Warner, after the usual suspects were discussed (save the first mention to moi of the San Francisco 49ers), I was told that Warner was also a topic of discussion behind closed doors.

    My source indicated that those discussions were a month old, however he was adamant they had at least discussed Warner as a possible target.

    Based on my source, he believes the Browns will only explore the possibility of Warner is he is cut however remains of the belief that a move on Pace could be in the offing.

    "Can't buy what I want because it's free...
    Can't buy what I want because it's free..."
    -- Pearl Jam, from the single Corduroy