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More Conflicting Reports: Barrie and Tampa Bay's Ownership Situation

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Next, on As the Lightning Circus Turns....

Contrary to earlier reports stating that Len Barrie was misappropriating funds from his massive Vancouver Island development - which also reported that Barrie was done with trying to buy out Koules - Barrie is again stating that he's still in the hunt to buyout Koules, and therefore have the majority stake in the team.

A report originally published Monday in the Globe and Mail stated:

...Mr. Barrie has told NHL commissioner Gary Bettman he was unable to put together a deal to buy out fellow Tampa Bay Lightning owner Oren Koules, according to an NHL source.

However, a statement made by Barrie to the Tampa Tribune flatly contradicts that:

In a message on Tuesday, Barrie denied the report, saying he is "still working on it."

Yet again, two different sources are stating two entirely opposite things.

So, what can we make of this? This is the second time this offseason that this has happened. I don't want to point fingers at the Canadian hockey press simply because both sides of these conflicting reports are originating in Canada as well. At this point, it's just really hard to say where and how these contrary reports are coming from.

However, this is a good reminder to take anything you read about this ownership situation with a grain of salt. It's not going to be over until a judge and/or the NHL says that it's over in an official statement. Until that time comes, read - and believe - with caution.