Contradictory reports on Len Barrie's ownership stake surface

It's late Friday night and two reports have surfaced in the last few minutes that paint starkly different pictures of the future of OK Hockey partner Len Barrie and his future with the Tampa Bay Lightning.

The first report that came to our attention was via the Globe and Mail, reporting that Len Barrie was walking away from the Lightning:

Those close to Len Barrie say he is likely to throw in the towel on his one-year run as co-owner of the NHL's Tampa Bay Lightning next Saturday, clearing the way for (sparring) partner Oren Koules to take over.


It looks as if Barrie has to drop out before his September deadline because he is fighting to save that gamble – a massive development near Victoria called Bear Mountain.

Yet at the same time, Tampa Bay's own St. Petersburg Times has published a story about new developments with Barrie and a St. Louis based real estate mogul's potential partnership.  The union would result in a new Lightning ownership group (if the two could come to terms and buy out Koules stake):

Anthony Sansone Jr. would not say when he will decide whether to try to join Len Barrie as an owner of the Lightning.

He also declined to identify the "very substantial" financial investment entity he would bring with him.

But the St. Louis real estate mogul offered this Friday:

"We're certainly in the advance stages of due diligence. There's a lot that has to be done and a lot that has to be handicapped."

What this leaves you to wonder is which source to believe?  Is Barrie finished?  Has the Sansone deal fallen through and the white flag come out?  Or perhaps the Globe and Mail has jumped the gun with their report?  We'll find out more in the near future.  How near remains to be seen.