The goal of this column is to try and explain why you, the sports consumer, are often more in touch with reality than your local media guy.
Here's two examples.
News from the Blues hockey training camp this year has been minimal.
As in no Brett Hull stories.
Just the way that coach Joel Quenneville and GM Larry Pleau like it, no doubt.
With what has seemed like a Blues news blackout, you would think that nothing was going on at the Blues training camp site.
That is, until earlier this week, when Hull returned to the Kiel Center as a member of the Dallas Stars.
Let's go back in time a few months.
One afternoon last spring, Brett Hull told Blackhawks radio play-by-play announcer Pat Foley that he looked forward to playing in Chicago in the 1998-99 season.
Hull's remarks (which were broadcast on AM-1120, the Blues' flagship station) were day-of-game stuff; the Blues and Hawks tangled at Kiel later that night.
I heard Hull's comments while driving to Kiel...and found them, at their most benign, simply another example of Brett Hull the Quote Machine.
And at their worst, the ill-timed nature of the comments seemed to signal, to me, that Hull was through as a Blue.
You just don't talk that way...day-of-game...to the opposition's broadcaster.
That night, at Kiel, I asked one of the most prominent hockey media types in all of St. Louis--a good guy--about Hull's comments.
"That's no big deal. He's been saying those kinds of things for awhile now," said the master of all Tips.
I was surprised...because to my ears, Hull's comments were incendiary.
And sources have told yours truly that Hull's day-of-game comments were, in fact, an important component in Blues management's decision to cut Hull loose.
So the perspective of an interloper was more in line with reality (at least from the point of view of Blues management) than that of an informed media member.
Two Sundays ago, the Rams lost to Minnesota in perhaps the most exciting football game ever played at the TWA Dome.
Sure, Tony Banks threw some ill-advised passes.
And sure, Tony Banks was stopped a half-yard shy of the goal line on the game's last play.
And sure, the game ended with the Rams still in possession of one time out.
But the game was exciting, and Banks' play, while erratic (or perhaps, because it was erratic), was also exciting...almost in a Jim Hart kind of style.
Fans in the TWA Dome, at least the handful that I spoke with, were actually quite pleased with the Rams comeback, felt that Banks' play was indicative of better things to come, and looked forward to the next home game (Sunday vs. the Cardinals).
Contrast the views of those fans with the written and spoken word provided to us by the St. Louis area print and electronic media.
Listening and reading to those guys (and yes, they're mostly guys), you would have thought that Banks threw nothing but INTs vs. Minnesota.
To repeat, the fans that I spoke with were not all that displeased with Banks' performance vs. the Vikings...and felt sure that better things were to come.
Did y'all see the end of the Buffalo game?