Before you read this, I have to add. These people need to get a grip, they are reporters. There job is to report, not be the news.

Slaten finds controversy again
By Dan Caesar

Kevin Slaten, the king of controversy on local sports-talk radio, finds himself embroiled in two this week - one internally and one outside the station.

Slaten will have a new partner and a slightly altered time slot at KFNS (590 AM, 100.7 FM) beginning Monday. That's the day he plans to go to a news conference and ask tough questions to Rams coach Mike Martz, whom Slaten said is being "poisoned" in his opinion of him by Martz' new advisor and competing radio talk-show host John Hadley.

The Hadley factor

Slaten has been blasting the Rams all week because they prohibited KFNS from airing Martz's news conference live Monday. The station has carried the event weekly in recent seasons. He has been referring to Rams Park as "the Kremlin" and to Hadley, who oversees some of Martz's dealings with members of the media, as "Heinrich Hadley," derogatory terms referring to oppressive governments.

Slaten said the station was not informed until shortly before air time that the news conference would be blacked out because the team wanted instead to carry it on its Web site. But he said he is convinced there is a different reason: that Hadley has a grudge against him and does not want Martz appearing Slaten's show.

"It was clear to me it was Hadley, with a personal agenda with me, which he's always had for whatever reason," Slaten said.

Weingarten added, "If we take it personally, well, it sure seems like it was aimed at us because we're the only ones who have been carrying it live."

Slaten added, "I thought I had a decent relationship with Mike Martz until recently. I think that's all been poisoned by Hadley, once he got in there, he's determining who's going to talk to Martz and who's not, and obviously, I've always been the odd man out (with Hadley) - which I don't care about, but for him to poison Martz in regards to me is amazing."

Sources at Rams Park said the request to black out the live feed also was made by some members of the media who cover the team on a daily basis and ask the majority of the questions in the session. They were unhappy that KFNS basically was airing their interview with "about 1 percent" of the questions being posed by KFNS reporters.

"If that's the case, that's the biggest crock I've ever heard," Slaten said, citing the fact that Bryan Burwell and Martin Kilcoyne, who have primary jobs elsewhere but moonlight at KFNS, often attend. "But why would that matter anyway?" because it's a public setting.

Hadley, who doubles as a sports-talk show host on KTRS (550 AM), declined to comment. But he said on his Web site that Slaten will "twist and turn every word in an attempt to avoid talking sports and kill time. ... Simply stated, same old Slaten, with the same old act."

Hadley also wrote, "His act always flames out and will again."

Slaten has vowed to attend the session this Monday and ask his own questions to Martz.

"I'll be ready to go," he said. "I'm assuming he'll hear my questions. Whether he'll answer them or not, that's up to him."

A new Twist

Former Blues defenseman Tony Twist is expected to return soon to KSLG (1380 AM) on the afternoon show. It remains to be seen what roles Malcolm Briggs and Howard Balzer, who now anchor the show, will have. But it sure wouldn't make sense to reduce Balzer's role at this time of year. He's the best local NFL broadcast reporter in town.