The ARod trade is dead. Long live the ARod trade. Larry Lucchino issued a statement last night saying the trade is dead. Peter Gammons reported last night that members of the Red Sox organization were puzzled by that statement from Lucchino, and that talks were in fact, ongoing. In any event, things sure seem to have gone too far to go back now. This is the downfall of being as open as this ownership and management group is. At this point, even though I wasn’t originally in favor of this trade, there has been so much talk and hype and things put out there that I’m almost going to feel betrayed if ARod is not playing in Boston next year. This has been built up, and dragged on, publicly now for an extended period of time. Obviously it’s not just the Red Sox who have put this story out there, but for all the criticism the Patriots get for not giving out information, I prefer their under-the-radar approach to doing business. I was shocked and pleasantly surprised when the Rosevelt Colvin and Rodney Harrison signings were announced last offseason. No one really knew the the Patriots were talking to those players until they were here and signed. It was like getting a surprise a gift. This Red Sox situation is more like someone teasing you with the promise of a reward or gift, and each day you’re expecting to get it, but they don’t have it with them, or they need to finish working on it first, or put you off in some other way. It would’ve been better had they said nothing at all, and just surprised you with it when they had it all ready for you. Of course, I realize something of this magnitude cannot be kept under wraps, totally. But I’m feeling really strung along at this point. Yes, I think the deal will still happen, but its all almost anticlimactic at this point. Mostly I’m just sick of the whole process.

This whole process has had Red Sox nation in a tizzy. The popular Sons of Sam Horn board, frequented by Red Sox personnel such as John W Henry and Curt Schilling has had to close its doors to visitors, because of incredible traffic demands, allowing only registered members to even view the board. Schilling called into WEEI yesterday to lay a smackdown on Tony Massarotti and Sean McAdam, neither of whom covered themselves in glory when talking about the Internet. Massarotti at one point said stuffily that if players want to talk to the fans via the Internet, then they can also promote their charities on web sites, hinting that this was something a power that the press has over the players. McAdam mocked fans who he says have a “slavish devotion to the team”.

Michael Silverman says that the ARod trade is not dead. Sean McAdam says that the Rangers have made some concessions that could make the deal still possible. Gordon Edes says ARod is still hopeful that a trade can be worked out to the Red Sox. Bob Ryan attempts to assess who is really at blame for the snags in this deal, he says it’s not Gene Orza. Jim Donaldson in fact, says Orza was right in how he handled the deal. Bob Hohler says the parties involved will not challenge the Union. Jeff Jacobs says the Union is tougher to beat than the Yankees. Tim Cowlishaw of the Dallas Morning News has a piece for the Globe saying that the union gap is too wide to be bridged. Steve Buckley looks at what would happen if Nomar and Manny are still with the Sox next year. Tony Massarotti says the Red Sox roster is a mess. Jeff Horrigan says ARod could make up for the loss of Babe Ruth. David Heuschkel looks at the possibility that the ARod trade is dead. Mike Shalin looks at fans expressing their displeasure with the Union’s actions outside the New York office. The Herald notebook looks at the Red Sox interest in Pokey Reese. Jim Donaldson looks at decisions the Sox have to make on eight arbitration-eligible players. Ken Fratus also looks at the Sox interest in Reese.

Nick Cafardo looks at the matchup and rivalry of Chad Pennington and Tom Brady. Paul Kenyon says the Patriots/Jets rivalry has gone from nasty to one of mutual respect. Alan Greenberg looks at the important of having Troy Brown back for Tom Brady. Christopher Price looks at the job done by the offensive line this season. Rich Thompson looks at the two Patriots named to the Pro Bowl, Ty Law and Richard Seymour. Michael Smith also has a look at the two veterans. Michael Parente looks at the Patriots new long snapper, Brian Kinchen. Ian M. Clark has a piece on Rodney Harrison, who wasn’t named to the Pro Bowl, but is only concerned about winning at this point. Thompson also has an article on Tom Ashworth, who has been learning on the job this season. Parente has another piece on the Pro Bowl selections. Curran’s notebook has more on the Pro Bowl. Thompson’s notebook has more on Kinchen. Parente’s notebook leads with more on Ashworth.

The Bruins are probably grateful that the all this other coverage is overshadowing their dreadful 5-0 loss to the Flames last night. Stephen Harris and Nancy Marrapese-Burrell have the gruesome details. Joe McDonald says it was just brutal. Kevin Paul Dupont says the Bruins need help. Joe Gordon looks at Andrew Raycroft getting pulled last night. Dupont also says the NHL is optimistic about getting a new CBA done. He’s also wondering if Mike Sullivan has lost his team. Gordon also looks at Flames goalie Jamie McLennan, who registered the shutout last night. Marrapese-Burrell’s notebook says the 5-0 loss was not the fault of Raycroft. Harris’ notebook doesn’t have quite as much good news regarding the CBA. McDonald’s notebook looks at Raycroft, being unofficially named the number one goalie.

Celtics links are at Fox Sports Net New England.

Bill Griffith looks at a few broadcasting milestones coming up, and has Jim Baker promising parting shots in his final column this Sunday.

FSNNE has Celtics/Jazz at 7:30. ESPN has Pistons/Pacers at 8:00 and Sonics/Spurs at 10:30.