Tired of Jorge Soler rumors? Burnt out on Matt Garza trade speculation?

Well, get ready, because now you get to hear about the other endless offseason storyline you’re sick of hearing about.

The Theo Epstein compensation drama is probably coming to an end soon.

According to reports out of both Chicago (Carrie Muskat and Phil Rogers) and Boston (Nick Cafardo and Gordon Edes), Commissioner Bud Selig, who has apparently been devoting an inordinately large amount of time to the decision, will soon render judgment with respect to the compensation fight. The Boston sources say the decision will come “very soon” and/or by the start of Spring Training. The Chicago sources say the decision will come by the end of the week, so I suppose that means tonight, tomorrow, or over the weekend.

We’ll probably never know the finer details of just what happened to turn this into such a mess. We know the two sides were sloppy in how they handled the permission to interview and hire Epstein. We know that the Commissioner’s Office was sloppy in order Epstein to officially join the Cubs, and then telling the sides to “keep working on it.” Everyone probably shares some blame.

Although we’re not going to know just what was said between the sides, we might be able to glean a bit based on the size of the compensation. Considering precedent, fair compensation would be a good (top 15/20) prospect and cash. If that’s the compensation Selig chooses, there’s probably little more to know. If the compensation is more than that (the “significant player” Boston keeps clamoring about, perhaps), then I’m going to suspect there’s a lot more to the story than we know. And we might never know.

But at least we’ll get that compensation piece “soon.”

  • Mike Foster

    Brett is it expected for Selig to name the player, or do the Cubs submit a list that he approves and then Boston picks one? (Blake Dewitt, Blake Dewitt & Blake Dewitt…)

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      No one knows for certain at this point.

    • Brady

      I think Blake Dewitt would be perfect because we would lose nothing at this point with him and the Red Sox would gain someone on the ML level than a 15-20 prospect. On the otherhand if they give cash I would like to see Theo deliver the money to Boston himself, go into Larry Lucchino’s office, make it rain and then return to Chicago. It would be both hilarious to see them scrambling to pick up the cash and it would also make Theo more bad ass than he already is.

      • http://campvegetable.com Soyboy

        It has been difficult to decipher a projection as to what Red Sox Nation’s compensation will be. I’ve read here (two weeks ago) that Garza and a top ten prospect should be packing their bags for Fenway South and not to Arizona this spring. Wow, what a steal! For the one GM in the nation who could possibly fail to develop a single Dominican superstar for Fenway on the coattails of Pedro Martinez. Can we sweeten the pot?
        It was also rumored that two top ten prospects may be coming our way (quasi Ozzie). Dillon Maples and Jeimer Candelario would be sweet.
        Maybe we will all be surprised and Soriano will stand in in left to spell Crawford in April. Then he could provide the much needed right-handed power we need coming off the bench? He always did seem to hit well in Fenway as a Yankee. May Justice prevail and we will all get to see a Cubs vs. Red Sox World Series. God willing and soon!

        • Luis Salazar

          I think you been drinking too much Soy Milk, Soyboy. Theo was in the last year of his contract, and by all accounts dbag Larry Luccino wanted him out. The Sox should be lucky to get anything, Garza and a top 10 prospect, yeah right.

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

          You read here that Garza and a top ten prospect would be going to Boston? Not so sure about that.

          • TWC

            I expect he’s referring to something he read in the comments.

  • Spencer

    Considering precedent, fair compensation would be zero, based on the fact that Theo left for a considerable promotion. The only reason this is still an issue (unless I am not clear on the facts, which is possible) is because the Cubs agreed to compensate Boston as part of allowing Theo to leave. I’m thinking of the article you wrote about how Theo went on a radio show and lawyered them up.

  • Luis Salazar

    Thank god this is close to being done. I still don’t get why Selig let Theo go to the Cubs without Compensation settled first… Once he became a Cub clearly they weren’t going to be nearly as motivated to give up a good player. It just doesn’t make sense how a big time business, like major league baseball can be so messy. I hope Bud is smart enought to consider precedents set in the past. But I have my doubts.

    • Scotti

      Without knowing the outcome I don’t really see this as “messy” on MLB’s side. Given the meltdown that the Sox had just been through (actually they were STILL going through it) MLB did the best thing possible from a management standpoint–put as much time as possible between the ick of Boston’s fanbase wanting blood for their team’s piss poor September and the actual compensation.

      This is what was going down at the time: Boston went from a team with a great record to a team that lost in historical fashion, threw their two-time World Series winning manager under the bus (exposing medical/pharmacological/psychological/marital issues), they had chicken and beer, conditioning issues, they had leaks galore and their FO was being petulant when it came to letting Theo interview for a promotion (they wanted compensation just for the right to TALK to him). To top it all off the talk in Boston (media/fans) was Garza, Castro but not both(!!!!)–see, they were being reasonable.

      From a leadership standpoint what do you do in that situation? You allow time to heal. And you finalize it during a time when people are least likely to care–day before/after spring when many other stories will crowd it out as much as possible seems pretty smart. Boston IS going to get on with their new season. Had this come down several months ago they (fans/media/FO) would have kvetched ALL off-season about not getting Garza, Castro (but not both), far worse than they have. Instead of fixing what THEY need to fix they would have found a whipping boy in the new prospect (ala Bartman).

      My concern is for any non-top prospect that might be moved. “My GM went to Chicago and all I got was this T-shirt/prospect” type of thing. Anyone who isn’t a top prospect will “suck” and have that hang over his head. From that standpoint, were I heading this up, I would make it strictly cash.

  • hardtop

    “i said, you’re an asshole, mr. selig…can you hear me now?”

    • Richard Nose

      Look at those satellite ears!!!

  • BD

    Another way we will find out more info is this: if Bud orders minimal comp., or less than expected, I’m sure Dirty Larry will let everyone know about it through the media.

  • Eric S

    Wow! With all this talk about the Theo compensation and no reference to the never ending story? I figured at least a picture of Atreyu or Falcor might find it’s way onto the site. No such luck I guess.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Well, I mean, the headline *is* the reference.

  • When the Music’s Over

    Just be glad the Cubs aren’t dealing with the White Sox here. Selig would give Reinsdorf whatever he wants.

  • SirCub

    This is the compensation issue that never ends, yes it goes on and on my friend. Brett just started reporting it, not knowing what it was, and he’ll continue writing about it forever just because… this the compensation issue that never ends, yes it goes on and on my friend. Brett just started reporting it, not knowing what it was….

    • JulioZuleta

      Wow, Lamb Chop. There’s a blast from the past.

  • Matt

    If Selig awards anything more than a mid-level prospect, there will be hell to pay!

    • ogyu

      Hell to pay. Right. What are you gonna do? Reach through your monitor screen and give Bud a wedgie?

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

        If Selig awards a significant prospect, other teams are likely to see team executive movement as a way to improve their talent pool in an area that is unregulated by the CBA.  Smart teams will look to sign top, young, future-GM style baseball executives to long term contracts.  Those team’s can then demand the moon and seven stars as compensation when other (particularly smaller market) teams want to higher those execs away from the smart team.  That would be extremely disruptive, especially for lower-budget teams, and those teams would likely make their frustrations known to Bud Selig in no uncertain terms.

        Considering the low-budget teams apparently dictated the draft and  IFA rules in the new CBA, I think is safe to say those teams have an enormous amount of influence on Selig.  That may not exactly be “hell to pay,” but it is far from a pleasant consequence for Selig, or for baseball as a whole.

        • Pat

          But front offices only have so many positions to fill that would have job duties sufficient to be considered for a promotion to a GM or asst GM position. I fail to see reason for significant concern on that level.

        • WGNstatic

          I am not so sure that “small market” teams were the ones dictating the new CBA. Many of the small market teams (Pittsburgh, KC, San Diego, Tampa) have actually been some of the most aggressive teams at the amateur level.

          The White Sox are certainly a team that will benefit from the new CBA, but they aren’t exactly small market. It has been argued, I think persuasively, that the new CBA is actually going to benefit the large market teams. If spending at the amateur level is leveled off, that puts more emphasis on outspending opponents at the MLB level.

          • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

            That’s why I said low-budget, not small market.  The two aren’t always the same.

  • Dante Hicks

    If only this was a business like TV, where non-compete clauses ruled the roost. You can have Theo in a new market, but first he must leave the airwaves…like Conan…wait, that was a lousy deal for Conan….

    I see three possible places where this went wrong…it could be one of the below variables or two or all three.

    1) As said, Bud Selig’s office messed up somehow. If so, good for the Cubs likely. Selig really needs to retire if he somehow made an error helping a fellow owner. He won’t retire and that is just wasted speculation.

    2) Crane Kenney screwed up. I imagine a case where our old pal called Lucchino or whoever at the Red Sox and agreed to “significant” compensation (in order to speak to Theo) without really knowing what that meant. Of course, we really don’t know either. Still, that could lead to #3.

    3) Larry Lucchino screwed up or took advantage or both. He was angry at Theo (much written) and didn’t want him to go to a “better” situation (think Theo in that old cube in the basement) and stretching this out. Or maybe, the Cubs did promise something and he wants it fairly. Maybe Crane, maybe Ricketts, who knows. Lucchino is a lot of things, but not stupid. And as very astute poster mentions, the media will aware of his story soon.

    So, who is to blame? I’d be willing to bet it comes to down a combo of idiotic promises, misunderstandings, new owners, etc.

    Maybe I am wrong. Maybe too cloudy. But a good sitcom would have been Crane and Larry.

  • Matt

    Dear ogyu. GFY>

    • TWC

      Really?  Grow up.

      • Matt

        Apparently you missed the comment directed at me. Before becoming a message board tough guy, read all comments. eh buddy?

        • TWC

          I did read it, kid.  And I thought your response to his comment was absurd.  He made a joke regarding your ineffective threat of “hell to pay”.  You told him to fuck himself.  Then I told you to grow up, as your response was a touch over-the-top.

          I thought I was being pretty clear.  Buddy.

          • Matt

            So, let me get this right. Him responding to me was a joke, but me responding to him is to be taken seriously? Looks like you need to clean out your bong before jumping in to conversations that you feel like you need to put your big boy pants on for. And a pothead with a Grateful Dead logo tells others to grow up…you just can’t write this stuff.

            • TWC

              No.  His response was a joke, a joke in which he played off your threat of “hell to pay”.  I’d frankly pay a lot of money to be able to reach through my computer and give Bud Selig a wedgie.  But if your point was that “hell to pay” implied league-wide ramifications, I don’t disagree, and I think that Luke elaborated on that quite well.

              What I took exception to was you telling him to fuck himself.  I didn’t — and still don’t — think it’s an appropriate response.

              I don’t do flame wars.  And I don’t care much for ad hominem attacks, thanks.  Please refer to my original response from here on out.

              • Matt

                You know what I don’t find appropriate? Jumping in to a conversation to address someone that didn’t address you to begin with to let them know you don’t approve or find their response appropriate. I didn’t ask, didn’t want to know or didn’t care whether or not you approved my response. You can’t belittle someone, then step back, throw your hands up and say “I’m not playing this game” and act holier than thou which is exactly what you are doing here. Take the high road and bow out gracefully.
                Don’t take yourself or others too seriously especially online. It leads to lengthy and unwarranted aggravation to someone you’ve never nor will ever meet.

                • Bbmoney

                  Boy, that escalated quickly… I mean, that really got out of hand fast.

                  • McKaley

                    I stabbed a man with a trident.

                    – I’ve been meaning to talk to you about that…..

                  • ferrets_bueller


            • ferrets_bueller

              “A pothead with a Greatful head logo”

              That’s a complement in my book.


            • BetterNews

              Matt-Don’t get worked up about Twc’s comments. He Is a joke(a troll) that just tries to get people worked up. His “kid” comments are an “old” management theory as he tries to work on people that come to the site.

              • ferrets_bueller

                now I’ve heard everything. What is this, April Fools day?

                • BetterNews

                  ferrets-Seems you’ve been busted too!

                  • Sircub

                    You are so right, BN, that TWC is such a troll!

                    • BetterNews

                      Yes, I got off to a bad start when I first came to the site. I was offended by some comments and replied in ways maybe I shouldn’t have. But I never chased down an individual for a comment the way TWC does. He is ignorant. Thanks for support!

                    • MichiganGoat

                      It’s Bizzaro BleacherNation baby

                    • http://casualcubsfan.blogger.com hansman1982

                      BetterNews – it’s not so much that you got off to a bad start, it is that you are continuing that bad start into a bad season. Keep on going and you will have a Ryan Theriot type career.

                  • Rick Vaughn

                    I see nothing has changed here. I’ll try again next week. TWC…keep fighting the good fight.

                    • http://casualcubsfan.blogger.com hansman1982

                      Rick, apparently you’ve been busted too…

                    • MichiganGoat

                      It’s a losing battle, I’ve learned that some folk can never learn and live only to annoy people.

                    • BetterNews

                      Rick-Good to hear from you, Hope all is well. Been a while. We all know TWC doesn’t like me, but that’s alright. What’s the old saying? Tell’s like I see’s it!

                    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

                      You missed a few good, uninterrupted weeks. Maybe you’re the problem.

            • http://casualcubsfan.blogger.com hansman1982

              Big difference between:
              Hell to pay. Right. What are you gonna do? Reach through your monitor screen and give Bud a wedgie?

              and telling someone to go freshen themselves…

              • BetterNews

                Hansman-What are you talking about? Usually you’re calm and thinking clearly with good comments. Too many beers?

                • BFiddy

                  Subtle ignorance is so much better than overt ignorance.

                  Nice work, BN! This post was a winner…

  • Jason “Thundermug”

    My guess is that once Bud hands out the compensation that he orders both teams to not say anything other than glad it’s over. If anyone steps out with frustration and goes public about it MLB/Bud Selig can step in and hand over fines to both teams

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I bet you’re right, with the exception that the Cubs will probably be allowed to say “we’re sad to lose Player X,” and the Red Sox will be allowed to say, “we’re happy to have Player X.”

      • Pete

        Unless the Sox feel short shrifted. Then Nick Cafardo will echo what Lucchino whispers to him.

        • Dante Hicks

          Pete, so, so true. Nicely said. Glad to know every baseball market has those writers…not to mention any Chicago names…

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

          Ha. Yeah…

  • Don

    Give the RedSox Dewitt, Bobbie Scales and a six pack of beer.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      No, no, no, no, no, no, no.

      Keep the beer.

      • Cheryl

        Keep Scales and the beer. The former manager of the cubs would be the best compensation. He still has a year left on his contract.

    • Richard Nose

      Yes, yes. Keep the beer. It may come in handy for the upcoming season.

  • TSB

    Maybe Matt and TWC can become Red Sox fans for a year, as compensation for Theo…

    • JulioZuleta

      Edit: thought someone else had posted that…nevermind.

  • mac

    Hopefully we’ll still be able to keep Theo. One cannot be quite sure with the way this saga has unfolded.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

      We’ll keep Theo.  He is working for the Cubs now because Selig ordered him to work for the Cubs and to worry about the compensation issue later.  There is no way Selig is going to change his mind on that decision.  The screams of outrage from all 30 owners would send penguins in Antarctica running for cover.

      • Brady

        That’s good because I have always thought of Selig as a real world representation of Penguin from Batman. Except I dont think I have ever seen him in a top hat and monocule, though that would be awesome.

  • EQ76

    Maybe we can talk Eddie Vedder into “taking one for the team” on the compensation thing.. how about Pearl Jam plays a concert at Fenway, $50 a ticket, and donate all the proceeds back to the Red Sox. there’s your compensation.

  • MightyBear

    I don’t care how big the sport is or how great the game of baseball is, MLB is the poorest run sport in the history of sports. It makes college football and gladiating look good.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

      I wouldn’t got that far.  Unlike College Football, at least with MLB we know who the champion at the end of the season is.

      Come to think of it, MLB doesn’t have anything all that comparable to the recent scandals at Miami, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Penn State, or TCU either.  And while the Braves did play in the West Division for awhile, baseball did not go out of their way to stick a team from the Mountain Time Zone in a conference called East.  I think College Football has a pretty good grip on the worst run sport.

    • Toosh

      I’d toss the NBA into the mix.

    • JulioZuleta

      College football is as crooked as Illinois politics, NBA is a close second.

      • http://casualcubsfan.blogger.com hansman1982

        I think jaws would fall off if there was ever a decent investigation into college football.

  • ty

    Eddie V has no athletic skills but gives it is all at every camp. Not the same without Ron !

  • Dave H

    I say we make this like the wagers that mayors make on the superbowl or worldseries. We’ll send them a cheeseborger, chip, pepsee(no coke). For good measures, we can even toss in a sahsage deep dish there.

  • DocWimsey

    Given how much we are all anticipating the decision, is there some place we can line up to wait for it, kind of like a new Harry Potter book or a new Star Wars movie?

    • Scotti

      I’m already sitting outside of Brett’s place. Pretty damn cold out here but I hear he’s going to bring out some cookies and butterbeer…

      • Brady

        And here I was thinking I had to sit in this tree. Silly me.

        • MichiganGoat

          Ha I’m inside drinking his beer sucka

          • http://casualcubsfan.blogger.com hansman1982

            come say hi, I am downstairs hiding all of his cat’s pajamas

          • BetterNews

            Goat-I thought you taught children? You’re busted too!

  • Canadian Cubs Fan

    Not sure if anyone’s asked this before, but would Bud be this “deliberate” in making a decision if it was the Royals and Pirates that couldn’t agree? These are two of the biggest revenue teams in the league, in two of the bigger markets. Just wonderin’.

  • CubFanBob

    I bet around 4:50pm Friday we will get a MLB press release with the official compensation in an effort to keep it on the down low for the two market’s media.

  • ty

    talk today at Fitch Field is that we lose two Single A players tomorrow to Boston. A bit scary since we have some darn good prospects at that level. Plus our head scout just joined up with Boston and Gary Hughes knows way too much about our guys.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I randomly remember hearing a long time ago that the Red Sox really like Dustin Geiger (as they should).

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

        I’d hate to lose Geiger, but he’s buried so deep at third base he’s not likely to reach the majors with the Cubs anyway.  He finished up the season in Peoria and probably would have started there in the spring.

        Geiger and Austin Kirk wouldn’t be a bad package for the Red Sox.

        • ferrets_bueller

          Geiger? I wouldn’t count on it.

  • die hard

    Heres my prediction….he will give Bosox choice….Barney or $1 mil ….then he will give San Diego choice….minor league player ranked 40-50 in Cubs organization or $250K…

    • Turn Two

      I find it impossible to believe Bud would pull our starting second baseman and send him to the Red Sox. I know everyone is down on Barney for whatever reason, but to pull a teams starting middle infielder a month before the season would not be logical.

      • die hard

        unless hints dropped that hes not going to start or even make team and so Cubs wouldnt mind….Would also serve notice on other FO raiders that could lose a player from prior 25 man roster to discourage future raids…

        • Turn Two

          Unless you’ve heard rumors that for some reason the Cubs are planning on cutting a solid young second baseman, I will assume our starting second baseman is not the compensation.

          • die hard

            How much is the most highly regarded Pres/GM worth? If reports are true, he will bring a WS to the north side. If true, then hes worth whatever Selig awards because isnt the goal to win WS? If you were assured that giving up Barney would not stop this from happening would you care? Of course not as you dont care who plays as long as Cubs win WS.

            • http://casualcubsfan.blogger.com hansman1982

              you are really jealous of Theo, aren’t you…never a positive thing to say.

              • BetterNews

                Is there really anything “positive” to say?

                • http://casualcubsfan.blogger.com hansman1982

                  you’re right, 6 months on the job and he hasn’t done enough yet like signing Pujols AND Fielder. What is there to be so negative about? I mean the guy got ran out of town after an 89-win season.

                  I will diligently await your intelligent response, but I won’t hold my breath, don’t feel like passing out.

              • die hard

                you dont get it…Mr. Ricketts made no secret that he wanted the most high profile GM and would do anything to get his man no matter what the cost. Think Steinbrenner. Now hes about to find out the cost. But I say, so what?! Mr. Ricketts believes that getting Theo will mean a WS ring. If hes right then who cares about the cost, right? Anything less is a losing season. But shouldnt you be a little suspicious of someone who let his world championship team dissolve into a beer swiggling toga party during games? If thats the Cubs’ future, is that what you want? Jealous? Sounds defensive. Worried? You bet, as I like many BN citizens are heavily invested emotionally in the Cubs and dont want to see the franchise become the laughing stock of.the league. Hope I am wrong as I too want to see Castro wearing a WS ring which would ramp up his game for years to come and maybe bring more.

                • BetterNews

                  Die Hard-Excellent comment!

                • http://www.casualcubsfan.com hansman1982

                  This beer-swilling toga party was heralded in 2003 for breaking the Red Sox curse and in terms of what happens in the clubhouse, I believe that is generally left up to the manager to police.

                  It terms of what we have to give up, I am of the mindset that Ricketts authorized Kenney to do what it took to get the interview short of promising actual players which is what happened. With that being said, you don’t want to send Brett Jackson if you can negotiate a better deal and we still owe San Diego compensation.

                  To use your example of why should we care if Theo will win us a WS: if you are building a house are you ok with going around the lot setting off dynatmite charges for the fun of it? Who cares, you’re going to get a new house. Well, no sense in having to spend the time, effort and money to fill in those holes.

                  • die hard

                    1. Theo is a hands on GM and so he saw clubhouse hijinks and just didnt give a darn anymore which is why he was going to be fired. Bosox saw Ricketts circling and baited the trap billiantly.

                    2. Buck stops with Ricketts and if Kenney went beyond instructions then thats the risk Ricketts assumed when setting this plan into motion.

                    3. Winning a WS ring is all that matters. How a team gets there doesnt matter. Sure, building a dynasty is preferred but tomorrow is not promised.

                    • http://www.casualcubsfan.com hansman1982

                      1. I guess I will have to trust your information on Theo being hands-on in the clubhouse. Again, though, this same stuff was described as “playing loose” in 2003. I also think that Lucchino would be playing these games regardless of who asked to interview Theo, Ricketts didn’t build a highly successful bond business by being a complete idiot, despite your thinking otherwise.
                      2. I wasn’t saying that Kenney went outside of the parameters.
                      3. You are absolutely right that winning the WS is paramount; however, as in my house analogy, why willingly give up something that will hinder your ability to do so?

                  • BetterNews

                    hansman-You lost me with your home analogy.

  • ty

    geiger is really an impressive young hitter`-gap power and over the fence at times. Working on defense but not a big deal at third

  • TeddyBallGame

    This story is going to come to an end soon, thank god…I’d rather they just bring it up when it’s resolved, but I know that’s wishful thinking. Regardless of who ends up being the player decided on for compensation, that player is fighting a lost battle from the beginning. It’ll probably end up being a mid-level prospect and he probably won’t be able to live up to the expectations that Red Sox fans are going to have for him. It’ll always be “the kid who got traded for Theo” and I think if the compensation was decided right away there’d be a lot less pressure for whoever it is. When it’s all said and done, we get Theo for a prospect which is “the cat’s pajamas”!!!

    • BetterNews

      Teddy-You always do things in three’s…!!!(LoL)

  • Curt

    Embarrassing is what this whole thing is
    ,experienced businessmen can’t do this on their own bc one doesent want to and LL is pisssd at the world and is mad that said world does not bow down to the might ,so now darth vaders boss the emperor gets to choose, really theo and lucchino did it need to be like this or might we have been grown-ups and dealt with this as such come-on already settle this bs so we can concentrate on obsessive soler watching.

    • BetterNews

      Curt-Please explane(LOL)

  • 2much2say

    Comp Choices: Johnson Dewitt Baker Vitters Cash
    I choose cash

  • Dustin S

    With pitchers and catchers reporting Saturday, I’m really hoping to hear something from Selig on this tomorrow. So looking forward to this saga finally being over. Kind of like Cespedes, even though we didn’t get him…it was a relief that the endless line of (what mostly all ended up being wrong) tweets and rumors ended.

  • 2much2say

    2 weeks later Ricketts: “Who ordered a 75 foot Sign?” Kenney: “That would be me” Ricketts: “I give up” Kenney: “Does that mean I am CEO now?”

    • Doug

      Didn’t you already post this little skit a while back?

    • Brady

      Ok this was funny the first time you typed it but now it’s obvious that you are just repeating it and makes it pointless. Come up with a new joke or don’t comment at all. Please and thank you.

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