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Dear BlackBerry Shorts: You Have Been Warned (Twice)

Stocks in this article: BBRY F FB

Let's start with CEO John Chen. He is leaps and bounds better than Thorsten Heins, the previous leader of the handset maker. 

Chen is honest, while Heins scared investors with comments about how the tablet market would barely exist in a few years and why his phones would dominate the market.  Neither claim was further from the truth.

Chen, on the other hand, seems to be realistic. Originally, I considered his plan for reaching profitability by fiscal 2016 as too difficult. I still do. But he's on record saying that there is only a "50-50 chance" that the turnaround plan will actually work. 

When Facebook (FB) bought WhatsApp for $19 billion, everyone was quick to suggest that BlackBerry's Messenger feature would suddenly be worth more than the whole company.

Thankfully, Chen -- who admitted to being open to spinning off the asset -- said that BlackBerry won't be "getting our $19 billion" yet, at least until the company refines the product a bit.

BlackBerry has a bit of the "it" factor. Of course it's easy to shoot against the company's current state. It's losing money each quarter, and as Chen said, it has only a coin-flip chance of succeeding. I, for one, am in the camp that the turnaround will fail. 

But you have to recognize something like I did in January. Even if you think BlackBerry can't turn it around, it doesn't matter. It's about the psychology of the herd, also known as the market. 

I'd be careful with the stock on the short side. Quite frankly, I wouldn't be on it. There's probably some support around $9.50, and the trend is certainly favoring the upside. 

Maybe, just maybe the short thesis can regain some of its credibility.  

But Chen has reset everything. He's lowered expectations and let the weak shareholders wash out. More positive news -- such as the teaming up with Ford (F) -- and momentum could pick back up. 

I'd suggest you either be long on this stock or flat it. Regardless of whether the fundamentals change, I would not short it until the crowd changes. There's plenty of room to the downside, if the time comes. 

At the time of publication, the author held a long position in Ford.

This article represents the opinion of a contributor and not necessarily that of TheStreet or its editorial staff.

-- Written by Bret Kenwell in Petoskey, Mich.

Bret Kenwell writes, blogs and also contributes to Robert Weinstein's Weekly Options Newsletter. Focuses on short-to-intermediate-term trading opportunities that can be exposed via options. He prefers to use debit trades on momentum setups and credit trades on support/resistance setups. He also focuses on building long-term wealth by searching for consistent, quality dividend paying companies and long-term growth companies. He considers himself the surfer, not the wave, in relation to the market and himself. He has no allegiance to either the bull side or the bear side.
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