Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
On Twitter: SoccerInsider and PostSports  |  Facebook  |  Sports e-mail alerts  |  RSS
Posted at 2:52 PM ET, 12/ 1/2010

New mechanism (MLS re-entry draft) is next opportunity for D.C. United to continue rebuilding

By Steve Goff

D.C. United has hired a head coach (Ben Olsen) and made a significant trade (Dax McCarty for Rodney Wallace). It said goodbye to Jaime Moreno (parts unknown) and Danny Allsopp (Australia), and lost Jordan Graye (Portland) in the expansion draft. It has been scouting the college scene ahead of the Jan. 13 MLS draft in Baltimore and window-shopping in the international marketplace.

But a new mechanism, a byproduct of the collective bargaining agreement struck between management and the work force last offseason, will allow United and the other 17 clubs to acquire experienced players through a two-stage re-entry draft. The first will take place next Wednesday, Dec. 8, the second on the following Wednesday, Dec. 15.

For much more information.....

Essentially, it is a form of free agency for players out of contract and those whose options were not exercised. In the past, a club would maintain rights to that individual, even if it had no intention of re-signing him -- a major sticking point in the CBA negotiations.

Yesterday was the deadline for clubs to notify MLS of contract status for their players. The full list of available players for the first part of the re-entry draft will be made public this Friday at 5 p.m. ET.

D.C. United, which had the fewest points in the league this season, will have the first overall selection in both phases. The draft order goes from worst to first, followed by the expansion clubs. This is a new frontier for MLS, and no one is quite sure how it will play out in its first year. Some high-profile players could be available, but at a high price.

"We think there could be an interesting player or two in the draft," United General Manager Dave Kasper said. "We don't know for sure yet."

The guidelines are complex, but in a nutshell, those eligible for the re-entry draft can choose to participate and take a chance on which club selects them (while maintaining their current salary), or opt out and continue negotiating with their previous employer.

In the first phase, the club doesn't have much contract flexibility; the 2011 salary for the player it claimed is set. Teams will continue selecting until all have passed. In the second phase, there are no predetermined salaries and the club has seven days to make a legitimate offer.

By Steve Goff  | December 1, 2010; 2:52 PM ET
Categories:  D.C. United, MLS  | Tags:  D.C. United, MLS  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Poll: FIFA's 2022 World Cup decision
Next: Landon Donovan's inspiration: Romania vs. Argentina in the 1994 World Cup at the Rose Bowl

Comments

Can't wait to see the list on Friday. There's got to be 1-2 veterans available that can help this team for a season or two.

Posted by: soccerman | December 1, 2010 3:11 PM | Report abuse

Could Jimmy Conrad be (1) available and (2) worth drafting in phase 1 of the draft? I'm guessing he'd have a pretty hefty salary in 2011...but he surely is an experienced CB.

Posted by: combedge | December 1, 2010 3:27 PM | Report abuse

Is Jaime going to be in the re-entry draft? The MLS snafu with the expansion draft would indicate that he would be, right?

Posted by: joe_hill | December 1, 2010 3:54 PM | Report abuse

*cough* *cough* Angel. *cough*

Posted by: redskinsux | December 1, 2010 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Oh yeah, lets get fast-fading Angel. After all, if we acquire him, he will magically start playing like he did two years ago; instead of his day-late-dollar short self of now. He will reverse-age. He will no longer be slow, like he is now. He'll get faster.

We can rebuild him. We can make him better.

Posted by: Ron16 | December 1, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

Tell us how you really feel about Angel, Ron16.

Posted by: iammrben1 | December 1, 2010 4:06 PM | Report abuse

I'm not sure Conrad is the answer either. He looked fairly slow and played poorly the times I saw him play last year.

There's a reason why these guys haven't had their options exercised. Part of it is money, but if they were really worth keeping I think most of the clubs would find a way to make it work.

Schelloto and Hejduk are a couple of other high-profile players who could very well end up in this process.

Posted by: fedssocr | December 1, 2010 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Sorry. Last line should read:

"We can rebuild him. We have the technology. We can make him better."

Posted by: Ron16 | December 1, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

I'd pass on Schelotto. Aging, some injury issues but most of all, doesn't address our two most critical needs: veteran defensive organizer, and clinical finisher.

I would go for Angel. Yep, he's aging. Yep, he's got a bad back. You can't count on him to play 30-34 matches in an MLS season. But....every game he's a threat. The post about "fast-fading" is a gross exaggeration. The deal with Angel is that he's had terrible service. But he's about as clinical as you can get as a finisher in MLS. Add Angel to last year's squad and we'd have won at least 4 and possibly 6 more games--simply on his ability to finish many of the chances we created (especially in the last third of the season with Olsen). Don't get me wrong--I'm not saying that add Angel and we're a strong team. But Angel, more than any other player in MLS (even if a Buddle or Wondolowski should magicially drop into our lap) is the best pure clinical finisher in MLS. Period. With his age. With his bad back. With his high salary.

Conrad--I'm not sure. Olsen knows him well, they were both games who made the USNT, weren't rated well by others (clearly not "international caliber") yet both showed well in limited time in critical games. Conrad may be aging and is slow but Dejan Jakovic has good speed. Conrad as a quasi-sweeper who organizes, lets our GK be calmer--he'd be a good addition. But I think our ability to get a good organizer on defense is easier than it is to get an affordable finisher. Don't forget, the league if full of examples of guys like Sergio Galvan Rey "King of Goals" who were prolific scorers overseas, came to MLS and laid a stinking turd of a career and then went back overseas and scored a bunch of goals. We're not going to go out and add 2-3 goal scorers. We're going to draft someone, hope Pontius gets healthy and maybe gives us 7 goals and probably add one senior international player to be our finisher. That and improved play from others is where our goals are going to come from. So a proven finisher is important.

Posted by: JoeW1 | December 1, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

I'm not expecting much activity in phase 1. Phase 2 could get interesting.

Goff, any word on whether 2011 salaries will be released publicly along with the names?

Posted by: benonthehill | December 1, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse

JoeW1:

Are you sure Jakovic is still first choice assuming we sign a new, undisputed #1 center back? James was better than him for most of last season. Jakovic has the higher ceiling, sure, but at some point we have to be good today rather than tomorrow.

If it were my team, James would be my starter with whatever new guy we get until Jakovic proved he could be relied on every week. It's that consistency that worries me.

Posted by: Chest_Rockwell | December 1, 2010 6:30 PM | Report abuse

Phase III: Profit!

Posted by: Godfather_of_Goals | December 1, 2010 7:07 PM | Report abuse

If it were me, I'd take a flyer on Angel here. Apparently DCU were trying to trade for him this past season. Does our stance change dramatically in a few months?...I think not.

I'd take Angel and hopefully we're in a position to draft FW Omar Salgado with the #3 pick in the SuperDraft. Let Salgado (17 yrs old) learn from a seasoned and experienced pro like Angel. This should also allow Angel the ability to play 70 mins, give 20 to Salgado off the bench and ease the player along.

Hopefully a player like Angel would have a nice influence on guys like Pontius, Najar and Quaranta as well. With the addition of Dax, that would also give us the flexibility to rest JPA if necessary. We could have Dax/Clyde in the middle, push Branko to the left and have 'Tino up top with Pontius/Salgado/etc.

Posted by: voetbol07 | December 1, 2010 8:30 PM | Report abuse

Phase III: Profit!

Posted by: Godfather_of_Goals | December 1, 2010 7:07 PM | Report abuse


South Park reference? If so, nice!

So...what's Phase II? ;)

Posted by: kdiff813 | December 1, 2010 8:41 PM | Report abuse

Phase 1 -- Collect underpants, er, I mean, cut taxes. Phase 2 -- ? Phase 3 -- eliminate deficit.

Posted by: fischy | December 1, 2010 10:39 PM | Report abuse

JoeW1:

Are you sure Jakovic is still first choice assuming we sign a new, undisputed #1 center back? James was better than him for most of last season. Jakovic has the higher ceiling, sure, but at some point we have to be good today rather than tomorrow.

If it were my team, James would be my starter with whatever new guy we get until Jakovic proved he could be relied on every week. It's that consistency that worries me.

Posted by: Chest_Rockwell | December 1, 2010 6:30 PM | Report abuse

I am going to commit blasphemy on this blog and go against Chest. I agree with 99% of what you have said, but I think that Jakovic is our best defender now, and in the future by some margin. He is clam on the ball, a good distributor, makes good decisions, strong tackler and has some speed. James is probably better in the air, but that is it.

Some people piled on Jakovic when he was beaten for some late goals in his first season. But what I saw, and I was there for the Open Cup final against the Sounders is that Jakovic was 1 on 1 with Montero the entire game thanks to Soehn's decision to play 3 in the back. He won almost every battle, but that is a poor tacticial decision to expect perfection of a CB especially against as good of a player as Montero.

I think Jakovic is the one to build with in the Center of Defense. Let's find another CB to partner with him and use James as cover or as a defensive-minded RB because I don't think he has the ability to get forward and send in a cross. For all of Burch's defensive liabilities he has shown an ability to get forward and send in accurate crosses from the left. We can put Najar at RM and he can provide the attack from the right by himself without having James supporting with overlapping runs.

Posted by: Golden_Child | December 1, 2010 11:12 PM | Report abuse

D.C United need to build the defense here. They need to grab Jimmy Conrad and another defenseman. They also need to sign Ethan White from the academy. Then in the draft they can take Omar Salgado.

Posted by: Dlewis6 | December 2, 2010 12:09 AM | Report abuse

D.C United need to build the defense here. They need to grab Jimmy Conrad and another defenseman. They also need to sign Ethan White from the academy. Then in the draft they can take Omar Salgado.

Posted by: Dlewis6 | December 2, 2010 12:10 AM | Report abuse

RE: Angel -- you'd fade fast too if you were informed halfway through the season your services were no longer needed. Only question is, is DC stupid enough NOT to at least pursue him.

RE: Jakovic -- It's a moot question. He and James are both keepers in CD, period. It's MLS, and further it's DC United. You're talking about 2 full internationals for decent teams. Those are the pieces you hang on to. A blockbuster Euro signing isn't going to happen.

Posted by: Godfather_of_Goals | December 2, 2010 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Angel is a gamble. for the money there are other strikers in other leagues that would fit the bill. Also I don't get the feeling Chang has the inclination to spend big bucks on any single player while he is the only investor in the team. As for CDs, Jankovic and James are it for now. However, a team needs 3 capable CDs to go through a long season. For the last 2 years I've been scouting Ethan White who is doing a superb job at that position for the University of Maryland. He is big and fast, good in the air, great distribution and better foot skills than Jokovic and James. Added bonus, he can play all 4 positions in the backline. Foreign clubs are looking at him. He won't be around for long.

Posted by: santi1 | December 2, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Post a Comment

We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge washingtonpost.com's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features.

User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions.




characters remaining

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company