Wednesday, November 26, 2008


According to SBI the Seattle choices for the expansion draft goes like this ...

Nate Jaqua (Houston) striker
Brad Evans (Columbus) midfield
Stephen King (Chicago) midfield
Jeff Parke (New York) defender
James Riley (San Jose) defender/midfielder
Khano Smith (New England) striker/winger
Jarrod Smith (Toronto FC) forward/midfielder
Nathan Sturgis (Real Salt Lake) defender/midfielder
Peter Vagenas (Los Angeles) midfielder
Tyson Wahl (Kansas City) defender

Most TFC fans would rather say farewell to Jarrod Smith over Johann Smith (and here's hoping that this is not
a typo between the Smith's). Those who were gambling that Seattle was not going to be choosing keepers are looking
wise right now.
There seems to be an emphasis on youth and potential in the list (apart from Jaqua and Vagenas), but looking at the
list from a Saputo in Montreal point of view you might say "for this you're charging 40 million US ???)
No doubt there will be trades to come and the Superdraft in January and the shape of the team will change before training camp, but it seems underwhelming. Perhaps the money for Freddie and Keller meant that salary was the main concern.
Jarrod Smith showed less and less this past season, but I would still trade Carlos Ruiz in a second to get him back.

Monday, November 24, 2008

On the list

Expansion Draft lists were released today. The draft is on Wednesday.
TFC protected the following .....
Chad Barrett
Jim Brennan
Danny Dichio
Todd Dunivant
Brian Edwards
Amado Guevara
Kevin Harmse
Julius James
Tyrone Marshall
Carl Robinson
Marvell Wynne

Which means the following are available (remember- Seattle are allowed only one player per team, they make 10 picks and there are 14 teams , so there is a chance Toronto will not be chosen from).
Attakora-Gyan, Nana
Elkinson, Kilian
Freeman, Hunter
Gala, Gabe
Gaudet, Derek
Melo, Joey
Ricketts, Rohan
Rosenlund, Tyler
Ruiz, Carlos
Smith, Jarrod
Smith, Johann
Sutton, Greg
Velez, Marco

Trying to find the logic in these choices. Rohan Ricketts and Johann Smith on the available list could indicate either midfield player signings or draft choices on the horizon. Sutton makes sense since Seattle has Keller as their #1 keeper and would not want an International #2. Protecting Brian Edwards makes sense because he would be very useful to Seattle.
Surprises ??
Attakora-Gyan not protected
Tyrone Marshall and Julius James both protected
Danny Dichio protected - Seattle would only take him to trade him back to Toronto

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Columbus Crew take the Cup

It was a funny season. I can remember like it was yesterday driving down to Columbus, Ohio for the season-opener in March and talking about the Crew as the measuring stick for TFC. The Crew had missed the 07 playoffs, so they were the logical team to match or exceed if Toronto was going to be a playoff team and a cup contender. Well, things have changed since then and the Crew did the double, winning both the Shield (best season record) and the MLS Cup.

I suppose our expectations are rising and Columbus are still the team to match or exceed. Why not ?

It was a deserving win and was welcomed .... I do not like Columbus, but I dislike New York far more....

Now tomorrow we find out who TFC are protecting in the expansion draft which is later this week.

Should be interesting.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Montreal drops out of MLS expansion consideration...

Reports are coming out that Montreal has bowed out of the MLS expansion process.

Speculation on the reasons behind this include the fall of the Canadian dollar and the ongoing story of George Gillett's financial entanglement with Liverpool FC.

I guess it makes some sense. Without paying $40 million to MLS, Montreal already has a home and home series with TFC due to the CONCACAF Champions set-up. The present financial environment makes agreeing to pay money now for a spot in a league three years from now a risky gamble.

Toronto fans wanted the rivalry with Montreal and it may still happen longer term. The economic downturn is the storm cloud over sports right now. I think that MLS will both survive and thrive in this climate as their economics (with the exception of LA) are based on selling affordable tickets and they have less luxury box traffic and TV advertising dollars to lose than the big boys (NFL, NBA, MLB and NHL). Not that I would give them my $40 million right now .....