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Not ready to make nice.



You don't spit into the wind. You don't tug on Superman's cape..


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You don't pull off the mask off the old Lone Ranger and you never, ever, turn your back on, leave your credit cards laying out around, lend lawn equipment to, or otherwise mess around with Bob Gansler.















In the wake of the Johnny X story breaking recently, perhaps the weakest rationale that I've seen on Bigsoccer (motto: "Celebrate Weak Rationale!) for preventing teams like the Metros from signing their academy players without putting them up on the open market (either via draft or Szetela style lottery) is that smaller cities will be at a disadvantage, that inevitably and inexorably the major markets will leverage their enormous (and lets face it, far more attractive, sophisticated and witty) populations in ways that Podun...er...DC just can't do, and so will turn into unstoppable dynasties. Well in response to this, let me say;

a) boo hoo hoo. Hoo hoo. The shackles have been on the big market teams long enough.
b) Remind me again what part of Paterson, Queens or Yonkers that Clint Dempsey, Eddie Johnson, and Clint Mathis (god rest his talent), to name but three, are from? The "smaller cities" - let's call them the Hunt Clubs - aren't exactly playing in soccer wastelands, either. Aren't they notorious youth soccer hotbeds? Doesn't half the Revolution side come from spitting distance of Arrowhead Stadium?
c) Bigger isn't always necessarily better. In fact, smart is usually best. Smart, like handing the reins of your club over to black-souled crypto-deviants like Bob Gansler.

Here's a man who gleefully sack-punched Bob Bradley a couple weeks ago by drafting Yura Movsisyan. Bob covets the kid, trades down on the assumption that he'll be there - not least because he's a poor Armenian immigrant whose biggest dream is to play close to home, becoming so popular among the adoring crowds in the second-largest Armenian city in the world (hell, for all I know, LA is the largest Armenian city in the world) that they actually change the club's name to Pyunik USA. It's a great story in the making, and if Bob B. was leaving obvious signs of using his first pick on the guy, you've gotta figure that the couple coaches ahead of him, all things being equal, would lay off.
Not Gansler. Bobby G. grabbed him - given that Yura's reportedly a project (with huge upside, but a project all the same) it's hard not to think that Gansler did it just because....he could. For shits and giggles. Or because he really is a Bad Man. Hey, there's an Armenian somewhere in KC. Yura can be a great story for that guy.

Now less than a month later, there's Kenny Cooper. Same drill. A Dallas kid who's coming back from Europe for the express purpose of playing at home. He might be halfway decent, but no one's tipping him to walk into the top 5 in scoring next season, so it's not like exhibiting a little gentlemanly reserve would be like saying "no thanks" to Ronaldinho. Cooper's a talented kid who wanted to develop back at home. Does Gansler say "well, thats nice, I wish him luck, but not against us"? Does he fuck. He jumps in there with a discovery claim and figures to score a player, a pick, or something out of the deal. Because in the MLS setup, the position that Dallas is thrust into is one of weakness.

Well, that was the initial storyline that we were getting from the stories coming out earlier. The end result - which is by no means very clear even now, is that Cooper goes to Dallas for nothing (thus, apparently no triple-threat trades between KC, Dallas and Metro today). Muddying the waters more is Dallas GM Michael Hitchcock (courtesy 3rd Degree)

""Discoveries are not tradable," said Hitchcock. "Kansas City simple passed on their discovery claim as Cooper did not fit into their plans."

Pardon me while I call bullshit on that "discoveries aren't tradable" idea - I don't have the gas to go looking now, but I challenge any one of you hundreds and hundreds of readers out there to find an instance of a discovery pick being traded. If it's not exactly legal, then the player is simply "picked" and shifted, all the same. I think the only thing that happened was that Bob Gansler got a call from Uncle Lamar asking him to ease off. Gansler may be a Bad Man - and that's a good thing to be in a world filled with stupid, easily exploitable rules (i.e. the world of MLS) - but I don't think he's a stupid one.

The morals of the story?

- The MLS system for distributing these players is funked up, and as long as it is, I can't get that agitated over machinations like this. I wouldn't be taking the guy out for beers n' laffs after he'd just shaken me down thanks to a stupid league setup, but that's beside the point. Good on Bob Gansler for taking advantage of the system while he can.

- The Metros damn well better not think of putting a guy like Johnny X, or any other academy product, through the Generation Adidas-lottery draft rigamarole. Because there is little, if any honor among MLS coaches.


Amado is in camp, sez the official roster on Metrostars.com

We sez that someone at Metrostars.com was reading this on the plane down to Florida. That's if "soccerwriter" in the Old Quarter of Bigsoccer has it right...and without giving any secrets away....The Metrologist figures anyone who shares his Christian name ought to get the benefit of the doubt.


2 Responses to “You don't spit into the wind. You don't tug on Superman's cape..”

  1. Anonymous MetroFanatic 

    Metros got Juskowiak using San Jose's discovery. Metro gave up a 3rd round pick. The trade came before the signing.

    link

  2. Blogger Mike H 

    Thank you for this post. One of the best things I've read in a long time.

    I too think that official or not, something was promised for the Cooper pass by KC.

    Keep up the excellent work.

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