The season is approaching at warp speed, with the MLS Superdraft less than a week away. But if you haven't been following the top prospects, don't fret; Soccer by Ives has you covered. The draft has become devalued with the level of talent coming through transfer in the modern MLS era, but some would argue that teams aren't using it properly.
Cascadia, and it's cup has been in the news in a big way over the last week. Everyone is weighing in as supporters of the three clubs circle the wagons. I expect everything to resolve itself in the best interest of everyone.The potential trademark may be worth quite a lot; just last week, the rivalry reared up seemingly randomly at the 29 minute mark in a Houston Rockets NBA conversation. (Thanks to Ryan Gates at Stumptown for this find).
I'd like to see the MLS All-Star game (or Superdraft) in Seattle one of these days, but for now, the former's 2013 entry is scheduled for Kansas City. Also in KC, their new women's soccer team decided to change their logo, and it was for the better. Now though, their colors are very similar to Seattle's.
Marc Burch was suspended during the playoffs last season for uttering a homophobic slur during a game. Most of the time, a role player wouldn't bother to perform reparations in a situation like this. They frequently go about their business and wait for fans and folks to forget. Burch instead went out and played with an all-gay team. As the article says, there were no cameras, no media reps. It isn't something we might have heard about if not for The Stranger. It'll be interesting to see if the stand made here will reach across to Europe.
A pair of 2013 kits appear to have been leaked via goal.com. Toronto's new kits haven't changed much, but see a subtle-ish maple leaf added to the chest. Vancouver's designers took last year's kits, selected the pinstripes, and rotated them 50 degrees. The rest of the jerseys should be revealed for real at the Superdraft.
A number of cities are vying for the USMNT hex round matches. Kansas City is reportedly competing with Salt Lake and Denver for the first rounder versus Costa Rica. The District of Columbia also wants in. Which is a great idea, as long as they don't schedule the game on FedEx Field's terrible, terrible turf.
In expansion news, MLS-Rumors put together a timeline for NY2, and Footiebusiness examines the benefits of promoting a division two team instead of starting from scratch. Seattle and Cascadia skew the small sample size quite a bit, but there's no denying the benefit.
MLS loans have become en vogue, netting transfer fees and exposure for teams that make their players available. Andy Najar in DC is one such case. Our own Fredy Montero another (and yes, it is still a loan).
The memory of Mike Ryan will be alive at the University of Washington on Saturday.
Moneyball is making its rounds through the sports.
A few more signings have come in since Tuesday, when we had our special edition of Major Links:
- Portland got their new DP, creative Argentinian midfielder Diego Valeri
- DC made perhaps the most intriguing DP signing of the offseason, picking up 20 year-old Rafael on a loan.
- Conor Casey has officially signed a contract with the Philadelphia Union, who will be grateful not to have to play on temporary grass at the Clink this year.
- Columbus inked their fifth home grown player, Chad Barson.
- FC Dallas picked a goalkeeper from Peru one of my favorite countries in the world. The keeper, Raul Fernandez, is expected to fight for the starting job with Chris Seitz.