The idea of Cubo Torres suiting up for the Seattle Sounders doesn't make a ton of sense on the surface. Sure, he's a great player, it would hardly be shocking if the Sounders were interested in him and the prospect of playing in Seattle is surely intriguing to someone who's had precious few opportunities to perform in front of a massive crowd, but there are some very real obstacles.
The biggest is that, under the current rules, the Sounders simply don't have room on their roster, already having the maximum three Designated Players. It's also still unclear how Torres will be allocated. It's been widely reported that he has a $7 million transfer fee -- a significant portion of which would surely need to be paid by the team that signs him -- so it could be a similar process that results in Clint Dempsey playing here and Michael Bradley playing in Toronto.
But even putting the machinations aside, this signing just doesn't seem plausible.
Yet, here we are, a couple months after the rumor first surfaced, still talking about it. Why? We can thank ESPN Deportes' John Sutcliffe. In his latest blog post (ESPN Deportes), the Mexico City-based reporter says Torres does not want to return to Chivas de Guadalajara and that the Galaxy and Sounders are his most likely destinations.
The Galaxy have to be considered the favorites to land Torres simply because they have room on their roster, but in a recent interview with Grant Wahl, Bruce Arena also sounded less-than-enthusiastic about the possibility.
SI.com: There's a report out on Cubo Torres on Goal.com that he only wants to be in MLS if he can join the Galaxy.
Arena: I've not heard that.
SI.com: Would you like to have him? Would AEG be willing to pay his $7 million buy-out number?
Arena: He's a Designated Player.
SI.com: You'll have a DP slot available in January.
Arena: So it's a question of whether that would be our Designated Player. We lose Landon Donovan, who you could argue is the greatest player in the history of our league. And I think the player we replace him with has gotta be upgrade quality.
So maybe this opens the door for the Sounders.
That still leaves the rather significant hurdle of fitting Torres on a roster that already has three Designated Players, none of whom seem to be going anywhere. The easiest way around this would be for MLS to allow for a fourth DP spot in the new CBA. One other possibility would be to raise the threshold for what makes a player a DP, perhaps high enough that Osvaldo Alonso's reportedly salary figure of $400,000 wouldn't count.
The final piece of the puzzle is, of course, how the Sounders would play with Torres, Martins and Dempsey all on the field. But maybe that's best left for a time when Torres is actually on the team. Until then, dream away that this wonderful dance will someday have a home at CenturyLink Field: