On the astonishing trade
June 27, 2011
"He is one of the most dangerous players MLS has seen in the attacking third and he is a true leader both on and off the field." -- Erik Soler on Dwayne De Rosario, April 1, 2011.
If that day delivered a shock, today produced an earthquake. Dwayne De Rosario, one of the greatest players in MLS history, acquired with such fanfare less than three months ago, making April fools of Toronto, is gone. The dynamic attacker has been sent to DC United for Dax McCarty in a trade that left us scratching our heads.
Ever since Amado Guevara's departure after the 2006 season, Metro has been missing that midfielder maestro, that man to play behind the strikers and create. And with De Rosario, they were supposed to have that man. After all, he has proven it everywhere, scoring goals and producing assists for over a decade, and, most importantly, winning, winning, and more winning. (Well, except for his time in Toronto. But he can't be faulted for that.)
Yet here he is, gone. 13 games, two goals -- both on penalty kicks, four assists, nothing spectacular, sure, but the team is first in the league in goals, in large thanks to him... And now, shipped to the Scum for Dax McCarty, a fine player, for sure, but...
To refresh your memory, McCarty was exposed by Dallas in the expansion draft. Portland took him and DC then acquired him for a fourth round draft pick and Rodney Wallace, not exactly a bounty. To acquire De Rosario, Metro gave up Tony Tchani, Danleigh Borman, and a first round pick. So if you add it all up... Yes, it doesn't seem right.
And this is nothing against McCarty, he has shown through the years that he can compete in MLS. And yes, he is a decade younger than De Rosario. And, in theory, if Metro was not willing to give De Rosario the DP deal he wanted next year, maybe it made sense to get what they could for him (but then, why acquire him in the first place?). And, maybe, there is something going on behind the scenes, such as a salary freeing (although with Toronto picking up a large chunk of De Rosario's 2011 contract, that seems unlikely) that will help Metro improve in the summer. But...
"At the end, we think this is a massive step in our quest towards the MLS Cup title." -- Erik Soler on Dwayne De Rosario, April 1, 2011.
Perhaps we were looking in the wrong place for April fools...