Welcome to the Rose City Mike. (Photo by Brandon Wade/Getty Images)
[Update: To end all the speculation, it has been officially announced that Eddie Johnson will retire making this move a little more understandable. Best of luck to him in his future endeavors, we'll have more on this a little later as well as our usual appreciation thread.]
Well today certainly took an interesting twist. Here I was working on an article for later (which will still appear) and this little press release pops into my inbox which left my mouth agape. That's not to say I'm angry at the trade or anything like that, but for other reasons I'll get to a little later in this post. First, though, let's dig through the details.
The Portland Timbers have annoucned today that they have acquired Mike Fucito in a trade with the Montreal Impact. This is the very same Fucito who played for the Seattle Sounders last year and, I do believe, marks the first time since joining MLS that the Timbers are fielding a former Seattle Sounders MLS player. Interesting I suppose.
Depending on his 2012 performance, in return, Montreal will receive either the highest second round SuperDraft pick from the Timbers or an international roster spot for 2013. Nothing too bad, I think although I suppose those international roster spots are becoming quite useful these days.
So back to my further jaw dropping... for those that don't know Mike Fucito was quite the fan favorite in Seattle. In fact there was a bit of a protest at his being traded away to Montreal in the first place. The fact that he's now a Timbers man is more than a little funny, in my opinion.
Additionally, however, I'm left wondering what the Portland Timbers will do with yet another forward. My guess is that either Fucito himself, or more likely given the conditional state of his trade, that another forward is likely on the chopping block. It's certainly an interesting situation that has seriously left me scratching my head.
Full presser after the jump:
PORTLAND, Ore. — The Portland Timbers today acquired forward Mike Fucito from the Montreal Impact. Conditioned upon Fucito's 2012 performance, Montreal will either receive the Timbers’ highest second-round 2013 SuperDraft pick or a 2013 international roster slot (through Dec. 31, 2013). Timbers general manager Gavin Wilkinson made the announcement.
"Mike is a player who brings MLS and CONCACAF experience to the club," said John Spencer, head coach of the Timbers. "He provides us with another experienced, quality option up top."
Fucito, 26, was acquired by the expansion Impact on Feb. 17 from Seattle Sounders FC, along with Lamar Neagle, in a trade for U.S. international Eddie Johnson. Selected in the fourth round of the 2009 MLS SuperDraft, Fucito played his first three MLS seasons with Sounders FC, making 23 appearances (13 starts) and recording a career-high two goals and two assists during the 2011 season.
A native of Westford, Mass., Fucito was a key contributor in the 2011 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup and also competed with Seattle in the 2010-11 and 2011-12 CONCACAF Champions League tournaments. He has five goals in eight career matches in CONCACAF Champions League play.
He played collegiately at Harvard University, where he ranks among the school’s all-time scoring leaders with 32 goals and 24 assists during his career with the Crimson.
Born: March 29, 1986 in Westford, Mass.
Hometown: Westford, Mass.
Last Club: Montreal Impact
College: Harvard University
Citizenship: United States