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Examining Real Salt Lake's Unprotected + TheNimo Situation

Real Salt Lake presents itself as an enigma to the Timbers come this year's Expansion Draft. On the one hand they offer a host of strong players due top their careful planning and building over the last couple of seasons. On the other hand, however, they own the rights to a young Portland local who has tons of potential: Alex Nimo.


Over the last couple of weeks, a couple of choice blogs have released what they believe will be Salt Lake's protected and unprotected list. Here they are:

Protected:

Kyle Beckerman
Nat Borchers
Nick Rimando
Jamison Olave
Javier Morales
Will Johnson
Alvaro Saborio
Paulo Junior
Collen Warner
Fabian Espindola
Tony Beltran
Luis Gil (GA)
Alex Nimo (GA)

Unprotected:

Andy Williams
Jean Alexandre
Robbie Russell
Kyle Reynish
Tim Melia
Rauwshan McKenzie
David Horst
Pablo Campos
Chris Schuler
Chris Wingert
Nelson Gonzalez
Ned Grabavoy
Robbie Findley

WVHooligan:

Protected:

Kyle Beckerman
Javier Morales
Nick Rimando
Jamison Olave
Nat Borchers
Alvaro Saborio
Will Johnson
Tony Beltran
Fabian Espindola
Collen Warner
David Horst
Luis Gil (GA)
Alex Nimo (GA)

Unprotected:

Chris Wingert
Robbie Findley
Jean Alexandre
Paulo Junior
Pablo Campos
Andy Williams
Chris Schuler
Nelson Gonzalez
Chris Wingert
Ned Grabavoy
Rauwshan McKenzie
Tim Melia
Kyle Reynish
Robbie Russell

Interesting lists for two reasons:

  1. Both Ned Grabavoy and Robbie Findley were left off both. While Robbie might seem like the easy pick, his current contract situation would make him a dicey option at best for either the Timbers or Whitecaps. Ned, however, is still under contract and has a decent history to go with his name. He could become a powerful force in our midfield given the opportunity (which seems wasted on RSL).
  2. Alex Nimo.
Both blogs are in agreement that the likely situation for the Timbers/RSL will be that they'll opt to trade Nimo in exchange for the Timbers not selecting any RSL players in the expansion draft. My only quetsion is: is he really worth that? Sure Nimo is a fine young player who has tons of potential, but then again, we've already got one of those in Dike and we're going to grab a couple more in the Super Draft. The key part of any solid Expansion Draft building is to get a nice mixture of veteran and young players so that they can compliment each other on the field: experience with energy, if you will.

While I'd love to have Nimo play for our team, being a Portland local and all, I simply can't justify the cost. Not with Grabavoy and Wingert on the table. Both would prove valuable to an overall pick, in my opinion.

Therefor, my final picks will be: Ned Grabavoy or Chris Wingert from RSL to PDX.