The MLS Re-Entry draft is this Friday and it is a chance for Portland to possibly fill in some of their bench and or starters. Before we get to who Portland can pick up, let's talk about how the process works. The draft consists of 2 rounds and the draft order is the reverse of how the teams finished in a league wide table. So the draft order will look like this:
1. Toronto FC
2. Chivas USA
3. Portland Timbers
4. New England Revolution
5. Philadelphia Union
6. Colorado Rapids
7. FC Dallas
8. Montreal Impact
9. Columbus Crew
10. Vancouver Whitecaps FC
11. Chicago Fire
12. Real Salt Lake
13. New York Red Bulls
14. Sporting Kansas City
15. San Jose Earthquakes
16. Seattle Sounders FC
17. D.C. United
18. Houston Dynamo
19. LA Galaxy
As stated above the draft is split into two different rounds with the first round occurring this Friday and the second round occurring a week later. For players drafted in round 1 of the Re-Entry Draft, the following rules apply:
A team which selects a player in that stage must exercise the existing option for, or make a real contract offer to, that player.
If a player is selected who has an option year (or years) remaining, that player will automatically be added to the team's roster - in other words, they can't draft him and then just release him.
If a player is selected who is (out of contract), and that player refuses the contract offerered, the drafting club will hold the right of first refusal for that player in MLS.
Next week we will talk more about the rules that apply to the second round. Now, taking into account the rules above let's take a look at who Portland should at least think about drafting.
(from Will) Gavin, despite having a name that will cause some Timbers fans to retire their two-sticks or risk confusion, is a solid midfielder who is affordable and, importantly, can fit into Porter's system after spending three years under the new Timbers' head coach at Akron. Captain Jack is not getting any younger, and the Timbers' other options at the defensive midfielder spot are tenuous at best. Most importantly, the Timbers could take him in the first round of the draft (barring a significant raise in his option) without taking on an overly inflated salary, as would be the case with many of the other options in the re-entry draft.
King was picked in Seattle's expansion draft and then traded to DC United a year later, after scoring two game-winning goals in their first USOC run. He played for the U-18 and U-23 National Teams but was not able to crack the starting line-up last year with some good players ahead of him. He is someone to look at if the price is right -- most likely the first round is not the place to nab him, but he is worthy of consideration.
Segares is a bit of stretch, as his salary stands at $210,000, but he does play a position Portland has had a hole at for the last 2 years. As a left back for the Chicago Fire he was a mainstay in the line-up and even played midfield in a pinch. Over the last 8 seasons he has played 178 games and 13 post season games, scoring 11 goals and doling out 13 assists. For a team that is looking for consistency at the outside back position, he might be worth the salary hit. Then again, he might not.
Freeman is another acquisition who could fill a hole the Timbers have had on their roster, right back. Hunter was one of the main reasons Kosuke Kimura was considered expendable in Colorado and hence traded to the Portland Timbers. His salary is much more manageable at $110K compared to Segares, but he might not have the skills Caleb Porter is looking for.