Danleigh Borman was selected by the New England Revolution in phase one of the MLS Re-Entry Draft process. Borman was the only player TFC made available for the draft.
TFC acquired Borman, Generation Adidas midfielder Tony Tchani and New York’s first-round SuperDraft pick for De Rosario in April. De Rosario would later get dealt to D.C. United, but would also go on to win the Golden Boot as the league’s top scorer and become the first Canadian to ever be named MLS MVP.
Tchani was traded to Columbus earlier this year, with Andy Iro and Leandre Griffit coming back in exchange. Griffit was already set free by TFC. Now Borman is gone for nothing in exchange. So, the assets left from the De Rosario trade are Iro and the first-round pick — which will be the 12th overall selection in the draft.
As was the case last season, most MLS GMs stayed away from Stage 1 of the Re-Entry Draft, where GM’s had to guarantee the wages of players selected would be comparable to what they made in the previous season. Last year, only two players were selected — and only one, D.C. United’s Joseph Ngwenya, actually saw playing time in MLS during the 2011 campaign.
This year, only Borman and two others were snapped up. Arturo Alvarez, left unprotected by Real Salt Lake, was claimed by Chivas USA. And defender Carlos Mendes, who was the last member of the Red Bulls to have worn an old MetroStars shirt, was plucked by the Columbus Crew.
The draft was hailed as the great compromise that helped MLS and the MLS Players’ Union avoid a work stoppage in 2010. Under the old rules, teams could hold what amounted to a 48-hour first right of refusal on players whose contracts had just expired or didn’t have the options picked up. If a deal expired, the player’s last team would have the right to match any offer made by another club if a player re-signed to the MLS pool. That would last 48 hours, and other teams could bid on a player’s services, as well.
Because of the collaborative nature of MLS general managers, players felt that the system restricted movement and wanted some form of free agency granted. The Re-Entry Draft was supposed to be the great compromise. Veterans whose contracts were not renewed or expired would be made available through a draft. But, in the two years since it began, only five players have been claimed in the Stage 1 process, where players are guaranteed to make comparable money to previous deals.