General managers, coaches, scouts, agents and loads of players are descending on Florida today. The 2013 MLS Combine is schedule to kickoff this weekend as nearly 70 players hope to show their skills and prove they have what it takes to be a SuperDraft pick in next week’s draft.
Naturally, just as in any year, there are loads of questions and rumors going through the Combine. I have a few here today to discuss and hopefully over the next couple of days we’ll get some answers.
Will Toronto FC keep their top picks?
Easily the biggest story line to follow over the next week. Toronto FC has the first and third overall picks in the SuperDraft next Thursday and many including myself still believe that one of those picks is up for a trade.
My gut tells me they’ll hold on to one of these picks and from what some folks around the league are telling me, that top pick is up for grabs. I see a number of teams possibly getting into discussions with Toronto over that pick as TFC will really be wise to trade down, pick up a good chunk of allocation money and maybe even a player for that top pick.
New England looking to move?
Something tells me the Revs and their four picks in the two round draft won’t be happy with staying where they are at. They have the forth overall pick and then a load in the second round. Two of their three second round picks are still quality picks at 21 and 23, by packaging them and some allocation they could move back into the first round and snag another quality player.
Will they go through with this plan? Maybe. It is a bit of speculation on my part right now but I see New England as a team that needs to make a splash in this draft. Sometimes it just comes down to quality over quantity.
What is Philadelphia’s plan in the draft?
No first round picks but two mid-second round picks have the Union, a pretty decent drafting team left out in the cold a bit. They have a solid core of defenders that they could unload at least one of them to get back into the first round. Who would be willing to part with a pick for one of their defenders? Depending on who and how much that player will cost, I could see a deal struck with someone like San Jose, RSL, or even Seattle.
Will FC Dallas pull the trigger on any deal?
Sitting at number seven, FC Dallas has a potential shot at a Generation adidas player. But most in Dallas know that Schellas Hyndman doesn’t like to draft young strikers through the draft. He has a club that is close to being back to full strength and getting a project type player just isn’t in the cards. So does he trade down? Trade up? Or stay right where they are at with the number seven and number 20 picks?
My gut says that Dallas will stay where they are at. Hyndman will continue to draft his way and that is alright even though fans are hoping to see more of a roll of the dice type of draft and not one that sees them get another defensive minded player.
Will Portland get back into the Draft?
Yeah, as weird as it may be the Portland Timbers have no picks. None. Zip. Nada.
Okay, you get the point. So what exactly will Caleb Porter and company do for the Combine and SuperDraft? Honestly, they’ll squeeze back in somehow. I’d be shocked if they sat out the draft entirely due to no picks. At worst they’ll have the Supplemental Draft the following week.
Or maybe Porter knows something that we all can only guess – this draft pool really isn’t anything special.