The long-awaited/dreaded expansion draft occurred this evening and the excitement was palpable..!
Ooooookay, maybe not so much.
So many teams had dealt for protection that the draft itself took maybe twenty minutes of the two hours CBSSN had blocked out for it…
…and left the CBS talent desperately vamping to fill the time. For Portland fans the most interesting thing that happened was San Diego’s third and fourth picks.
Which weren’t picks at all, but “passes”. Kassouf – who’s been all over this story – immediately linked these to the handshake deal he reported last week and, sure enough, as soon as the transfer window re-opened at the end of the draft the deal was announced.
Portland sends Christen Westphal and the rights to Amirah Ali to San Diego in return for $50,000 in allocation money – and the protection from the draft implicit in one of the “passes”.
As an individual I will miss Westphal, a player who truly grew during her time here. As a Thorns fan I can’t help but think that the new FO of LeBlanc and Wilkinson made good moves to protect the core of the roster.
Now we move on to the NCAA draft this weekend, and the Thorns are slightly better off than they were the last time we visited the event, having nicked the 13th overall – first second round – pick from Angel City as part of the Charley/Lussi deal.
We’ll see what sort of quality remains on the table on Saturday.
I’m not all that excited.
And before we go, a reminder that to the people who own these teams you and I, the fans, are pretty much fungible; OL Reign is returning to Seattle.
I wonder how well this will work when the Reign aren’t paired up with the Sounders. I seriously doubt that they’ll get many crossover fans – the old Queens had five seasons under the Space Needle to draw from the Sounders fanbase and got bupkis.
So tip an empty glass to the poor sods in Tacoma who thought they had a local pro soccer team. The brights lights of the big city were too seductive, and they’ve been dropped like yesterday’s laundry.