2011 MLS Expansion Draft: Live Commentary

2011 MLS Expansion Draft: Live Commentary

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2011 MLS Expansion Draft: Live Commentary

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The Portland Timbers and Vancouver Whitecaps are ready to make the first selections in the 2011 MLS Expansion Draft.

The Timbers have already begun building their team with the signings of USSF D-2 standouts Ryan Pore Eddie Johnson and Bright Dike, while the Whitecaps recently unveiled U.S. national team defender Jay DeMerit as their first major acquisition.

Both sides will move closer to forming the teams we could see when the 2011 season kicks off next spring.

I will be providing live commentary from the expansion draft so please feel free to follow along here. As always, you are welcome to share your own thoughts and opinions in the comments section below.

Enjoy the draft (Commentary is after the jump):

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FINAL– That's all for now. Feel free to share your thoughts on the expansion draft in the comments section below. 

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2:54pm– That's that. Portland started well, but Vancouver finished well and may have had the edge overall. Portland spent two picks on lottery tickets with Findley and Bornstein. If either of those players comes back then you like the Timbers draft. Otherwise, Vancouver wins today.

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2:53pm– Vancouver selects John Thorrington with the final pick. A great pick, a steal really, and Chicago will wind up regretting not protecting him. 

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2:52pm– Funny but I think Portland had a much better first half of the draft while Vancouver has had a stronger second half of the draft.

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2:51pm– Portland selects Arturo Alvarez.

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2:50pm– Vancouver selects Jonathan Leathers from KC, who I like MUCH better than Jordan Graye.

Better pick from the Whitecaps.

KC pulls back Eric Kronberg. Why? I have no idea. Guess they REALLY hope someone takes Chance Myers or Jimmy Conrad.

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2:49pm– Vancouver two picks left.

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2:47pm– Portland selects Jordan Graye from D.C. United. Not a fan of that pick at all.

D.C. United pulled back Kurt Morsink. No, really. They did.

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2:45pm– Portland is up. Corey Ashe perhaps?

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2:43pm– Vancouver selects Joe Cannon. Not a surprise. Yes, Pat Onstad would have been a nice nostalgia pick, but Cannon is a solid starter.

San Jose pulls back Tim Ward.

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2:41pm– Portland selects Jonathan Bornstein. Double Wow?

Chivas USA is off the board.

Who's doing their draft, Bob Bradley? 

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2:40pm– The Union luck out today. Losing Salinas and Moreno doesn't hurt Philly at all. 

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2:38pm– Vancouver selects Alejandro Moreno from Philadelphia.

Union are off the board and get lucky not to lose Brad Knighton. Would love to be in the room for Peter Nowak's first meeting with Knighton.

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2:36pmPortland selects Peter Lowry from Chicago. Very underrated player, sneaky good goal scorer. 

Chicago pulls back Dasan Robinson. Fire got lucky there.

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2:35pm– Portland is up.  

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2:32pmVancouver selects O'Brian White from Toronto. Still don't get why he wasn't protected.

Whitecaps should give White a chance to play. Toronto pulls back Julian DeGuzman.

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2:31pm– Vancouver is up next.

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2:30pmPortland selects Robbie Findley. Not that surprising. Findley played college soccer for Oregon State.

Real Salt Lake is off the board.

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2:29pm– Surprises? Philly pulling back Chris Seitz and exposing Brad Knighton. How do you bring him back now? Definitely a vote of no confidence by the Union with that move.

As for who is out there. Doesn't look like either team will be taking Jimmy Conrad, which is a bit surprising. O'Brian White is out there and someone I see Vancouver taking. You also have John Thorrington. 

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2:27pm– Halfway through this expansion draft it's tough not to give the edge to Portland. Timbers have grabbed five solid players. Vancouver took three MLS starters first, but Salinas and Gordon are questionable in my book.

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2:25pmVancouver selects Alan Gordon. Just don't get that one.

Chivas USA pulls back Mariano Trujillo.

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2:24pm– Vancouver is up now. They have to go centerback eventually.

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2:21pmPortland selects David Horst from Real Salt Lake. Interesting one. He's a big centerback who Portland surely saw in USSF D-2 play.

Real Salt Lake pulls back Collen Warner. WOW, they got lucky there.

Color me shocked that Portland didn't grab Collen Warner. Timbers will regret that.

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2:20pmVancouver takes Shea Salinas from Philadelphia.

Philly pulls back Chris Seitz. WOW.

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2:18pm– Loving the Timbers draft so far, and not just because they've taken three players I had them taking.

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2:17pmPortland selects Anthony Wallace. Colorado pulls back Wells Thompson.

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2:17pm– Sturgis is a very good player who finally put injury issues behind him. Will Sturgis stay healthy? If he does, Vancouver got a steal. Seattle will miss him.

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2:15pmVancouver selects Nathan Sturgis from Seattle.

Sounders are done and Blaise Nkufo stays with Seattle.

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2:12pmPortland takes Adam Moffatt. Columbus loses Brunner and Moffatt.

That's a good pick for the Timbers. Moffatt can start for you right away.

Columbus will go with Ekpo and probably Danny O'Rourke in central midfield.

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2:10pmVancouver selects Atiba Harris. Interesting move there. Harris is a useful player, but the only way he's dangerous is when he tackles people.

No more Dallas players can be taken, including Eric Avila and Kyle Davies. They just lost starters Dax McCarty and Atiba Harris.

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2:10pm– Vancouver up next. Kyle Davies, Blaise Nkufo, O'Brian White are possibilities.

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2:09pm– Columbus pulls back Kevin Burns.

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2:08pmPortland takes Eric Brunner.

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2:07pm– Is Nyassi the best player available? No, but you have to consider positions as well as the fact that if the other expansion team takes someone from a team, you could lose out on the chance to take someone. 

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2:06pm– Patrick Ianni is pulled back by Seattle.

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2:05pmSanna Nyassi to Vancouver. The Whitecaps get a winger and hurt arch-rival Seattle.

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2:04pm– Vancouver is up next.

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2:03pm– Dallas pulls back Daniel Hernandez. Surprising. I really don't think Dallas understand expansion draft machinations.

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2pmPORTLAND-Dax McCarty. No shock. Everyone saw it coming.

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1:58pm– Quincy Amarikwa? What a waste of a pick he would be.

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1:55pm– I agree with Greg Lalas on John Thorrington. He could be a steal here coming off an injury-hit season. Chicago may regret not keeping him.

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1:54pm– I know a lot of people were wondering about the designated players I had go in my Fox Soccer mock expansion draft. I can definitely see NKufo to Vancouver. As for Angel to Portland? That seems unlikely unless there's a trade in place. Schelotto to Vancouver? That one was more a wishful thinking pick on my part. Doubt that marriage would work. 

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1:52pm– Listen folks, FC Dallas flat-out dropped the ball in leaving Dax McCarty unprotected. Whether they like Eric Alexander or not, the fact remains they could have traded McCarty for value, perhaps even a first-round pick. 

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1:51pm– The expansion draft starts at 2pm. Get your coffee ready and feel free to mute your computers for the next nine minutes. 

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1:50pm– When will the actual expansion draft start? Hopefully soon. Really interested to see whether it's Pat Onstad, Joe Cannon or even a Brad Knighton as Vancouver's goalkeeper pick.

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1:47pm– No, the picks haven't started. We'll be forced to listen to some analysis from the MLSSoccer guys. Or you can just wait for me to tell you who the picks are.

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1:30pm–  We're about 15 minutes away from the expansion draft. Consensus is that Portland will take Dax McCarty with the first pick, but at least a few think the Timbers may go in a number of directions. I'll go with McCarty.

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