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Portland signs Kris Boyd as designated player

KrisBoyd (Getty)

The Portland Timbers were looking for a strong target forward to help fill the role that Kenny Cooper never could quite fill, and they have turned to a proven goal-scorer to do the job.

The Timbers have signed Scottish striker Kris Boyd as a Designated Player, the team announced on Monday. Boyd, the Scottish Premier League's all-time leading scorer, joins the Timbers after a failed move to Turkish side Eskisehirspor ended prematurely due to unpaid wages.

Boyd had been in talks with the Houston Dynamo, but concerns about the heat in Texas, which can be brutal in the summer, ultimately led Boyd to pass on a move there before he eventually reached a deal with the Timbers. According to the Houston Chronicle, the Timbers are sending a first-round draft pick in 2013 to Houston for Boyd's Discovery rights.

What do you think of this signing? See Boyd being the player who helps turn Portland into a playoff team?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Are you serious? You don’t have to trust Kinnear to know that this post is absurd. Hasn’t won since 2007? Constantly sloughs the forward position?

  2. I’m not sure. I’ve heard other people suggest that AEG footdrags on DPs or big money signings for Houston but AEG/Leiwecke were the ones saying Go Big in the press. I have no inside information but we have been so consistent about our personnel approach that I’m more inclined to believe what I have said, which is that I think we lowball targets, tell them they can have a contract through mid-summer or the remainder of the season, and then offer an improved salary past that post if they prove their worth. But few of the players survive the trial period….Koke quit before we canned him in July last year. If you want to speak directly you mention the trial period, which I recall hearing about with players other than Koke last year. If you prefer to be nice, you just kind of say it’s a hot place, few will question that.

    I also think they are developing a habit of perseverating. Second pass at Sanchez, second pass at Boniek, some of the names aren’t even new. Even Camargo was a second pass, and Watson was brought back in during the season after his preseason offers were deemed too high.

    I agree money does not equal quality but we were paying DP-level money for Ching (subject to allocation or something?), it’s not like the cap hit isn’t already there. The elite may want LA or NY but I’m thinking more about the next Emilio (who was in Honduras), who might be more like Costly or Ching’s price, but won’t be cheap. I just don’t believe anyone productive we get not through trade or draft is going to be cheap. It’s like QB or pitcher, or #10, people pay a premium for talent.

  3. Well its not that they are not willing to spend the money, its that half of the ownership is unwilling to give them extra money because they are giving it to the galaxy. I do not have hard facts to support this, but I believe AEG gives the dynamo the minimum amount of what MLS requires. And over the last couple years we have seen some offers go by from Houston that were D.P. or close to D.P. money for people they wanted but never got. However, they do not necessarily need to spend money just to spend money, they just need to be picking up quality players, and right now we currently do not see that.

  4. The problem with non-drafted strikers is I think you tend to get what you pay for. Houston is honestly a tad cheap with their salaries, out there picking around the rubbish pile for players like Dalglish, Akinbiyi, Caraccio, Koke, and Costly. Dalglish had a nice run of a couple months — off the bench mind you — and Koke was probably hard done by because of how his tiki-taka style fit in a long ball 442. But generally we’ve been cheap about signing forwards and so since 2007 we’ve struggled for offensive punch. We did make the finals but in both 09 and 11 we went out to LA because we literally could not score. I don’t think we have a good enough defense yet to assume a shutout and play for PKs. We need scoring if we want silverware.

    One thing Houston once did well was picking up players like Jaqua who were second or third tier US players, but I think MLS has changed in terms of how easy it is to just sign some returning American.

    Personally I think we need to splurge on a F but I don’t think that’s how DK sees it.

  5. Remains to be seen. More attention has been paid to defensive signings this off season than any other position in Portland. The D was better the second half with Chabala and Palmer than it was at the start with Wallace and Hall. Brought in new blood in the center with Mosquera and Jean-Baptiste (though I suspect the later is a project). That leaves Bruner / Danso really the only two fighting it out for the other central defense spot who saw starting action last year. Horst is hurt and won’t be back until mid season.

    Definately could use an upgrade at R back (Palmer) but hopefully with some experience together he can work with Chara and Marcelin better than they did at times last year (keystone cops at times).

  6. This puts Portland in the upper echelon talentwise. The defense should be improved with Mosquera and Jean-Baptiste and they will get goals with Boyd.

    Now, thy have to back it up on the pitch and win some road games.

  7. Are you suggesting that Houston isn’t a big city? Also Dynamo received a 1st round draft pick, not #1 pick. The draft order has not been determined yet.

  8. Well this the 3rd of a 5 year Collective Bargaining Agreement, CBA, so in 3 years there will be a new one in place. I think that one should bring our Salary cap up to about 5 since we are around 3 and a half million now with a 5% or is it 10 each year?

    I think by then a 5.5 million dollars should be reasonable, personally I’d like 6-7 million which would make them very competitive, even with Argentina and Brazil for the South American players from other lower level countries go play in big clubs in those leagues… maybe the level is not close but for sake of wages it would place us in similar levels…

    It would also prevent us from losing guys like Parkhurst, Rolfe, Califf etc to Scandinavian or 2nd Division lower tier clubs

    Lets hope for 5 million+ by Jan 2015!

  9. lol which says nothing about Houston, the mecca of oil and gas. This past summer we hit above the 90’s for at least 60 consecutive days.

  10. Uh, he scored 12 goals in 37 games in the Championship. Not at all shabby, especially considering he was benched by Middlesbrough for an extended period of time.

  11. The policy behind the Discovery Rule is to stop MLS teams from getting into a bidding war and driving up salaries. Ergo, it’s a cost cutting measure.

  12. Good comment. I don’t buy the heat excuse either. Adam Moffat is from Scottland, came here from Potland, playing big minutes and is scoring goals from the cheap seats. He also has a beard which has to be Africa hot to play with IMHO. Hainault is from Canada and put in 2,800 minutes for crying out loud. Regardless, with more than half the world’s footballing population nearer the equater and not the north sea (i mean pole), we are bound to put someone on the DP list sooner or later – PS, we made the finals without a showpiece didn’t we?

  13. B/c the vast majority of foreign players haven’t been outside of Europe and/or South America, don’t know squat about this country and would prefer to play in LA or NYC.

    This signing illustrates the point: it’s generally harder for KC, Columbus, Houston, Colorado to sign Europeans who envision coming to America and seeing the bright lights of the big city.

    Let’s be honest: discovery rules impact at best a handful of players each season. And the majority of those players are going to be USL guys out of contract.

    As for the specifics….I think Houston made out fine…they get a #1 pick. And b/c the West is so tough, it’s not likely to be at the bottom of the first round. I think Portland was unique suited to attract Boyd. Damp, rainy weather that probably feels a bit like Scotland, a blue-collar city that is pedestrian friendly, a coach who’s a big name in Scotland. I bet there are only 2-3 other teams in MLS who could have attracted Boyd. And yes, for all it’s draw, Houston is a really tough place to be in the summer–I’d argue much worse than Dallas.

  14. I think you’re underrating Clark and overrating Cruz. I agree with the assessment of Watson, but obviously Dom doesn’t since he protected him in the Expansion Draft. Remember… Clark’s the guy who dribbled through 3 defenders to score the equalizer against FCD while a man down last season. He was hampered by injuries for a while, though.

    That said, our shallow roster makes me nervous. We only have 20 signed players right now. We do have 10 trialists/draft picks in camp, and I’d expect at least half to stick. At least we’ll hit the midseason transfer window before CCL play heats up.

  15. Expansion drafts make sense and are a part of ever major American sports league (even if they’re not expanding quite as often as MLS).

    This “discovery rule” is complete nonsense, it shouldn’t apply to established players on first division teams in other countries, any MLS team should be able to sign someone like that.
    Otherwise I would be putting a couple of my 10 annual discovery claims on Ibra and Ronaldo, just so if they ever come to MLS, the Galaxy or Red Bulls have to pay me for their rights.
    This is a very American concept though, it’s sort of like Columbus discovering America when there were already people here.


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