Thursday, December 18, 2008

Breakers roll back into Boston April 11

I rarely get excited about press releases. I suppose it's because 95% of my inbox is filled by them. That, and heck, how often are releases in general that exciting?*

(*Granted, I haven't been a journalist for that many years, but is there such thing as an "exciting" press release? I can't think of one. However, I have a nagging feeling that there are many examples of exciting press releases. Feel free to dispel the above premise in the comments section.)

But last night, I opened my inbox to find a release from the Boston Breakers announcing their home opener, which has been set for April 11, 2009.


Why do I find this exciting?

Well, I've actually been looking forward to the Breakers home opener since the announcement of Women's Professional Soccer was made back in early-2007. This is largely due to the fact that the very first soccer game I attended was a U.S. Women's National Team match in Foxboro in 1999. Ever since, I've always held women's soccer dear to my heart.

Unfortunately, that sentiment wasn't enough for me to take the train to Boston for a Breakers match. Thus, I missed the first Breakers run back in the early-2000s. I have excuses. None of them are good. So, I never got to see Kristine Lilly and Angela Hucles don the Breakers kit and scurry around Nickerson Field.

After WUSA folded in 2003, my time machine began to malfunction. A missed the opportunity. Sigh.

Luckily, the Breakers returned. They came back in the recently-formed Women's Professional Soccer. Not only were players like Lilly, Hucles, Abby Wambach and Shannon Boxx given a second chance to help women's pro soccer succeed, but I was given the opportunity to cover them this time around.

At first, 2008 was the projected timetable for WPS' inaugural season. But eventually, it was pushed back to 2009, presumably to grow stronger roots and build better infrastructure. That move seems to have paid off, as WPS just announced a $10 million partnership with Puma this week.

I've already calculated the number of days (114) until Opening Day. It'll be a thrill for me to see Lilly, Hucles and, this time around, Heather Mitts in Breakers blue. The fact that they're all sticking around New England, rather than the occasional, once-every-three-years World Cup Qualifier or friendly that the WNT plays in Foxboro is just awesome. I love covering the WNT. Now, I get to cover many of them throughout the summer.

Exciting? You bet.


This story is worth more than a passing comment, but I figured something is better than nothing.

How the heck did Toronto get Dwayne DeRosario, one of the league's best offensive weapons, for a rookie defender and allocation money? Moreover, how - why - did Houston allow this? 01010101!!!!

I understand that the league's single-entity structure played a role in this. I also understand that DeRosario, who hails from Canada, likely expressed a desire to play in his home country.

But come on. Trades in MLS are often about as fair as Rod Blagojevich. Rarely does a trade occur in which both sides truly benefit. In this case, Houston got twenty cents on the dollar in this trade - unless, of course, the allocation money approached seven figures.*

(*It probably didn't.)

How fair was this trade? Let's disregard the allocation money and look at what we know: the stats.

James: 13 G, 1 G, 0 A, 1 SOG

DeRosario: 24 G, 7 G, 2 A, 34 SOG

I know what what you're saying: James is a defender. Obviously, the disparity in offensive output is going to favor D-Ro. I'm cognizant of that. Even so, why would Houston trade one of its best players - nevermind, one of the league's best players - for a rookie defender and some cash?

Why? Because that's how MLS rolls.


Contrary to what many of my friends think, I had absolutely nothing to do with the Rhode Island Stingrays change of home venue next season (scroll to the bottom half of the page).

Trust me. I've got alot more people to pay off before I can even imagine wielding that kind of influence.

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