Impact ignore retirement threat, make Ching first pick in expansion draft


The Montreal Impact didn't waste any time in making a statement in the MLS Expansion Draft.

Despite threats that Brian Ching would retire if selected, the Impact made the Houston Dynamo forward and captain the first overall pick in Wednesday's draft. 

"I know that he's expressed that he doesn't want to be here, but we would be delighted to get him here," said Montreal coach Jesse Marsch, who added that he informed Ching of his decision in a phone call Wednesday morning. "If it doesn't work out that way, then it doesn't, but we think there's value to him. Our initial phase was just to think about what he is as a player and what value he has.

"When you look at the draft, you have to look at it in terms of building your team and what pieces you want to put in place for your team moving forward, but also how to maximize the value of the draft. If it doesn't work out, then hopefully we'll be able to figure out another situation that's beneficial for everybody involved."

In addition to Ching, the Impact pounced on the chance to grab former Chivas USA and U.S. Under-20 defender Zarek Valentin, a year after he was an early first-round selection and a Generation adidas signing.

"We were delighted that he was available, and quite surprised actually," Marsch said. "We consider ourselves very lucky to have access to him."

The Impact were able to add another of Chivas' young assets by drafting Seattle right back James Riley and then trading him to the Goats for 24-year-old forward Justin Braun and Gerson Mayen. In a separate deal, the Impact dealt allocation money to Seattle for Tyson Wahl.

Here are the 10 players the Impact selected in Wednesday's draft to join Hassoun Camara, Nelson Rivas, Evan Bush and Sinisa Ubiparipovic on the club's MLS roster:


Brian Ching, F, Houston Dynamo

Zarek Valentin, D, Chivas USA

Justin Mapp, M, Philadelphia Union

Bobby Burling, D, San Jose Earthquakes

Jeb Brovsky, M, Vancouver Whitecaps

Collen Warner, M, Real Salt Lake

Josh Gardner, D, Columbus Crew

Sanna Nyassi, M, Colorado Rapids

James Riley, D, Seattle Sounders (traded to Chivas USA for Justin Braun, Gerson Mayen)

Seth Sinovic, D, Sporting Kansas City


What do you think of the Impact's selections? What do you make of the decision to pick Ching?

Share your thoughts below.

This entry was posted in MLS- Expansion, MLS- Montreal Impact. Bookmark the permalink.

224 Responses to Impact ignore retirement threat, make Ching first pick in expansion draft

  1. Brian Ching says:

    Stupid move drafting Ching.

  2. Karl says:


  3. Oshi says:

    Damn good haul, damn good. They would have been retarded not to pick up Valentin and Nyassi, and the Braun deal just makes me wonder what the hell Chivas is thinking…
    Interesting to see where the Ching ordeal goes.

  4. An MLS says:

    Thank you for taking Justin Mapp off our hands, I must go buy an Impact scarf to show my appreciation.

  5. seth says:

    Way to waste a pick, just out of spite.

  6. Lee says:

    Is it too early to say that this Impact team may not be all that bad for an expansion team? I can think of a couple of teams this roster looks better than already *Cough* New England *Cough*

  7. David K says:

    Taking Ching was kind of a dickmove. Let the man move into the stadium he helped build FFS. He deserves better than to be trade bait for an allocation.

  8. A R says:

    Some great selections, and the trade for Braun/Mayen helps add insurance in case of a Ching let down.

  9. A says:

    ..if nothing else, the Ching move helps bring some publicity to the club.

  10. Charles says:

    Seattle could have had Braun for Riley ?

    Wouldn’t that have been better than putting Riley up for adoption ?

  11. chris says:

    If i was ching i would retire

  12. ex_sweeper says:

    I think that if Ike Opara doesn’t recover from his multiple foot injuries, the Quakes in big(ger)trouble. Losing Bobby Burling after dealing away Brandon McDonald? Granted, Burling was prone to the occasional screw-up, but he did give height and toughness. What are we left with at CB? Jason Hernandez, who gives up 50 pounds on most attackers, Tim Ward, who barely got off the bench last year, and Attakora, who looked OK in limited minutes but is an unknown quantity.

  13. jimbo says:

    Warner was probably the one guy I didn’t want to see RSL lose. However, at the same time, he didn’t make quite the impact I’d have expected this season, so we’ll see. Maybe it’ll turn out to be no big loss in the long run.

  14. ShaggyReAL says:

    RSL was going to lose someone but I’m glad to see Paulo and Ned staying with RSL. Good Luck in Montreal Warner.

  15. Benny Dargle says:

    Let’s say the Impact saw 9 players they wanted, plus they knew Ching still had some miles on the treads and could be useful. They pick him first and try to persuade him to come, hoping the #1 spot helps prove their interest and change his mind. If it doesn’t work, they try to trade him back to Houston for something. If they really didn’t want anyone else on the list, that something would be better than picking a player they don’t like. Makes sense as a strategy.

  16. strider says:

    Yeah, the wrong kind (and for a very limited number of people). Hard to believe they will benefit from this. It is a business, but it doesn’t show much class.

  17. strider says:

    Oh, you all need to change the Riley part of the post. Obviously they didn’t trade Riley FOR Riley and Mayen, but for Braun and Mayen.

  18. Karl says:

    At this point I can only assume the owners of Chivas are pulling a ‘Major League’ and trying to make the team so bad that they’ll have to relocate.

  19. sciroccer says:

    Sweet! They took Collen Warner from RSL! Yeah! He’s okay at best, and never fit into RSL’s style/system. He messed RSL up more then helped. His lack of focas cost RSL the lose’s in a couple of games last year including the one in Portland. And he will be absolutely NO threat to play against.I hope Ching retires he’s past his prime. Oh Happy Day!!!!

  20. Mr.Maxican says:

    Question, whats the easiest way to start a rivalry? No matter what Houston vs Montreal will be sold out. Any suggests on what the classy fans in Houston should throw on the field?

  21. Hincha Tim says:

    I’m glad Montreal did not take Ned Grabavoy especially. Would much rather lose Warner then Grabavoy who is one of the most underrated players in the league. And I’d rather Montreal took Warner than Paulo Jr. who, if he can regain his form from 2010 could be a special player. Warner never impressed me when he got his chances. We’ll see…

  22. Jeff says:

    The makings of an instant rivalry with the selection of Ching. Gutsy move.

  23. ericj says:

    Meh, blame Houston for not protecting him. Montreal had every right to pick him.

  24. Matt (NEF) says:

    Already have Ochoa and White. SSFC didn’t need another project forward.

  25. Ed says:

    Blame Houston for not protecting him. It would have been stupid for Impact to pass on Ching.

  26. SWED says:

    Interesting that Seattle essentially loses two players when all week the FO has been talking about wishing they could keep everyone. Two outside backs leaving means they are definitely going to sign the Norwegian kid from Fredrikstad.

  27. doug says:

    maybe houston should have protected ching.

    obviously they got greedy here.

  28. T says:

    Didn’t want valentin to go.

  29. AlexS says:

    On the field? Nothing. Egging Marsch as comes though the tunnel on the other hand…

  30. Camjam says:

    I really agree. I don’t like losing Warner by any means, but I’m really glad that we didn’t lose Ned or Paulo Jr.

  31. CrowsFeet says:

    Anyone have the quote regarding Ching from immediately after the draft?

  32. ericj says:

    I agree. You can’t complain when you try to protect more than the allotted players with this kind of “ill retire” stunt.

  33. soccerroo says:

    I thought Ching would retire this year but I guess because the new stadium was opening he desided to play one more year. Now unsless something happens to send him back to Houston that will not happen.

    Funny thing is when the team moved from San Jose he was one of the players who was going to move back as soon as San Jose got a team.

  34. T says:

    Hope the canadians don’t stunt our young talent by not letting them play like they tried to do with Salgado in Vancouver, I prefer our young youth internationals to stay with the more established American clubs (except Red Bull who only field foreigners) just my opinion. The majority of the canuck clubs, maybe Montreal has a chance with this years expansion draft, have sucked and have been at the bottom of the table and I have no clue what is wrong with TFC having been in the league six years now.

  35. dan says:

    maybe Ching pick is to use him for trade “bait” to get someone else? if that is the case…. it could be a great move.

  36. Rory says:

    Hoping Colorado makes a trade and gets Nyassi back.

  37. SWED says:

    or at least I hope they do…

  38. lassidawg says:

    I like the move if they didn’t have anyone else in mind. Take him try and talk him into playing, trade him, or at the least weaken a division foe.

  39. T says:

    Warner was an interesting young prospect, but sometimes he tried to do “too much” from when I saw him play and didn’t try to keep things simple at times, being a young guy probably contributed to that. RSL will be able to manage without him I’m sure as they’ll add more to the team with trades and new transfer signings.

  40. The Imperative Voice says:

    How’s it dumb? If Houston will compensate them to get Ching back, rumored Hainault trade out there, they’ve created their own poker chip. How bad do you want him, eh?

    It’s only dumb if Houston refuses to buy him back in which case he probably does retire because (a) he’d probably never play for Marsch after his Bradley experiences and (b) he’d just as soon be in the Dynamo FO as play anywhere else. But then they don’t have the poster boy for the new stadium. So even the stubborn negotiator Kinnear almost has to give in and pretty quick to keep the marketing train rolling towards the station.

    Houston tried to game the system and protect other people and Montreal took advantage….

  41. ec says:

    I blame Hou for not protecting Ching, obviously they were trying to game the system, got what they deserved. Good move, Montreal!

    Love the Nyassi and Riley picks, hate drafting Justin Mapp too inconsistent and a pretty hefty salary in the $200k range.

  42. doug says:

    answer – mo johnston!

  43. Brian says:

    Not a bad move drafting Ching. They could trade him back to Houston for something else they need.

  44. Yeah but... says:

    Houston should not have left him out there unprotected. This is the pros…just because you say I don’t want to play in Vancouver doesn’t mean you get your way. People can say what they want but Ching has a lot of experience and he is great on set pieces and that is how most expansion teams score in their first year or two. Even with his injury history he is still good for 8-10 goals.

  45. Rory says:

    Sadly taking the 12th best player off the top ten teams will make you better than some of the bottom feeders in the league.

  46. T says:

    Seattle’s going to have to sign some players this winter to re-strengthen their backline, with Keller a good GK and Riley a pretty solid defender gone. Just when you thought the team was getting some good balance on both sides of the ball.

  47. Rory says:

    If Ching does retire it makes another Eastern division team weaker… of course Houston could trade to get him back.

  48. Poulet says:

    Houston definitely lacked class by not covering one its veteran.

  49. ericj says:

    We needed to upgrade our backline anyways…

  50. SydneySounder says:

    Exactly the same thing happened with RSL and Kreis

  51. cfig says:

    You’re “delighted” to get Ching so you can hold his rights hostage? What a classless move.

    Ching should have them pay out his contract then come back to Houston for 2013 before retiring.

  52. Rory says:

    St. Petersburg here they come!

  53. dan says:

    shouldn’t there be an MLS clause about only able to be taken once in an expansion draft and then be left alone regardless of being protected or not??!

  54. T says:

    Isn’t he gone now, he seriously set back TFC with his poor management skills, what a horrible decision that was to hire him. Management is important, good that is, the recent expansion teams have already faired better than the Red Patch Boys!

  55. rory says:

    How is that any less classless then trying to work the system by leaving an older player unprotected but trying to protect them by the “I’ll retire” stunt? If anything, Houston is the classless one and we will see if Ching wants to still play or not. If he’s ready to hang ’em up, then okay.

  56. ericj says:

    So you’re saying Houston should have protected him? I agree.

  57. T says:

    Good thing L.A. didn’t lose anyone, I would’ve went stupid if Cardozo or Stephens were picked. On a side note, Chivas lose Braun and Mayen waht are they going to do up front next year. I seriously hope to hear there going to move to San Diego or Phoenix by 2013, they are second-fiddle to the Galaxy in Los Angeles. D.C. should move to Baltimore (and still be called D.C.) and build their stadium if things can’t be arranged in D.C.

  58. cfig says:

    The #1 spot has zero meaning, they’re the only team picking.

  59. Creige says:

    Agreed. Still don’t understand the selection.

  60. cfig says:

    Bingo. They’ve just become a hated franchise by a whole lot of people.

    Not well played by the Dynamo FO, but there’s no good reason for the Impact to take a guy on a big salary who started less than half his team’s games and scored 5 goals…other than exortion.

  61. T says:

    And Montero, besides Braun has a poor first touch and has been tainted by the Chivas uniform. I’ll still have to see some more signings but I could see Montreal finishing at least 14th in the league, best case scenario the finish 5th in the East and play United for a wild card.

  62. The Imperative Voice says:

    And the beauty of it is — and I say this as a Dynamo fan — that if the Hainault (he’s Quebecois) to Montreal rumors pan out, they would be having us take one of our own players back in trade (Ching), in exchange for another player they actually want (Hainault). The Dynamo would lose Hainault and in the big picture only truly gain whatever the throwaway considerations are tossed in with Ching. Very “Fight Club” (think soap).

  63. cfig says:

    It’s working the system to leave a guy unprotected who you have no reason to pick other than to extort his rights? I’d certainly prefer that the Dynamo had protected him, but it’s also certainly classless to take a guy who just wants to retire by playing a season in the stadium he helped build.

  64. Paulie says:

    He’ll never play in Montreal. But @David K – Houston putting him on the unprotected list, and then Ching saying he would retire if he gets picked – that’s the dickmove.

  65. Dax says:

    What a coup… for Houston.

    They just got back $375,000 in cap space, and lost nothing more than a 33-year-old, injury prone, limited striker. Throw in the DP cap figure for Costly, and Houston has a ton of cap room.

    Hello Shalrie Joseph and Fabian Espindola via the re-entry draft.

  66. Paulie says:

    MLS makes the rules, Dynamo and Impact just have to play by them. Looks like Houston just got outsmarted, that’s all.

  67. Paulie says:

    Patience, grasshopper…

  68. ericj says:

    Yes, it is working the system.

  69. Andrew says:

    If that clause existed, Riley would still be with San Jose. The Earthquakes snatched him in the 2008 expansion draft from New England.

  70. away goals says:

    How is an expansion team drafing a player available in the expansion draft classless?

    Houston gambled that they could get a special ‘retirement’ protection spot for ching. They lost.

  71. T says:

    Shalrie Joseph in a Dynamo uniform HELLLLOOOOOOOOO!!! Espindola is staying in Salt Lake no way they let him go into the re-entry draft, they’ll need him for champions league next year and Kreis said he’s an valuable asset to the club

  72. The Imperative Voice says:

    Well before the draft happened people were pointing out the naivete of mock drafts that assumed Montreal was drafting to retain everyone. Long history of teams drafting more cynically to do a little or a lot of trading, just look back at last year. So while I’ll be interested to see if certain players like Sinovic end up actually in Montreal, others will be flipped right back to their old team or someone else….it’s the draft equivalent of the red paper clip. I can dutifully draft and sign a journeyman roster that may be as good as Chivas or Vancouver their first years, or I can play the trading game a little and see what pans out.

  73. Bandito says:

    Houston made the right move in leaving him available and Montreal is foolish for picking him. Ching was going to retire but wanted to hang on to have a chance to play in the new stadium. You don’t use a protected player slot just so he can do that but Ching has earned enough respect in this league that he ought to be able to go out on his own terms. Houston did what they had to do and Montreal wanted to use one of their picks to advertise, “Hey, we are great big assholes!”

  74. Paulie says:

    Yes, Houston should have protected him, now they’ll have to lose someone they really didn’t want to lose if they want Ching to be there to open the new stadium. If they had done things the proper way instead of trying to game the system, they wouldn’t be in this predicament. Bad week for the Dynamo!

  75. Froggy Frog says:

    Montreal will be MLS champions in 2012!

  76. Paulie says:


  77. Ajonesin says:

    ACK! The lone Portland Pilot on my beloved RSL is gone! So long Collen Warner!

  78. insider says:

    Marsch didn’t like Ching at all and only wants to see him retire. Good plan to submarine someone you hated.

  79. T says:

    Your froggin right! Come on! Tell us your frogging with us!!

  80. The Imperative Voice says:

    From my perspective as a Dynamo fan Kinnear should hold the line, let them keep him, and let’s rebuild some more with the freed cash. Ching only plays 15-20 games a year now and is worth 5 goals. If we decline the option on Costly (who is talented but did squat) and retire Ching this way, that’s like at least $800K to play with and you only lose like 6 or 7 goals in production in doing so.

    But I presume Houston will play “fan favorite” and dutifully buy Ching back out of hock, and the trend of the past 3 years of frontline power outage will continue. There’s a reason the Dynamo rely on set pieces…’s because short of that you’re trying to get goals out of Ching, Carr, et al. If we were ruthless this would be doing us a favor.

  81. gigi says:

    Wow the justin braun deal could easily be one of the best trades by an expansion team. very nice move by marsh

  82. Bandito says:

    Ching just said he had no comment on the draft pick but did say that he will be joining the Dynamo FO although exact role is yet to be determined. Some rumors are Technical Director

  83. Playa says:

    Agree. Plus, Warner is always bychin about more playing time on FIFA 12…..

  84. MC Pharaoh says:

    Some pretty strange selections indeed. Who really cares about cap space when you do an expansion draft so I dont buy that..? Why? Because if you think the player is not worth the space or you want to go & get another you just trade the selection over the offseason. There are some crazy selections here… Collen Warner is somewhat promising, but selecting him over Grabavoy or Russell, especially Ned Grabavoy? Thats a relief for RSL. Bobby Burling being chosen over Bobby Convey is a head scratcher & Mapp over Adu is another. The biggest failure imo though? Emmanuel Ekpo really stepped up for Columbus last year and is continuing to develop. I thought he was a clear choice. Michael Stephens, Darrius Barnes, Mehdi Ballouchy, & Adrian Cann are also head scratchers… The only picks that are good imo is Nyassi & Gardner who was surprisingly good last season. I still would have picked Ekpo from CC if I were them though…

  85. T says:

    So he’s retiring -__-

  86. sciroccer says:

    Keep dreaming on the Espindola in Houston idea! I don’t believe RSL wants to lose him, and I’m sure he dosent want to go anywhere else.

  87. T says:

    Valentin had some upside, but yeah there were some solid players in that draft, but maybe it came down to salaries more than anything though, they probably plan to fill out the rest through the draft and winter signings.

  88. Exactly what i was thinking.. I dont understand why houston fans are going all ap ish over this. Ching is old, injury proned and ineffective on top of being slow and having a terrible touch. Everything must come to an end and the ching era ended two seasons ago. Look at the bright side, you have cap room for a dp or for 2-3 very very good mls caliber players.

  89. Al K says:

    I agree. If you look at Ching’s current value on the field, he probably does not deserve to be protected or picked. He really only has much value to Houston — and most of that is sentimental. I don’t see him ever returning to a 20-25 start or 10 goal level. But as an overpriced hood ornament starting 5-10 games and finishing games as a 3rd or 4th striker, Houston would be happy to keep him. Almost every other team in the league would opt for equal production from a younger cheaper player with greater upside.

    So Montreal is trying to take advantage of Houston’s sentimental weakness. I hope the Dynamo don’t even answer the phone when Montreal tries to negotiate a ransom. Giving up Hainault or anyone else in the rotation would be foolish.

    Definitely the most interesting story of the expansion draft.

    Other than this, Montreal did pretty well. Have a nice group of outside backers and Wahl, Burling could be an okay set of centerbacks.

  90. T says:

    Start scouting for the SuperDraft and young CONCACAF talents.

  91. mc pharaoh says:

    ofcourse he has upside & he isnt a bad selection, but Riley, Kimura, & Russell are amongst the best in the league at RB & they were avoided. I wouldnt have expected Kimura though because of injury & Nyassi being available though. If I were them, I wouldnt have picked anyone from Chivas USA but they end up with 3. I know that has alot to do with Marsch.

  92. CMac says:

    I agree jimbo; he wasn’t going to be a starter for RSL next year either, and he never seemed to relish the fact that he was behind a 17 year old in the depth chart. I would have liked to keep him around, but wish him well in Montreal.

  93. Machista Gay says:

    Waiver Draft!

    Who was available besides Kalfan?!

  94. gigi says:

    I thought barnes was for sure going to be picked. However, i think montreal could have a solid year next season. I highly rate Wenger, who they are most likely to get in the draft. They could have a very, very solid defense. Marsh went for the guys he knew, and i think it might pay off.

  95. Dimidri says:

    I don’t know, if I’m Ching, living in Houston or living in Montreal….even if they do speak French…

  96. MC Pharaoh says:

    A good way to start a franchise is to make it an instant enemy by making an MLS stallworth retire… Really foolish move by the Impact. Maybe MLS would grant them a pick from a team who they didnt chose from. Wouldnt put it past Garber.. would be fair imo.

  97. exactly. Houston tried to pull a fast one and it blew up in thier face. Now is your oppurtunity to test your ownership and ask them for some more cash to get some better attacking players with the money that ching used to take up. How about trying to pry away JFT from pachuca.

    I think I am more suprised as to why Montreal didnt take cardozo, barett or Stephens from the Galaxy..

  98. sack says:

    Wow, terrible picks. Given some of the talent for value out there these picks are plain bad by and large.

  99. DetroitFire says:

    It’s the same strategy the Fire used when they drafted Kev Hartman and Danny Pena from LA, to trade back for Campos and Chris Armas in 1997. Smart if it works for you.

    Make Houston give up someone better from their protected list, in exchange for the aging Kahuna. Good luck convincing the Houston FO to launch their new stadium with Carlo Costly as the big star on ESPN.

  100. DetroitFire says:

    Chivas is never thinking. Their MLS team is probably run by interns in Mexico

  101. gigi says:

    Winner Montreal Looser Chivas USA.

  102. DetroitFire says:

    hahaha now you feel the Fire’s pain as well. Mapp’s claim to fame is he’s the best player ever to be born in Mississippi.

  103. DetroitFire says:

    Ward is a solid RB, and not a solid CB.

  104. cfig says:

    Bingo, you have no real reason to pick a guy who started less than half his games last season and scored 5 goals with a rather astronomical salary.

    I’m hearing that Houston has zero desire to negotiate with Marsch, we’ll see if that holds true.

  105. sciroccer says:

    Agreed! Some players just have to be pushed out, and I think thats what the Dynamo FO just did!

  106. cfig says:

    People are upset because Ching wanted to retire in Houston and has earned the stadium that the Dynamo will play in next season.

  107. T says:

    They were probably too busy smoking the stolen weed from Galaxy to realize how stupid they look trading away three young players with potential for one defender.

  108. sciroccer says:

    So by your comment here I believe you have a great sense of humor, or drugs are legal in Montreal.

  109. Mr.Maxican says:

    +1 we don’t negotiate with terrorist.

  110. gigi says:

    It is definitely a head scratcher, I think the whole entire ching thing is overshadowing what a great deal it was acquiring Justin Braun. When your a team like chivas, you want to keep guys like him and valentin and build around them. I will be highly surprised if chivas makes the playoffs next year. But i do wonder how much allocation they received, I can’t imagine it being too much. It is a steal, and something i would expect out of my blundering red bulls.

  111. If Ching really meant that much to the dynamo organization then protect him in the draft. Simple as that, and if you really want him to retire and play in the new ss trade for him. I’m with you on how important the fans think brian ching is to the dynamo. I am just not convinced that your FO is on the same page as you.

  112. T says:

    All I know is Chivas wants to use mostly their own academy players for years to come, they better hope next year they produce some solid young players or they’re going to miss the cut for the second consecutive year.

  113. gigi says:

    I think ching was going to retire anyways, and houston didnt say anything so he would get picked and they wouldn’t loose anyone else. Thats something I would do ya know? winner winner turkey dinner.

  114. DG says:

    Riley is the king of expansion drafts! Bet he can’t wait to move to NYC.

  115. Pepe says:

    Costly’s not coming back. Rumor is the next Dynamo striker’s going to be Diego Forlan.

  116. Dave S in San Jose says:

    I liked Burling as a Quake as well – good value for money. But tell me who you would have added to the Quakes unprotected list. The reality is that, in my opinion, there wasn’t a better option. Hernandez and Opara (healthy) are clearly better center-back options. And our attack has been so weak that we had to protect attackers. Sorry to see Bobby go, but he was the right choice to leave unprotected.

  117. Tony in Quakeland says:

    I’d take Montreal over Houston every day and twice on Sundays.

  118. Tony in Quakeland says:

    It does have meaning in that it is a message to Ching that they are serious about wanting him there.

  119. Benny Dargle says:

    That’s exactly why it’s a costless gesture. Symbolically, you’re telling Ching that we want you, but not at a cost of not getting anyone you actually want more. It’s the perfect reason to select someone #1. In these situations, you select first the person who is going to headline the expansion draft stories. You don’t select a no-name first.

  120. Khan says:

    Houston was just embarrassed, and I expect retribution from the league office against Ching.

  121. TommyOC says:


    Where does Houston get off thinking they could have one more “protected” player than everybody else? If Houston thought Ching’s threat of retirement wasn’t going to be taken seriously, they would’ve put him on their list. Instead, they wanted to game the system.

    And they got burned. Now, if they want Ching playing, they’ll be forced to part with a protected player – or lots of money and draft picks. Oops.

  122. TommyOC says:

    They don’t have to play that game as LA fans would prefer that they leave!

    In fact, we’ve been pointing our fingers to a sunny destination 90 miles south for a good while now…

  123. Nick says:

    Sorry, but this is all on Montreal. It was risky to not protect Ching, but the only reason Ching is even playing another year is the new stadium… how do you justify protecting him? especially when they had to leave danny cruz unprotected … who on this list would you switch for a sentimental cameo? Corey Ashe, Bobby Boswell, Luis Camargo, Geoff Cameron, Calen Carr, Colin Clark, Brad Davis, Andre Hainault, Tally Hall, Adam Moffat, Jermaine Taylor.

    Dom made the right financial/team choice, Ching even admitted that when he went unprotected. Montreal (Marsh) are just being aholes in selecting him.

  124. Thomas McLaughlin says:

    Freddy Adu?

  125. Rev up those Revs says:

    Yeah, why would you draft someone when the worst case scenario is that he retires and you don’t have to play against him.

  126. SWED says:

    Its a business. It stands to be seen whether Montreal made the right business move — depends on what they get out of Ching. a-holes? really? cmon.

  127. JJ says:

    is a bum?

  128. cfig says:

    Yeah, really. Guy just wants to play in a stadium that he earned, he’s not worth nearly his salary and they took him anyway. I hope he sticks Montreal with paying his contract and takes up a big chunk of their cap next season.

  129. Bandito says:

    From a soccer standpoint it is certainly not bad for Houston. They take nearly 400k off the books and only lose a guy who was going to be a part-timer next year. It’s just a screw job on Ching. They are basically telling him they are not going to allow him to go out on proper terms. They are holding him hostage. It doesn’t hurt the Dynamo but the player has been absolute class for this league and deserves to retire the way he wants. Personally, I hope Houston tells Montreal to go to hell.

  130. jmadsen says:

    you mean, “they would have been foolish”

    yeah, the language police are here, too.

  131. Khan says:

    How the hell is Houston escaping blame from most people?

    They basically just rubbed dirt all over Ching’s face and said you’ve been the prime player on our squad for over a half decade, scored 51 goals on over a 100 caps… are one of the main reasons this new stadium is being built… and we can’t even respect you enough to protect you over Calen freaking Carr.

  132. Al17 says:

    I say the same thing. Brilliant move by l’Impact.

  133. Joseph D'Hippolito says:

    Stephens is slow. Cardozo has potential but has been inconsistent. Also, keep in mind that Arena might have told the Impact, “if you don’t pick any of our players, we’ll make it worth your while,” just like Portland did by loaning Ryan Pore to them last season.

    BTW, Chivas still has Juan Pablo Angel.

  134. g-dub says:

    Yeah – sucks for Riley.

    So Seattle loose both Riley and Wahl. Showing confidence in Zach Scott as a right back. On the left Leo Gonzalez was dissapointing for me last year. Clearly Seattle need to strengthen their roster now at outside back.

  135. chodilicus says:

    Yeah, Collen Warner always had talent and I still think he could be a good player. But his skill set is a little bit redundant to what RSL already has. Grabavoy is better with a similar skill set and Paulo has rare speed for the RSL squad.

    I actually think this is a positive as it opens up a slot for RSL to pick up some speed in the midfield. RSL needs to add a couple of guys that can stretch the field either as a midfielder or RB.

  136. abc says:

    That will soon change thanks to Kellen Gulley (U-17 MNT, Chicago Fire) from Clinton, Miss.

  137. abc says:

    Gets paid as much as these 10 guys COMBINED… to SIT ON THE BENCH.

  138. abc says:


    Beckham is 36, getting paid millions, and at the end of his contract. There was zero chance Montreal would take him or that he would play there if they did. Yet the Galaxy still protected him.

    Hope you’re taking notes, Dynamo front office.

  139. ex_sweeper says:

    What does Montreal get if Ching decides to retire? Do they get another pick, or an amount of allocation money equal to his salary?

  140. Joe Quake says:

    I’m surprised that Adu wasn’t selected.

  141. Two questions: says:

    What if Houston does not care that much about getting Ching back?

    Separate issue: How good is sarkodie?

  142. abc says:

    They get nothing if he actually retires.

    They are counting on the fact that Ching wants to make the $400k remaining on his contract (who wouldn’t?), and that both he and the Dynamo want him to play in their new stadium, as the face of the franchise.

    I expect them to package Ching and some minor piece back to Houston in exchange for Quebecois Andre Hainault.

  143. abc says:

    Congratulations on being the ten millionth person to overestimate the importance of Freddy Adu. The dude makes 600k to sit on the bench.

  144. Big Chil says:

    Colorado was stupid in leaving Nyassi available. They protected internationals Joseph Nane, and Danny Earls–non-Rapids fans are saying, “Who?,” neither of whom would have been selected.

  145. JGD says:

    I think you give Houston’s FO way too much credit. And apparently haven’t been reading the rabid posts from Dynamo fans. They’re pissed about losing Ching.

    Kinnear and Co. tried to bluff, MTL called their bluff and won the hand. Either Impact get Ching to play, trade him, or Ching retires and MTL keeps his rights. At worst, MTL comes out with having made a big statement to the rest of MLS that they’re not going to mess around.

    Judging by recent attempts to sign marquee players, I highly doubt Houston’s FO comes close to bringing-in Joseph or Espindola.

  146. giaco says:

    HAHAHAHHAHAHAHhahahahahaaaa….. Ching.

  147. beachbum says:

    like the Torres idea…hope that happens

  148. WK says:

    You’re probably right but now we likely need to find another CB for depth- though i hope Ike is finally healthy and starts every game next season. we really need a MF and Forward overhaul- having to search out a new CB option means trades or scouting and Yallop & Doyle are successful only about 50% of the time.

  149. Shayne says:

    Seriously? You really believe that? So with Montreal building a new team starting out with a 34 yr old striker who’s past his prime and with a bloated salary makes it a smart pick for you, then I’m glad you’re not my GM. It just smells like Montreal could game Houston on the emotional side of this deal, which to get caught up in that on your draft day is quite unbelievable. Montreal has no future under Marsch.

  150. my inner 12 year old says:

    I’d take you mom over my mom every day and twice on sundays.

    wait, that’s not what I meant….

  151. PD says:

    I think the idea is if he retires M.I. lose nothing but a draft pick, if Houston makes a play for him M.I. have a good bargaining chip to get a better player, and if he plays… well whatever he’s not exactly useless.

    sometimes soccer is business and this was a good business move.

    I feel for Ching though. Getting jilted for South Africa after carrying so much water during qualifiers, now Houston leaving him in the wind before they open their stadium and his playing a role in getting then through the MLS playoff… no love no love no love.

  152. PD says:

    last time I checked, when you say to someone “you don’t have the nerve” you’re pretty much begging them to do it.

  153. PD says:

    to montreal?

  154. Turkey Baster says:

    we’re all talking about them on the night before thanksgiving. I’d say they’re doing something right in this move.

  155. Turkey Baster says:

    Agreed. if i were Ching i’d say Houston are the tools here, not Montreal.

  156. Turkey Baster says:

    I am going to reserve judgement on Adu. If after this next season he is not a starter with 6-8 goals with Philly or another comparable team, then I will join the he’s a washout club. Until then, he was a mid season acquisition carrying an injury for a lot longer than anyone probably is letting on trying to find him place in an offense that was in a lot of turmoil after Ruiz left.

    On a related note, Philly is a great team and has a lot of potential, but they started the season as a “defense first, Ruiz scores” philosophy and never quite recovered, even though Seba did his best to step into that role.

    They will either go in the direction of an offense defined by a trio of ball handlers like Torres Adu and Farfan or in the direction of more traditional strikers like Mwanga and Seba, with holding mids and wingers, or a team that is adept at shifting between the two depending on the opponent. Either way it’s going to take a season to bear that out.

  157. marco says:

    Many of his fans here and at other sites predicted Freddy Adu would be the foundation of the new team. They based that prediction on six good games over 5 years.

  158. Helm says:

    If Ching is mad at anyone, he should be mad at Houston. They didn’t value him enough to protect him. That’s their fault.

  159. The Imperative Voice says:

    I personally feel that Houston could do worse than take a designated player-worth of salary cap hit and go out and buy someone who is healthier and scores more. I’d rather open the stadium like NYRB did with the next Henry — a productive striker — than with Ching’s symbolic value…..which is like begging to have JP Angel back at this stage.

    Sarkodie is fast but raw. I wanted him to add some speed to our glacial backline but he made too many bad passes. His old Akron teammate Zakuani abused him in the first Seattle game and he largely disappeared thereafter. Freeman took the job back and then Hainault displaced him.

  160. FSegaud says:

    Then he really put the club first…didn’t he!?!

  161. Goob says:

    I like the move to take Ching.

    Your job is to create the best team possible. You don’t do that by playing nice. Houston totally screwed the pooch on this. RSL was burned once not protecting Kries.

    Live by the sword, die by the sword.

    I hope they stick it to Houston or Ching retires. I would prefer retire. Good riddance.

  162. Dave says:

    No one has mentioned Sinovic yet? Biggest steal of all. Player impact vs. salary is amazing.

  163. CDC says:

    Bummed about Braum. Live in LA and he was fun to watch. A big goofy kid with crazy talent. Hopefully he will get the chances he needs to maybe get into a national team camp.

  164. 99 says:

    They became my most hated club in their match at Portland this year. They played like thugs. Danny cruzs hit on Chabala was pretty lame. I’ve not always been head over heals for Ching, but he’s been a steady, positive person and deserves better.

    Houston sucks and Danny Cruz is a punk.

  165. euroman says:

    A 34 year old making $400K isn’t going to retire to a front office job making $50K. Ching will be playing somewhere for another year and probably for another couple of years after than on a reduced deal.

  166. Nepal says:

    no doubt about it…Mediocre players make the best managers

  167. Murph says:

    They could go after a bigger name than Ching or Costly….This is AEG we are talking

  168. Green Machine says:

    Hard to believe anybody would want him…He should be in USL

  169. Don says:

    +1,000,000. Disrespectful by Houston. Ching still doesnt get the credit he deserves.

  170. Bool says:

    I disagree…He is still very young and has lots of potential

  171. Bear says:

    Cardozo has amazing potential….LA lucked out here, especially if Becks leaves

  172. Francois says:

    They went young and cheap. They must be saving money for some nice internationals. Anelka + more???

  173. Sims says:

    I would take Ching over Carr, Clark, Moffat, and Taylor.

    Houston f’ed up.

  174. Quid says:

    Hainault had a breakout year….Terrific move by the Impact

  175. Suazo says:

    Adu looked good on the wing….Philly needs a dependable #10

  176. Marshall says:

    Riley’s been taken three times in expansion drafts, right? That’s got to be a record…

  177. Chingybaby says:

    Welcome to the MLS Impact, and by the way I hate you!

  178. Tommy says:

    Interesting that Ching would have such loyalty to a team that did not protect him from this draft.
    I bet he puts his tail between his legs and moves to Montreal.

  179. Scott A says:

    Thanks for the laughs Houston.

  180. Dj says:

    So you use the expansion draft solely to blackmail? Your threat is that you will hurt the player personally unless his team sends you money or a player?

    Ching should report and go to camp and be constant vocal critic of Marsch. Disrupt the locker room. Hit Montreal for the full cap amount and not run a foot in any game. No effort. Collect his guaranteed amount. Publicly state he will retire or disrupt ant team that trades for him so that Marsch gets no value.

    Marsch deserves nothing but enmity.

  181. Kishan Jeter says:

    As a Houston resident and fan of the Dynamo I understand why they left Ching unprotected. His salary’s expensive, he’s always hurt, he’s turning 34 in a few months and only produced 5 or 6 goals for the whole year so realistically he’s an unattractive pick. What made him “attractive” was his desire to stay with the Dynamo & play in the new stadium. So Montreal is betting his willingness to retire is just a bluff and that either the Dynamo will trade for Hainault or pay “blackmail” a.k.a “allocation” money for Ching, the face of the Houston Dynamo Franchise. It’s a smart, cheesy, and shrewd move from a business standpoint but borders on the unethical cause it prays on the weak & emotional for gain. It’s like saying, “I won’t kill your mom (Ching) if you pay me some money (allocation) or let me sleep with your sister and take her with me (Hainault).”

  182. Kejsare says:

    Ching is not signed with Montreal yet, only drafted.

  183. Dj says:

    Yes. Aholes. Houston should not have to use a protected slot for a player who only wants to play a few games in their new stadium and Marsch has no genuine desire to use.

    This is the sort of dishonorable games that make MLS such a joke.

  184. Kejsare says:

    Dax went #1 [but of course there was another team there] and summarily traded.

  185. Do says:

    Rules requiren protection of DPs. They had no choice.

  186. Dj says:

    Montreal will not be getting Hainault. You guys are deluded.

    Your stuck with Ching and his salary. You could probably deal Ching back for a very small allocation. Nothing more.

  187. Vic says:

    Has anyone seen the latest World Freedom Rankings that came out? I’ll copy and paste:

    1. Slavery

    2. Major League Soccer

    3. Jail

    4. North Korea

    5. Half Way house

    5. Drug/Alchohol rehab centers

  188. jeff2 says:

    I don’t now that kind of thinking sort of implies Ching isn’t smart enough to realize montreal was the only team picking

  189. jeff2 says:

    what can they do if he retires?

  190. Kishan Jeter says:

    Why so mean? What has Houston or Brian Ching done to you? “Good riddance?” Why the hostility? The man has given his blood, sweat, and tears to Dominic Kinnear and stated he wanted to retire in Houston after playing a year in the stadium he helped build. What harm is there in that and why hate him for it? I understand Montreal wanting to build a team but they’re basically trying to blackmail Houston for either money for Ching or by stealing another player who is protected (Hainault). It’s extortion, plain and simple.

  191. “just because you say I don’t want to play in Vancouver”

    It worked for Darlington Nagbe.

  192. Nathaniel says:

    Under-20 defender Zarek Valentin, a year after he was an early first-round selection and a Generation adidas signing.

  193. Dune Man says:

    Ching should not retire. He should go and collect a paycheck in Montreal as a player. He can just run around at half speed until they let him go or even better when they play Houston at home he can just start scoring own goals in the new stadium for Houston :-) He can also start doing interviews talking about how much he hates free health care, snow, soft bacon, and the sound of the french language…not exactly the face you want for a team trying to grow in the first year and he can talk about how much better Houston is in every way (also waring his old Dynamo kit or colors to all the interviews). They might just let him go early to get a few games in at Houston, bench him and still pay him (not a bad summer holiday) or if nothing else he come back as a bit of a legend when he gets his desk in the FO the next year.

  194. islandofmind says:

    Maybe Dynamo trade Hainault to some other market . . . oh, maybe Toronto. Ching moves to the Dynamo FO. and L’ImpAct go home with nothing. That would be brilliant.

  195. gotcha says:

    thanks bro

  196. marco says:

    Based on 6 very solid games over the last 5 years, Montreal made a huge mistake not taking Freddy.

  197. Brent McD says:

    Let Ching and Hainault both go. They’re both slower than molasses. Houston needs to keep getting younger, faster, more athletic. And yes, I’m a Dynamo fan.

  198. Oscar De La Houston says:

    Houston is dumb….Ching is class

  199. griffon says:

    Montreal drafted Ching…but at the end they want Hainault…
    He is the first Qu├ębecois ever playing in major soccer league. We want him back home.
    Hainault should be in Montreal and Ching in Houston…both of them would be happy and both organisations also.

  200. hogatroge says:

    They won’t trade Hainault, especially when Ching said he was only going to play another year in Houston (to break in the new stadium) before retiring.

    Hainault is more valuable to the Dynamo than Ching at this point.

  201. hogatroge says:

    Hainault’s not the fastest, but he’s solid and has good tactical awareness. No way Houston lets him go to get Ching back.

  202. hogatroge says:

    There is no way to pretend this was a good move.

    Ching’s expensive, injury-prone, and close to retirement anyway. He didn’t want to leave, so his heart won’t be into playing for the Impact. Plus, there’s the chance the move was made out of spite, in which case he’ll have no motivation.

  203. hogatroge says:

    Wrong. Ching’s been with the same team for a decade (including the time in San Jose). His heart won’t be invested in any other team. He was going to retire in a year anyway. To force his hand like that… THAT’s the “dickmove.”

    BTW… “dickmove” (1 wd.) definitely needs an Urban Dictionary entry.

  204. hogatroge says:

    Respectfully disagree. Before the MLS Cup, Ching said he wanted to play one more season because he wanted to play in the new Dynamo stadium.

    It was wise for the Dynamo not to protect him, even if they didn’t actually think Montreal would go for him. They had to leave Danny Cruz unprotected, too, which I’m sure they didn’t want to do.

  205. hogatroge says:

    Which team made the playoffs again… Houston or Portland? I can’t remember.

  206. hogatroge says:

    I have every right to empty my bank account and spend it all on swastika and confederate flags to decorate my lawn. Doesn’t mean it’s 1) smart, or 2) tactful.

  207. hogatroge says:

    There were 11 players more valuable to the long term success of the club. It was a reasonable gamble, especially since Ching has publicly stated he would retire in a year anyway (mostly because he wanted to play in the new stadium).

  208. hogatroge says:

    I don’t think the Dynamo got outsmarted like everyone seems to think. There’s little other than sentimental value left in Ching. Plus, Houston protected 11 other valuable players and didn’t lose Danny Cruz, a decent asset with time left in his legs.

    The Torres idea, as a Houston fan, sounds awesome. I should drop Dom Kinnear a line.

  209. hogatroge says:

    Or not. Ching has little left in his legs and you’re on crack if you think he was surprised by his inclusion on the unprotected list. People seem to think that the organization doesn’t value their star. Hogwash.

  210. hogatroge says:


    Silly move by Montreal. The Dynamo knew what they were doing, even if the worst case scenario did come to light. At least Danny Cruz wasn’t taken… Houston’s roster is too shallow as it is.

  211. hogatroge says:

    You really think Kinnear didn’t have discussions with Ching? You’re pretty silly.

  212. Paulie says:

    Haha – agree with you that “dickmove” should be in Urban Dictionary.

    I really think fans get more upset about this ‘one team for his entire career’ stuff than the players/front offices. Off the top of my head, I’m thinking of NFL SF 49ers when Joe Montana went to Kansas City and Jerry Rice went to the Raiders. It’s a business. And from a business standpoint, Ching has some value.

    I would be surprised if he retired, because I think he still has some gas in the tank, and it’s not like he made more money in his career than he’ll ever be able to spend. He’s 33 years old, and if he retires and works in the Houston front office, he’s not going to make anywhere near $400k. Unless he’s made some really solid investments over the years, he would be crazy not to play until his knees give out.

    If he really does retire, then of the three parties involved, it probably hurts Ching the most. Houston comes out ok because they don’t have a part-time player eating up a huge portion of their salary cap. Montreal wasted a pick in the expansion draft, but usually only 3 or 4 guys from the expansion draft contribute much anyway, so they’ll be okay.

    I think Houston and Montreal will work out some kind of a deal and Ching will get to go back to the Dynamo. Because remember – it’s a business.

  213. hogatroge says:

    True dat. Hainault was probably the 2nd guy to make the protected list after Brad Davis.

  214. hogatroge says:

    Well… a toss up between him and Geoff Cameron, but those would be your top 3.

  215. hogatroge says:

    Hainault’s more valuable to Houston than Ching, especially considering that Houston has the shallowest roster in MLS. With the new stadium and all the hype, Brian Ching’s celebrity won’t be missed from a monetary standpoint. Davis, Cameron, Tally Hall and Adam Moffat are household names here, too.

    Plus, Hainault has a lot invested in the Dynamo. He skipped that Canada call up for the Portland game, remember. If he wants to play in Montreal, he’ll wait till his contract with the Dynamo is up.

  216. hogatroge says:

    Would it be possible for Montreal to loan Ching back to the Dynamo for a slightly less exciting trade than they’re expecting (Hainault)?

  217. huh says: