Pickens transferred to Rowdies days after Waiver Draft move

Matt Pickens


Former Colorado Rapids goalkeeper Matt Pickens has been transferred to NASL side Tampa Bay Rowdies five days after being acquired by the New England Revolution via MLS Waiver Draft.

Sources tell SBI that Pickens move to the Rowdies in a $150,000 transfer that will earn the Revs $100,000.

Pickens is coming off a season with the Colorado Rapids in which he suffered a broken arm that sidelined him for several months, costing him his starting role to current Rapids goalkeeper Clint Irwin.

Pickens had a guaranteed contract with MLS in 2014, sources tell SBI, and that status forced MLS to find a home for the veteran goalkeeper after the Rapids determined they would not bring him back in 2014.

The move is part of a multi-year deal that sends the 31-year-old veteran to Florida, voiding his guaranteed 2014 MLS contract after making $212,933 last season according to the MLS Players Union.

Pickens, an 11-year professional, joins a Rowdies side that captured the 2012 NASL championship, and is set to kickoff its 2014 campaign on April 12.

“This is a marquee signing that will add a great deal of quality and experience to our squad,” Rowdies general manager Perry Van Der Beck said. “Our goal is to win another championship this season, so we’re excited to have a player of Matt’s caliber on our roster. He brings 11 years of experience, having played over 150 games in MLS. His size and agility is imposing at his position, and I think he will be a great asset for us.”


What do you think of the deal? Surprised to see an NASL team pay a transfer fee? Think there are MLS teams Pickens was good enough to start for?

Share your thoughts below.

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18 Responses to Pickens transferred to Rowdies days after Waiver Draft move

  1. William the Terror says:

    150K? This isn’t one of those deals where they are paying in steaks, is it?

  2. Horsewhistle says:

    For an MLS salary, that ain’t Slim Pickens.

  3. CVS says:

    I thought Diego Restrepo was doing pretty well for them.

    • Jared says:

      Diego was excellent for Tampa Bay last season (the true goalkeeper of the year in the NASL), but he torn his Achilles tendon in the first week of preseason training. He will most likely miss the entire year.

  4. Matt C says:

    Finally Matt plays for a storied US soccer club. Welcome aboard Matty. Diego is out injured and to be honest was not as good as Atinella and Satler who preceded him.

    Strong move by the new ownership.

    Just need to beat the stink’n Cosmetics now.

    • DCLee says:

      Good luck on your season!

    • Jared says:

      Matt, fellow Rowdies supporter here, but you’ve got to be kidding. Diego was every bit as good as Attinella or Sattler. Frankly, he was the only thing that kept us in a lot of close games last season. Plus, he was 100% on penalty saves. Losing him was a huge blow to our title hopes, but hopefully signing Pickens will soften that. We still need a few more defenders.

  5. The Imperative Voice says:

    How does a GK this good end up in the minors and not on another MLS team or in Europe? Some of this might be a timing issue but surely something better for the player and the team could have been worked out with more patience. I mean, the Revs drafted a CBA guaranteed player…..

    • SilverRey says:

      I think this is more about the NASL expanding their reach. It’s no secret that many of the owners want to compete with MLS and believe their business model is better.

      • The Imperative Voice says:

        Even if I accepted a premise that free spending was expanding beyond Cosmos to other NASL teams — dubious — I don’t buy that the best we can do is a $150K transfer of a keeper with international caps to a minor league team. Financially, sporting, however you slice it. This is a Freddy Adu slapdash solution to a problem best solved by “you have a guaranteed contract with a CBA player.”

  6. Matt C says:

    Wonder if the Rowdies made a financial investment here in an asset. He was available so they bought him. It’s early in the MLS season and goalies do get injured. So when some MLS side’s keeper goes down…the Rowdies can make some money?

    I write all of that admitting my own ignorance on how is contract works and how selling or transferring him mid season gets done from the MLS side of things.

    Meanwhile Matt gets to enjoy the sunny south and stay fresh in a starting keeper roll.

  7. Who ate all the pies says:

    Let’s all laugh at the Rapids FO for missing out on $150k. Pretty shrewd business from the Revs.

    • timothy says:

      Actually, this benefited the rapids. The short stop at new England means that Colorado has completely wiped their hands from his salary. Otherwise, they would be partially paying his salary in new england

      • Who ate all the pies says:

        Why did they just not trade him for some useless 4th round pick in the future if they were going to be liable for his salary, but waived him? Teams are still liable for player salaries when they’re waived?

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      Only if you allow the charade of a GK with international caps and CBA contract guarantees being transferred for less than his annual salary to a minor league team while his guaranteed contract just voluntarily accepted in the waiver draft gets torn up. They make out well but only because MLS lets this happen.

      I mean, isn’t this the same MLS that holds his contract and routinely holds up transfers a la Geoff Cameron to bargain for a few more dollars? Taking peanuts from the minors for a GK who’s been in a US camp?

      • The Imperative Voice says:

        Further research suggests Pickens has been called but not capped. But I’m befuddled that a player with $200K salary can be sold for $150K. He was trialing in Europe.