Reserve league integrating with USLPro

Discussion in 'MLS: News & Analysis' started by PhillyMLS, Dec 18, 2012.

  1. newtex

    newtex Member+

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    Except that the Hammerheads are in Wilmington, NC.
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  2. OleGunnar20

    OleGunnar20 Member+

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    here is what i came up with ... it requires kicking Antigua to the curb of course but who cares:

    WESTERN CONFERENCE
    PACIFIC DIVISION
    Vancouver Whitecaps II (Vancouver, BC)
    Seattle Sounders II (Tukwila, WA)
    Portland Timbers II (Portland, OR)
    Sacramento (Sacramento, CA)
    SJ Earthquakes II (Santa Clara, CA)

    SOUTHWEST DIVISION
    Real Salt Lake II (Casa Grande, AZ)
    Colorado Rapids (Commerce City, CO)
    LA Galaxy II (Carson, CA)
    Chivas Blues (Fullerton, CA)
    Phoenix FC (Tempe, AZ)

    CENTRAL CONFERENCE
    SOUTHERN DIVISION
    FC Dallas II (Frisco, TX)
    Houston Dynamo II (Houston, TX)
    VSI Tampa Bay (Tampa, FL)
    Orlando City (Orlando, FL)
    Charleston Battery (Charleston, SC)

    MIDWEST DIVISION
    Sporting KC II (Kansas City, KS)
    Chicago Fire II (Bridgeview, IL)
    Dayton Dutch Lions (Bellbrook, OH)
    Columbus Crew II (Columbus, OH)
    Pittsburgh Riverhounds (Pittsburgh, PA)

    EASTERN CONFERENCE
    ATLANTIC DIVISION
    Charlotte Eagles (Charlotte, NC)
    Wilmington Hammerheads (Wilmington, NC)
    Richmond Kickers (Richmond, VA)
    DC United II (Washington, DC)
    Harrisburg Union (Harrisburg, PA)

    NORTHEAST DIVISION
    Toronto FC II (Toronto, ON)
    Montreal Impact II (Montreal, QE)
    NE Revolution II (Foxboro, MA)
    Rochester Rhinos (Rochester, NY)
    Red Bull NY II (Harrison, NJ)


    Play teams in your own division 3 times (rotate extra home game every 2 years) and the teams in your Conference 2 times. For 22 total games.

    Top 2 teams from each division plus 4 wild cards go to a 16 team play off tournament.
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  3. Earthshaker

    Earthshaker BigSoccer Supporter

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    If you stretch just a little bit further, San Jose to Sacramento is 117 miles.
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  4. FuzzyForeigner

    FuzzyForeigner Member

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    this is seriously good news. personally the college players should get a couple of seasons in this system before getting"drafted" into first team. if that became common practice we would have mroe mature rookies in the league and these young players would keep their egos in check.


  5. m vann

    m vann Member+

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    I'm glad both leagues are looking to better serve our soccer talent. This certainly sounds intriguing and something that I've wanted for a while but I will reserve judgement until concrete information is out there.
  6. brandonboy2

    brandonboy2 Member

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    Not to be adding fuel to the fire, but doesn't this pretty much throw prom/reg out the window...I am neither for or against it either. And it almost seems to me that the MLS reserve league will just be replaced with USLpro...not a bad way to get young guys more playing time
  7. PhillyMLS

    PhillyMLS Member+

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    You mean that thing that MLS has constantly said is not realistic anytime in the foreseeable future? I doubt it even crossed their mind when they started working on this deal nor will it cross their mind again until well after the deal is done.
  8. Darkwing McQuack

    Darkwing McQuack BigSoccer Supporter

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    I hope the MLS teams that start up their own USL Pro teams come up with completely new names and identities for their teams. I'd rather see these teams have their own identity instead of being referred to as the reserve squads of so and so's team. If you guys get where I'm coming from.
  9. Benny Dargle

    Benny Dargle Member+

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    The model might be the National Basketball Association Developmental League. Each NBDL team has one or more NBA affiliates who send it players, but some NBDL teams are owned and controlled directly by an NBA team. If you want to pay more, you get your own team. If you don't, then you can share a team with another club or two, each of which can send up to 5 players. Of course, in the NBDL the NBA team doesn't control all the players on even the teams it owns, but it controls the coach and the style of play/position played for their players, which can be helpful.

    So, for example, the Cleveland Cavaliers own the Canton Charge NBDL team, hired their coach, and I believe they have shared front office personnel. The Charge players have contracts with the NBDL club only, except for the 1-2 players who are on the Cavaliers' roster who are assigned to play with the Charge for periods of time during the season. Players who are trying to get a Cavs contract sign with the Charge because of that "trial"-like opportunity (they signed one player from the Charge this year already). This is to be distinguished from Cavs' past affiliation with the Erie Bayhawks, which was also affiliated with the Toronto Raptors and Philadelphia 76ers and got players from all of those teams.

    Bottom line, you could have a USL Pro team with multiple affiliations. The distance wouldn't matter all that much, since presumably those MLS teams would really be using this in lieu of loans to NASL or USL teams for players on their roster who are young, recovering from injury etc. It would be fundamentally different from a reserve league experience where a player could get some more minutes after only having played as a late game substitute in an MLS game. For teams that wanted that opportunity, they would start their own USL Pro teams and pay to staff it fully.

    Obviously, we need more details to see if that is what the two leagues had in mind, but it seems plausible.
  10. Stan Collins

    Stan Collins Member+

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    For what it's worth, the Spanish league also plays its reserve teams in the league pyramid, there's just a rule that they can't get to the first division.
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  11. tigersoccer2005

    tigersoccer2005 Member+

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    cool USLPro can become a true MLS minor league--in line with the rest of American sports!! :thumbsup:
    That means though that FC NY could potentially become a NY Red Bull minor league team!!:eek:
    What this means for the future of NASL is unclear....will they still be needed?
  12. Sandon Mibut

    Sandon Mibut Member+

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    Yes.
  13. JG

    JG Member+

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    I suspect that for these teams it will be basically the current reserve team setup with an expanded schedule that include USL teams, rather than a "real team" with its own players and coaches (and front office?). The investment required to to have a whole separate team doesn't seem worthwhile unless it's accompanied by a push to sign talented college-age talent en masse along with quality coaches.

    Expanded schedule, including more opportunities for young players to play against adults in games that matter, is certainly a positive.

    Presumably there's a collective bargaining hurdle that has to be cleared before this is implemented.
  14. VioletCrown

    VioletCrown Member

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    This happens and you'll see a few PDL teams decide to go pro, so you're going to have to accommodate more than just 30 teams.

    The Aztex have said that they hope to go pro in '14. I think this would make it a lot more likely.

    You might want to look at which MLS teams have Development Academy teams as an indicator of which ones could field a full USLPRO team. I know that most MLS teams have Development Academy teams, but I don't think all of them do.
  15. AndyMead

    AndyMead America Uber Alles

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    There's a difference between "reserves" and "farm team".

    The "reserves" are part of the "first team". MLS Reserve Division is a mechanism to allow players down the bench to get some game action in a controlled environment without impeding the ability of the team to play first team games. It keeps the players down the bench available and ready to step in as needed.

    The short Reserve Division season is fine. It is not meant to supply full time action for players. If anything the original 05-08 Reserve Division failed because it was overworking MLS first team rosters.

    The relationship with USLPro is a mechanism to allow MLS teams to farm out players to gain experience, to get more minutes than they would in the reserves. The tradeoff is that the player is no longer readily available for first team selection.

    Both serve different purposes. Unless MLS reduces first teams back down to 24 players, the need for Reserve Division play isn't going away.
  16. Virginian

    Virginian Member

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    I don't think you can underestimate how big this is for a current USLPro team. Add 5 FREE rostered players to their team who will be (theoretically) some of the best players on their squad. Now the USLPro team has an official path to the first tier team for their players. Some of these clubs have their own youth clubs as well which may well increase their membership and/or pull better players.

    There will be added travel costs with the potential expansion of the league, but the free players should more than make up for those costs.
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  17. Sandon Mibut

    Sandon Mibut Member+

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    In a related development, my marriage keeps me from having sex with Alex Morgan.
  18. Beau Dure

    Beau Dure Member+

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    So "All USLPRO teams will have an MLS affiliate"?

    Welcome to 1997, everybody!
  19. whill4

    whill4 Member+

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    Wonder what will happen to the NASL? Unless you are planning to jump up to the MLS, it seems kind of stupid to have a club in the NASL now when you can go to the USLpro and get free players and better exposure.
  20. pdxsoccerfan

    pdxsoccerfan Member

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    If teams in USL Pro become MLS reserve teams, then they would presumably be filled mostly with young players who have the potential to someday contribute to the MLS team. For many of the players on those teams, it will eventually become clear that they are not going to develop into players who can make an impact in MLS, at which point the USL Pro teams will lose interest in them. Those players will need somewhere to go, and many of them will probably end up in the NASL.
  21. speedcake

    speedcake Member

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    Can you explain further how it would be stupid to have a team in the NASL if this were to happen?
  22. Heist

    Heist Member+

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    Are you sure Alex's consent isn't the bigger issue here?
  23. SJTillIDie

    SJTillIDie Member+

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    an mls academy coach expressed to me his opinion that the reserve league has declined in quality the last couple years as more teams are playing some of their 16-18 year old academy kids in reserve league games... it's great for the academy kids but bad for the MLS professionals.

    if we can start getting more 18-22 year olds as opposed to 16-18 year old academy kids into this USL/MLSreserve league then maybe the quality will go back up.
  24. ielag

    ielag Member+

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    Every club besides Toronto and Philadelphia have teams in the USSDA. However, Philly is made up of local affiliates in the DA (FC Delco, PDA, PA Classics)
  25. JoeSoccerFan

    JoeSoccerFan Member+

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    Aug 11, 2000
    yeah, that's it. :)

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