Here’s a question: how many articles/posts/message board items have you read since last Friday that questioned the value Major League Soccer (MLS) clubs get through the SuperDraft. Jamie Trecker posted a mildly frustrated kick-around on the subject just this morning over on Fox Sports and it covers familiar ground – e.g. not-ready-for-primetime players; the soft perversity built into the balance between value versus talent, the growing importance of the transfer market, etc.
Those points not only matter, they raise a pretty obvious question: does having this event on television actually help MLS? If the majority of players who enter the league through the SuperDraft aren’t tomorrow’s stars, does the event create hype or fizzle?
I don’t know. Maybe a single event is all the league can squeeze out of ESPN. If that’s the case, though, perhaps MLS would be better served by going to, say, Fox Soccer Channel and pushing for a weekly half-hour program that starts in, oh, mid-January or even February and goes where the news really seems to be in the off-season: the transfer market and trades within MLS.
After that, the league can do with the SuperDraft what they’re doing with today’s supplemental draft. And that would be burying it….very, very quietly.