Butch and Sundance. Batman and Robin. Bruce and Freddy.
We Call It Soccer's plea messing up a cad. (3,3)
After reading the accounts in the Washington Post of a town hall meeting last week, those who can read between the lines should be afraid? very afraid.
It is unclear how a stadium only makes sense if 3,000 houses are attached to its construction. It is also unclear at this point who will build this housing, how it will be planned, and how it will be distributed. What is clear is that with this reversal, Barry will make sure that he and his cronies will be intimately involved in the process. Kevin Payne and DC United are walking down a very dangerous path.
United's owners can only foresee two probable outcomes here. One, the stadium is built along with the housing, private developers retain control of the housing and parcel it out carefully, the area's real estate booms, and the team and city are happy. Two, the housing is dropped from the plan for some reason and it's no longer an issue. Any other outcome and this plan isn't worth the trouble for United. Both likely outcomes guarantee that the lives of Anacostia's residents are not improved. That's where Marion Barry comes in. He can't ensure that the stadium is built, but he can ensure that it isn't. If all of this money is being spent in his ward, he will want to do something to benefit his constituents. What does that mean? Who knows, but it will only add onto the cost and the trouble of building this stadium for United.
This sounds like the beginning of long, painful process, where the stadium dies of a thousand paper cuts courtesy of DC politics as usual. Ask for more and more from a team that has less and less to work with. This could get ugly.
90:00 is teasing their cover-story interview with Santino Quaranta. Now, while the substance of what they have up is interesting, let's get to the real issue: Is Tino now officially a hottie? As I may have mentioned, my spouse has professed her love and desire for a certain DK, but Tino's glamor shots are, well, inspired. They wouldn't look out of place in the liner notes of whatever indie music artist Pitchfork is swooning over. They say "Hey, I'm a loner, but I can work with a team. Wrap your mind around that contradiction." He's sensitive, but he's tough. If the article would to include a passage like the following, it would not surprise me...
The DCenters returns Monday, hopefully, after a nice Thanksgiving. Unless we hear of a major story. In which case we'll be here.
"I didn't think it would change at all," MLS Commissioner Don Garber said this week. "Freddy is not a marketing tool."
It was nearly two years ago that a proud Garber announced at a Madison Square Garden news conference the signing of the 14-year-old Adu. But in two seasons of MLS play, Adu, one of the league's highest-paid athletes, has spent almost as much time on the bench as on the field.
"It doesn't frustrate me at all," Garber said on Monday. "It probably frustrates Freddy a little bit. We have to remind ourselves at times and remind him that he's 16 years old."
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT. DC United, a professional soccer team based in Washington, has hired Arent Fox to lobby on the federal and local government on matters that include the construction of a new stadium. The lobbyists working for the United include Craig Engle, a former general counsel to the National Republican Senatorial Committee, and Jon Boucher, the former chief counsel and legislative director to Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.) and minority counsel for Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.).
(Part 1 here)
Standing pat and waiting for talent to develop will not address DC United's most critical needs, but does provide insurance as DCU's established strengths grow older. The pipe-line is providing depth, but not bredth, with the possible exception of Nick Van Sicklen at wing, and even there it's not a situation where a hole is being filled. There's value in the reserves, but value that is more likely to be leveraged though trades, where these players may provide a more immediate upgrade for another team. To improve DC United to a dominant position, you're going to have to make some deals. In short, it is time to Trade Freddy. Or, someone. Part 3 will adress trading ideas.
So, read the PDF, and hopefully you can see why I feel confident that DCU is handling this thing in exactly the proper way to move forward. Perhaps slowly, but surely.
...but those are just eggs. Ooops.
Okay, good, but let's not forget that a week is a long time in soccer. Or in politics. A little buried note at the end of the article should remind everyone to stay vigilant and make sure that this is seen through to conclusion (emphasis added):
“It’s an entirely different process,” he said, referring to last fall’s debate over the Nationals stadium. “This stadium will be up before the baseball stadium, there’s no question about it.”
Greene emphasized that while Barry is receptive to the stadium plans, he has not ruled out other options for how the development will proceed.
According to Greene, Barry will host a second public meeting exploring alternate possibilities for the site on Nov. 29 at Anacostia High School.
So it isn't a sure thing, as Marion Barry will be prepared to potentially move another direction if the situation arises. Before anyone screams "backstabber!", from Barry's perspective this is smart politics. He should do this, since his job is to get the best deal for his constituents, not to give DC United a home. We just need to close the deal, and all signs are that DCU is handling the situation intelligently. Watch the skies!
Also, DCU alum (and frequent humor target) Bobby Convey is profiled as a World Cup Unknown by the BBC. However, the fun is in the traditional dismissal the English press reserves for US Soccer support: "The United States are gradually becoming a force to be reckoned in world football - although that fact is probably still lost among its own citizens. " I'd like to be snarky and respond to this, but Bruce is saying we'll be lucky to get out of the group stage, so I'll wait. That being said, I expect that ratings for the World Cup could be big over here. I honestly expect the most interest in this cup since 1994.
Washington Post catches up with the Times on reporting former Mayor Marion Barry's conversion to a soccer specific stadium supporter (ssss?) at Poplar Point. Great details on why Barry changed his mind in the story. Also, a warning for anyone who thinks that this is out of the woods yet. The idea that soccer is the sole provence of the surburban soccer mom worries some:
For Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner T'Chaka Sapp, the question was whether nearby residents would have a real shot at contracts to supply popcorn, sell beer or water or even to wash the clothes and linens.
"We want some wealthy folks to come out of this thing," said Sapp, who also asked why there weren't more black people involved in the team's leadership. "I need to see someone in leadership who looks like me."
So, let's see, Twellman is the MVP over Moreno. Fine. Keep jobbing Moreno, it only makes him angrier...
There's bias everywhere. Newspapers own teams they cover. While I'm not about to pretend that USSoccerPlayers is totally objective, it's also not a propaganda machine.Personally, I'm more concerned when I'm involved enough in a story to know all sides and then I read what makes it onto websites and into papers... When reading anything, look for the bias. It's almost always there.
This is all stuff that is familiar to DC fans, but it is rare to see it so nicely wrapped in a concise package. Go read the thing. Also, as an aside to the Times, it might be easier if you had a separate section of the sports are to bookmark. That's what makes the Post so convenient when it comes to finding interesting stories.
Not to do Kali's job for her, but DCU-alum and RSL icon Eddie Pope will have a chat with folks on Monday over at ESPN. And DCU-alum and still in the playoffs defender Mike Petke, who once graced the subtitle of this particular site on the internet, checks in with an entry at CNN/SI. I miss him, but he doesn't miss us much:
Over the past two years, I've found myself thinking more and more about retiring. Maybe it was the monotony of the season or the way it becomes more of a business than a sport. This is strange because I'm only 29.
Coming to Colorado, however, has rejuvenated me in a way that I would never have imagined. For all the things that have drove me crazy since I arrived here, there are
twice as many things that have energized me.
The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel carries details of how DC United ownership figure William Lauterbach is involved in the details of a proposed stadium/real-estate deal for an expansion Milwaukee MLS team. Apparently, while things are looking (cautiously) up for Poplar Point, they are looking a little less rosy in Wisconsin.
Well done to the new ownership for navigating a potentially difficult situation and actually making an effort to not just dismiss Barry as a has-been junkie politico, but instead to reasonably work with him to find a solution. Good showing all.
Also yesterday, commission members said they received the support of D.C. Councilman Marion Barry, Ward 8 Democrat, for the construction of a new soccer stadium at Poplar Point in Southeast.
Barry, who has long opposed the construction of a facility for D.C. United east of the Anacostia River, changed his position after reviewing plans that included the construction of affordable housing and neighborhood-serving retail, commission members said.
"He's looking at this now in a much larger context," sports commission chairman Mark Tuohey. "He's very supportive."
Now that we've all self-medicated our pain from the Chicago game away, the natural fancy turns to the off season. And in the time I noticed that A Little Less Conversation was active (see post below), they've already started beating me to the punch on this topic. I think they're pretty much right on in their diagnosis, but before delving into the details, let's establish the guidelines.
The more a fan thinks about how they would manage player transactions, the less likely they are to be correct about the specifics of any transaction.Proof? Look at all the people who said that DCU would have to find a replacement for Ryan Nelsen last season. And yet it never happened. Picking out a player that is to be replaced is probably not going to work. If a fan figures out how a trade is going down, its because the GMs are already in serious talks about it.
A few quick notes: