Beyond Good and Evil: Out- Boswell, In- Wells + draft pick
It's going to take some time for me to really evaluate the now completed Bobby Boswell for Zach Wells deal. The Goffather updated his original scoop with the telling detail that Bobby requested the trade. Given the situation, Bobby wanting out, Troy wanting to go abroad, United seems to have neatly handled a way to accommodate both players' wishes. Our think back line is even thinner, but so it goes. I think this deal is impossible to evaluate in terms of "good" or "bad." It depends on your tolerance of the unknown. We know less about United then we did, and for some of you that may be a good thing. It is a move with tremendous potential, but it is a potential equally for greatness as disappointment.
This is a risky move, if you define risk as uncertainty. Just as in picking your stocks, riskier investment may yield bigger rewards, but they may also fall flat. I think we know where Bobby's talent ceiling was, and that most of us thought we would perceive Bobby's 2008 season closer to his 2005 and 2006 seasons, as opposed to the 2007 let-down. And that would have been a good MLS defender, perhaps not great, but at least good.
As for Mr. Wells, I think he is something of an unknown commodity in terms of potential. He has shown promise, yes, but he has also shown weakness. Troy Perkins showed us what he was last year, and he was one notch down from the top tier of MLS Keepers. Zach Wells has yet to prove that he can be an average every day starter, and while he has the skills in terms of quickness and distribution, I'm not sure how well he will be in terms of tactical decision making (I say this even though this is the very trait that is praised in his Houston player bio... I just haven't seen it yet. Not consistently).
Anyways, Bobby Boswell gets filed on a long list of players that I am sad to see leave, even if I can understand the reasoning. Perhaps somewhere he can get together with Mike Petke and Alecko Eskandarian and remember the good times. And perhaps one day DevonMcTavish.Com will feature a fake video about Bobby the intern being bossed around.
To those in Houston, you are getting a decent MLS Center Back, with the potential to occasionally be a very good center back at the MLS level. He is not the next Ryan Nelsen, but he will do his job well for you.
And to Zach Wells, we bid you welcome. You are now the #2 keeper, and apparently you're a candidate for a very fast promotion. We welcome you as well, and hope you enjoy your time hear in DC. D.C. United's list of keepers, including Garlick, Presthus, Warren, Rimando, and Perkins features many decent keepers, but few that I would call exceptional. May you be the first, but know that if you are just as good as the last two in your position, that will be enough for now.
UPDATE: Sorry, comments should have been turned on earlier. They are now.