The construction of Major League Soccer's two new expansion teams, Real Salt Lake and CD Chivas USA, will enter its next significant phase on Jan. 14, as both teams take part in the 2005 MLS SuperDraft™ presented by adidas at the Baltimore Convention Center, the league announced Thursday. The entire draft which will be streamed live on MLSnet.com and the first hour will be broadcast live on Fox Sports World.
The Monarchs pick first, followed by Chivas USA, in this year's SuperDraft. The draft, which in the past has been a six-round affair, will this year be reduced to four rounds with an additional four-round draft held at a later date to stock the yet-to-be-named MLS developmental league. Following the initial selection by the new kids on the block, the rest of the draft will feature the other MLS teams in reverse order of its finish in the 2004 regular season.View the entire draft order, including conditional picks and past trades.
The rules for this year's affair were also announced Thursday. Each team will have five minutes to confirm their selection in the first and second rounds. In the subsequent third and fourth rounds, each team will be permitted three minutes to make their pick. In addition, there will be a five minute break between each of the rounds.
Unlike the rules on the playing field, each team is also given one timeout meaning they can stop their clock for five minutes in order to deliberate further on a selection. A team can only stop the draft clock once during the proceedings and once two teams have taken timeouts in a row, the third team cannot take a timeout.
Many of the players eligible for the 2005 MLS SuperDraft™ will also take part in the annual adidas MLS Player Combine which is being held at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., for the second year in a row. The combine plays host to all of the MLS general managers and members of each of the team's coaching staff who have valued opportunity to scout the future MLS stars as they compete with and against each other. A total of 42 players who participated in the 2004 Player Combine were later selected in the 2004 MLS SuperDraft.
Sean Wheelock, the host of the MLS Wrap on Fox Sports World, will lead the network's coverage of the 2005 SuperDraft™, with expert analysis provided by international and MLS commentator Allen Hopkins.
Danny Polinsky is a contributor to MLSnet.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Soccer or its clubs.