Marlon Hairston - Colorado Rapids - Close up

CHICAGO – It flew a bit under the radar during the general hullaballoo around the SuperDraft, but the Houston Dynamo and Colorado Rapids completed a notable deal on Friday.

The Rapids traded right back/right winger Marlon Hairston to Houston in exchange for $175,000 in General Allocation Money – $125,000 in 2019 and $50,000 in 2020. According to sources, a few factors paved the way for the deal.

For Houston, the trade makes sense on several levels. Hairston will turn 25 in March, has nearly 100 games of MLS experience, is a decent option in several different positions and, with a 2018 salary of $144,996 per the MLS Players Association, is cap-friendly. He'll provide cover behind wingers Alberth Elis and Romell Quioto, both of whom will likely miss significant chunks of next season while on international duty with Honduras, and right back AJ DeLaGarza, who only played four games last season while spending most of the year on the shelf due to a torn ACL. That type of quality depth will be especially important for Houston next season with the club competing in Concacaf Champions League on top of their MLS and U.S. Open Cup schedules.

For Colorado, acquiring $175,000 in GAM from Houston was critical in their ability to trade $100,000 in GAM to Chicago to move up from 15th to fifth in the draft. They nabbed University of Denver forward Andre Shinyashki with that selection, acquiring a player they’re both high on and familiar with – he trained with them during stretches last summer. The Rapids also have a ready-made solution at right back in Keegan Rosenberry, whom they acquired from Philadelphia in exchange for $300,000 in GAM earlier this offseason. Rosenberry is more of a natural defender than Hairston, and the club feels like he’s a better fit for them at right back going forward.

The deal wasn’t one that rocked the MLS world, but, as is the case with most trades, the anatomy of the move lined up in such a way that both clubs are happy with the exchange.