HOW ACQUIRED: Selected No. 5 overall in 2017 SuperDraft.
The physically-imposing 24-year-old center back Lalas Abubakar made 23 regular-season appearances (20 starts as a center back) for Crew SC in 2018, registering one goal. He was named to the MLS Team of the Week after playing all 90 minutes in the first match of the season on the road against Toronto FC (March 3) and again following his start in a road contest against Seattle Sounders FC (May 5). He made one appearance for Crew SC in the Audi 2018 MLS Cup Playoffs off the substitute's bench in the Eastern Conference Semifinals Leg 1 match against the New York Red Bulls (November 4). He played in seven matches during his 2017 rookie year, as well as featuring in three of the Crew's playoff contests.
INTERNATIONAL: Abubakar has international experience playing for the Ghana Under-20 National Team.
COLLEGE: Abubakar played three seasons at the University of Dayton, making 61 appearances (60 starts), scoring four goals and recording six assists during his time there. He was chosen as the Atlantic 10 Conference Defender of the Year, making the Second Team NSCAA All-Midwest Region and the First Team Atlantic 10 All-Conference his senior year (2016). The previous year, the defender was named the Dayton Defensive Player of the Year in addition to earning First Team All-Ohio and First Team Atlantic 10 All-Conference Team honors (2015). In his first season with the Dayton Flyers, Abubakar made the Second Team All-Ohio and the Atlantic 10 All-Rookie Team (2014).