MLS Lottery Regulations

As per League regulations, since the signing of Danny Szetela comes after this year's SuperDraft (held January 16, 2004), he will be made available to MLS teams via a weighted lottery draft to be held on Thursday, July 22 at 3:00 p.m. ET. Szetela, who signed an adidas contract, will be roster protected and occupy one of six developmental roster spots available to each MLS team but will not count against a club's salary budget or a team's senior roster.

Lottery ranking is based upon the MLS points system, such that the team with the lowest number of points receives the greatest chance of attaining the player, while the team with the highest number of points receives the least chance of attaining the player. Since the lottery may take place at any point during the calendar year, total regular season points shall be determined for each team by taking its points total for its previous 30 regular season games before the lottery (dating back to previous season if necessary). In the case of the Szetela lottery, a team's previous 30 regular season games will be counted through Friday, July 16, 2004.

The previous year's playoff record is also a factor with incremental point values assigned to each team based on its most recent performance in the MLS Cup Playoffs. These points are added to the 30-game regular season point total (2003 playoff performances are included in parentheses):

Failure to qualify for playoffs: 0 points (Dallas Burn, Columbus Crew)
Elimination in conference semifinals: 2 points (MetroStars, D.C. United, Colorado Rapids, Los Angeles Galaxy)
Elimination in conference finals: 4 points (New England Revolution, Kansas City Wizards)
Elimination in MLS Cup final (runner-up): 6 points (Chicago Fire)
MLS Cup Champions: 8 points (San Jose Earthquakes)

In the event of a tie, the following series of tiebreakers are implemented:

1. Playoff record;
2. Goal differential during the prior year's games;
3. Head-to-head record over the prior year's games;
4. Number of points per game in the current season;
5. Goal differential per game during the current season;
6. Goals scored per game during the current season;
7. Head-to-head record during the current season;
8. Coin toss.

After point totals are determined, a set "percentage chance" of receiving the player is then assigned to each team. With all teams participating, the club with the least amount of points receives a 26.2 percent chance of acquiring the player (262 of 1000 balls), while the team with the most points receives a 0.6 percent chance (6 of 1000 balls). What follows is the list of percentage chances and assigned ball numbers for the July 22 Szetela lottery with all teams listed as participating:

Dallas Burn 30 0 30 26.2% 739-1000 (262)
Columbus Crew 38 0 38 21.1% 528-738 (211)
MetroStars 36 2 38 16.6% 362-527 (166)
D.C. United 38 2 40 12.6% 236-361 (126)
New England Revolution 40 4 44 9.1% 145-235 (91)
Colorado Rapids 44 2 46 6.3% 82-144 (63)
Los Angeles Galaxy 45 2 47 4.0% 42-81 (40)
Kansas City Wizards 43 4 47 2.3% 19-41 (23)
Chicago Fire 43 6 49 1.2% 7-18 (12)
San Jose Earthquakes 44 8 52 0.6% 1-6 (6)
If a team participates in a lottery and lands the services of a player, it shall be precluded from ALL future lotteries during the season in question.