2017 MLS EXPANSION DRAFT PROCESS
Rounds: Five rounds as LAFC can select up to five players from the eligible pool; they can only claim a single player from any one club
Selection clock: Permitted three minutes for each selection
Timeouts: No timeouts implemented
Trades: No trades permitted during draft
Each current MLS club protected 11 players from their 2017 roster. Generation adidas players (who did not graduate at the end of the 2017 season) and Homegrown Players on a club’s off-budget roster are automatically protected and do not count against a team’s 11 protected roster spots. Designated Players are not automatically protected. If a Designated Player has a no trade clause in his contract, then the club must protect him in the Expansion Draft.
Once one player has been selected from a team’s unprotected roster, that team may not lose any further players (all additional players from that team become ineligible for selection).
2017 MLS EXPANSION DRAFT RULES
Protected/unprotected player-related rules: The 22 MLS clubs that competed during the 2017 season can protect 11 players between their Senior, Supplemental and Reserve Roster.
• If the player’s contract expires at the end of 2017, he will still be considered part of the club’s Senior Roster. If a club protects a player, it is not obligated to exercise the player’s option. It may renegotiate a new budget number for the player as in previous years, subject to the CBA. Option Decline Free Agents and* Out of Contracts Free Agents* are part of the Expansion Draft and are not automatically protected.
• Players on a club’s Supplemental Roster, other than Generation adidas players who have not been graduated at the end of the 2017 MLS Season or Homegrown Players, are eligible.
• Generation adidas players who have not been graduated at the end of the 2017 MLS Season and Homegrown players on a Club’s Supplemental/Reserve Roster at the end of the 2017 MLS Season are automatically protected. Clubs do not have to use a protected slot on them.
• Designated Players are NOT automatically protected (i.e., clubs must choose whether to protect such players and if such player is not protected, he will be available for selection in the Expansion Draft). If a player has a no-trade clause in his contract, his MLS club must protect him and he will count as one of the 11 players who may be protected.
• Retired player rules: If a player retires, he will not be a part of the Expansion Draft, but his club will lose its right of first refusal to him should he ultimately decide to play.
• International player rules: Clubs are restricted in the number of international player(s) that they may make available. Clubs may make available a number of international players equal to their total number of international players minus three, provided that if a club has three or fewer international players it may not make more than one international player available.
• Selection of Free Agents: If a Free Agent is selected in the Expansion Draft, the expansion club that selected the player will gain his previous club’s ability to renegotiate a new contract consistent with the CBA before the beginning of Stage 2 of the Re-Entry Draft. If an Out of Contract Free Agent is selected in the Expansion Draft and subsequently signs with his 2017 club via Free Agency, he will be subject to the compensation limitation for Out of Contract Players signing with a new Club, as provided in the CBA.
• If LAFC selects a Supplemental/Reserve Roster Player, it must offer him a Senior Roster position and he must remain on the Senior Roster as of Roster Compliance Date.
• Maximum player loss: Once one player has been claimed from a club’s non-protected roster, that club is eliminated from the Expansion Draft and may not lose any further players.
• Right to negotiate: LAFC will have the right to renegotiate a drafted player’s salary (either up or down) without having to place such player on waivers or giving his previous club a right of first refusal.
EXPANSION DRAFT HISTORICAL NOTES
• LAFC GM & EVP of Soccer Operations John Thorrington was selected 20th overall in the 2010 expansion draft by the Vancouver Whitecaps, making 35 appearances for the team in 2011
• Thorrington is the first GM to be drafted and draft an Expansion Draft
• For the first time with the 2016 Expansion Draft, the league changed its system as Minnesota United FC and Atlanta United were granted only five selections each, and General Allocation Money awarded to them in lieu of lost picks.
• LAFC will be the second expansion team led by Head Coach Bob Bradley
• Bradley led the 1998 MLS/US Open Cup Champion Chicago Fire that featured appearances by 7 players taken in the 1997 expansion draft. (Danny Pena, Kevin Hartman, Manny Lagos, Jason Farrell, Jorge Salcedo, Zach Thornton, Francis Okaroh, Diego Gutierrez, Andrew Lewis, Brian Bates, A.J Wood, Steve Patterson)
• Diego Gutierrez selected 15th in the 1997 draft made 109 appearances for the Chicago fire between 1998-2001 scoring 7 goals
GEMS OF THE DRAFT
• 2016 Expansion Draft included Atlanta’s selection of goalkeeper Alec Kann who made 18 starts in 2017 and Minnesota’s pick of defensive midfielder Collen Warner who appeared in 25 games in 2017.
• The Sounders’ final pick in the 2008 Expansion Draft, Brad Evans is one of the most important figures in Seattle’s MLS history. Evans has racked up 200 regular-season appearances with Seattle, tallying 20 goals and 27 assists
• Zach Thornton, selected by the Fire 11th overall in the 1997 Expansion Draft, immediately became the club’s full-time starter, earning MLS Goalkeeper of the Year and Best XI honors in 1998, receiving All-Star nods five times with the Fire and winning one MLS Cup, three Open Cups and one Supporters’ Shield in eight years in Chicago.
• The fourth selection in the 2009 Expansion Draft, Sebastien Le Toux is perhaps the most iconic player in the history of the Philadelphia Union. The Frenchman spent parts of six seasons in two separate stints with the Union. He ranks first in Union history in numerous statistical categories, including goals (50), assists (50), games played (175), shots (320) and shots on goal (144).
• Now the club’s head scout, Andy Williams was a Real Salt Lake mainstay in the club’s early years, appearing in at least 23 regular-season games in all seven of his seasons with the club. A key member of the Salt Lake squads that won MLS Cup in 2009 and reached the final of the CONCACAF Champions League in 2011, the Jamaican retired in 2011 as RSL’s all-time leader in games played and shots and ended his career second in club history in assists, games started and minutes.