Wednesday, February 18, 2015

News And Notes, Feb. 18th 2015

  • Altitude released the TV schedule for the Rapids season.  The only note of interest is the March 28th game which won't finish before the Avs drop the puck and the Nuggets tip off.  Because of that Altitude won't show the game until late that evening on same-day delay.  You can't really blame Altitude as they get much better ratings for the other two teams and only have two channels to work with.  In the past when this has happened the Rapids have lifted the blackout restrictions for the game on MLS Live to make it possible to watch locally live.  I've reached out to see if they'll be doing it again for this match.
  • The Denver Post had more info today about the the Ciao lawsuit.  It appears that the team and league did not do due diligence as both Global Logistics (the North American distributor for Ciao) and Ciao itself had legal proceedings against for failure to honor commitments and pay debts when the deal with the Rapids was signed.  Both Garber and Hinchey are reported as stating they weren't aware of these proceedings.  As hard as that is to believe its an indicator that somebody dropped the ball in doing their research on the companies.  Let's hope the next deal is a bit more stable.  Ciao and Global are now pointing fingers at each other over who's to blame while Hinchey says they're in talks with 2-3 companies for the sponsorship now.  Of course, we've heard that before...
  • The Rapids are currently playing Kansas City in Tucson.  2-0 to the burgundy boys in the second half.  Torres and Badji with the goals, both set up at least partially by Pittinari.  Full game report tomorrow after the Rapids release the lineups (I don't know all the trialists on sight yet)
  • Finally, and to me the most interesting news of the day, draftee Brandon Fricke has signed with Charlotte.  A tweet a couple of weeks ago from a former coach of Fricke's had made it sound like he signed with the Rapids but that appears to have been in error.  This signing was announced on the Rapids website so its obviously with their blessing.  Not only that but Brian Crookham, who's the Rapids Senior Director of Soccer Development, is currently service as Charlotte's Technical Director.  
  • The Independence have 6 players under contract now, and 3 of the 5 others are currently in Arizona with the Rapids (Slogic, Newnam, Ribeiro).  The Denver Post also reported this weekend that the Rapids and the Independence will be using the same 4-2-3-1 system and mentality.  It appears that the Charlotte Independence are Colorado Rapids II in all but name.  coach Mike Jeffries, which Crookham and the Rapids helped hire, even wore a Rapids jacket for a interview on the local FOX affiliate in Charlotte last week (though to be fair, with the Independence just revealing their logo and colors, there probably isn't team gear available yet).  If this is really going to be the equivalent of the Rapids AAA team as a true partnership and not just a place to send 3-4 players for some playing time that's a huge step forward for the Rapids plan.
Updated camp roster:

(* = international):

John Berner
Clint Irwin
Zac MacMath

Marc Burch
Bobby Burling
Michael Harrington
Drew Moor
John Neeskens
Shane O'Neill
Axel Sjoberg*

Sam Cronin
Marlon Hairston
Nick LaBrocca
Lucas Pittinari*
Dillon Powers
Marcelo Sarvas
Dillon Serna
Jared Watts

Deshorn Brown*
Caleb Calvert
Charles Eloundou* (not yet in camp, visa issues)
Vicente Sanchez
Gabriel Torres*

GK Quentin Westberg (trialist in camp)
D Francisco Flores (trialist in camp)
D Joseph Greenspan (draftee, on Naval duty through 2017 probably, with team in Vegas)
D Matt Jeffrey (draftee, not in camp)
D Wes Knight (trialist in camp)
D Ben Newnam (trialist in camp)
D Patrick Slogic (trialist in camp)
D Grant Van de Casteele (trialist in camp)
M Carlos Alvarez (trialist in camp)
M Oscar Montoya (trialist in camp)
M Juan Ramirez* (multiple reports of signing with the Rapids, in town for physical)
Andrew Ribiero (trialist in camp)
F Dominique Badji* (draftee)
F Kevin Doyle* (negotiating)
F Billy Schuler (trialist in camp)

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