Sunday, January 21, 2018

Preseason Starts Tomorrow

In today's Superdraft rounds 3 and 4 the Rapids added 3 more players who will likely (later round draft picks have been known to decide to not pursue a career and never report) join the rest of the team in Commerce City this week as training camp opens officially tomorrow morning.

In the 3rd round the Rapids took GK Thomas Olsen out of the University of San Diego.  Olsen has been an outside pick for the U-20 national team, filling in when local kid Ethan Horvath hasn't been released by his team for games.  There's an open 3rd GK spot on the roster and barring competition from an Academy product I expect him to take it.

In the fourth round the Rapids took midfielder Brian Iloski out of UCLA and forward Niki Jackson out of Grand Canyon University.  Both players are long shots to make the roster due to the backlog of competition and their positions.  Iiloski will be competing against Sam Hamilton and a bunch of international players while Jackson was the 3rd forward taken in this draft by the Rapids to compete against McBean and Calvert for 2 or so spots.

With the draft complete the roster is "set" for preseason.  Padraig Smith and Anthony Hudson said multiple times this offseason than the goal was to have all the significant players signed by the beginning of preseason so we can hit the ground running.  No surprised to long time Rapids fans, that didn't happen.  I'll give them a bit of leeway for the next couple of days but reportedly we wanted to sign 2 more CBs and 2 strikers, and we signed 0 in either of those positions since that talk started.  I doubt we're suddenly going to see 4 signings before the team leaves for camp in Arizona on Wednesday.  At best we'll get Smith (who I expect) and maybe the rumor of Keseru to the Rapids turns out to be accurate so we get one of each, but I don't expect 2.  So we'll be heading into camp without our full compliment of players, which is SOP for Colorado.

On to my annual camp player list.  I'll keep this up to date, as usual, through out the preseason.

Signed Players:
* = international
HG = homegrown
DP = designated player

GK Tm Howard - DP
GK Zac MacMath
D Edgar Castillo
D Kip Colvey
D Mike da Fonte
D Kortne Ford - HG
D Marlon Hairston
D Eric Miller
D Axel Sjoberg
D Jared Watts
D Deklan Wynne*
M Bismark Adjei-Boateng*
M Stefan Aigner*
M Michael Azira
M Johan Blomberg*
M Shkelzen Gashi* - DP
M Sam Hamilton
M Ricardo Perez - HG
M Jack Price*
M Dillon Serna - HG
F Dominique Badji*
F Caleb Calvert - HG
F Jack McBean

Unsigned Draftees:
GK Thomas Olsen
M Brian Iloski
F Niki Jackson
F Frantzdy Pierrot
F Alan Winn

All-but-signed players:
D Tommy Smith* (I'm including him on the list because all signs point to him being announced this week but he's not official yet)

So that's 23 signed players, 24 if Smith signed as expected, for 30 spots.  Olsen, or some other 3rd GK, will take one open spot so really there's 5 spots up for grabs in camp.  Smith would make 8 internationals for 7 slots so something will have to change there.  We have one DP slot open.

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