Klopas explains the 'Protected List'

FC Dallas v Chicago Fire

More than a few eyebrows were raised when the Fire announced their 'protected list' of 11 players who wouldn't be eligible for selection by Philadelphia in today's MLS expansion draft.

One player in particular who stood out on the list was midfielder Justin Mapp. Mapp, a 25-year-old winger who has enjoyed a lot of success in the past, struggled with his play - and his ability to get playing time - for all of 2009. All the same, the Fire felt that they had to protect him (and his $220,000 salary) at the expense of promising youngsters Mike Banner, Peter Lowry and Daniel Woolard.

"Justin Mapp is a player that has value to a lot of teams. Especially one that's coming in with a lot of allocation money," said Fire Technical Director Frank Klopas. "It's better [to protect him] considering that the player has value if we're thinking of... moving him than we could get something for the player instead of leaving him unprotected and losing him for nothing."
While Klopas's rationale makes sense - trading Mapp could land the Fire a valuable commodity - it would have been nice to see the aforementioned younger players protected as well. Unfortunately, only 11 players are put on the list, which made for some tough decisions for Klopas and his staff.

"With 24 players on the roster and 11 to protect you're going to leave some players out there," Klopas said. "Throughout the season players are going to get opportunities and teams are going to be watching and unfortunately that's part of the process and there's nothing you can do now."

Klopas, who intimated that he hopes no Fire players get selected by Philly, said he wasn't sure if Union Head Coach - and Klopas's former Fire teammate - Peter Nowak would be specifically targeting any of the Fire's unprotected players.

"Peter's a very disciplined guy," Klopas said. "He wants hard working guys. It kind of depends on other players that are out there, what positions he's looking to pick up and other players he's bringing in and what makes more sense. But I think there are quite a few players that we left there that I think are good players that could be picked up."

As I've said earlier, I would have liked to see Mike Banner on this list instead of Justin Mapp. I feel like Banner is a player who showed a lot of promise last season and has a chance to be a real solid player for the Fire. This is in stark contrast to Mapp who, despite his undeniable talent, just didn't seem to have it in 2009.

I'm set to drive off to the Detroit-area for Thanksgiving in a couple of hours, so I may be unable to post until well after the end of the expansion draft. I'll have a piece up detailing the whole process as soon as I can though.


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  • I think the "trying to move him" comment has been said for 2 years now. There is no market for this guy.

  • "It's better [to protect him] considering that the player has value if we're thinking of... moving him than we could get something for the player instead of leaving him unprotected and losing him for nothing." - Frank Klopas

    This was the ONLY logical reason I thought Frank put Mapp's name on list. My first reaction was anger, but after some coffee I was hoping that Frank kept him for trade value. By the end of the day, I knew that was the only logical reason.

    Good reporting Sam . . . better than that pile of steaming crap Ives wrote this morning where he jumped the shark and compared Andrew Hauptman to Al Davis, without acknowledging Guppy's/AEG's role in the last two hirings before Denis.

    It would be sweet justice if RBNY hired Ives' newest man crush.

  • If Nowak is looking for hard working, disciplined players he certainly would not have picked up Mapp for $220,000.00.

    Fireman451.....you're right.....Ive's article today is ridiculous.

  • Ives is kissing Hamlett's ass because he will do interviews for him. I would love to see The Menace welcome the Metros new stadium. He would be the perfect fit for them...

  • Let's trade Mapp for Scheletto.

  • David Myrie selected so i've heard, wonder what his best memory of his time as a Fire player......0 minutes.

  • In reply to MythosFC:

    Zero minutes because Denis signed him not to fill any of our defensive needs THIS season, but as a project for 2010. Myrie was our only signing during the transfer window.

    I'll miss decisions like those . . .

  • In reply to MythosFC:

    I'm gonna go ahead and call it . . . Myrie will be Philadelphia's Marmol.

  • In reply to MythosFC:

    What if Nowak made his pick, because he trusts Klopas and the scouting that Frank did? Time will tell.

  • In reply to MythosFC:

    Time will tell, but I'm glad we didn't lose anyone who contributed during the season (Banner, Lowry, Carr, etc.) Until proven otherwise, Myrie wasn't better than the guys who logged minutes for us, filling in the gaps between injuries and international dates. One thing Hamlett did allow us to see was that we had quality up and down the roster. I feel a lot better seeing Daniel Woolard's name penciled in as a starter next year than I would have in July.

  • Interesting to find out Sam, since Klopas was the one who brought him in and it was Hamlett who didn't play. How does Klopas feel about losing him without actualy seeing him in any minutes for the Fire?

  • Unlike Denis Hamlett, I guess Peter Nowak thought David Myrie was better than Austin Washington and Mike Banner.

  • Yeah that may be the case, in a way i'm glad for my friend and myself that Klopas signed Myrie rather than Sinclair, because he could have ended up moving to Philadelphia.

  • Wow, major surprise here. Makes me wonder what we missed out on here.

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