Weighing the opposition side of Seattle’s GM debate


The folks around Sounder at Heart, the excellent blog on all things Seattle Sounders, support Adrian Hanauer’s bid for reinstatement as the club’s General Manager.

But in an admirable effort to dodge the dangers of groupthink, they have penned a post on “the case against Hanauer.”

It’s interesting, even if some of the points against Hanauer are clearly a stretch. (Which is what a writer is left holding when trying to make a case that he really does not truly believe in, one just there for sake of representing an opposition viewpoint.)

(MORE: very little appetite to replace Hanauer)

The chief reasons would be a sketchy history of Designated Player selection and a lack of MLS playoff success so far.

As for the DP argument: Freddie Ljungberg, Blaise Nkufo and Alvaro Fernandez didn’t work out, although none could be fairly labeled as notorious flops. Still, they didn’t work out. Christian Tiffert has only recently pulled on the rave green, so the sample is way too small there.

That leaves Fredy Montero and Mauro Rosales, who are DPs now. But they “grew into” their DP clothes. So while it’s not really accurate to credit the organization with DP home runs, landing the two plums in the first place must be considered a huge scouting success.

That lack of payoff success is the only other reason with any real legs cited for replacing Hanauer (pictured, along with Kasey Keller). But who are we kidding? This team has been around for all of three previous years. I know Seattle Sounders fans are wonderful, and there are so very man of them – and all that is peachy.

But that doesn’t mean the team is entitled to MLS Cup playoff success. These things take time. And mathematically, chances of winning the thing have ranged from 1-in-15 to 1-in-18 so far. (It’s 1-in-19 this year.)

So, scratch that one.

I really don’t think anybody believes Hanauer is in trouble here. But for “sake of argument,” this piece is worth a read or at least a scan.