Monday, April 10, 2006

MLS Commissioner talks about expansion cities

Earlier today, MLS Commissioner Don Garber fielded 20-questions from fans about the future of the league. If you have not read it, it is worth the time. His first question was about expansion. It seems 30% of the 500 or so questions received had to do with expansion. You can read his full comments at the link, but here is a quick rundown of places mentioned.

Toronto - Will be in next year. Expect official announcement soon.

Bay Area* - What to be back soon. Talking with Oakland A's co-owner and managing general partner Lew Wolff about purchasing the rights to an expansion team.

Philadelphia - Always wanted to be there and are working with Rowan University in New Jersey to make it happen. Hope to have a team in the new stadium for 2009.

St. Louis - Want to be there, but need to find owners to pay for a soccer stadium.

Southeast - This includes Atlanta, Cary and Orlando. Not in serious discussions about Atlanta, but are interested. No discussion for Cary. Never mentions Orlando's potential.

Miami - Want to come back, but no plans anytime soon.

Phoenix - No plans to move there.

Detroit - Potential, but no plans to expand in the motor city.

Seattle - Want to go there (or Portland), but have not found the right mix. Regularly speak with the Seattle Sounders about things.

Milwaukee - Watching closely. Chicago-Milwaukee could be a great rivalry.

Hartford, Connecticut - No plans.

Southern Orange County - Two LA teams nearby. Had talks about San Diego.

Rochester - No plans for expansion, but regularly talk with Frank DuRoss of the Rhinos.

Those are all the cities mentioned. The other questions are a great mix of things. Will 2010 see the league take off for the World Cup? Why are there no games on Fox Soccer Channel? How will the domestic and foreign player rules work for Toronto? Are you up for NFL commissioner? And so on.

* I forgot to include the Bay area in my initial post.

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