Ten Best: Metros who played for Toronto
May 13, 2014
Toronto has been in the league for less than a decade, but somehow, the list of Metros who played for Toronto is a long one. ("Trader" Mo Johnston, who spent time in charge of both teams, had something to do with it.) The two teams are often willing trading partners, taking each other's scraps, for better or for worse.
10) Tim Regan: NY 2003-05, 2007; Toronto 2008
Regan was a useful player in his two stints with Metro, but retired from soccer after being released midway through 2007. In 2008, he was working as a scout with Toronto, when the team was decimated with injuries and national team call-ups. So Regan was signed on a one-game deal, retiring for good after.
9) Jeremy Hall: NY 2009-10; Toronto 2012-
You remember the story: Juan Carlos Osorio sat next to Hall on the plane, was surprised that he spoke Spanish, and drafted him. Unfortunately for Hall, Osorio then proceeded to stick him at a rather misfitted right back. Never given a chance to blossom under the "Student of the Game" or under Hans Backe, Hall was sent to Portland prior to the 2011 expansion draft. He made his way to Dallas and eventually Toronto, where he now fills at various positions in midfield.
8) Hunter Freeman: NY 2007-08; Toronto 2008
Freeman had a stellar 2007 for Metro, replacing the departing Marvell Wynne at right back (more below), but his form dipped mightily in 2008. Keen to leave MLS to go to Europe, Metro intercepted his wishes by trading him to Toronto late in the season, receiving in return draft picks -- and his return rights. Freeman played out the year in Toronto, went to Scandinavia, came back, and Metro traded him once again -- to Houston.
7) Danleigh Borman: NY 2008-11; Toronto 2011
An important player on the left side during the Osorio and Backe years, Borman ably filled in at defense and midfield. He was traded to Toronto with Tony Tchani for Dwayne De Rosario (two players who should have made this list based on talent, but did not due to their lack of Metro contributions). Borman played out the year in Toronto before returning to South Africa.
6) Kevin Goldthwaite: Toronto 2007; NY 2007-10
Goldthwaite's arrival was astonishing, considering the price (more below). Quickly earning the nickname "Deadweight", he has a terrible, injury-shortened, 2007. Yet in 2008, he was the team's best defender, and a key cog in the team that made it to MLS Cup. Injuries caught up with him in 2009, and Metro dumped him a year after.
5) Jon Conway: NY 2006-09; Toronto 2010
Say what you want about Conway's tenure in goal, but he put up decent numbers, and beat out both Tony Meola and Ronald Waterreus for starting jobs. His 2009 was as terrible as the rest of the team, and his termination was one of the last moves of the Osorio reign. He eventually made his way to Toronto, playing in a single league game in 2010.
4) Marvell Wynne: NY 2006-07; Toronto 2007-09
The first overall pick of the 2006 SuperDraft was supposed to become a star. So heads were scratched when Bruce Arena decided to dump Wynne for Toronto in exchange for a lowly second-round pick. Arena's thought that Freeman was the better choice at right back; what he didn't realize is that Wynne will grow into a capable central defender. Toronto didn't realize that either, as he only reached his potential in Colorado.
3) Todd Dunivant: NY 2006-07; Toronto 2007-08
Dunivant arrived in 2006, one of the last deals done by Johnston. By the time Arena took over, it was clear he wasn't a fan, calling him "one of the top 12 left backs in MLS" (there were only 13 teams at the time). So Dunivant was traded straight up to Toronto for the clearly inferior Goldthwaite. Then, a strange thing happened: in 2009, Arena, now with LA, acquired Dunivant, and he has been a starter ever since, helping the Galaxy to two titles.
2) Michael Bradley: NY 2004-05; Toronto 2014-
We saw his first professional steps, we saw his playoff-clinching goal, we saw him blossom with USA and in Europe, we now we see him control the midfield for Toronto. We still don't like it.
1) Amado Guevara: NY 2003-06; Toronto 2008-09
Only one of the greatest players in Metro history, team MVP, league MVP... He feuded with Johnston during Mo's time in charge, then, was acquired by Johnston during his time in Toronto. Amado's last game with the Canadians was the 5:0 drubbing by Metro's terrible 2009 team. Sigh. We wish he stayed a Metro...