LAUDERHILL, Fla. – Restrictions will not encumber the New England Revolution as the club ponders its options with the sixth overall pick in Thursday's MLS SuperDraft.
With several departments in need of reinforcements even in the wake of Didier Domi's signing on Tuesday, New England can afford to assess the available talent and select the best available player without regard for external considerations.
The usual draft day aids – a board meticulously constructed after months of research chief among them – will play their role as the Revs contemplate their possible selections.
New England's choices will almost certainly depend on how the first five picks of the SuperDraft unfold. Akron stars Perry Kitchen and Darlington Nagbe are expected to come off the board as the first two picks, but the next three selections by D.C. United, Chivas USA and Philadelphia aren't as clear cut.
Burns said the Revs' wishlist for the pick all but guarantees one of their preferred options will remain on the board when they make their first choice.
“Some of the guys we are looking at, we know mathematically that they have to be there at six,” Burns said after the MLS Player Combine concluded on Tuesday. “That's good for us.”
New England can also enter the draft without having to eliminate players based upon their status on the roster or within the salary budget.
Generation adidas players occasionally merit additional consideration from clubs in the top half of the first round because they do not count against the senior roster or the salary budget. Although Burns did not discount the possibility of plucking a GA player based on his skill level, he noted the Revs would not feel compelled to simply choose a GA option to avoid a roster or a salary budget hit.
The additional flexibility afforded by the expanded rosters and the Revs' current salary budget situation permits the club to select the player that best suits its needs, according to Burns.
“I think this year, with the increase in roster size, we have both developmental slots and senior roster spots available to us,” Burns said. “In the past, it might have played a bigger role, but I don't see it being an overriding factor that we have to take a Generation adidas player with the sixth pick. That's not to say that we won't, but we have flexibility in our roster.”