On Sunday, all the SBNation MLS blogs got together (virtually) for the annual MLS Mock Draft. Trades are not allowed and as Don Garber was not available to announce the mock picks via Skype, picks were made, banter was shared and mock hopes were crushed.
As the Montreal Impact made it to the conference finals, the team is seeded near the bottom of the pile in both rounds. Given the late picks. the likelihood to find a MLS starter is slim. Still, with Montreal picking 19th in the first round, there might be hope for a surprise - Dom Dwyer was drafted 16th back in 2012.
We just hope that Dom Dwyer made himself available for this draft.
Pick #19: Brian Nana-Sinkam
A former Philadelphia Union academy centre back and 2015 NCAA Champion with Stanford University, Nana-Sinkam gives youth and depth in the weakest point in the Impact’s 2016 lineup - the back four. While youth isn’t as lacking in the back as the midfield - Oyongo, Cabrera, and now Chris Duvall are all 25 or younger - the depth is important.
Nana-Sinkam is a reasonably large and physical player at 6’0” and 180lbs, which is something the Impact back line could use a little more of. He has started 63 games over the last three seasons, and only missed some time in his first season due to injury.
His Pennsylvania upbringing should make adjustment to the Montreal winters easier too.
Pick #41: Michael Amick
In classic Montreal drafting style (the Impact picked up three forwards and nothing else in the 2015 Superdraft, including club legend Cameron Porter), Amick is also a 6’0” centre back. He has been the team captain at UCLA the past three seasons, and won numerous individual achievement awards including the Pac-12 Men’s Soccer Scholar Athlete of the Year and a CoSIDA Academic All-America first team selection in 2016.
Amick is a native of Sunnyvale, California, and studies at nearby UCLA, so he might not take as quickly to Montreal as Nana-Sinkam, but he is a talented player who is definitely worth trying out.
With Ciman and Oyongo likely to miss time for international duty, an injury to Cabrera or Lefevre would leave the current roster in a tough spot. Still, it’s worth noting that Oyongo is the team’s only rostered left back, and I wanted to pick one up in draft but all the top choices were gone by the time the 19th pick came around.
Besides the previously mentioned Porter, notable Impact SuperDraft picks include Calum Mallace, Michael Salazar, and Kyle Fisher, who are still with the team; Eric Miller, who started nearly every game for the second-place Colorado Rapids this season; and Andrew Wenger, who was the #1 overall pick in 2012 and is currently playing for the Houston Dynamo.
We’ll find out who the Impact front office picks up for real this Friday in the first two rounds of the MLS SuperDraft.