SEATTLE - APRIL 17: Peter Vagenas #8 of the Seattle Sounders FC battles Davy Arnaud #22 of the Kansas City Wizards on April 17, 2010 at Qwest Field in Seattle, Washington. The Sounders defeated the Wizards 1-0. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
When the Rapids pulled a trade right before the expansion draft to swap Julien Baudet and Danny Earls to the Seattle Sounders for Peter Vagenas, it came across as an attempt to get something for a player (Baudet) who would most likely have been gone in the expansion draft and also to clear out some international slots before the draft began so as to avoid the internationals protection rule and protect Wells Thompson and Macoumba Kandji instead. When he was left unprotected in the expansion draft it hardly raised any eyebrows because it was unlikely to see him picked from Colorado with Anthony Wallace on the board, but we assumed our new man was safe afterward.
It was therefore somewhat puzzling when we found out that Peter Vagenas was one of the three players that the Rapids had entered into the 2010 Re-Entry draft.
When the RE draft ends, players become available on a first come, first serve basis to any team in MLS who happens to want them. Claudio Lopez and Ciaran O'Brien were also put into the re-entry draft and with Lopez on the tail end of his career as a footballer while playing almost no minutes except as a largely ineffective bench spark last season and O'Brien basically one of the biggest draft busts in Colorado Rapids history - he played a grand total of one game in a Rapids kit in his career, doing nothing but drawing a red card - it's fairly inevitable that the duo have seen their last days in Burgundy.
Vagenas might be a different story.
Peter made $117,000 last year with Seattle, a fairly hefty salary for a player who would most likely be third on the depth chart in the realm of defensive midfielders on a central heavy Colorado Rapids roster. Considering Vagenas' skills are most likely hardly enough to get him selected in the RE draft, this strikes me as a ploy to get him through the draft unscathed and then quickly snatch him up for a slightly lower salary after. The first-come, first-serve basis that signing players after the draft works by may not make it a guarantee, but as I said before I doubt that there is a plethora of teams knocking down the doors to get Peter Vagenas.
Say goodbye to our friend Claudio Lopez - we hardly knew ye! - and our... well, whatever Ciaran is. However, you might want to wait a little while before closing the door on the Vagenas story in Denver yet. I've got a feeling that his footballing days a mile high are still just beginning.