How often can you label a trade in MLS as a win-win for both teams? Very often it seems moves are predicated on teams needing to free up salary space. So yes, today's news that the Houston Dynamo shipped longtime star Dwayne De Rosario to Toronto FC seems like a salary dump by Houston.
In actuality it's more of a Michael Scott 'win-win-win' scenario. Houston is able to offload De Rosario while the 30-year old still has value and get back promising young Trinidadian defender Julius James in return. Toronto gets a win because it brings perhaps the best Canadian -- and Toronto native no less -- player plying his trade in North America to the BMO Stadium. Finally, MLS wins because it keeps De Rosario in the league before he fled to the greener pastures of Scandinavia or some other European league.
The biggest winner is probably Toronto, which brings back a Canadian star -- not that it will help the gate since the team pretty always sells out it games. De Rosario, if he can recapture his form, is the kind of gamechanger that can lift Toronto into the playoffs for the first time.
Houston, which had come close to dynasty status over the last couple years decided it was probably time to shake things up and now they conceivably have the money to bring in a big player, or perhaps move Stuart Holden into a more prominent role.
Canada might not get another MLS team in the next round of expansion, so consider this De Rosario trade an early Christmas present.