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Colorado Rapids: The Off Season Thus Far
Denver, CO - After receiving a swift kick out of the MLS Cup Playoffs by LA way back in October, the past two months have been fairly busy for the Rapids. The club has already has its fill of comings and goings, before the January draft and trade window have even begun. Here is a brief look back at the major events that have surrounded the club since November 1st.

On election day 2004, the Rapids stadium project passed a major obstacle when "Commerce City Initiative 2A" passed by a 67.5% majority. The initiative approved the creation of $64 million dollars in tax revenue to fund the primarily off-site improvements surrounding the Prairie Gateway site. The further development of the area continues to make the future stadium a reality.

Only a few weeks after Colorado's season ended, many were left scratching their heads when keeper Joe Cannon was denied the MVP award in favor of MetroStars striker Amado Guevara. Despite Cannon have an incredible impact on the Rapids performance, MLS was content with putting him on the back burner for a player the has played fewer games and has many goals as Cannon had clean-sheets.

With expansion teams (Chivas USA and Real Salt Lake) comes and expansion Draft. The Rapids saw the departure of defenders Antonio de la Torre and Jeff Stewart to Chivas. Stewart was later exchanged to RSL. It's was somewhat perplexing to fans as to why Kyle Beckerman was protected over DLT. Torre had a good season while Beckerman's play was border-lining appalling. For the sake of the club (and the fans), one should hope that this decision is part of a larger plan.

Dramatic change was indeed the order of the day for the Rapids as both Head Coach Tim Hankinson and General Manager Dan Counce "parted ways" with the club. The change came with little surprise after a several year run of mediocrity with the team. Nearly a mouth later, Fernando Clavijo was named the new head coach. A new manager has yet to be determined.

Much has changed within the club since October, but there is still much to be done. With several players leaving and the allowed expansion of rosters, the club has many holes to fill. There are many questions that need to be addressed. Who will the new GM? What kind of players will the club go after? Will any of the big players get traded? With the year coming to a Rapid(pun) close, only 2005 will tell.
December 28, 2004 Patrick Quinn


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