New England Soccer Today

Revs Discussed Pre-Draft Trade Possibilities for Larin

Photo credit: Nelson Lucindo/Prost Amerika

Photo credit: Nelson Lucindo/Prost Amerika

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – It isn’t exactly a habit of Jay Heaps’ to discuss the Revolution’s past interest in an opposing player. But earlier this week, he broke from protocol to talk about one of the league’s best young players ahead of Sunday’s clash at Orlando City

Before he earned 2015 MLS Rookie of the Year honors on the back of a rookie-record 17 goals, and before he was taken with the first overall pick in 2015, Orlando forward Cyle Larin was a can’t-miss college prospect at the University of Connecticut, where he scored 23 goals in 39 games during his freshman and sophomore years.

Naturally, Larin’s scoring exploits at the NCAA level attracted the attention of Heaps and Revolution goalkeepers coach Remi Roy, both of whom took a long hard look at the talented goalscorer well before the 2015 MLS SuperDraft.

“He was someone we scouted heavily,” Heaps said. “He was someone that (although) we knew we didn’t have a pick in the first round, there were discussions whether we should trade for him. But we didn’t know where he was going to go. And of course, he goes first right away.”

Heaps said Roy, a native of New Brunswick, Canada, tried to use his connections to entice Larin, a Canadian international, to consider coming to New England if there was a deal to be made.

But given that the Revolution had traded their 2015 first-round pick to Sporting Kansas City for Teal Bunbury the previous year, Heaps knew the chances of landing Larin weren’t terribly great, especially with the club’s earliest selection not set to arrive until the 33rd overall spot.

Judging by what he saw from Larin in Storrs, Ct., the Revolution coach said he wasn’t surprised to see Larin go first overall – not before the draft, and most certainly not after it, either.

“He’s backed that (selection) every time,” Heaps said. “He’s a player we have high regard for and someone that, come Sunday, we’ll have to manage well, but someone after Sunday, we root for with him going to school around here.”

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