Which Team Should Trade For Kei Kamara?

Vancouver Whitecaps

The Vancouver Whitecaps should trade for Kei Kamara. On the surface, that may seem a bit difficult because the Caps have the max amount of Designated Players. But, digging a little bit deeper, I think you’ll find that this move would make a lot of sense for both sides. It seems over the last few years; Vancouver has always been a team that seems poised to win a trophy or two, given their stellar roster construction and depth of young and exciting talent. But, their biggest issue has been finishing in the final third. Last season, they brought in Octavio Rivero from Chile as a DP to be their 15-18 goals guy, but he has yet to live up to the bill. 10 goals in 44 games is not the type of production you want from your DP striker. Now, enter in the rumors of Columbus trying to unload Kei Kamara. Generally speaking, it’s not a good idea to “give up” on a 24-year old that has shown a lot of promise, but a talent like Kamara is tough to come by. Let’s say the trade involves Rivero, allocation money, and #MLSery, I think that makes sense for both sides. Kamara is the type of guy who can put Vancouver (A team playing Blas Perez consistently) over the top, especially in a tough Western Conference. Columbus, being able to land Rivero and some Garber Bucks makes the best out of a bad situation. Let’s get this thing done. 

- Mark K.

San Jose Earthquakes

Listen, we love Chad Barrett here at Total MLS, some of us more than others. He’s a great guy. But for a team looking to make a playoff run, you could probably do better than starting Chad Barrett at forward. A healthy Quincy Amarikwa and Chris Wondoloski is a very formidable front two in San Jose. Even better? A front two of Kamara and Amarkiwa with Wondolowski playing behind them or cutting in from a wide position in more of a 4-3-3.

Kamara makes a lot of sense for San Jose. He played for Dom Kinnear in Houston in 2008 and 2009, scoring seven goals in thirty two appearances. He even had a stint in San Jose, playing twelve games for them, and scoring twice, in the early part of the 2008 season.

The problem with San Jose, they already have 3 designated players. Kamara recently became a DP, so the Earthquakes would have to use targeted allocation money to buy someone down. For a player who nearly won the Golden Boot last season, this shouldn’t be a problem. Kamara could put the Earthquakes in to the discussion for Western Conference supremacy. Wondolowski has long had to shoulder the goal scoring load for San Jose and Kamara would ease that immensely. The Quakes have some young talent they could part with, likely forward Adam Jahn and the popular MLS trade chip, cash. Having two forwards of that caliber, alongside Amarikwa, Simon Dawkins, Marc Pelosi, and Fatai Alashe, someone get Dom Kinnear on the phone and get this deal done. 

- Dustyn R.

DC United

DC United have improved a bit over their very cold start to the season, but a goal scoring spark would be something that Ben Olsen and company would have to think long and hard about passing up.  Right now, DC United sits in Seventh in the Eastern Conference having scored only 11 goals. 11 goals isn’t the worst return imaginable, but when you consider that 7 of those goals were in just two matches and that they’ve been shut out in 50% of their outings the picture starts to look a little bit more concerning.

Enter Kei Kamara. He’d certainly be DC’s most expensive player and it is a pretty big investment for a 31 year old striker that has a contract through 2018. Ben Olsen doesn’t seem to mind paying for experience though.  You need only to look at his current attacking options like Espindola, Saborio, Rolfe, and recent acquisitions like Sarvas and Nyarko to see that he doesn’t mind bringing in players on the grayer side of 30.

The last time DC paid big money for an experienced striker with let’s say “questionable team spirit”, they brought in Eddie Johnson and that move wasn’t exactly a rousing success even before his unfortunate health issues.  Perhaps that will make them a bit gun shy this time around.

It would certainly be brave. It would certainly be bold. And it just might be what DC United need to give their season the jump-start it so desperately needs.

- Ian L.

Houston Dynamo

I know what you’re saying, forward is the last thing the Dynamo need. Hear me out here. Kamara makes the Dynamo better. With Cubo set to miss time for the Olympics and the constant need for depth and shuffling of lineups in MLS, Kamara would look good donning an orange kit again.

Would you send Will Bruin to Columbus for Kamara? That’s the big question. The Dynamo would likely have to add more compensation but they have an open designated player spot and could put Kamara on their roster. If Bruin is involved in the trade, Kamara immediately slots in to the target forward role that he has been so successful at with Crew SC. Kamara had Ethan Finlay and Justin Meram as his wingers in Columbus and coming to Houston would pair him with Andrew Wenger and Giles Barnes, not a bad swap. Kamara relies on service and those wingers, alongside Chaco Maidana’s playmaking abilities, there’s no reason the Sierra Leone international shouldn’t score 20 goals in Houston.

Can the Dynamo pull the trigger? Is this the designated player that makes sense for them? On the surface, probably not. But look long term, Kamara is 31 and probably has a couple of good years left in him. If Cubo isn’t long for Houston, and that remains to be seem, fire on this trade and get Kamara back to south Texas.

- Dustyn R.

New England Revolution

The New England Revs are clearly missing an offensive spark. Gone are the powerful, forward runs of Jermaine Jones and the talented attacking trio of Lee Nguyen, Kelyn Rowe and Diego Fagundez is clearly struggling. New England has slogged through its first 11 games, picking up only 10 points. Forwards Charlie Davies, Teal Bunbury and Juan Agudelo have provided just four goals and one assist so far. Kei Kamara immediately adds the goal threat this team is desperately lacking. Even better, the Revs are set up to take advantage of Kamara’s strengths. Nguyen, Rowe and Fagundez thrive when they have a striker they can play off of in and around the box and Kamara’s big body and hold­up play can certainly provide that. Kamara has also feasted off crosses during his time in Columbus. While New England isn’t so focused on sending in cross after cross, Chris Tierney is one of the best in the league at whipping in a dangerous ball and he’s encouraged to get forward in the attack. Bringing in Kei Kamara immediately vaults the Revs into contention for the No. 1 spot in the East and could provide the missing piece to get this team back to an MLS Cup Final.

- Anders A.