Basically, that's the way I feel about the outcry over the DP grandfathering of players making DP money before the DP rule. It's funny to think that so many people grouse about how cheap MLS can be, but then want rules enforced to punish the clubs that were willing to spend money.
What I also find amusing is those who say that MLS should have just instituted the grandfathering rule permanantly from the start.
Well, the reality is that if the guys ran MLS had that much foresight, the league would be further along. Because they're not infallible prophets, they didn't make a decision without first seeing how the designated players would actually affect the league. Instead, what they did was give themselves a one-year window to see whether or not having a DP and a DP-like player would give teams too much of an advantage.
They soon discovered that in MLS, the whole is more important than the DP parts. No teams with DP players made it to the final. Teams are often better off with players who are slightly second-tier, at least as far as the national team level, because then they won't be missing as much time from their teams.
Yet for the league to say that DP players don't matter would be foolish. The fact is, MLS received more attention this year than any other in its existence because of players like Blanco, Beckham and Angel. If team owners had hesitated in going after those players because it might mean disrupting the chemistry a squad had because of perhaps being forced to give up stars they already had, the league, fans, and other players themselves would suffer for it. Increased exposure is good for everybody in MLS - well, except for perhaps the refs, because it just seems to make more people complain about them.
That doesn't mean that I was really in favor of the grandfathering extension. I was hoping the league would add another DP slot to everyone in the league. Chivas USA could have made good use of that. I understand, though, that it might be premature to add a DP when so many teams haven't even made use of the one they have.
Anyway, I asked Landon about it, and had to give credit that he immediately recognized his own impartiality.
"I’m probably biased. It’s hard to say, under one set of rules, you go get a player and then all of a sudden you can’t have that player unless you trade something away for him. I don’t think that’s a good thing to do to teams. The teams that went out and got players shouldn’t be punished. I think it was the right thing to do. I’m sure that other teams may not agree."
Also, I got confirmation from a Galaxy official that Landon does indeed have a no-trade clause in his contract. It's also likely that Landon isn't the only one in MLS with such a stipulation.