With several national reports coming out in recent days that MLS players are willing to strike if they do not gain some form of free agency in the ongoing CBA negotiations with the league. I cannot help but ask the question, who will be the soccer Curt Flood? In 1972 St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Curt Flood won an anti-trust case in front of the Supreme Court paving the way for players to have a say in where they play and ultimately the free agency process we know today.
Some 43 years later MLS players are fighting this same battle even though the four other major North American sports have free player movement through free agency. USMNT players Michael Bradley and Omar Gonzalez are two of the most high profile players to claim that the players are ready to strike in order to gain their free agency rights. Unlike the case with Flood Bradley and Gonzales are top players in their league and for soccer players in North America to gain the freedom of movement that those in the general workforce and all other major sports have it will have to be top players like them who will have to lead the way on behalf off all the players. I applaud their outspokenness and hope it is not just negotiation bravado. With the league collecting 100 million dollar entry fees and a new bumper TV deal it is time the players get a fair shake in this new CBA allowing them to play for the team of their choice following their initial entry contracts.
What do you think? Is it time MLS join the ranks of the modern sports world, or should players still be limited in their movement “for the good of the league”?