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So About that Conditional Draft Pick

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As everyone and their Mom knows by now, Brian Ching has returned to the Orange, even practicing today with the team, after a semi-lengthy process involving the Montreal L'Impact and the Houston Dynamo. When the deal was announced, speculation was made as to the Draft Pick the L'Impact acquired. Some said it was for a First Rounder, some said a Conditional Draft Pick. A little bit ago, JdJO confirmed the pick is indeed a Conditional Draft Pick, but what exactly does that mean?

Thankfully, our sometimes beloved Chron reporter, Jose de Jesus Ortiz, gave us all the information we need to know:

I have confirmed that Montreal's conditional pick for 2013 will become 1st pick after Ching plays 20 games. It's 2nd pick otherwise.

So let's break that down, shall we?

If the Cap plays in 20 MLS games in 2012 for the Houston Dynamo, the Draft Pick traded to Montreal Impact is a 1st Rounder in 2012. If the Cap does not manage 20 games for the Dynamo this season the pick is downgraded to a 2nd rounder. Sounds reasonable enough, but what are the chances he plays in 20 games for the Houston Dynamo? Wikipedia, our wonderful friend for knowledge lusting, has given us a good clue as to the likelihood of Cap playing in a full 20 games.

In 2011 Chinger appeared in 13 MLS games for the Dynamo. In 2010, he appeared in exactly 20 games. In 2009, he reached 24 game appearances. In 2008, he reached 36 appearances - the most he's played in a Dynamo Orange uniform over the course of a full season. In the last 4 seasons, the Chinger has regressed tremendously from the 36 game mark to the 13 game mark. Obviously, injuries played a huge role in this, but at the same time, his age gives reason to believe this season could be the lesser of the average of the last 4 seasons.

That is to say, the chances are better than 50% Cap will play in less than 20 games this season. This would leave the Draft Pick swapped for Cap as a 2nd rounder, essentially making the trade an easy to declare winner for the Dynamo. What do you say Dynamo fans? Is it going to be a 1st or 2nd rounder?