The Houston Dynamo have re-signed two of the team's most important contributors from the 2015 season - forward Will Bruin and goalkeeper Tyler Deric, according to Jose de Jesus Ortiz of the Houston Chronicle. As is standard MLS policy, terms of the deal are unlikely to be disclosed as part of Tuesday's official announcement.
The news comes on the heels of the Dynamo announcing seven declined options on Monday, leaving room for fans to speculate on how the opening of the salary cap (as well as three International player slots) might be utilized during an offseason retooling.
Bruin continued his fairly consistent career form in 2015, scoring 11 times and assisting on 4 goals. While it wasn't enough to get the Dynamo into the post-season, The Bear's run of form has moved him into second all-time on the Dynamo scoring list and Bruin remains one of the most consistently productive forwards in the league during his first five seasons.
Playing at a guaranteed salary reported by the MLS Players' Union to be around $185,000, Bruin had maintained one of the best values at the forward position for multiple years. With the clearing of cap space and a proven track record, Bruin is very likely to have commanded a better six-figure payday.
Tyler Deric has become known for his between-the-post heroics in 2015, thanks in part due to his 14 (!) "Save of the Week" nominations throughout the year, winning four of them. His performance, despite a losing season, is one of the Dynamo's bright spots, considering it was also his first full season as a starter (he started half of 2014 following Tally Hall's ACL injury). Deric is certainly a player on the rise in MLS and justifiably commanding of one of the better paychecks to be granted to the league's keepers.
These Dynamo moves signal that the front office is willing to pay out on players that they can build around heading into 2016. The Kinnear era was defined by hidden value contracts and a team reluctant to pay anyone too much unless they had earned it - usually as a multi-year veteran. But now, in an increasingly competitive market, Houston seems to recognize the effort (and expense) required to keep some of the league's brightest talents.