In the where-are-they-now department, a hat trick of former Wizards have been making news lately.
First and foremost, Chris Henderson was announced as the technical director of expansion side Seattle yesterday. Words can not do justice to Henderson’s illustrious career for both club (MLS original, 2nd all-time in games played) and country (79 caps). In Kansas City, he made 61 appearances as a player and served as an assistant to Curt Onalfo last season. Last May, Henderson was inducted into the Colorado Rapids’ Gallery of Honor during a Rapids’ home game versus the Wizards. A large group of KC fans were on hand to witness the video tribute. Henderson says he will return to KC regularly to be with his wife and kids.
Another former Wizards player and assistant coach, Brian Bliss is reported as the leading candidate for the Columbus Crew’s technical director. Though Bliss retired as a Wizard after just three appearances, he returned as an assistant under Bob Gansler. Following Gansler’s resignation in July 2006, Bliss became interim coach for the remainder of the season. Replaced by OnGoal and Onalfo last offseason, Bliss has been working for the Kansas Youth Soccer organization since. Another name mentioned as a candidate for the Crew position? Former Wizards GM Curt Johnson (99-06).
Finally, former Wizards goalkeeper Chris Konopka’s name has once again surfaced abroad. The 6’5″ 22-year-old has trialed with Bohemian FC of the FAI League of Ireland Premier Division, according to an Evening Herald article referenced on a team discussion board earlier this month. The trial was also confirmed by an independent team news site that says, “He also needs a keeper as backup for number 1 Brian Murphy, with American Chris Konopka hoping to earn a contract after impressing during preseason.” No backup keeper is listed on the team’s official website, so perhaps the possibilty remains. The Wizards drafted Konopka last season in the third round of the Supplemental Draft, but waived him at the end of the season. Here is a Get Close video of Chris.
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