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Bakero Traded To Toronto [UPDATED]

The Fire have obtained Nico Hasler in exchange for Bakero and $50k in GAM

MLS: Chicago Fire at FC Dallas Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Last week we asked what was up with Jon Bakero and whether he was ever going to get minutes with the Chicago Fire. Apparently we have an answer now.

Paul Tenorio is reporting for The Athletic that the Fire have traded Bakero and $50,000 in General Allocation Money to Toronto FC. In exchange, the Fire will receive midfielder/defender Nico Hasler.

The Fire have yet to make an official announcement. We will update this post once that happens.

While Hasler does fill a position of need— he’s been used primarily as a right back by Toronto— he has also struggled for regular minutes with a TFC team that has otherwise been pretty awful this season. That the Fire are giving up one of their top draft picks and potential future heavy weapon on the forward line for a reserve player from an underperforming team is, uh. Let’s just say it doesn’t inspire confidence, at first blush.

Another way of looking at it— one that Tenorio and fellow Athletic colleague Guillermo Rivera seem to concur with— is that this amounts to the Fire characterizing their decision to sign Bakero as a mistake. While it’s true that he came in to the 2018 MLS SuperDraft with an impressive resume and a MAC Hermann Trophy in tow, and impressed in his brief loan stint with the Tulsa Roughnecks, Bakero hasn’t been given minutes with the Fire and the time he was given were unimpressive. When weighed against what they gave up for a high enough draft pick to grab him— $175k in allocation money plus Matt Lampson— the Fire giving up the Wake Forest alum for a reserve team outside back probably says less about how they rate Hasler than it reflects a serious case of buyer’s remorse with Bakero.

Whether that’s a fair assessment of Bakero’s talent or future prospects is a matter for debate. Either way, this comes off as another instance of the Fire giving up too much for too little in return. At a time when the Fire needs to be particularly savvy with their transfer dealings, the club is signalling a return to a time when “major signings” were less of a Bastian Schweinsteiger caliber and more on a Guly Do Prado level.

Anyway: welcome to Chicago, Nico Hasler. And good luck.

UPDATED: It’s official.

Hasler is signed through 2018 with a club option for 2019. He’ll be on the roster once his visa and ITC are sorted.