2023 MLS SuperDraft grades: LA Galaxy
While they did not necessarily walk away with as many players as some fans would have originally thought heading into the night, the LA Galaxy made a couple of additions to their system in the 2023 MLS SuperDraft last Wednesday night.
The Galaxy stayed fairly quiet on the evening in that they didn't make any trades on draft day. In this article, I'm going to break down LA's picks from last Wednesday.
Round 1: Pick 23=F Gino Vivi (UCF)
Vivi had an up and down collegiate career at Central Florida (UCF). He burst onto the scene with a strong freshman season (five goals, eight assists across 20 matches). His strongest season came in his junior year in 2021 when he scored seven goals, and added six assists. In his senior year this year (one in which he battled an injury), he regressed as a goal scorer (two goals). However, he still had a strong season assist-wise with five across ten matches (the best season of his career in terms of assists per match).
The 5'6, 148lb winger ended his career in Orlando with 19 goals and 23 assists across 61 matches, a strong career total in both categories. Vivi was one of 44 players invited to the MLS College Showcase, where he performed well enough (along with his performance at UCF) to earn a first round selection.
I viewed Vivi as more of a second rounder, but I don't think picking him in the late first round is too much of a reach. I don't have an issue with Vivi as a player/prospect, the biggest issue I have is the fit/need.
Although I don't hate LA for seemingly going BPA (which sometimes is the smartest way to play the draft). LA has a lot of talent up top between Chicharito and Dejan Jovelic in the middle to Douglas Costa and Samuel Grandsir on the outside. However, the trade of Kevin Cabral did open up a potential opportunity for minutes at winger, which Vivi should help fill.
In my opinion, Vivi will battle for depth minutes at winger. I also wouldn't be surprised if Vivi spends some time with LA Galaxy II in his rookie season to help him develop (and to get consistent minutes).
It's also worth noting that Vivi is from Costa Rica, so he will require an International Roster Spot.
- Pick Grade: B-