first_imgStudents learned how to manufacture personal happiness at Happiness Intervention, an event hosted by the Office of Alcohol and Drug Education (OADE) on Wednesday.  The program, led by University Counseling Center staff psychologist Megan Brown,  was the latest installment to the Wellness Wednesday series, an initiative started last semester. OADE health educator Bridget Hoffman said Wellness Wednesdays was started in an effort to create holistic wellness programs for students. “The hope was to establish more programs that are holistically based on wellness,” Hoffman said. “They cover various topics from stress reduction to fun exercise activities to cooking on a college budget.” OADE developed the concept for this week’s program after screening ‘The Happy Movie’ on the United Nations’ International Day of Happiness a few weeks ago, Hoffman said. Designing follow up sessions focusing on how students could effectively increase their positive emotion level would hopefully improve student happiness, she said. Brown led the group of attendees through multiple exercises, which ranged from measuring positive emotion and life satisfaction on the subjective happiness scale to writing down three things they are grateful for having in their lives “We talked about how that [gratitude] felt – that was the first intervention,” Brown said. “Gratitude has been studied in the field of positive psychology as one intervention that helps a lot of people feel more positive.” Brown also shared several studies that demonstrate the benefits of feeling gratitude, including one that asked participants to list five things they were grateful for on a weekly or daily basis. “[The studies] found rather consistently that people felt better about their lives as a whole, they were more optimistic about the future, they reported fewer health complaints,” Brown said. “The gratitude group also spent more time exercising, 1.5 more hours per week.” It is important, however, to distinguish positive emotions like gratitude from happiness, Brown said. “Gratitude is a positive feeling but you might not be happy,” she said. “Things might be going badly in your life, but having gratitude, that positive emotion, still lights up the same area of the brain that happiness does.” Joy, compassion and other positive emotions serve the same purpose, Brown said. Brown concluded the session by having attendees form a happiness plan for them to move forward. She said students focused on what they could do to improve not only their positive emotions, but also the positive emotions of others. “The benefits of happiness, of positive emotion in general, are that people are healthier, they live longer and they’re more resilient in the face of things that go wrong,” Brown said. “Not only are they okay after a tragedy, but they are flourishing. They are better off than if the tragedy never happened.” The Happiness Intervention aimed to increase the overall happiness of students on campus, Hoffman said. “Students here are set to such high academic standards, which is awesome, but they tend to become anxious and stressed out,” Hoffman said. “We were able to just bring the whole idea of being grateful for something different every day rather than just focusing on, ‘What are the tasks that I need to accomplish today.’”last_img read more

first_imgAll aboard! Peter Gallagher and Kristin Chenoweth are bringing high fashion to Broadway in the new revival of On the Twentieth Century at the American Airlines Theatre this spring. The classy stage couple looks especially dapper in the pages of Vanity Fair, featuring this gorgeous photo by Mark Abrahams. In On the Twentieth Century, Gallagher plays Oscar Jaffe, a down-and-out Broadway producer who struggles to convince his former muse, Lily Garland (Chenoweth), to return to her Broadway roots. See the pair board a luxury train together in On the Twentieth Century, beginning performances February 12! On The Twentieth Century Related Shows Show Closed This production ended its run on July 19, 2015 View Comments Star Files Kristin Chenowethlast_img read more

first_imgOur next A+ vlogger is…Jason Biggs! The Orange is the New Black and American Pie star is back on Broadway as Scoop Rosenbaum in Wendy Wasserstein’s The Heidi Chronicles, and he’s ready take us backstage. Look out for The Scoop: Backstage at The Heidi Chronicles with Jason Biggs.Biggs will offer up a glimpse of life at the Music Box Theatre, where he and his Heidi co-stars, including Mad Men’s Elisabeth Moss, Tony nominee Bryce Pinkham, have wild dance parties, study up on art history (it’s fun, we promise!) and more!Biggs’ numerous screen credits include the American Pie series, Orange is the New Black, Jersey Girl, Saving Silverman and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. He previously appeared on the Broadway stage in The Play What I Wrote, The Graduate and Conversations With My Father.The Scoop will kick off on April 9 and run every Thursday for eight weeks. Related Shows The Heidi Chronicles View Comments Show Closed This production ended its run on May 3, 2015last_img read more

first_imgCredit unions were created to do right by their members. That’s baked into their DNA and in their charters. They succeed by sticking to their mission: providing affordable, fairly priced financial services and service that puts members, and their communities, first.So, why is it so hard for so many credit unions to deliver that message? It’s one thing to do all the right things, but it’s another to get people to sit up and take notice, to give credit unions the credit — and the business — where it’s due.Instead, the movement’s competitors — old and new — are publicly pounding their chests about doing the right thing like it’s something new. That’s true even when the “right thing” unravels in the fine print.Take the case of Chime, a mobile-only bank backed by Bancorp Bank that’s making a big impression in the marketplace by advertising itself as “the bank that has your back” and promising “an early payday” by depositing pay into accounts “up to two days early.” It also offers no hidden fees and 38,000 fee-free ATMs. continue reading » ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

first_img“While Biden will want to put other issues, including domestic concerns, at the top of his list of priorities, Pyongyang has a way of forcing the United States to pay attention to North Korea.”Waqas Adenwala, Asia analyst at The Economist Intelligence Unit, agreed.“North Korea often attempts to remain relevant by conducting various missile tests and this will ensure that the issue remains a key foreign policy priority,” he said.The reclusive regime launched missiles early in both the Obama and Trump administrations. Relations between Washington and Pyongyang have seen highs and lows over the past four years.President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un exchanged threats and provocations in 2017, but subsequently met twice at bilateral meetings in 2018 and 2019 discuss denuclearization in a bid to roll back tensions. The U.S. offered possible relief from sanctions that the U.N. has imposed on Pyongyang since 2006, but the talks failed to achieve much progress.Egyptian billionaire Naguib Sawiris, whose business holds a telecommunications license in North Korea, told CNBC’s Hadley Gamble that Biden should continue Trump’s policy to connect with Pyongyang.“I work in North Korea, and I know the mentality. The threats and the bullying and so on, it will not work with them,” he said. “What will work with them is, we reach (out) to them and we test their sincerity of peace.”“It’s not in our interest, as a free world, to have China dominate this part of the world and take North Korea to its side,” he added. Seoul should thus avoid the impression that its alliance policy is: ‘Please protect us while we make peace with Pyongyang and make money with Beijing.’Leif-Eric EasleyProfessor at Ewha University North Korea often attempts to remain relevant by conducting various missile tests and this will ensure that the issue remains a key foreign policy priority.Waqas Adenwala- Advertisement – “The coming weeks may see North Korea conduct a nuclear or long-range ballistic missile test in order to send a strong message to the incoming president,” said Evans Revere, a nonresident senior fellow at Brookings Institution. Revere also said the demands being made are widely viewed as “excessive, unfair and unsupported by facts,” and that Trump failed to recognize that the military presence in South Korea — meant to deter North Korea — will be beneficial for the U.S. as well.“I have no doubt that the Biden administration will recognize this and come to a speedy, reasonable agreement with our South Korean allies,” he said.Leif-Eric Easley, a professor at Ewha University in Seoul, said Biden would demand “more modest increases” in military cost-sharing without threatening to withdraw American troops.However, he said a Biden administration would be sensitive to international burden-sharing as it fights the pandemic at home. “Seoul should thus avoid the impression that its alliance policy is: ‘Please protect us while we make peace with Pyongyang and make money with Beijing,’” Easley said. – Advertisement – People watch a television news broadcast showing a file image of a North Korean missile test, at a railway station in Seoul on March 21, 2020.Jung Yeon-je | AFP | Getty Images Sharon Squassoni of George Washington University said Biden would take a principled approach to North Korea that supports “long-standing U.S. security and non-proliferation objectives.”The research professor at GWU’s Elliott School of International Affairs added that the North Korea would be a “top foreign policy objective for Biden from the start,” even if Kim doesn’t provoke the U.S. with more missile tests.She said Biden knows “benign neglect” won’t work with North Korea, and will seek to address it.“It may be quieter diplomatically than anything Trump ever did, but I think it will be a priority,” said Squassoni.South Korea and JapanExperts also weighed in on what a Biden presidency would mean for other North Asian countries. Leaders from Japan and South Korea have congratulated Biden, and said they want to work on their alliances with the U.S.Under Trump, the U.S. considered reducing its military presence in South Korea and signaled it wanted South Korea to pay more for troops stationed in the country after a cost-sharing agreement expired in 2019.“It is natural for any U.S. administration to urge Seoul to pay more to underwrite the costs of stationing U.S. forces in Korea,” said Revere, noting that South Korea has already agreed to boost its contributions. “However, the Trump administration has rejected this generous increase and demanded more.”center_img SINGAPORE — North Korea may launch missiles to send a “strong message” to President-elect Joe Biden and ensure Pyongyang continues to be a foreign policy priority in Washington, analysts told CNBC.NBC News on Saturday projected that Biden would win the U.S. presidential election, four days after Election Day. President Donald Trump has not conceded, and has filed multiple lawsuits in swing states amid unsubstantiated claims of voter fraud and illegal votes.Experts said Biden’s priority will be to tackle the coronavirus crisis and worries about the U.S. economy, but that North Korea could test weapons to make its presence felt.- Advertisement – President-elect Joe Biden waves to supporters as he leaves the Queen theater after receiving a briefing from the transition Covid-19 advisory board on November 09, 2020 in Wilmington, Delaware.Joe Raedle | Getty Images News | Getty Images The Economist Intelligence Unit Japanese flag in Tokyo ahead of U.S. President Donald Trump’s visit to Japan in November 2017.Artur Widak | NurPhoto | Getty Images In Japan, relations are likely to strengthen further, according to Adenwala of the EIU.That’s because Biden will not pursue a “volatile and mercantilist policy” with its allies, he said.Biden and Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga do not have the same personal rapport that Trump and former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe shared, but they will likely work together on the basis of “mutual interests such as trade and especially on issues of security, particularly in the face of increasingly assertive policies from China,” Adenwala said.Brookings’ Revere said there has been “considerable unease” in Japan over Trump’s approach to North Korea. He added that Biden would manage North Korea and burden-sharing negotiations well, and “restore confidence in the United States’ handling of bilateral defense and security ties.” – Advertisement –last_img read more

first_imgDirektor Glavnog ureda Hrvatske turističke zajednice (HTZ) Kristjan Staničić tijekom službenog boravka u SAD-u sudjelovao je na konferenciji Udruženja turoperatora Sjedinjenih Američkih Država (USTOA), koja se održala u Hollywoodu (Florida). Tom se prilikom direktor Staničić susreo s predsjednikom USTOA-e Terryem Daleom, javljaju iz HTZ-a, a s kojim je dogovorio aktivniji angažman HTZ-a, posebice kroz održavanje prezentacija na nadolazećim konferencijama, ali i uključivanjem Hrvatske u projekt istraživanja „USTOA’s Portrait of American International Travelers“.In addition to USTOA representatives, Director Staničić also met with other key partners in the US market, including representatives of the Signature Travel Network and representatives of the Virtuoso luxury travel network, with whom an action plan for 2018 has been agreed. as well as the long-term course of cooperation. “One of the most important topics of the meetings, which we did during our stay in the USA with key partners, was the establishment of a direct flight between Croatia and the USA. We are extremely pleased that the partners in this market have expressed strong support in the realization and establishment of a direct flight, which would be of great importance for Croatia, and not only in terms of tourism. I am optimistic and believe that Croatia will have a direct flight with this large and globally important market in the near future.” said Director Staničić, adding that all partners confirmed this year’s excellent results and growth of 35 percent in arrivals and overnight stays, ie the popularity of Croatia in the North American market as one of the fastest growing destinations.Dodajmo kako su osim sjevernoameričkih turoperatora, aktivnih članova USTOA-e, skupu prisustvovali i pridruženi članovi – predstavnici turističkih ureda i turističkog gospodarstva zemalja iz cijelog svijeta te renomirani turistički novinari. Isto tako, na ovom najvećem godišnjem skupu udruženja sjevernoameričkih turoperatora, osim HTZ-a, sudjelovale su i turističke zajednice grada Zagreba i Dubrovačko-neretvanske županije. Konferencija je okupila oko 900 sudionika koji su se, tijekom pet dana održavanja konferencije, imali priliku upoznati s novostima i trendovima u turizmu, ali i sudjelovati na networking eventima i sastancima s ciljem dogovaranja poslovne suradnje.Croatia in the top 10 destinations in the world according to Virtuos researchThe Association of Luxury Travel Agencies Virtuoso again this year conducted a traditional survey among its members – “Vituoso Luxe Report”. According to the survey results for 2018, Croatia is ranked among the top 10 destinations in three categories, with progress on the scale compared to the survey results for 2017. Thus, our country took a high 2nd place in the category of the most popular emerging destination, which is an improvement of one place compared to the survey for 2017, when Croatia took an excellent 3rd place in this category. In the category of the most popular international destination, Croatia took 8th place, which is also an improvement compared to the survey for 2017, when Croatia took 10th place in this category. Progress has also been made in the category of the most popular destination for the so-called millenials passengers, so in the survey for 2018, Croatia took 6th place in this category, which is an improvement of three places because in the survey for 2017, Croatia was ranked 9th in this category.last_img read more

first_imgThe Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has set out its business plan for the coming 2015-16 year and said it would conduct a market study on the asset management space, examining charges paid by investors.The UK financial services regulator said it would develop the full scope of the market study in the coming months but focus on the level of charges and the factors affecting those levels.A document detailing the exact parameters of the study will be published in due course, it said, but a thematic review into investments will occur later this year, alongside a competition review of managers.PwC said it was likely focus on whether investment funds performed in line with what was sold to investors, with a potential extra focus on specific-target or absolute-return solutions. The regulator said it was also restructuring to create two separate divisions, with one responsible for supervision of wholesale and specialist markets, and the other for retail markets and authorisations.The FCA, overseen by HM Treasury, is responsible for supervising insurance-based defined contribution (DC) products, while The Pensions Regulator, overseen by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), regulates defined benefit (DB) and trust-based DC schemes.In other news, asset manager F&C has said the UK liability-driven investment (LDI) market saw a strong quarter in the final three months of 2014, as both interest rate and inflation hedging levels rose.Interest rate liability hedging increased by 26% on the previous quarter, covering £23bn (€31.6bn) of liabilities. F&C said this was driven by pension funds coming to market before year-end and existing participants switching between hedging strategies.Inflation hedging also rose 2% to £18.3bn despite the pricing of the strategy not falling in line with nominal yields, as is normally expected.F&C said demand for interest and real rate hedging strategies had kept prices higher than expected for most of the quarter, with prices dropping in mid-December as demand waned.Both strategies were mainly implemented via the swaps market, F&C said, despite the Gilt market’s becoming a cheaper option. There was some activity in shifting from swaps to Gilts, but this focused around syndicated sales from the UK government.last_img read more

first_img Loading… FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 One Italian intermediary, who handles several high-profile coaches, has said United representatives have been in touch with more than one Italian coach in recent weeks to sound them out about moving to England. While no names have been identified, Massimiliano Allegri, the former Juventus coach, is understood to have resisted interest from LaLiga and Serie A to leave himself clear for England – and particularly the United job. Read Also:Gent striker urged to wait for Man Utd Indeed, on the ground in Manchester, there remains a confidence the board, including vice-chairman Ed Woodward, are fully behind Solskjaer – though there remains the expectation that his team will produce Champions League football next season.center_img Manchester United chiefs are testing the managerial market in Italy as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer‘s team battle for a top four finish. Erling Haaland is the subject of interest from a number of European clubs including Man Utd. With United sitting in eighth position, six points behind fourth placed Chelsea, there is pressure on Solskjaer to secure Champions League qualification. And has been informed United’s directors aren’t sitting on their hands and instead are sounding out potential replacements for the Norwegian.Advertisementlast_img read more

first_img Published on August 29, 2013 at 1:57 am Contact Stephen: [email protected] | @Stephen_Bailey1 Four quarterbacks. Zero starts.In one of the most bizarre, and perhaps unprecedented, moments in modern college football history two teams head into battle on Saturday without a starting quarterback announced.Both Syracuse and Penn State are choosing between two unproven quarterbacks. Both are trying to prepare for two signal callers without much film.But the big difference comes in the quarterbacks’ distinctions.SU head coach Scott Shafer is preparing his team for a scheme. Empty backfields. Multiple tight end sets. Whether PSU’s quarterback is 19-year-old JUCO transfer Tyler Ferguson or 18-year-old five-star freshman Christian Hackenberg, they’ll be running the same Bill O’Brien offense.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textFor O’Brien, though, SU quarterbacks Drew Allen and Terrel Hunt present different skill sets and different problems. Allen is a senior with a big arm and three years’ worth of Big 12 football knowledge. Hunt is a sophomore dual-threat option who ran the offense in the spring.“It’s really one of the things that’s a little nerve-wracking, going into the first game,” O’Brien said. “You really don’t know what to expect. You have to make sure you cover all your bases as best you can, but you also can’t stay into the office until 4:30 in the morning trying to block ghosts and things you really can’t be sure exist.”Shafer said he hasn’t thought much about how his masking of SU’s starter could be more pertinent than O’Brien’s, but admitted the inexperience of all four quarterbacks makes it difficult for both teams to scout. When the Orange opens its season against Penn State on Saturday at 3:30 p.m. at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., it will do so without having seen a ton of film on Ferguson and Hackenberg.Ferguson starred as a freshman at College of the Sequoias in Visalia, Calif., last season while Hackenberg spent a year at Fork Union Military Academy, in Virginia. Most of what Shafer has found he said was from YouTube, and the tape showed both quarterbacks are capable of running an offense, and also moving the chains with their feet.“We won’t be in a situation where we have two drastically different situations on the football field,” Shafer said. “I think they’re similar to one another so I don’t think it poses as big of a concern with regard to those two.”The biggest concern may be O’Brien’s use of his tight ends. As an assistant coach with the New England Patriots, he took the AFC by storm flaunting his “12 personnel” two-tight end sets with Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez.Now he’s using Kyle Carter and Jesse James similarly. Shafer said he’s expecting to match up with as many as three Nittany Lion tight ends at once.“We have to be prepared for that and anything else,” Shafer said. “They do a good job with their empty package, so we have to have good answers and they will try to get some mismatches on us.”And with an inexperienced quarterback under center, SU linebacker Marquis Spruill expects either Ferguson or Hackenberg will be working with a limited playbook.Those tight ends will likely be their first or second options on most passing plays.“Whoever they put in there we’re going to go after,” Spruill said. “We want to make sure he doesn’t have the ball that long to get it there.”But while the Penn State quarterback selection doesn’t affect the SU defense’s approach, the same can’t be said for Syracuse’s choice.Allen can throw the ball 70 yards, Shafer said, while Hunt is athletic enough to have played high school basketball for powerhouse Christ the King Regional High School in New York.“Whether it’s Hunt or Allen, from what we know they are two different quarterbacks,” O’Brien said. “So you’ve got to be ready for two different styles of quarterbacks. I’m not going to get into how I see the difference in their styles, but we have to do a good job on defense of recognizing who’s in the game and making sure that we’re ready for that.”While Shafer and the rest of the coaching staff have been mum about which one the Orange will start, sophomore H-back Ashton Broyld said Allen is taking most of the first-team reps with him and Shafer said he’s seen Allen’s teammates grow to look at him as a leader.If that is true, it’s possible SU may be able to stretch out the Penn State secondary enough to keep the running lanes open for Jerome Smith and Prince-Tyson Gulley.The only thing that is certain is football will be played Saturday afternoon. Two of the four quarterbacks will start, but the two others could finish.Said Allen: “Whoever coach goes with, or no matter what happens in the game, we’re all going to be ready.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

first_imgThe 2019 Major League Soccer season arrives this weekend, with Toronto FC traveling to Pennsylvania to take on the Philadelphia Union at Talen Energy Stadium.Perhaps you didn’t see this coming. Since its initial season nearly a quarter-century ago, MLS has had two persistent problems: when to start the season and how to end it. The continued growth of the league has pushed the season opener earlier and earlier, and  now we have action the first weekend in March.MORE: Nani joins Orlando CityIt is a busy time in American sports, with NCAA basketball, the NHL and NBA all approaching the most intense junctures of their regular seasons and baseball’s spring training in full operation. But the American soccer season has to start sometime, and a full slate of MLS games this weekend offers the promise of warmer weather soon to come.With Atlanta United attempting to declare in its third season it has become not only the league’s reigning champion but also its dominant team, and with so many interesting new players arriving and a redesigned competition in place for 2019, there are plenty of questions to ask about how the next 8 1/2 months will develop in MLS.1. Is this new playoff format the one that finally will work?The season-ending playoffs have been a challenge for Major League Soccer since it began play in 1996. The league has gone through several format changes, none of which was truly ideal. In recent years, teams in the conference semifinals and finals have played two-leg, total-goals series that have provided essentially no real advantage for the team that finished higher in the regular-season standings.So the league has come up with a new one. Seven teams from each 12-team conference will make the playoffs. The No. 1 seed in each conference will earn a bye to the conference semifinal round. The other teams will be matched according to seed — 2 vs. 7, 3 vs. 6, 4 vs. 5 — in single-elimination games. The higher seed will be the host for all playoff games. Teams will not be reseeded to accommodate an upset; the original tournament bracket will stand throughout.The season also will end earlier, with MLS Cup arriving on Sunday, Nov. 10, which does not assure ideal soccer weather if the game winds up in a Northern city. But it’s a better bet than it was when the game came a month later.2. Was FDB the right hire for ATL?Atlanta United unquestionably made the correct coaching hire when it joined MLS as an expansion team in 2017. Tata Martino introduced an attractive style of soccer, aided in the construction of a dynamic roster that included Miguel Almiron and Josef Martinez and led the club to an MLS Cup title in its second season. Tata then chose to accept the head coaching position with the Mexico national team, which left Atlanta searching for someone to replace him.The choice: Frank De Boer, who managed Ajax in the Netherlands from 2010-16 and won the Eredivisie four consecutive times, the only club to accomplish that in its history. That sounds promising. After things wilted, though, he resigned and took a job at Inter Milan. He was fired in less than three months, having coached 14 games. His next job was in England’s Premier League, at Crystal Palace. He stuck around only five games, four of them in the league, all of which were losses and none of which included a Palace goal.When Atlanta United began its competitive season being shredded on the road 3-1 in the CONCACAF Champions League by Herediano of Costa Rica it was hard not to wonder if Atlanta had been searching more for the name than the game in choosing De Boer.3. Can Toronto FC rediscover its swagger?In early January 2014, Toronto FC signed Michael Bradley as a transfer from AS Roma and the era of TFC ambition began. A year later came Jozy Altidore and Sebastian Giovinco, and by 2016 the club was in the MLS Cup final. It claimed the title in 2017 and then began 2018 by coming closer than any MLS team ever to winning the CONCACAF Champions League, falling on penalties to Chivas Guadalajara.Then it all fell apart. Injuries limited playmaking midfielder Victor Vasquez to 21 games, Altidore to 13 and defender Drew Moor to eight. TFC allowed 64 goals, second-worst in the Eastern Conference, and finished 14 points out of a playoff spot.MORE: Giovinco questions TFC’s commitment, claims club forced him out Since then, TFC allowed Giovinco to depart along with Vasquez apparently because it didn’t want to offer big contracts to either player. In its 2019 CCL debut, the club was smacked 4-0 by CA Independiente of Panama. It was a shocking result, but only because 2018 was viewed to be an exception to the club’s recent history.The trick is to assure it’s not the new normal, and to do it without two players who ranked with the league’s best.4. What will the league do about the LA Galaxy’s DP overflow?Since 2010, MLS teams have been permitted to have three “designated players”; only a fraction of the salaries of such players count against their team’s cap. This has allowed such teams as TFC and Atlanta United to flourish and attract high-level talents to the league.But you can’t have four, and with the season opener Saturday at home against Chicago approaching, the LA Galaxy have forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic and midfielders Jonathan Dos Santos, Gio Dos Santos and Romain Alessandrini.Doesn’t somebody have to go? Or at least have a contract restructured somehow? League rules make that a challenge, so it’s unclear what the Galaxy will do. If anything. GM Dennis te Kloese told the Los Angeles Times all four players will remain with the team. That’s about all that’s clear.The Galaxy sold forward Ola Kamara to a club in China. He scored 48 goals in 90 regular-season games with the Galaxy and Columbus, including 14 in 30 games in his first (and only) season in LA. But that doesn’t really address the issue, and there still hasn’t been any real direction given about how that will be handled.5. What does outflow of great young talent mean for the league?It seems a little like more good young players left MLS than in any recent offseason, but it could be more so that it was about better young players departing.Almiron not only was by far the most expensive player ever sold by Major League Soccer, at $31 million, he also broke the transfer record for Newcastle of the Premier League. Canadian teenager Alfonso Davies went for $13 million, but he also went to one of the most powerful clubs in the world, Bayern Munich.New York Red Bulls midfielder Tyler Adams went for only $3.5 million, but to a club in Germany’s Bundesliga, RB Leipzig, where he was expected to make an immediate impact. And he has.All this does seem to indicate a willingness on the part of Major League Soccer to occasionally sell its most promising talents to bigger leagues. That could be viewed as a negative, particularly by American audiences accustomed to seeing their leagues (MLB, NBA, NHL) as destinations for the best players. But it also could encourage top young talents from here or abroad to consider the league as a place to develop.6. What does the inflow of promising talent mean?The Almiron success story has opened doors for prospecting MLS teams, particularly in the Americas, and specifically for Atlanta United. Midfielder Pity Martinez arrived for $17 million from River Plate in Argentina, which he led to the 2018 Copa Libertadores. He was considered one of the best South American-based players and is expected to play a role similar to Almiron.We also have seen high-priced transfers from Romania (midfielder Alexandru Mitrita, NYCFC, $10.4 million), Mexico (forward Raul Ruidiaz, Seattle Sounders, $8.25 million), Portugal (Andre Horta, LAFC, $7.4 million) and Spain (Bryan Acosta, FC Dallas, $3.65 million).The MLS salary and roster rules can be a labyrinth, but it’s clear the talent level in the league continues to rise.7. Is this the year Red Bulls break through?It is a perpetual question for this club. Whether you called them the New York/New Jersey MetroStars or the Red Bulls following their sale more than a decade ago or even RBNY, they have not been able to claim the MLS Cup championship. Oddly, the closest they came was by traveling far away, during the years when teams at the bottom of playoff qualification sometimes shifted conferences. The 2008 Red Bulls wound up winning the Western Conference by upsetting Real Salt Lake on the road and then lost in the MLS Cup final to the Columbus Crew.Since then, they’ve finished first in the Eastern Conference five times and won three Supporters’ Shields (best regular-season record) and never once made it to the MLS Cup final. There are times when this kind of streak becomes almost like another opponent for a team, a mental obstacle the players struggle to overcome. This even can be true when the players involved had no part in constructing that particular history.But, as the Boston Red Sox showed 15 years ago or the Washington Capitals showed last spring, such a “curse” can be broken.last_img read more