It was a season of mixed results for the New England Revolution – but one they were able to cap with their first road win in over a year.
Prime Time Sports Talk’s lead New England Revolution writer Kyle Bray gave awards to various Revolution players for their performances over the 2017 season.
Attacker of the Year: Kei Kamara
Although Kamara was quite streaky in his goal scoring throughout 2017, he led the team in tallies with 12, four of which were game-winning goals which is the most on the team. While a case could be made for Teal Bunbury, Kamara’s scoring record earns him this award.
Midfielder of the Year: Lee Nguyen
The Revolution’s captain takes home the award for midfielder of the season after yet another standout season. Nguyen had one of his most productive seasons with the Revolution this year, scoring 11 goals and contributing 15 assists in 32 games. With a goal conversion rate of almost 50 percent, Nguyen has been one of the Revolution’s best attacking options and has continued to be crucial to the team.
Defender of the Year: Antonio Delamea
While this season may not have been the most glorious season for Revolution defenders, Delamea stood out in the back line this season. Delamea was often the calmest head in the Revolution’s defensive line and was only behind Andrew Farrell for most minutes on the pitch this season. He contributed one goal and one assist in his 29 starts, and played every minute of the Revolution’s first 17 games. His standout debut season earned him the Revolution’s Most Valuable Player Award, which was voted on by fans.
Goalkeeper of the Year: Cody Cropper
Cropper was the only goalie who made consistent appearances this season, so this award was fairly easy to give. In his first full season in the MLS, Cropper made 28 appearances and earned eight shutouts while making 71 saves. This was not the easiest season for the Revolution’s keepers due to the struggles of the defense, but Cropper proved that he was a decent option going forward for the Revolution after winning the starting spot in preseason.
Rookie of the Year: Joshua Smith
This year was not a big year for rookies, but with the small amount of time Smith got, he made a solid impact. Not much was expected from the fourth-round pick out of the University of San Francisco, but Smith found himself in the starting lineup six times, most of which came in April and May. While Smith may have been forgotten as the season went on, he did a solid job for a rookie stepping into the lineup, and set the precedent for himself to make an impact in the future.
Signing of the Year: Antonio Delamea
Signed from Olimpija Ljubljana of his native Slovenia on Jan. 24, Delamea was the first of the many new defenders brought into New England. Out of all the new signings for this season, Delamea was easily the most impactful, playing the most games out of all the new signings and cementing himself as one of the team’s leaders and a fan favorite early on. He won the Team MVP Award as well as the Defender of the Season award from the team.
2017 Season MVP: Lee Nguyen
While the fans gave this award to Delamea, Nguyen gets the honors here. While Delamea did a great job and certainly warranted the award, Nguyen had a standout season and was essentially the most important player on the team. Without Nguyen’s offensive production, the Revolution’s record would have been drastically affected and they probably would not have been in the playoff race as long as they were. Nguyen is the best player on this team, and unless any superstars are brought in this offseason, he will remain the best on the team.