MagicJack (WPS)

Last updated

magicJack
Founded 2001 (as Washington Freedom), relocated 2011
Dissolved 2012
Ground FAU Soccer Field
Capacity 1,200
Owner Dan Borislow [1]
Manager Abby Wambach
League Women's Professional Soccer
2011 WPS, 3rd

MagicJack was an American professional soccer club based in Boca Raton, Florida. The team competed in Women's Professional Soccer (WPS) for one season until legal challenges caused the team's owner, Dan Borislow, to be banned from the WPS, which folded in 2012.

Contents

History

Freedom era

MagicJack was founded in 2001 as the Washington Freedom of the defunct Women's United Soccer Association (WUSA). The Freedom were the only team to continue as an organization once WUSA folded, first playing exhibition games before joining the W-League. The Freedom were a founding member of WUSA's successor, Women's Professional Soccer. In 2011, the team was purchased by Dan Borislow, owner of the phone tech company magicJack, and relocated to Boca Raton, Florida.

First season

magicJack players gather at midfield in August 2011

MagicJack opened its 2011 season with three wins, and was the only team with a perfect record for the first month of the season. Despite this, coach Mike Lyons was let go after these first three victories, beginning a long period of coaching controversy, while both Borislow and Christie Rampone functioned as team coach at various points. During the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup, magicJack lost in a WPS-record 6-0 defeat, falling to the Philadelphia Independence.

On July 22, 2011, Abby Wambach was named as magicJack's player-coach for the rest of the season. [2] The team was the visiting side when the Western New York Flash of Rochester (Wambach's hometown) set the new WPS league record attendance of 15,404. [3] MagicJack ultimately finished third in both the regular season and the playoffs.

Battling with the league

In the waning months of the season, Borislow sent an e-mail to his players telling them that WPS was threatening to terminate the team before the season was over, and he filed a suit in Florida courts. The league denied this accusation, and agreements were made for the suit to be dropped. [4]

On October 25, 2011, the Women's Professional League Governors voted to terminate the franchise, [5] accusing owner Dan Borislow of violations ranging from "unprofessional and disparaging treatment of his players to failure to pay his bills." WPS also stated, "Mr. Borislow's actions have been calculated to tarnish the reputation of the league and damage the league's business relationships." [6] All players were able sign into new teams when free agency started on November 9, 2011.

MagicJack forward Ella Masar was the only player to condemn the team owner, Dan Borislow, publicly, accusing him of mistreating players, including her. [7]

Exhibition team

Borislow again filed suit in Florida courts, and on January 10, 2012, the judge ruled the league could not terminate the team's franchise without following its own procedures. A hearing was set for the following week. [8] Before adjudication could continue, WPS and Borislow reached another deal, this time allowing Borislow to keep his team as an exhibition team, guaranteeing magicJack at least seven games for each of the next two years, one at each of the WPS teams' home grounds and two in Florida. [9] This quickly became moot as the WPS announced on January 30 that it was suspending the 2012 season; on May 18, 2012, the league ceased operations. Borislow died in 2014.

Players

As of March 2012.

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No.PositionPlayer
2 United States DF Marian Dalmy
3 United States DF Christie Rampone
5 United States FW Lindsay Tarpley
6 Jamaica MF Omolyn Davis
7 United States MF Shannon Boxx
8 Canada MF Sophie Schmidt
No.PositionPlayer
14 United States MF Sarah Huffman
16 United States MF Lydia Vandenbergh
20 United States FW Abby Wambach
21 United States GK Jillian Loyden

References

  1. Washington Freedom Contact Information Archived 2010-12-06 at the Wayback Machine.
  2. "Wambach hired to coach her pro team".
  3. "WPS benefits from Women's World Cup".
  4. "Timeline of Dan Borislow's dealings with WPS". ESPN. Retrieved June 30, 2018.
  5. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-07-19. Retrieved 2015-08-18.
  6. Boehm, Charles. August 3, 2011, nationalsoccerwire.com, "[Seeking to "terminate his franchise," WPS fires off new shots in escalating battle with Dan Borislow http://www.nationalsoccerwire.com/news/460/14219%5Bpermanent+dead+link%5D]". Accessed June 27, 2012.
  7. "Magic Trick", ESPNW, http://www.espn.com/espnw/news-commentary/article/8336849/why-hope-solo-abby-wambach-back-magicjack-owner-dan-borislow-espn-magazine, accessed November 27, 2017
  8. Sporting News, January 11, 2012. "Judge rules against WPS in magicJack termination suit". Accessed June 27, 2012.
  9. Dure, Beau (January 18, 2012). "WPS, Dan Borislow to work together again". espnW. Retrieved January 19, 2012.

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