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Red Bulls Trade Stunner: Dwayne De Rosario For Dax McCarty

The New York Red Bulls pulled off a stunning trade Monday, sending midfielder Dwayne De Rosario to D.C. United for midfielder Dax McCarty in a one-for-one transaction. The Red Bulls had acquired the 33-year-old De Rosario from Toronto FC earlier this season in exchange for midfielder Tony Tchani, defender Danleigh Borman and New York’s natural first round 2012 MLS SuperDraft selection.

In 13 games with New York De Rosario tallied two goals and four assists.

"Dax is an exciting young player who will immediately add his dynamic style of play to our midfield," said Red Bull New York General Manager and Sporting Director Erik Soler. "He is an excellent two-way player who will contribute both to our defense and to our attack for seasons to come."

"To acquire such a promising player, we had to make a difficult decision in trading Dwayne. During his short time in New York, Dwayne has been a consummate professional. We wish him the best of luck in D.C."

McCarty, 24, has played in 13 games for United, notching 11 starts and two goals. His rights were acquired by D.C. from the Portland Timbers in addition to allocation money on Nov. 24, 2010 in exchange for defender Rodney Wallace and the lower of United's two fourth-round selections in the 2011 MLS SuperDraft. Portland had drafted McCarty with the first pick in the 2010 Expansion Draft.

Prior to joining D.C., the Winter Park, FL native was an integral part of FC Dallas' run to the 2010 MLS Cup Final. In 2010, McCarty featured in 21 matches, tallying one goal and two assists while establishing himself as one of the top young midfielders in MLS. He also scored against Real Salt Lake in FC Dallas' 1-1 tie in the second leg of the Western Conference Semifinals and appeared in all four postseason games.

McCarty enjoyed a breakout campaign in 2009, recording three goals and six assists in 28 games played. On the international level, McCarty has earned five caps for the United States and made his senior team debut on Nov. 14, 2009 against Slovakia.

Goal.com speculated that this could be the first domino in a series of moves by the 5-3-9 Red Bulls, who are tied for second in the Eastern Conference. De Rosario carried a base salary of $425,000, while McCarty's is just $155,000, thus clearing some salary room for New York.

SB Nation's Once A Metro wonders if the Red Bulls will use that newly-gained salary cap space to pursue a goalkeeper to replace Greg Sutton and Bouna Coundoul, who have each struggled at times in 2011.