Adam Paul Green

Real Salt Lake Superstar Soccer Goalie Nick Rimando Wins Far-Famed MLS "Save of the Year"


Sandy, UT -- (SBWIRE) -- 01/07/2013 -- RSL ubber goalkeeper Nick Rimando has won the 2012 MLS Save of the Year.  En route to the well-deserved award, he beat Vancouver goalkeeper Joe Cannon and even himself — twice.  Rimando's award-winning save — a reflex save against Sporting KC's Kei Kamara — marks the end of a quality season for the goalkeeper.  Despite holding three of the four final contenders and generally impressing through the year, he didn't even hit fourth in goalkeeper of the year tallies.  Some will dispute Nick Rimando’s win, pointing to Rimando's diminutive stature as the cause of such spectacular saves, but it's worth remembering that his height (or, if you will, ability to jump) wasn't involved in the save of the year — it was pure reflex and an understanding of where his body is at all times.

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It is also worth considering that Rimando makes spectacular saves match-in, match-out, but it's certainly not because he's short that they are spectacular. It's more that he has a finely tuned ability to be in the right positions at the right times, giving him a leg-up on some of his lankier competition who might rely on their physical stature with more regularity.  It's also worth considering that Rimando is fantastic on set pieces, rarely allowing opposing players much joy in the box. His lack of shakiness has been much to RSL's benefit.

About Nick Rimando
Nick Rimando would have been hard-pressed to duplicate the record-setting 2010 campaign he presided over between the posts for Real Salt Lake, but his 2011 season was not all that far behind. Once again finishing at or near the top of Major League Soccer in goals against average, shutouts and wins, Rimando’s 12th MLS season gave credence to the theory that the shelf life of the American goalkeeper is almost limitless … a good sign now that the 32-year-old Rimando is the elder statesman of the Claret-and-Cobalt after the offseason retirement of Andy Williams.

That being said, it takes more than age to climb towards the top of MLS’ record books, which is exactly what Rimando has done by ranking second in all-time shutouts (87) and third in wins (121), games played in goal (288), starts in goal (also 288) and minutes in goal (26,073).

Much like teammate Kyle Beckerman, Rimando’s international career has also picked up steam once again, as the Southern California native has been a regular call-up under the new regime of Jurgen Klinsmann since his appointment as USMNT’s sideline boss last summer. If Rimando can continue to produce sparkling performances like the first half he turned in against Panama in January, it will be a busy year of shuffling between club and country for the RSL fanbase’s favorite “homeboy.”

Lives in Salt Lake City with wife, Jacqui; 4-year-old son, Jett Nicholas; and 2-year-old daughter, Benny Rose … Enjoys hitting the local dog parks with his two dogs, Cassius & Marley … Runs his popular “Nick is My Homeboy” blog and is an avid social media user, as demonstrated by his plentiful Facebook and Twitter updates … Proud of his Southern California roots, where his parents still live in his hometown of Montclair … A huge music fan, sees as many concerts as possible and enjoys listening to Jack Johnson, Rancid, AFI, Rise Against and Ben Harper … A self-proclaimed “perfect slow dancer.”

RSL: Acquired via trade from NY for a 2008 MLS SuperDraft pick and 2009 MLS Supplemental Draft pick on 2/23/07
NY: Acquired via trade from RSL on 2/9/07 for future considerations
RSL: Acquired via trade along with MF Freddy Adu from DC for GK Jay Nolly, a major player allocation and future considerations on 12/11/06
DC: Selected third in the 2002 MLS Allocation Draft on 2/12/02
MIA: Selected in third round (35th overall) of the 2000 MLS SuperDraft on 2/06/00

Finished his three years at UCLA with an impressive 0.67 GAA, the second-best mark in Bruin history … 1999: Culminated his final season with UCLA by receiving NSCAA All-Far West First-Team and College Soccer Online All-American Honorable Mention honors … Tallied 19 wins in 22 games while maintaining a 0.78 GAA in helping UCLA reach the NCAA College Cup Semifinals … 1998: Named NSCAA Second-Team All-American, Second-Team All-Mountain Pacific Sports Federation and First-Team All-Far West as a sophomore … Recorded 11 shutouts to earn Team Co-Defensive MVP honors and help the Bruins to a second straight NCAA College Cup appearance … 1997: Earned All-MPSF Honorable Mention honors as a freshman … Held a shutout streak of 450 minutes to begin the season … Registered a 0.17 GAA and four shutouts as a freshman.

U.S. MNT: Has collected a 3-0-0 record and 0.25 goals against average (1 GA in 360 minutes) in his six “caps” for the full U.S. Men’s National Team … Was called into USMNT camp by head coach Jurgen Klinsmann as one of four MLS players on the roster for the 2/29/12 friendly at Italy … His latest January camp stint in 2012 was topped off with a standout 45 minutes on 1/25/12 @ Panama, his Man of the Match performance in the first half helping the USA register a 1-0 win at Estadio Rommel Fernandez … Also earned call-ups by Klinsmann for the USA’s contests on 10/08 v. Honduras in Miami and 10/11 v. Ecuador in Harrison, NJ, but did not feature in either contest … Ended his stay at the U.S. MNT’s January 2011 camp on 1/22/11 v. Chile, starting and playing a shutout first 45 minutes in the 1-1 draw at The Home Depot Center in his native southern California … Ended six-and-a-half-year span between Senior team appearances on 2/24/10 v. El Salvador and earned the win from a 2-1 friendly triumph at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa … Also made 18-man roster on 1/23/10 v. Honduras as starter Troy Perkins’ back-up … Participated in Bob Bradley’s extended training camps in January and February 2010, marking his first activity with the U.S. Senior side since joining RSL prior to the 2007 season … 2-0 victory over Wales on 5/26/03 marked his first start, win, and complete-game shutout for the U.S. MNT … Relieved Tim Howard at the half on 1/18/03 v. Canada, helping the U.S. to a 4-0 trouncing of the Maple Leafs in Ft. Lauderdale … Made his senior international debut on 11/17/02 vs. El Salvador, coming on at the half and combining with Howard to post a 2-0 shutout win on his home turf of RFK Stadium … U.S. Under-20’s: Made 31 caps for the U.S. Under-20 squad across 1998-99 … Was a member of the U.S. U-20 National Team that went 2-2-0 at the 1999 FIFA World Youth Championship in Nigeria … U.S. Under-17s: Was a member of the USA’s U-17 squad that competed in the 1995 U-17 World Cup in Ecuador.