As a tribute to our 40th anniversary, we're proud to unveil the San Jose Earthquakes' 40 in 40: 40 weeks of 40 stories from 40 years of Earthquakes soccer. From March until December, fans can follow along and learn about key moments of our history - and see how our past, present and future ultimately shape our new identity.
The San Jose Earthquakes would not be the same without club legend Troy Dayak. You may remember hearing Dayak's remarkable tale of dedication to the Earthquakes after he successsfully came back from a spine injury suffered in 1996. In his first season back, he helped lead the Quakes to their first MLS Cup and was awarded MLS Comeback Player of the Year in 2001.
But that all couldn't have happened without his relentless devotion to the Earthquakes.
Flashback to the inaugural MLS Draft on Feb. 6, 1996. Dayak received a call from the New York MetroStars that he was their second round pick - 19th overall - for the inaugural MLS season. Dayak's reaction was not what they expected: to put it simply, Dayak told the MetroStars technical staff that he would retire before he would move to New York. With that, the MetroStars were forced to trade with the San Jose Clash for their fourth round pick, Stanford graduate Rhett Hardy.
We sat down to hear how it all went down from the man himself. Watch as Dayak tells the story of the first trade in MLS history: