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Jordan Morris ruled out for season in major setback

Jordan Morris

Seattle Sounders forward Jordan Morris hobbles to the bench for medical help after being slightly injured while scoring a goal against the Colorado Rapids in the second half of the second leg of an MLS Western Conference soccer finals game Sunday, Nov. 27, 2016, in Commerce City, Colo. Seattle won 1-0 to advance to the MLS championship game. Morris remained in the game. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

AP

Jordan Morris’ ACL injury has ended his season, Seattle Sounders confirmed on Monday.

The 23-year-old suffered the injury in a CONCACAF Champions League match at Santa Tecla FC last week.

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Morris has 17 goals and six assists in 70 matches for the Sounders, but failed to build on a magnificent rookie season last year:He scored just three times with two assists in 23 matches.

Here’s Seattle general manager Garth Lagerwey, from SoundersFC.com:

“We are going to do what is best for Jordan’s career long-term. We think he is a Sounder for the long-term, he is in the club’s long-term plans,” Lagerwey added. “Jordan is part of the Sounders, that has not changed, that will not change. We are going to do what’s best for him long-term, which may mean a longer recovery.”

Potentially unpopular take on a young American soccer hero: This is not a huge setback for the Sounders, and most of the drawback comes from the timing of the injury (and Seattle’s inclusion in the CCL).

Some advanced metrics had Morris (barely) behind Will Bruin in 2017 performance, and Bruin remains on the team as a proven double-digit league scorer.

It also opens the door for any number of U.S. prospects. Not to kick a player when he’s down, but it begs the question of whether Morris descends into the post-injury dips of once-huge USMNT prospects Gyasi Zardes and Charlie Davies (wildly varying degrees of injury severity in those cases).

For all the plaudits Morris received when Jurgen Klinsmann elevated him to the senior team, he’s scored five times in 25 matches. With Tim Weah, Josh Sargent, and others in the pipeline, this recovery will be a crucible for Morris’ potential. The good news is, he’s often carried himself like a man capable of coming out of it with style. Here’s hoping.

Follow @NicholasMendola