Since a lot of people in SoCal -and the rest of America for that matter- think that LA soccer begins and ends with Goldenballs, it's a good time for Grahame L. Jones of the LA Times to remind folks who the O.G. of the Galaxy is. With his club's unlikely comeback and Beckham's long awaited comeback looming, it will be easy for his anticipated retirement at the end of this season to get lost in the shuffle, forgotten about until after the fact.
Grahame L. Jones won't forget though. On a personal level my older brother & I certainly won't forget, because for 2 soccer-loving black kids growing up in Texas in 1994 Cobi Jones was a near deity; he was the footie equivalent of Living Colour (the rock band) and In Living Color (the sketch TV show)....someone who looked like us doing stuff we'd never seen people like us doing.
And what's he done? How about reping for the Yanks at the Barcelona Olympics and the 1994, 1998, AND 2002 World Cups. How about suiting up for a record 164 U.S. caps in 28 different countries. He has played a record 349 games for the Galaxy, his only MLS club, which he has been with since the first year of the league. He also has a team record 76 goals and 104 assists. He scored the first-ever Galaxy goal and helped Los Angeles win two MLS titles, the U.S. Open Cup and the CONCACAF Champions Cup.
In New York some people refer to Clint Mathis as "13 Legend". I've only met Mathis once, but I'm reasonably sure that he wouldn't mind sharing a nickname with another number 13. So let it begin here...Cobi Jones, 13 Legend.