Late summer can be a transient time in any MLS locker room. With the transfer window open, playerscome and go. Even a roster thatsits in first place – like D.C. United's – isn't immune to the realities of thebusiness.
So when a cleanly shaven young man sauntered into theBlack-and-Red dressing room on Saturday, most players assumed it was the club'slatest trialist – or perhaps a new signing.Turns out it was rookie midfielder Nick DeLeon – who ditchedhis famous mane for a more aerodynamic look.
"It hit a weird length where it was always hanging in myeyes," DeLeon explained at the club's Meet The Team Day this past Sunday. "That mixed with the heat, now I don'thave to deal with hair anymore."
The makeover may help DeLeon on the field, but it won't helphis Q Rating. The club's 2012media guide – which lists a pre-haircut DeLeon at 5 feet 10 inches – must surelybe corrected, and Nick DeLeon Wig Night has been bumped considerably down theto-do list for United's Marketing Department.
"I told him that," Danny Cruz exclaimed when asked if hethought DeLeon had made a sound business move. "I was like, this is for marketing. But he said it was too hot."
Other teammates took to DeLeon's new do a little better.
"It's more my style," said fellow midfielder PerryKitchen. "High and tight. He looks sharp, like he is ready forbattle. I support it."