For the first time in a very long time, Kraig Chiles saw an astonishing name on the MASL free-agent list.
Naturally, the San Diego Sockers’ front office sought to amend this as soon as possible. If anything, it were almost a foregone conclusion the veteran Chiles would be back.
One month after the MASL free agency period began, the Sockers made it official and resigned their longtime captain to a three-year extension. Per MASL and club rules, details of the contract were not released.
(We did such a good job of keeping it a secret too…)
The Captain's back!
Yes, it's true. @KraigChiles has signed a three-year contract extension to stay in San Diego. Full story: https://t.co/fqk7DHqEuE pic.twitter.com/VB3I86op0o
— San Diego Sockers (@SanDiegoSockers) August 6, 2020
The 36-year-old Chiles is the only current Socker under contract who was with San Diego during their professional restart in 2009. In 191 matches in Socker blue, Chiles has netted 408 goals and 580 points, the highest total for any active player.
Chiles started the 2019-2020 season off at a slow pace but caught fire in the middle of the season with a six-game scoring streak. The streak above saw Chiles score hat tricks in back-to-back matches against the Soles de Sonora and Orlando SeaWolves.
Before MASL play was shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Chiles netted 22 goals and 11 assists (33 points overall) in just 19 matches, good for his eleventh consecutive season of 20+ goals scored.
In a statement, Sockers general manager Sean Bowers said, “Kraig is our captain, our top forward, and one of the best pure scorers in the history of the sport… we have always intended for Kraig to play his entire career in San Diego, and with this contract, we hope to make that goal a reality.”
The Sockers have been relatively quiet this offseason as, after signing former SeaWolf Gordy Gurson to a MASL contract, the Chiles resigning was only the second move made by San Diego.
However, with a lineup that has remained mostly intact after a 16-5 season (before the MASL shutdown), San Diego has had little need to sign new players.
The contract is set to keep Chiles in a Sockers uniform for the remainder of his career, an accomplishment few have achieved in any professional sport. For Chiles, that goal seems like it will become a reality.