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DeLeon, Pontius, Olsen among MLS awards finalists

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MLS on Thursday announced the shortlists for its 2012 awards, with D.C. United’s Nick DeLeon (Rookie of the Year), Chris Pontius (Comeback Player of the Year) and Ben Olsen (Coach of the Year). Here is the full list, with the candidates I voted for in italics:

Rookie of the Year — announced Nov. 19
Austin Berry (Chicago)
Nick DeLeon (D.C.)
Darren Mattocks (Vancouver)

Individual Fair Play — Nov. 19
Ante Jazic (Chivas USA)
Logan Pause (Chicago)
Heath Pearce (New York)
*Selected by MLS 

Team Fair Play — Nov. 19
Chicago Fire
Houston Dynamo
New England Revolution
*Selected by MLS

Defender of the Year — Nov. 20
Victor Bernardez (San Jose)
Matt Besler (Kansas City)
Aurelien Collin (Kansas City)

Humanitarian of the Year — Nov. 20
Kei Kamara (Kansas City)
Michael Lahoud (Philadelphia)
Chris Seitz (Dallas)

Referee of the Year — Nov. 20
Silviu Petrescu
Baldomero Toledo
Armando Villarreal

Coach of the Year — Nov. 27
Ben Olsen (D.C.)
Peter Vermes (Kansas City)
Frank Yallop (San Jose)

Comeback Player of the Year — Nov. 27
Alan Gordon (San Jose)
Eddie Johnson (Seattle)
Chris Pontius (D.C.)

Goalkeeper of the Year — Nov. 28
Michael Gspurning (Seattle)
Dan Kennedy (Chivas USA)
Jimmy Nielsen (Kansas City)

Newcomer of the Year — Nov. 28
Victor Bernardez (San Jose)
Michael Gspurning (Seattle)
Federico Higuain (Columbus)

Most Valuable Player — Nov. 29
Thierry Henry (New York)
Chris Wondolowski (San Jose)
Graham Zusi (Kansas City)

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