First-year coach Wilmer Cabrera took the Dynamo from last place in the Division in 2016 to the 2017 conference final. He brought an exciting brand of soccer that took a team with the lowest payroll in the MLS from 10th to fourth in the West. Surprisingly, he was left off the list of finalists for the MLS Coach of the Year. Sports Illustrated honored Cabrera and minority Dynamos owner Oscar De La Hoya as two of the 30 most influential Hispanics in sports last fall. Cabrera had an 18-year playing career in the American and Caribbean. When he was named coach of the U.S. National under-17 team in 2007, he became the first Latin American head coach in the U.S. national team system.