MLS Eastern Conference Round (17) Up

Diego Valeri, Portland Timbers

Results, news and notables from MLS round Seventeen with focus on the Eastern Conference through the kaleidoscope of Crew.

MLSsoccer.com picks a “Team of the Week” (TotW) each round of the MLS season and Massive Report is keeping tabs on who gets voted on. There are two different ways to get recognized during each round. 1. As a ‘Best XI’ player and 2. As a ‘Bench’ player. Works out to be 18 total players a week these days.

Important Note: Early in the year (and going back to previous years) MLS didn’t have a fixed number of bench players. At times it was ten players, other times many more. Fans complained, the site feature was changed.

Now, on to turning this into something usable. After playing around with it for a bit it makes sense to assign THREE points for a BEST XI selection and ONE point for a BENCH selection. From there you can add it all up and get a general idea of who are some of the better players and teams in the league.

PTS : TEAM

62 : Portland Timbers

56 : FC Dallas

45 : New England Revolution

42 : Sporting Kansas City

42 : Real Salt Lake

47 : Montreal Impact

45 : New York Red Bulls

38 : Seattle Sounders

40 : Philadelphia Union

39 : Vancouver Whitecaps

29 : Toronto FC

27 : San Jose Earthquakes

32 : LA Galaxy

27 : Houston Dynamo

35 : Colorado Rapids

35 : Columbus Crew

23 : Chicago Fire

19 : D.C. United

19 : Chivas USA

If you want, you can consider that your league power ranking (data link). Next up is individual players. Who scores highest when giving out 3 points for a “best XI” and one point for “bench”? Here we go:

Points : Name (TEAM)

13 : Rodney Wallace (PDX)

12 : Jack McInerney (PHI)

12 : Aurélien Collin (SKC)

11 : Clint Irwin (COL)

11 : Jámison Olave (NY)

10 : Diego Valeri (PDX)

10 : Marco Di Vaio (MTL)

10 : Camilo (VAN)

10 : Darlington Nagbe (PDX)

10 : Patrice Bernier (MTL)

10 : Bill Hamid (DCU)

9 : Tim Cahill (NY)

9 : Djimi Traoré (SEA)

9 : Lamar Neagle (SEA)

9 : José Gonçalves (NER)

That list above is about as good as it gets as far as individual player quality in Major League Soccer. For Crew fans wondering... Federico Higuain has 7 points and Josh Williams 5 under this measurement.

BEST COMMON BOURBON FOR WRITING MID-SEASON MLS ROUND UPs

Here are some affordable bourbons ($20-$40) to get you through round ups during the summer months of the MLS schedule.

1. Elmer T. Lee (Would be silly to rank it lower than Buffalo..)

2. Buffalo Trace (there it is)

3. Bulleit Frontier Whiskey (standby)

4. Wathen’s Bourbon (I like this, having it now. Smooth)

5. Jefferson’s Bourbon (anything with TJ in name is alright with this Virginian)

6. Knob Creek Single Barrel Reserve (will knock you face off)

...and my current Columbus local favorite is Watershed’s Bourbon Barrel Gin. Different. Excellent. Note: I’ll grade Rye’s some other time. Suck it, Rye.

MLS FANTASY SOCCER

A lot of folks out there discount MLS fantasy soccer. Heck, any Fantasy sport. There are lots of reasons to do so. That said, it is still a measurement of performance. Just like listing out which players make a “best XI” most know that no one measurement is perfect, but when you start taking them all into consideration you just might find out where you (your favorite team) fall.

There is something to be learned from anything. Here is how well fans of each MLS club are doing as far as average total points on the year through this week:



The Columbus Crew fans, as a group, are in second place. In an abstract way, just another example of why there is a disconnect between Crew fans and a delusional General Manager. Be it real or fantasy; people here in Columbus know the sport. Another note. The highest scoring player in the league is a person with the team name of Hire Guillermo (GBS).

TRUE TABLE RESULTS

Things seem to be shaping up in the Eastern Conference as far as playoff contenders. Over the past few weeks we’ve seen Philadelphia Union shoot up the table and join playoff locks like l’Impact de Montreal, Sporting Kansas City, Houston Dynamo and the New York Red Bulls. In fact, Philly is currently 3rd in the east on the true table.

PPG : Team

2.07 : Montreal

1.56 : New York

1.47 : Philadelphia

1.44 : Sporting KC

1.44 : Houston

1.33 : New England

1.25 : Columbus

1.20 : Chicago

0.80 : Toronto FC

0.56 : D.C.

Earlier today Columbus Crew President and General Manager was quoted as saying:



Not even sure where to approach this. Considering games in hand and general trends (ie. Chicago finally playing to level of player quality (have beat Crew 3 times this year), New England being awesome) McCullers’ comments should be concerning for Crew fans (even more so for club insiders).

UPCOMING MATCHES

The action in the East this time of year clubs battling for that last playoff spot.

1. Columbus Crew (fried!?)

Sporting KC away, LA Galaxy Away and Portland at home. Doesn’t get more difficult than this. Three points from these three games would be a victory.

2. New England Revs (rise!)

A bad Chivas USA club away then San Jose and Houston at Home. I think they get six points here.

3. Philadelphia Union (hmm...)

The Union have a good Dallas at home then Real Salt Lake and Houston away. Thinking they only get three points here.

4. Chicago Fire (hangin’ in)

San Jose and Sporting at home and then a trip to Vancouver. Not sure the make up much ground here, but they do keep pace.

As of this moment the Crew are in a dogfight with New England and Philly, and it doesn’t appear they will be making up ground in the coming weeks. It would not be surprising to see NE Revs solidify their playoff chances in July while the Crew and Union try and find a way to hold off the Chicago Fire.

All I’ve got for this week. Enjoy the games this weekend.


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