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Crew Playoffs 4caster - Game 31

Favorable results from around the league helped make the week tolerable for Crew fans. Points in either Philly or New York in the next two weeks could be necessary in order to secure the playoffs.

G3 takes a breather.
G3 takes a breather.
Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

Current Playoff Outlook: "The Stock Went Up" - Wall St

Last Week's Summary

My mood is often about my perspective.  When frustrating circumstances drop through my Twitter feed, onto my lawn on down the front of my shirt, the level to which my life is temporarily ruined can be minimized by realizing that someone else has it way worse than me.  But why do these things bother me in the first place?  Usually, it's because I have a high standard of what to expect from the life machine.  If I lowered those expectations, I'd be less frustrated.  In that way, Wall Street analysts (and in turn, corporation) live in a world where news is deemed good or bad specifically based on if an earnings report exceeded or failed to meet expectations.  So, losses that are not as bad as expected losses are wins.

Make sense?  Good, because that's how last weekend was for the Crew.  End-of-game meltdown aside, the weekend turned out slightly better than my expectations.  In a "Wall St" way I could say it was a good weekend.  And while they can no longer win the Eastern Conference, I still have Columbus making the playoffs.  In fact, I now have them landing in 4th, not 5th.

Like last week, I was 4-2 with my predictions.  I incorrectly predicted a win for KC for the second straight week, where they only managed a 0-0 tie.  Two wins in their last 10, and one of those was against Chivas DOA.  This leads to a drop in their projection... more on that later.

Here's the current look, sorted in the standard MLS order: PTS, W, GD, GF.

Current MLS Eastern Conference Standings

standings 10-5

The Race & 4cast - 3 Weeks Left

Here's how I see the Crew doing week-by-week from here on out:

  • W @ Philly,
  • L @ New York (Henry's last home game unless they make playoffs), and
  • W vs Philly
    Note the big drop when you look at Philly & Houston.  Reminder: If the Crew beat Philly in one of their last two games, Philly cannot pass the Crew.
    I'm now projecting a Columbus - Kansas City Wild Card eliminator at Crew Stadium.  Rich with "re-branding" storylines, I'd just like to beat the Sporks at soccer.  The Crew are the best home team in the East right now, and this scenario could set up a 3-game bonanza of Crewness at CCS from 10/26 - 11/2. This is because not only would they host their final regular season match just 4 days before their Wild Card eliminator, but the conference semi-finals would start a DC-Columbus aggregate series at Crew Stadium that following weekend.  This would be even more helpful, in my opinion, in that the Crew would avoid the Revs and Red Bulls until the Eastern Conference Finals.
    I love talking about Crew playoffs.  Here's the race:er 10-5

CREW 4CAST: 4TH PLACE

Yellow = Crew's Pts earned.  Black = Bad Guys' Pts earned.  Gray = Potential Pts  Red = 4casted Pts

In/Out/Battling:

  • In: DC United, Revs
  • Battling for Final 3 Spots: Kansas City, Crew, Red Bulls, TFC
  • Out: Montreal, Chicago, Houston, Philly

Crew Playoff Breakdown

Category
Statistic Notes

4casted Pts Needed For Crew To Make Playoffs (3rd, 4th, 5th)

3rd - 51

4th - 50

5th - 46

Unchanged at 5th, but I think 4th is now in play for less than 51 points.  4th is way better than 5th, because it hosts the knockout Wild Card game.  Unless MLS changes the playoff setup between now and the end of the month.

3rd place would be attainable is Columbus won their 2 games against Philly and tied the Red Bulls.

Columbus cannot win the East, and I don't see them realistically pushing for 2nd place, either.

Current Crew 4cast

49

I now have the Crew beating Philly on 10/11, pushing their point total up to 49.

Current Points Needed to Clinch Playoffs (Any team in east)

53

Down 1 from last week.

Estimated Playoff Clinch Date

Team-by-Team

DC - IN (10/3)

New England - 10/11

NY - 10/19

SKC - 10/18

Columbus - 10/25

Estimated Playoff Elimination Date

Team-by-Team

Montreal - OUT (9/20)

Chicago - OUT (10/5)

Houston - 10/11

Philly - 10/11

Toronto - 10/25

Projected Additional Points Needed for Playoffs

3

Just one win; I have Toronto landing on 45 points.  No change from last week.

Crew could host MLS Cup against:

Vancouver, Portland

Only Vancouver is in playoff position.  This is a pipe dream.  The west owns 4 of the top 5 records in MLS.

Who Do I Root For This Week?

9 games remain in the Eastern Conference schedule that involve teams the Crew is battling; 4 of those games are this week.  Just like the last 2 weeks, these games are at different times.

  • Houston over Toronto (Wednesday, 7:30pm EST on MLS Live).  This is the game that *finally* catches up the remaining games in hand.  It also involves TFC, the team not playing the Crew that can most endanger the Crew's playoff chances.  If TFC wins this game, it will pull ahead of Columbus in the standings going into the weekend.
  • Chicago over SKC (Friday, 8:30pm EST on MLS Live).  If you're interested in Sporting's continued downfall, look no further!  They've been average at home lately, and play a Fire team that will be playing for their jobs and not much else.
  • Montreal over New England (Saturday, 4:00pm EST on MLS Live).  New England would have to collapse for Columbus to catch them, but stranger things have happened.  Like when they lost 8 straight games mid-season.
  • NY over Toronto (Saturday, 7:00pm EST on MLS Live).  This game's at the same time as the Crew game.  A tie here would allow Columbus to gain points on both teams, while a NY win would severely hurt TFC's chances at the playoffs.  Since the Crew and Red Bulls play the following week, a NY win would be the next best alternative to a tie.
  • DC - Houston (Sunday, 3:00pm EST on UniMas).  Anything other than a Houston win.  DC will still have home field advantage and the chance to host MLS Cup to play for, so they should come into Rocket City with determination and focus.  But we all know how well the Dynamo tend to play in October.

What if...


If... ...Then
Best Case
Houston beats TFC
Chicago beats SKC
Montreal beats Revs
New York beats TFC
Columbus beats Philly
DC beats Houston


bc 10-6

Philly, Houston eliminated.  New England, New York & SKC clinch playoffs

Toronto on the edge of elimination, concurrent w/Columbus nearly clinching final spot.  1 point lost by TFC or won by the Crew would seal it.  This could happen, at the earliest, on October 18 when Toronto lines up against Montreal.

Worst Case
Opposite of above results

wc 10-6

Toronto leaps Crew, Red Bulls in standings

Columbus in 6th.  Would have to beat NY on 10/19 or need outside help to qualify.  SKC, Revs qualify.

My Guess
TFC beats Houston
Chicago - SKC tie
Revs beat Montreal
New York beats TFC
Columbus beats Philly
DC - Houston tie

mg 10-13

No changes in current standings

Philly, Houston eliminated.  Revs qualify.

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