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Crew Playoffs 4caster - Game 23

With a loss to Toronto on Saturday, the Crew missed a chance to establish itself as a team on the rise in the East. Instead, Columbus seems to be destined for a royal rumble with New York, New England and Philly for the last two playoff spots.

Steve Clark: On Through The Night
Steve Clark: On Through The Night
Sam Fahmi


Current Playoff Outlook: Stuck In The Middle With Doop

So we didn't get Mix.  Or Jozy.  Or Miroslav Klose.  Or a unicorn.  We did, however, get a very young player with a name that describes lettuce.  Lettuce.  Iceberg.  Iceman.  Aron Johannson.  Didn't get him, either.

The Union got much better by bringing "He looks like a" Carlos Valdes back.  Chicago could still sign JJ.  New York is already stacked and Titi is not about to go out quietly.  The New England Dance Dance Revolution is an enigma; plenty of talent on the team, though.

However, here's the good news.  Five of the Crew's next seven games are against the bottom three teams in the league.  Five of the Crew's next seven games are also at home.  All seven are either at home, against one of the bottom three teams in the league, or both.  That's 21 points up for grabs that's very grabbable.  If Columbus went 4-1-2 over that stretch, they'd have 41 points with 4 games to go.  As you'll see below, 5th place in the MLS East is currently projecting at 41 points.  History says that figure will creep up to at least the 43-45 range, and I think New York and Philly will make sure of that this year... So while 14 out of 21 points would be great, 16-17 would give them a bit of comfort heading into October.  Otherwise, it's going to be the DOOPOCALYPSE.

MLS Eastern Conference Standings

Standings_08.10_medium

Category
Statistic Notes

Projected Pts To Win the East

58 SKC & DC's loss may have given Toronto more than just a hope of making the playoffs.  Both teams looked quite fallible this week.  With between 11-13 games to go, these three teams have separated from the pack.  This is obvious in the projected points (blue boxes), seen in 'The Race' image below.

Projected Pts Needed For Crew To Make Playoffs (5th Place in Eastern Conf)

41 While the Revs have 5th place on PPG, Columbus and Philadelphia are locked in 6th/7th with the same record.  All three of those teams are projecting at 40 points, so I'm saying 41 will secure the 5th spot and avoid tiebreakers.  The Crew-Union meetings 2 of the last 3 weeks of the season could decide which team makes the playoffs.
Current Crew Points
27 I have some old Crew warmemup pants from the '08 team that are #27.  I think they were Miglioranzi's.  Earlier this year a co-worker's daughter in San Jose told me Stefani was her coach and was a great guy.  He was born 40 days before I was.  I think my Miglioranzi pants have magical properties.

Projected Additional Points Needed for Playoffs

14 41-27=14.

Example Record Needed for 14 points in 11 games

4-5-2

5 out the next 7 games are against the 3 worst teams in the league.  5 out of the next 7 games are at home.  If the Crew can't muster 5 more wins this season, they don't deserve playoffs.

PPG Needed to Make Playoffs

1.27

14/11 = 1.27.  To get to a more safe 45 points, they'd need to play 1.64 PPG ball.  Given their competition, that should be feasible.




The Race

As you can see here, Kansas City, DC and Toronto are currently off the Mapp. (MLS jokes!)  5 teams are jammed in the middle, fighting for 2 spots.

Eastrace_08.10_medium

Who or What Do I Root For This Week?

5 teams are projecting within 2 points of each other, battling for the last 2 playoff spots.  Chicago's Sunday win over New York kept the Red Bulls within the Crew's reach, but also meant the Fire are now immediately behind the Crew in the standings.

Your new favorite bands this week:

  • Houston (over Philly)
  • Montreal, losers of 7 straight (over Chicago).  They're soooooo due!
  • Portland (over NE)
Less critical:
  • SKC over Toronto
  • Colorado over DC.  Because DC kept the Crew from winning fat stacks of trophies when the league was young and there were only 10 teams.
What if...


If... ...Then

Best Case

Crew win and Robbie Rogers has a good game
Houston wins
Montreal wins
Portland wins
SKC wins
Rapids beat DC 11-0
The Crew would be in 4th place with 30 points and 1.25 PPG.  They'd be 2 points behind Toronto (2 GIH) and 2 points ahead of New York (1 GIH).  That would be 3 points clear of 6th place Philly.
Worst Case
Opposite of Best Case
(see above, brainiac)

Yikes.  1.13 PPG.  8th place and 2 points behind Revs, who'll have a game in hand, for the last playoff spot.

My Guess
Crew tie and Robbie Rogers has a good game
Houston beats PU
Chicago ties IMFC (yes, ties!)
Revs beat Portland
Sporks win
Rapids beat DC 2-1

Crew stay at 1.17 PPG, would be tied with NY/NJ/NBBJ Architects for 5th.

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