The air has turned cold, the leaves have turned brown, and the TFC front office is busy trying to sign Leyton Orient’s top scorer while hitting off the third tee. That’s right, it’s the MLS playoffs. Let’s take a look at the matchups. First off it’s Chicago and New England. Just a couple weeks ago I would’ve said that could be a competitive and interesting series. Now, after the rash of injuries and suspensions that the Revs have suffered, I suspect Chicago will roll thus doing us all the service of preventing Steve Nicol from ruining another cup final. Right now Chicago looks to be firing all guns blazing again after their demolition and near-elimination (cue sobbing from DC fans) of the Red Bulls. Prediction: Fire advances easily.
Next in the east, it’s Columbus facing Kansas City. This sorts out as the battle of MLS’ best team over the regular season with its hottest team at this moment. Columbus fans have likely only just finished celebrating their Supporters Shield win, only stopping now to re-engage in their favorite activities watching Wall to Wall Sports, driving too slowly down Rt. 315 and penning witty missives to yours truly.* We all know Columbus’ history when favored going into playoff series. Maybe we don’t, so let me summarize – they tend to stink. I am going to stick by my pledge that Columbus would bomb out of the playoffs early. Prediction: KC advances after a penalty shootout.
Now to the west, where we start with Houston versus New York. Even more than the Chicago-NE series, this one shouldn’t be that close. The Dynamo haven’t lost in the league since August and New York is the beneficiary of good luck overcoming rank incompetence, and somehow.. despite winning only twice since Labor day, they have qualified for the playoffs. (Cue more sobbing.) If Houston ever surrenders the lead in this series, I’ll be surprise. Houston in a walk.
Oh boy, welcome to the annual series with absolutely nothing interesting about it. To use the technical term, Chivas is “eh,” and RSL is “eh.” RSL will have the better home field advantage and better goalkeeper in Nick Rimando. Therefore, RSL it is for the privilege of getting crushed on the road at Houston the next week. I kid, but this series really could be a close one, unlike at least two of the others. It might be worth tuning in…. Eh. I doubt it.
* Point taken – most of that joke made sense to no more than 10 people.