The Mane Land 2016 MLS Power Rankings: Week 19



I'm no mathematician, but can we stop saying that draws are good results? I know that context has a lot to do with whether we declare a draw to be positive or negative, but generally I get the sense that some people think draws are positive. Certainly, earning a point is better than earning none at all, but drawing a game should almost never be looked upon with pride in the larger view. One point is a third of three points, which means a draw is only one-third as good as a win. If you asked me, I'd rather win one and lose two than draw all three.

Drawing is never a good result, it is just the absence of a bad one.

1. FC Dallas (Last Week: 1)

The first- and second-place teams met this week. Just when I was hoping for a decisive winner to make the decision on where to place the two easier, I instead was met with a 1-1 draw. Seems fitting, though. Dallas was on the road (where they've struggled just as much as any other team) and Colorado doesn't like high-scoring games.

2. Colorado Rapids (Last Week: 2)

I wasn't wise enough to watch much of Tim Howard in his Everton prime outside of his U.S. appearances, but you've got to think based on what we've seen of him in a Colorado uniform that he will help the perhaps declining Rapids maintain a high playoff seed. Why do I say declining? Of course Colorado is on a 15-game unbeaten run, but if you look closely those games have been turning from wins to draws as the streak has worn on. In their first eight games of this streak, the Rapids were 6-0-2, but have only been 2-0-5 since.

3. LA Galaxy (Last Week: 3)

Just like that, LA has matched the MLS season-high winning streak of four games in a row, joining the two mercurial New York squads. Bruce Arena looks at late summer the same way I looked at the Chinese buffet line as a youngster. (Note: I wore "husky" sized pants as a kid.)

4. Montreal Impact (Last Week: 9)

Well, what can you say about Montreal's 5-1 beatdown of Philly? If you work for the league office you say, "OH MY GOD DROGBA SCORED A HAT TRICK! QUICK, LET'S GET A YOUTUBE HIGHLIGHT VIDEO UP AND CALL IT 'DIDIER DROGBA HAT-TRICK' IN ALL CAPS TO SCORE THOSE SWEET, SWEET CLICKS!"

Someone get MLS a drink, it's thirsty.

5. New York City FC (Last Week: 4)

Maybe the Red Bulls just have NYCFC's number, or maybe it's something larger. Either way, the Soccer Yankees are still in first place in the East. They next play Colorado at home, so that may well be a litmus test for both teams.

6. New York Red Bulls (Last Week: 11)

The Red Bulls have the second-most losses in the East, but are sitting pretty in second place behind their crosstown rivals. If there was ever an argument that winning is way more valuable than drawing, this year's Red Bulls are that argument. New York has the second-fewest draws in the league and fewest in the East.

7. Sporting Kansas City (Last Week: 8)

Dom Dwyer scored twice to help SKC beat Seattle. SKC is tied with Dallas for most games played so far this year, but sits 10 points behind in the standings.

8. Vancouver Whitecaps (Last Week: 6)

Vancouver is the Philadelphia of the West. Steady as she goes with a fair chance to make the postseason, but just about no threat to win the whole thing.

9. Portland Timbers (Last Week: 5)

Portland lost to LA at home on ESPN Saturday, which puts them at the third-most home losses in the West. Portland's unbeaten run is over, and it saw the Timbers draw more games than it won. Not a good look for a team in a neck-and-neck battle for the playoffs.

10. Philadelphia Union (Last Week: 7)

Philly got the stuffing beaten out of it in Montreal. As uninspiring as the entire East is when it comes to championship contention, Philly might be the least-inspiring team currently over the red line.

11. San Jose Earthquakes (Last Week: 12)

San Jose plays Houston on the road next time out, which should be an easy win for the Quakes. The only thing wrong with that previous statement is that San Jose never makes an easy win look easy whatsoever.

12. Real Salt Lake (Last Week: 11)

Don't look now, but RSL is just about in free fall. The Claret and Cobalt were formerly in the race for first place in the West earlier in the season, but now find themselves without a win since June 22 and securely in the scuffle to make the playoffs.

13. Toronto FC (Last Week: 14)

Welcome back to the league, Giovinco. The tiny Italian netted a hat trick of his own to warrant his own ALL CAPS MLS YouTube video this week, just like Didier Drogba. Don't ever say the league is above grovelling for page views just like any other site on the web.

Also, does it make me a bad U.S. fan to not really care that Jozy Altidore returned this week? Don’t get me wrong, Jozy is one of the best American players of all time (which really isn’t saying all that much), but considering Bobby Wood’s explosion onto the seen, I’m just not so concerned with Jozy and his jello knees anymore.

14. D.C. United (Last Week: 13)

D.C. acquired Patrick Mullins from NYCFC, who you may otherwise remember for going on a goal-scoring streak in his rookie year with New England a few years back. Remember that thing I’ve been saying just about every week about D.C., that they’re just a collection of cast-offs? I’ve never seen a team try so hard to make my analysis seem correct.

15. Orlando City (Last Week: 15)

Now the real truth about Jason Kreis will show. Was NYCFC the anomaly of his career, or was RSL?

16. New England Revolution (Last Week: 16)

Two wins in three weeks for New England, but those wins were over Chicago and C-Bus, which doesn't score many points in these power rankings.

17. Columbus Crew (Last Week: 20)

Columbus moves out of the basement this week, but only barely. Three straight draws is better than three straight losses, but as Orlando, New England and the Red Bulls are proving this year, draws are nothing to be proud of.

18. Seattle Sounders (Last Week: 17)

Seattle stinks, but did you see this Alejandro Bedoya tweet?

So Seattle passed on Bedoya to sign Nelson Valdez for more money, and Bedoya isn't shy about throwing it back in their faces. Thank God for social media.

19. Chicago Fire (Last Week: 18)

Chicago is still only nine points from the last playoff position. Believe it or not, the Fire are not technically out of things yet.

20. Houston Dynamo (Last Week: 19)

Two 0-0 draws in the span of three weeks is a quick way to hit bottom, Houston.


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