MLS Table Talk - The Standard Issue Pileup
Well, things should certainly get interesting as SuperLiga throws its SuperHat in the SuperRing to create a SuperMess of the table over the next few weeks. Multi-competition madness aside, let's take a look at the state the table finds itself in this week. The Revs remain well clear of their pursuers, though the Crew have the games in hand to catch them. After that, it's the MLS Standard Issue Pileup, with the next 8 teams within just two points of each other, and everybody but the Quakes and those top two sides within five points of each other. That's a recipe for some drastic upward (and downward) mobility given any sort of consistency--as evidenced by DC United's recent surge.
The points per game table is slightly more stratified. Again, it's the Revs (1.94) on top and the Crew (1.8) tucked behind, both holding a significant lead on a pursuing pack consisting of TFC and the Fire (both at 1.5), followed closely by DC (1.47), and with the LA sides (Chivas and LA at 1.4) tossed in for good measure. Behind that lot is a second group that includes the Bulls (1.33) edging out the Rapids (1.27), who in turn are just ahead of RSL and the Dynamo (both at 1.25), with KC (1.21) bringing up the rear. Losing touch with this five-pack are Dallas (1.13), who still hold a sizable lead over the Expansion Fever-afflicted San Jose (0.8).
When it comes to goals, nobody beats the Wiz . . . oh, wait, almost everybody beats the Wiz! At 0.86 goals scored per game, only the frightfully inept Quakes can top their futility at 0.67 goals per game. No, if it's goals you're wanting, then the Toolbox has to be your destination. The Galaxy not only bang them in at a league-leading 2.2 goals per game (United is well behind in second at 1.87), but they also surrender them at a league-worst (2 goals per game) clip as well. Defensively, the Fire are still the tightest team in the league, and the only one that can boast less than a goal scored against per game. You've got to temper that with the knowledge that the figure has been steadily creeping upward over the last month, and they may soon find themselves under threat from the Revs, Dynamo, and RSL.
So that's the state of the table this week. Do the numbers whisper any other sweet nothings in your ear? Are there any trends emerging besides "Parity is King"? Will the Galaxy ever be involved in a nil-nil? Will SuperLiga break up the logjam?