Still stumbling through the scheduling muck thrown up by SuperLiga and hemorrhaging players to various summer international tourneys, Major League Soccer crosses the halfway mark, not with a bang, but a whimper. A quick gander at the table reveals that the Dynamo and Goats have officially been reined in, with the Sounders just three and two points back of the leaders, respectively (Hooray, Parity Police!). DC United are two back of the Sounders, while the Crew and TFC sit just a point off United. The Rapids and Fire sit one back of that pair, and the "pair trifecta" is complete with the Wiz and RSL two points off the playoff pace. A point behind them are the soon-to-be-Beckhamed Galaxy, who, in turn, are two ahead of the battered Revs, who are two ahead of the soon-to-be-Coop-less Hoops, who are two ahead of the Quakes, who are two ahead of the moribund Bulls. Patterns are fun, kids!
- The points per game table is a bit closer. The Dynamo (1.9) hold a tiny edge over Chivas (1.8). After that, it gets messy. Everybody from the Sounders in third to the Wiz in ninth is packed into the 1.4-1.6 space, with RSL, the Revs, and the Gals just behind in the 1.2-1.3 playoff-fringe zone. Dallas and the Quakes are detached but still alive at 0.9 ppg, but the Bulls look to be sunk already at 0.6 ppg (and they've played at least two more games than anybody at 18, which leaves them only 12 games to play and at least 11 points to make up on teams with 2-4 games in hand!)
- Nobody seems to want to claim the title of goal-scoring kings of MLS, as the crown shifts again this week, landing squarely on the noggins of DC United at 1.6 goals per game. That said, no less than four sides boast a 1.5 average, with much of the rest of the league packed into the 1.3-1.4 region. And we better put a suicide watch on the MLS HQ troglodytes because, don't look now!, the two "flagship" franchises in the key markets, LA and NY, are floundering at 1.1 and (gasp!) 0.8 goals per game. Ouch!
- Defensively, the balance of power remains where it always has, with 1, 2, and 3 in the standings claiming the top spots: Houston (0.7 apg), Chivas (0.8 apg), and Seattle (0.9 apg). Nobody else keeps them out at less than a goal per game, especially the Quakes, whose 1.9 apg is the worst in the league, followed closely by the Revs at 1.7 apg.
- Chivas has slipped of late in the goal-differential sweepstakes, with the Dynamo leading the way at +10, followed by the Sounders at +9. Looking for futility? Look no further than the Red Bulls' -14.