I'm not going to lie, first place feels pretty good. Even if the Lions have to share it with that team from New York.
With Orlando City SC going for its first MLS winning streak on Saturday, we've got plenty of Lion Links for you this morning. Enjoy...
Rafael Ramos named to MLS Team of Week
Remember when people talked about Orlando City's "fierce" competition at right back?
Rafael Ramos wasn't even guaranteed a starting spot when he arrived at preseason training in January, but the Portuguese youngster has surpassed all expectations through two games this season, earning a spot on the MLS Team of the Week.
Ramos was extraordinary in Friday's 1-0 victory over the Dynamo, effectively shutting down USMNT veterans Brad Davis and DaMarcus Beasley, while also remaining a constant threat on the attack. He was also solid in the opener against NYCFC, but his performance on Friday could be a turning point for the young defender.
Lions announce statewide TV Deal with FOX Sports Florida/Sun Sports
As an Orlando City fan from elsewhere in the Sunshine State, this news was particularly exciting to me.
On Monday, the club announced a statewide TV deal with FOX Sports Florida/Sun Sports to broadcast Orlando City's regionally televised games starting this Saturday. This means that if you live in Florida and have a television set, you'll never have to miss a Lions game.
The deal is quite a coup for the Orlando City, as the club seeks to grow its fan base throughout the state. It also gives the Lions a leg up on any other clubs that might seek to start playing in Florida. Looking at you, Beckham.
Brek Shea continues to revive career in Orlando
Check out this interesting article from The 91st Minute on how Brek Shea is rebuilding his career in Orlando.
The former FC Dallas star has been a bit of an enigma throughout his career, but after struggling in Europe for the past few years, many wondered what exactly Shea would bring to Orlando City. There were even more questions about his move to left back.
But according to this story, Shea's passing and tactical discipline have improved dramatically with Orlando. He's also leading a back line that's been a huge bright spot for Orlando early this season. And we'll always have this:
"@MauriceEdu: Trick Shots w/ @brekshea20 and @jordanrico10! https://t.co/KpG6q4BOt3" hahaha— Brek Shea (@BrekShea) May 19, 2013
Sounders extend lease at CenturyLink Field
The Seattle Sounders announced a 10-year extension to their lease with CenturyLink Field on Monday, keeping one of the most popular teams in MLS at one of the league's largest stadiums.
CenturyLink is one of the toughest venues in MLS to get points on the road and the Sounders have sold out the place 109 times in a row, so this news really doesn't come as much of a shock. But there is a clause in the lease extension that's rather interesting.
As part of the deal, the Sounders are guaranteed new artificial turf at the stadium every four years. Considering how big an issue turf quality has been for MLS in the past (Thierry Henry refused to play on the stuff while he was in the league), this has to be exciting for Seattle.
That's it for Lion Links today. Good luck with your brackets.