The Western Conference is more crowded and competitive than the current Republican Presidential picture. Nine points separate the first-place team (Seattle) from the ninth-place team (Houston), and one could conceivably see the entire playoff scenario turning on its head by the end of the season. Who knows how this thing will shake out?
1. D.C. United (Last Week: 3)
2. Sporting Kansas City (Last Week: 1)
3. Seattle Sounders (Last Week: 2)
Now comes the real challenge for Seattle. Obafemi Martins is out for 3-6 weeks, Clint Dempsey is out for two more matches on suspension and then he will miss several weeks in July for the Gold Cup. Fredy Montero isn't walking through that door. Seattle's dynamic scoring duo has been the heart and soul of the team for the last couple of years, and this stretch without them will be key. Can Lamar Neagle act as a band-aid? Will Chad Barrett prove he can be more than a spark off the bench once he returns from injury?
4. Vancouver Whitecaps (Last Week: 5)
5. Portland Timbers (Last Week: 7)
Don't look now, but those hipsters from out west finally have something to cheer about. The Timbers are getting key parts back from injury, and Caleb Porter, as noted by Brian Dunseth on Sunday night's FS1 broadcast, has been using his striking triumvirate of Adi, Fernandez and Urruti to keep teams guessing.
6. New England Revolution (Last Week: 4)
7. LA Galaxy (Last Week: 8)
LA's 5-1 demolition derby win over Philly was the first time this season that the champs had scored more than two goals in a game, and only the second time (Orlando's 4-0 triumph) that either team in an LA match scored more than two.
8. Toronto FC (Last Week: 6)
9. FC Dallas (Last Week: 7)
FC Dallas Craptastic Streaks: 2015 Edition
Six games without a win, from May 15 to? A total of 15 points dropped.
10. San Jose Earthquakes (Last Week: 14)
11. Real Salt Lake (Last Week: 15)
12. Houston Dynamo (Last Week: 10)
13. Orlando City (Last Week: 11)
Step away from the cliff, Orlando fans. While on the surface a 2-0 loss at Montreal is bad, it's not as bad as it seems. Montreal is rising and was always more talented than their position in the table indicated.
14. New York City FC (Last Week: 16)
Sal, the Fictional Sports Fan from the Bronx, on NYCFC's 2-0 win at Toronto: "Eeeey Chawlie, listen to this noospapuh headline, 'Noo Yawk beats Toronto, Two ta zip.' Can you believe dat? The papuh still thinks it's hawkey season."
The Soccer Yanks have won three(!) in a row, but Sal still isn't paying attention.
15. New York Red Bulls (Last Week: 12)
New York and New York City are even on points in the standings after this week. If you had told me that just five weeks ago, I would have looked at you like this.
16. Columbus Crew SC (Last Week: 13)
17. Montreal Impact (Last Week: 20)
Since Montreal rejoined the rest of the league after the CCL run, the Impact (which might be the worst nickname in sports, by the way) have won five of eight. In the words of a famous hotel heiress, "That's hot."
18. Philadelphia Union (Last Week: 17)
19. Colorado Rapids (Last Week: 18)
"You broke my heart
Fredo Pablo, you broke my heart."
The mustache is no more, kids.
20. Chicago Fire (Last Week: 19)
They had a good run, but the Fightin' Harry Shipps find themselves on the bottom of the pile after three straight L's.