Are you enjoying Copa América as much as I am? I was really happy with Fernando Fiore and the rest of the Fox presentation of FIFA's least favorite tournament, until ESPN began showing the Euros. Why can't all soccer tournaments have Bob Ley hosting the halftime segment? Is that too much to ask?
With MLS taking the week off for the Copa and Euro 2016, instead of ranking MLS teams, we take a look at the mid-season rankings for MLS's postseason awards.
1. Sebastian Giovinco
Last year's MVP has been a one-man wrecking ball yet again in his second season in the league. Despite having star counterparts in red (Jozy Altidore, Michael Bradley), TFC goes as does the Atomic Ant. Watching Toronto sometimes feels like the game plan is simply "get the ball to Giovinco," and the diminutive Italian is never shy to shoot. In short, if Giovinco keeps it up, he should have no trouble repeating as MVP.
2. Ignacio Piatti
The other midfielder plying his trade in Canada of note, Piatti has been every bit as creative for the Montreal Impact as you could hope. Piatti is one of the few players in the league that has the ability to make your jaw drop at a moment's notice. Expect the Argentine to make a run at this award as the year goes forward.
3. Jermaine Jones (?)
Hear me out. I know he hasn't played much this year for Colorado, but you've got to give him credit for being a part of the culture change that has taken place in
Denver Commerce City this season. I'm not saying he deserves to win, but he definitely deserves some credit and MVP votes if the Rapids can maintain their early season form.
Coach of the Year
1. Pablo Mastroeni
The mustachioed ex-USMNT midfielder was on the hot seat at the beginning of the season, but has gone from the doghouse to the penthouse in a short span this season. Jermaine Jones as an attacking midfielder? Go ahead, Pablo. Colorado is shockingly in first place in the league, and if the Rapids can stay in the top five, I'd suspect Mastroeni would be a clear choice for Coach of the Year.
2. Jim Curtin
Like Mastroeni out West, Jim Curtin is having a bit of a charmed season in Philly. Sebastien Le Toux is playing out wide, Andre Blake is making a name for himself in goal, and the Union lead the destitute Eastern Conference. While winning the East is a bit of an empty award as compared to the West, Philly is surpassing expectations this year, which should be seen in a reward for Curtin.
3. Jeff Cassar
No one expected RSL to be as good as they are so far this season. No more Alvaro Saborio, Javier Morales and Kyle Beckerman are ordering dessert at the dinner table with father time, but somehow RSL is competitive to the tune of third place in the West with 23 points. If RSL can maintain that level of play, expect Cassar to get some votes.
Comeback Player of the Year
1. Kevin Molino
We all remember how disappointing it was that The Original tore his ACL in a friendly last year to miss the vast majority of Orlando City's inaugural season. In year two for the Lions, Molino is making his comeback with a vengeance. After a slow start to the year, Molino has racked up six goals to go along with three assists to make what so far should be a strong campaign for Comeback Player. Oh by the way, Molino is one of the most valuable goal scorers in the league.
2. Mike Magee
Like Molino, Magee lost most of his 2015 to injury and is making the most of his renewed life in MLS. After winning MVP after being traded to Chicago mid-season in 2013 (yes, really), Magee went back to career form in 2014 as a positive role player, not a star. Now, back from injury, Magee has been incredibly valuable in his return to LA with five goals and four assists while already nearly tripling his minutes from last year.
Goalkeeper of the Year
1. David Ousted
Ousted has been faced with the most shots of any goalkeeper in MLS (85), and has responded with the most saves in the league (58). The Dane has been a key part of Vancouver's positive beginning to the season, and will need to keep up his high level of play if the Caps are going to make noise long-term in 2016.
Rookie of the Year
1. Jordan Morris
Come on, you know the league office has already decided this is going to happen. I'm pretty certain his name is engraved on the trophy, Don Garber has already written his speech for the award ceremony, and they're planning on changing the name of the award to the "Jordan Morris Rookie of the Year Award" immediately after they give it to him. If it is any consolation, he is actually having a good season, with five goals and an assist to go along with four Rookie of the Week awards from Soccer by Ives.