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PawedCast Episode 266: Nashville & D.C. Rewinds, NWSL Pauses Play, USMNT Qualifiers Loom and More

The Cardiac Cats returned with a pair of stoppage-time results this week and the NWSL faces a crisis.

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MLS: D.C. United at Orlando City SC Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Orlando City picked the most dramatic ways to stop the bleeding this past week. The Lions roared back from two goals down on the road, scoring the equalizer in stoppage time to draw 2-2 at Nashville SC in the midweek. Then, on Saturday, Orlando improved on that by scoring a game winner deep in stoppage time in a 2-1 home win over D.C. United.

The end of a four-game losing streak, followed by the end of a five-game winless streak, was a welcome sight. Neither of those was easy, but Orlando City found a way to get it done and Oscar Pareja was jubilant to see his team get back in the win column on Saturday. Daryl Dike is a big reason why, with a goal in three consecutive games.

Dave Rohe and I broke down both results, which have left the Lions in a good place now that the international break is here. While the team would no doubt love to try to continue its positive momentum, there is nothing wrong with stopping at a good spot and maybe getting some guys healthy and rested for a vital final stretch run.

We also talked about Dike’s iconic goal celebration and how it stacked up against another favorite in the team’s history.

The Orlando Pride did not play on the road at Chicago this past week as the fallout of the Paul Riley news and subsequent departure of Lisa Baird as NWSL commissioner had a ripple effect throughout a league that is trying to recover from a collective trauma and move forward in a way that both makes sense and, most importantly, protects its players from predatory behavior. That protection means nothing if the system that can stop such behavior is fundamentally broken, flawed, or flat out misused by those in charge. We wish nothing but the best for the NWSL’s talented players and demand that the NWSL finds some system-wide fixes.

This week’s mailbag asks about Orlando City and Pride versions of player Mount Rushmores, scary movies, halftime shows, and comebacks. If there’s anything — and we do mean anything — you want us to address on the next show, just ask by tweeting it to us at @TheManeLand with the hashtag #AskTMLPC.

We close the show with some USMNT World Cup qualifier discussion about the roster, some key injuries, and the upcoming matches.

That’s all for this week.

Stay safe and enjoy the show!

Here’s how No. 266 went down:

0:15 - Orlando City left it late both times but got a draw and a win against top Eastern Conference competition. It was stressful, but we’ll take it.

39:48 - The NWSL has some extremely important business to take care of in the wake of the Paul Riley news that dropped last week. It must answer for what was done and it must make sure it does everything it can to prevent it in the future. Plus, our mailbag and some USMNT talk.