|Team (prev. rank)||Comment|
|1. N.Y. Red Bulls (2)||Came to Seattle without two of its best players, in the pouring rain, and got a big result|
|2. Sounders FC (1)||On amazing 38-0-10 run when scoring first, but settled for ties in last two such games|
|3. Real Salt Lake (3)||Upset in the USOC final; maybe it was good no one could watch since it was on Gol TV|
|4. Sporting K.C. (4)||Interestingly, has taken the most shots in the league (460) and allowed the fewest (259)|
|5. Portland (6)||Earned a believer in Sounders legend Alan Hinton, who thinks Timbers should be at No. 3|
|6. L.A. Galaxy (5)||What did Keane and Co. think upon realizing vehement protests were about correct call?|
|7. Colorado (8)||There is no better time than Saturday to end a sorry winless streak against Seattle: 0-7-1|
|8. Montreal (7)||Forty-four goals allowed are most of those in playoff position; nine came in last four games|
|9. New England (9)||Has one of the hardest stretches to get into postseason with three of its final four on road|
|10. Houston (10)||Will Bruin has goals in back-to-back games after scoring just twice in his previous 15|
|11. San Jose (11)||Chris Wondolowski’s nine goals can’t compare to last year’s 27, but six are game-winners|
|12. Columbus (14)||Wins in three straight, four of five, could earn interim coach Brian Bliss the job for good|
|13. Philadelphia (16)||Club-record scoreless streak went over a month before mercifully ending at 346 min.|
|14. Chicago (15)||Mike Magee has been brilliant (18 goals), but will his missed PK cost them the playoffs?|
|15. FC Dallas (12)||Fading in stretch run with three losses in a row; fans already calling for coaching change|
|16. Vancouver (13)||Will be kicking itself for a while after losing at home to a second-string RSL lineup|
|17. Chivas USA (17)||A halftime lead is usually a good sign, but Goats have turned just two of its eight into wins|
|18. Toronto FC (18)||Beat D.C. to snap a 0-5-3 streak; half its four wins since March 16 were vs. lowly United|
|19. D.C. United (19)||Stunningly won the Open Cup while on pace for perhaps the worst season in MLS history|
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And, in a new feature, posted below are some thoughts from Sounders legend Alan Hinton, who you might know from his broadcast work for the team … or coaching the NASL team here from 1980-82 … or from “The Damned United” … or from his must-follow Twitter account. We’ve teamed up to offer a couple opinions (Hinton loves soccer talk, and thinks rankings are a good starting point for some fun debate).
Hinton argues the Sounders should stay No. 1 due to a maximum-point potential of 66, which dwarfs the rest of the league — a fact that can’t be argued. Seattle could win just two or three of its final five, he says, and still earn the No. 1 seed in the West.
Here are Hinton’s top teams: 1) Sounders FC, 2) New York, 3) Portland, with Sporting Kansas City, Real Salt Lake and Montreal after that.
In a side note, even before the Clint Dempsey news came out Tuesday night, Hinton warned that the star forward’s returns to health might result in a USMNT call-up. It’s both the upside and downside of getting him back healthy.
And adding Hinton’s voice to these rankings? All upside…