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PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2018 6:01 am    Post subject: Last thing. What do we Reply with quote



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Can Sporting KC repeat as MLS Cup Champions or will Houston Dynamo regain their place as the best team in the East? As Major League Soccer prepares to lift the curtain on another season, TSN.ca presents the first of our five part season preview, taking a look at the American based teams in the Eastern Conference. Chicago Fire It was a tough 2013 for the Toyota Park faithful, as the Fire followed-up their first playoff season in three years with their lowest-ever finish in 15 MLS seasons. The disappointing finish was due in large part to a disastrous start that saw the Fire go 2-7-1 over their first 10 games. A strong May and an unbeaten home record from late July onward were not enough to salvage the season. A turnaround for the Fire could well depend on their last line of defence. Goalkeeper Sean Johnson, 24, posted a save percentage of 70, which was fifth-best among MLS keepers that started at least 20 games. The American national will need to be stellar again to get the Fire back into the MLS Cup conversation. The Fire are going to California for their 2014 season opener, crossing conferences to meet Chivas USA. They meet up with the Impact on Apr. 12 for their first Canadian visit of the campaign. Whos In?: F Giuseppe Gentile (waiver draft), D Jhon Kennedy Hurtado (trade with Seattle), D Patrick Ianni (trade with Seattle), M Benji Joya (weighted lottery), D/M Lovel Palmer (trade with Real Salt Lake), GK Kyle Reynish (free agent). Whos Out?: D Jalil Anibaba (trade with Seattle), M Corben Bone (option declined), D Shaun Francis (free agent), M Joel Lindpere (option declined), M Daniel Paladini (trade with Columbus), M Arévalo Rios (option declined), F Maicon Santos (option declined), GK Paolo Tornaghi (waived), D Michael Videira (option declined), D Wells Thompson (free agent). SuperDraft: D Marco Franco (1-13). Columbus Crew A year after missing the MLS Cup playoffs by a single point, 2013 was a disappointment in the Ohio capital. The Crew dropped to eighth in the East, missing the playoffs once more. Six losses in seven mid-summer games would be the Crews undoing, despite strong seasons from Argentine striker Federico Higuain and team goal-scoring leader Dominic Oduro. The Crew have shuffled the deck in net, sending Andy Gruenebaum to KC and hoping that one of Matt Lampson or new acquisitions Steve Clark or Brad Stuver can carry the load. Columbus visits the minnows of the 2013 MLS season – D.C. United – to open their 2014 campaign. They get a return date with their Eastern rivals from Toronto in their first Canadian visit on May 31. Whos In?: GK Steve Clark (trade with Seattle), D Waylon Francis (discovery), D Giancarlo Gonzalez (transfer from Valerenga), M Hector Jimenez (trade with LA Galaxy), M Daniel Paladini (trade with Chicago), D Michael Parkhurst (rights acquired from New England), GK Brad Stuver (waiver draft). Whos Out?: D Drew Beckie (option declined), M Eddie Gaven (retired), D Glauber (option declined), GK Andy Gruenebaum (trade with Kansas City), F Aaron Horton (waived), D Kyle Hyland (option declined), D Chad Marshall (trade with Seattle), D/M Danny ORourke (option declined), M Matías Sanchez (waived), M Konrad Warzycha (option declined), GK Daniel Withrow (waived). SuperDraft: D Ben Sweat (1-14). D.C. United Fans in the U.S. capital would probably be best served to forget that 2013 ever happened. A season removed from the third-best record in the League, United dropped to dead last in the table, posting an all-time MLS low of just three wins for a season. The off-season overhaul was of particular note to Canadas MLS clubs as United acquired Montreal Impact captain Davy Arnaud via trade. A week later, though, D.C. sent one of its premier players back home, leaving Dwayne De Rosario unprotected in the MLS Re-Entry Draft, allowing him to be snatched up by Toronto FC. If Arnaud and Portland acquisition Eddie Johnson can reignite the United offence and if Chris Pontius can rediscover his scoring form, 2013 may prove to be an aberration. But a season that poor is a tough one to wipe clean from a fan-bases memory. D.C. opens at home on Mar. 8 against the Columbus Crew. Theyll face a rejuvenated Toronto FC in front of an undoubtedly-raucous BMO Field crowd in the teams home opener on Mar. 22. Whos In?: M Davy Arnaud (trade with Montreal), D Nana Attakora (re-entry stage 2), D Bobby Boswell (Re-entry stage 1), F Conor Doyle (transfer from Derby County), F Fabian Espindola (Re-entry stage 2), D Christian Fernandez (free agent), F Christiano Francois (waiver draft), D Sean Franklin (re-entry stage 1), F Eddie Johnson (trade with Seattle), D Jeff Parke (trade with Philadelphia). Whos Out?: M/F Syamsir Alam (option declined), M Dwayne De Rosario (option declined), F Christiano Francois (loaned to Richmond), D Dennis Iapichino (out of contract), D Dejan Jakovic (transfer to Shimizu S-Pulse), M Collin Martin (loaned to Richmond), F Lionard Pajoy (option declined), D James Riley (option declined), F Carlos Ruiz (option declined), M Marcelo Saragosa (option declined), M John Thorrington (option declined), D Ethan White (trade with Philadelphia), GK Joe Willis (loaned to Richmond), D Daniel Woolard (option declined). SuperDraft: D Steve Birnbaum (1-2). Houston Dynamo Houstons run had to come to an end at some point. After two straight trips to the MLS Cup – both defeats at the hands of the Los Angeles Galaxy – the Dynamos season was once again derailed by the eventual Champs. This time it was Sporting Kansas City who took their aggregate Conference Final 2-1 at Sporting Park. That said, the Dynamo did what they do best once again and saved their best play for when it mattered most. A fourth-place showing helped show that they belonged with the best in the East and their playoff moxie once again came through for them. All-time leading scorer Brian Ching called it a career after the season, meaning Will Bruin can likely take full-time ownership of the “face of the franchise” mantle. With New York City FC on the way in 2015, this season could well be Houstons last in the Eastern Conference. Will they give the Conference one more run for its money? The Dynamo open at home on Mar. 8 against the team that forced them into the 2013 MLS Cup Knockout Round game by virtue of goal-differential, the New England Revolution. Their first Canadian test comes later in March, in Vancouver on the 29th. Whos In?: M Tony Cascio (loan from Colorado), D David Horst (trade with Portland). Whos Out?: D Bobby Boswell (out of contract), F Calen Carr (out of contract), D Mike Chabala (option declined), F Brian Ching (retired), M Alex Dixon (option declined), F Cam Weaver (option declined). SuperDraft: D A.J. Cochran (1-16). Sporting Kansas City Sporting got off to a roaring start in 2013, losing just one of its first six matches and that a surprising upset at the hands of Toronto FC in the latters home opener. They would pick up that pace once more to finish the season by winning six of eight (6-1-1) and coming within one point of the Supporters Shield. While they narrowly missed one piece of hardware, the Leagues most rabid fan-base was rewarded with the franchises second ever MLS Cup after a thrilling penalty-kick victory over Real Salt Lake in the Final. One of the faces of that triumph has left KC, as goalkeeper and captain Jimmy Nielsen has hung up his gloves. Losing arguably the leagues premier keeper hurts, but the addition of Columbus Andy Gruenebaum might salve that loss. The team will also be hoping for even greater leadership out of sophomore striker Dom Dwyer, midfielder and team MVP Graham Zusi and DP Claudio Bieler, who led the team in goals with 10 in 2013. Kansas City opens on the road in Seattle on Mar. 8 and make their first trip to Canada with a May 10 date with the Impact at Stade Saputo. Whos In?: GK Andy Gruenebaum (trade with Columbus), M Sal Zizzo (trade with Portland). Whos Out?: F Teal Bunbury (traded to New England), D Kyle Miller (waived), GK Jimmy Nielsen (retired), D Brendan Ruiz (waived). SuperDraft: F Adnan Gabelic (2-3Cool. New England Revolution Something had to give eventually at Foxborough. After two straight years in the MLS basement, the Revs finally got back to good in 2013, racking up 14 wins (the same total as their prior two seasons, combined) and qualified for the MLS Cup playoffs for the first time since 2009. The difference-makers for the Revs were the young, dynamic offensive pairing of Kelyn Rowe, in just his second MLS season, and Diego Fagundez, a then-18-year-old Uruguayan somehow in his third. If those two can click once more, then the upward trend should prove to be more than just a one-year aberration. The permanent addition of Charlie Davies should also help the Revs depth up front. The Revs open up with a visit to the Houston Dynamo on Mar. 8 but dont hit a Canadian pitch until May 3 when they visit Toronto FC. Whos In?: F Teal Bunbury (trade from Sporting KC), F Charlie Davies (transfer from Randers), M Paolo DelPiccolo (waiver draft), GK Brad Knighton (trade with Vancouver), M Daigo Kobayashi (rights acquired from Vancouver), D Jossimar Sanchez (Supplemental Draft). Whos Out?: F Juan Agudelo (out of contract), F Chad Barrett (option declined), D Bilal Duckett (waived), M Ryan Guy (option declined), F Matt Horth (waived), M Gabe Latigue (waived), D Tyler Polak (option declined), GK Matt Reis (retired), M Clyde Simms (option declined), M Juan Toja (option declined). SuperDraft: F Steve Neumann (1-4), F Patrick Mullins (1-11). New York Red Bulls A nearly-winless March was cause for concern for the Red Bulls in 2013, but things turned out alright in the end. Two huge streaks – seven unbeaten in April and May and eight unbeaten to finish the season – propelled the Red Bulls to their first Supporters Shield in a tight race with Kansas City. Sadly, an Omar Cummings extra-time marker stunned Red Bull Arena and sent the Houston Dynamo on to the Eastern Final instead of the Bulls. The playoff result has to come as a sting, especially since it was Cummings who struck in injury time in the first leg to salvage a draw. The Bulls were clearly concerned about their back end in the off-season, bringing in Spanish full-back Armando Lozano and acquiring Richard Eckersley from Toronto via trade. Will a better D be key to a better finish? The Red Bulls season starts on Canadian soil as they will be forced to begin their campaign in front of a boisterous BC Place crowd in the Vancouver Whitecaps opener on Mar. 8. Whos In?: D Armando (free transfer), M Bobby Convey (trade with Toronto), D Richard Eckersley (trade with Toronto). Whos Out?: D Brandon Barklage (option declined), D David Carney (option declined), F Fabián Espíndola (option declined), GK Kevin Hartman (retired), D Markus Holgersson (contract terminated), D Heath Pearce (out of contract). SuperDraft: D Chris Duvall (2-22). Philadelphia Union The Union finished just three points out of the MLS Cup playoffs and maybe locking down the last 10 minutes of their final three games – all of which saw them concede an equalizer or winner – might have been that difference. Jack McInerney – seventh in league scoring – certainly did his part scoring late ones of his own in two of the three, but time would run out on the Union. McInerney was excellent early in the season and clearly turned it on again at the seasons end. The Union are hoping theyve found him some help, but will a return to the States prove a jump-starter for Maurice Edu? The 27-year-old has seen little of the pitch over two years with Premier League side Stoke City and it has led to fewer appearances with the U.S. national side as a result. The Unions season begins with a tall task, the team being handed the reigning Western table-topping Portland Timbers on the road to start the season. Philly will hit Canada for the first time on Apr. 26 when they visit Montreal. Whos In?: M Corben Bone (re-entry stage 1), M Maurice Edu (loan from Stoke City), GK Brian Holt (free), M Cristian Maidana (free transfer), M Vincent Nogueira (transfer from Sochaux), D Ethan White (trade with Philadelphia). Whos Out?: D Chris Albright (retired), F Don Anding (waived), M Michael Farfan (transfer to Cruz Azul), M Greg Jordan (waived), M Kleberson (waived), GK Oka Nikolov (waived), D Jeff Parke (trade with D.C. United), D Mikaël Silvestre (contract terminated). SuperDraft: GK Andre Blake (1-1), MF Pedro Ribeiro (1-15). Taron Johnson Jersey . -- Top-ranked Stacy Lewis birdied the last three holes and five of the final six Thursday for an 8-under 64 and a share of the lead with Mi Jung Hur in the Yokohama Tire LPGA Classic. Jeremy Kerley Jersey . The mood in Seattle was electrified as the parade featuring the NFL champions began near the Space Needle and made its way to CenturyLink Field, the home of the team. At a ceremony inside the stadium, the team thanked its loyal followers -- the 12th Man -- capping a day of boisterous celebration that drew an estimated 700,000 revelers to Seattle. http://www.cheapbillsjerseyssale.com/ . On Sunday, hell attempt to become the youngest driver to win a NASCAR Nationwide race on Iowas short track. The 20-year-old Blaney wont be the only kid pushing a podium finish. Thurman Thomas Jersey . Louis, MO (SportsNetwork. Russell Bodine Jersey . Jason Zucker and Matt Cooke also scored for Minnesota, which has won five of six. Kuemper made five saves in the first, nine in the second, and nine in the third. The rookies best save came with 2:17 left in the third period when he denied former Wild forward Matt Cullen from just outside of the crease on the right side.As a die-hard Baltimore Ravens fan, certainly Id like to ease into a 5-year, 40-million dollar deal with my boys in purple (though blue better complements my skin tone). The club has a need at starting left tackle — with Eugene Monroe potentially on the move — and the entire offensive line is in disarray. Still, I tell myself, Ive got to stay open to possibilities. So Ive hired an agent. He keeps insisting hes not the type of agent Im seeking, and really wants me to check out a fully furnished 2-bedroom condo he wont stop talking about. His name is Gary Maguire and theres just something exciting about him. Maybe its the crazy look in his eyes. Maybe its that he keeps repeating "help me, help you". Whatever it is, he really gets me: Maguire: You dont look like an NFL player.Gallay: I get that a lot.Maguire: Not sure youre even muscular enough to be an NFL fan.Gallay: Im going to put my clothes back on.Maguire: Shouldnt you declare for the draft first—not free agency?Gallay: Theres too much running at the Scouting Combine. Not my strong suit.Maguire: So how am I going to pitch you to NFL front offices? What are your skills?Gallay: Im tenacious. Im focused. I cant catch a football, but I can clumsily swat at other people playing football. My wife says Im in the way a lot, so I plan on using that to my advantage. Im also dangerously delusional. (I hand him a doctors note.)Maguire: Fine. Ive seen more done with less. Lets talk staging. After discussing mortgage pre-approval for some reason, he and I come up with a plan. He explains to me how most NFL offensive linemen are well over six feet tall, roughly 300-350 pounds, a decade younger than me, and likely had a successful college career followed by some prior success in the NFL. I explain to him that Im not like other people. We settle on agreeing Im a maverick and get to work. "First, you need to put on 165 pounds." I tell him no problem, I did it once, I can do it again. He advises me Ill have to do it in under 35 years this time. Ideally hed like me to hit the target weight by mid-afternoon. Im on it, I holler, through large bites of tofurkey. He stops me as I head towards the bathroom, reminding me I cant afford to lose any weight today. "Next, you need to grow five inches, possibly seven." I explain to him that my whole allure is quarterbacks will have no problem seeing over top of me. Of the other significant O-line free agents, Branden Albert is 65. So is Eugene Monroe. And Rodger Saffold. Jared Veldheer is 68! My shortness and poor posture is EXACTLY how Im gonna differentiate myself from those terrifying bruttes! Maguire is unconvinced, so I grudgingly step into the medieval stretching machine he found on Kijiji.dddddddddddd It smells of pine wood and suffering, which Im told is exactly what Vince Lombardis station wagon smelled like. "Your hands are too small. Left tackles have huge mitts." Thats the least of my worries, I explain, as I wrap 50 yards of tape to my left hand. Well just tell coaches I have a sprained thumb and I should be better in 2-4 years. Everyone in the NFL is nursing an injury. Shows Im tough. "What about your embarrassing lack of football knowledge and acumen? You just called a touchdown a Pass-The-Liney-Scorey." Ill give it to Maguire, hes asking all the right questions. I explain how I consume 8 hours of NFL Network every day, a claim which seems to impress him. Also, Im able to name four other offensive linemen, none of them John Madden, which is more than 98% of football fans. (To be fair, since nobody knows their names, Maguire cant verify if Richie Incognito is an actual human being.) "Last thing. What do we do about your, um, advanced age?" No problem, I tell him. Im going to change my name to Stanislav Gomez, a young Cuban defector. (I figure if Oscar Isaac, a multi-talented Cuban-Guatemalan, can play a spot-on pasty neurotic Jew in Inside Llewyn Davis, surely I can do the opposite.) We both nod in unison, followed by an enthusiastic slow clap. Time to show me the money, Maguire. He advises me to not say anything else until Ive contacted a copyright attorney. And here we are, Tuesday, March 11, the opening salvo for NFL free agency. I see that Alterraun Verner my fellow hot commodity free agent has been tweeting bible verses to me (and all his followers) for the past several hours. My Verner Mountain Dog, what a joker! Gosh, I hope we land on the same team. Anyway, I better tweet him back before he gets worried. Also, I better get some rest (Im super fat now). Whatever happens, Im not worried. Its like my dad has always told me, worst comes to worst you fall back on your education. Thank goodness I got that Division I degree in sports anthropology. (Maguire knows a guy who knows a guy who is gonna get me a diploma.) Gonna be a big year. Gallays Poll #2 Which situation would be the best fit for Gallay? a) A multi-year deal with his favourite organization, the Baltimore Ravens (said every Steeler fan).b) Drawing five-pointed stars hoping the Devil shows up offering a deal.c) Pulling out of free agency until 2015 to realize all his goals in intramural soccer baseball.d) Discussing his dosage level with a trained professional. 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