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16 April 9:45 am

If you haven’t heard by now, Dynamo defender Geoff Cameron is raising money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society as part of his 20 for 20 campaign. Although Cameron is raising money for the cause, he is also part of the Man and Woman of the Year competition. Each year, the man and woman who raises the most amount of money is named the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Man and Woman of the Year.

If you haven’t donated to Cameron’s campaign yet, there is still time. If you are on the fence about donating, I’m here to provide you ten reasons why I think you should get off that fence and donate to the cause.

  1. Cancer sucks. We all know someone who has had it or currently has it and we all wish there was a cure. Raising this money will bring us one step closer to finding a cure.
  2. Geoff Cameron off the field. Since the Dynamo drafted Cameron in 2008, he has been a model person and a great representation of what the Dynamo stand for. He regularly visits patients at local area hospitals and last year, he raised $20,000 for The Fisher House and The Ronald McDonald House.
  3. Geoff Cameron on the field. Two-time all-star. Finalists for Defender and Rookie of the Year. 2011 Dynamo Golden Boot winner. Need I say more? For the past five years, Cameron has given his all for the club and for the fans and now it’s our turn to help repay the favor.
  4. Dynamo Charities. Each year, Dynamo Charities raises money to help fund various projects in Houston that promote healthy lifestyle and the sport of soccer. It is a staple to the Dynamo’s commitment to remain a partner to the Houston community. Dynamo Charities already made a contribution to Cameron’s campaign, and so should you.
  5. Winning tradition. For the past two years, the Dynamo have won the Man of the Year competition. In 2010, it was Rocky Harris who raised the most money. Last year, it was Danny Cruz. Let’s not let the tradition die.
  6. Clint Dempsey. The man known simply as “Deuce” donated an autographed jersey to be auctioned off for Cameron’s campaign. If a man who is scoring goals left and right for Fulham thinks this is a good cause, shouldn’t you?
  7. Tim DaPonte. Tim is the motivation behind Geoff wanting to raise this money. He is a former youth soccer teammate of Cameron’s and a very close friend. Tim was diagnosed with hodgkins lymphoma in 2011 and has been battling the disease for the past year. You can help Tim by supporting Geoff.
  8. Celebrity Pour. Interested in donating to the cause and having fun while doing it? You can come out to Cameron’s celebrity pour on Wednesday, April 18 at Bar Munich. Cameron and his teammates will be serving drinks and all tips will benefit his campaign. Come out and have a beer (or some water!) and have fun while supporting a great cause!
  9. Because Sarah Pepper said so. The HOT 95.7 morning emcee is a candidate for Woman of the Year and has teamed up with Geoff for the celebrity pour. What you doing at the courthouse? More like what aren’t you doing at Wednesday’s celebrity pour?
  10. Because you want me to stop listing reasons. Trust me, I could go all day and night if I needed to tell you why I think you should support this campaign, but I promise to spare you all and leave you with this…

No donation is too small and every dollar counts toward helping Cameron reach his goal and helping the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society reach their goals. For more information about Cameron’s campaign and to see the various ways you can participate, please visit HoustonDynamo.com/20for20.

13 April 9:45 am

So with the Dynamo having two weeks off from MLS play, I decided to take two weeks off from providing fantasy advice. Hopefully your team didn't suffer too much!

This weekend, the Dynamo travel to Chicago for an Eastern Conference tilt with the Fire. Historically, the Dynamo have done well at Toyota Park, coming away with a 3-1-2 record and 10 goals scored in six matches.

This weekend should be an interesting one from a fantasy perspective. Midfielders Adam Moffat and Colin Clark are suspended and Brad Davis is doubtful with a calf injury. Since Colin Clark would normally be the replacement for Davis on the left hand side, Dominic Kinnear will have to dig into his bag of tricks to fill out Sunday's lineup card. He could start Jermaine Taylor at left back and move Corey Ashe into a familiar position at left mid, or he could leave Corey Ashe at left back and play anyone from Alex Dixon to Je-Vaughn Watson to Calen Carr to Mac Kandji at the outside mid positions.

With that said, here are a few key notes heading into Sunday's showdown with the Fire:

  • In 13 career games against the Fire, Brian Ching has scored four goals and tallied three assists. If you recall two years ago, it was against Chicago that Ching recorded a hat trick in a 4-3 shootout at Robertson Stadium.
  • Bobby Boswell scored five goals last year but has yet to record a goal this year. However, Boswell did score the game-tying goal at Toyota Park in 2011. The Dynamo center back has three career goals against Chicago.
  • With Brad Davis, Colin Clark and Adam Moffat out, it will be interesting to see who steps up to take set pieces. As a natural left-footed player, Corey Ashe could swing in some crosses from the right side of the field. And maybe Luiz Camargo will have the opportunity from the left? Regardless, whoever steps up to the set pieces will have ample opportunity to record some assists.
  • Dynamo goalkeeper Tally Hall has only faced the Fire twice and each time he has come away with a 1-1 draw. The second-year starter has look solid in 2012 and with speedsters Dominic Oduro and Patrick Nyarko up top for Chicago, look for Hall to have a busy night on Sunday.
  • The Fire have three players all-time who have scored two goals or more against the Dynamo. Thankfully, one of those players (Calen Carr) now wears orange and the other two are no longer with the club. Dominic Oduro played twice against his former club in 2011 and scored the Fire's lone goal at Robertson Stadium. The man has speed, and Chicago will look to go to him early and often against the Dynamo back line.

Hopefully this provides you a little more insight into Sunday's matchup from a fantasy perspective. As always, I take no credit if you start a player I suggest and he does well and I take no blame if you start a player I suggest and he doesn't perform up to your fantasy standards.

Don't forget to set your lineups by tomorrow and good luck this weekend!

10 April 11:19 am

There is only so much I can say about the Dynamo's place in the power rankings after consecutive bye weeks. So let's get down to it. With the sudden surge of Thierry Henry and the New York Red Bulls, and results pending from a Brad Davis MRI, the folks at MLSsoccer.com dropped the Dynamo to the No. 6 spot in their rankings. They said:

They didn't play, but they still drop a spot thanks to New York's jump and concern over Brad Davis' calf. If their midfield maestro is laid up for any amount of time, the Dynamo could be in for a steep, hard fall. Especially with four more left on the road.

Hopefully we'll have more news soon as to whether or not Davis can play on Sunday at Chicago.

Elsewhere around the world of soccer, Brian Straus of The Sporting News agrees with the MLSsoccer.com folks with regard to the Dynamo's place in the league rankings. SI.com's Avi Creditor gives the Dynamo a bit more credit, keeping Houston in the No. 4 spot in his rankings, while ESPN.com's Jeff Carlisle drops Houston to No. 5.

So what do you think? After consecutive bye weeks, should the Dynamo still be in the 4-6 spot in the rankings? Who would be your top five? Let us know in the comments below!

 

10 April 9:00 am

Houston Dynamo midfielder Josue Soto, who recently joined the San Antonio Scorpions on loan, started and played 90 minutes in San Antonio's season-opening game, Saturday night against the Atlanta Silverbacks. The homegrown product will be with the NASL club until May 7, but will join the Dynamo in Frisco today for their reserve league match against the FC Dallas Reserves. Watch below for a 2:30 minute highlight package from the 0-0 draw, Saturday night at Atlanta Silverbacks Park.

05 April 1:19 pm

It's been almost a month since NBC Sports Network aired their first MLS game and by all accounts the partnership has been a huge success. The broadcast quality has been fantastic and NBC has worked their tails off to make MLS broadcasts as professional as the ones they do for the NFL or NHL. Below is the latest ad that NBC Sports released promoting their MLS partnership. What do you think? Can you name all of the Dynamo players featured in the spot?

04 April 5:53 pm

Look what we saw going up outside the stadium today? Rumor has it that sign installation will be complete by the weekend. We'll provide you photo updates throughout and video once the final piece is complete. And if you haven't watched it yet, be sure to check out the latest stadium update, courtesy of HoustonDynamo.com's Matt Pedersen.

03 April 3:08 pm

MLSsoccer.com is in the midst of a feature where they look at five sophomores who could make an impact for their team in 2012. Number 4 on that list is our very own Will Bruin. Watch the video to see what MLS' experts have to say about the Dancing Bear.

03 April 10:48 am

Bobby Boswell said on a recent radio interview that during these three weeks off, there will be teams that jump the Dynamo in the standings, but Houston players have to remember that they will get those games back down the road. After Houston's first of two consecutive bye weeks, a few Eastern Conference foes stepped their game up and took it to their (seemingly more dominant) Western Conference counterparts.

Although the ranking on MLSsoccer.com/Standings is the one that matters most come season's end, the virtual standings in the weekly power rankings do offer an opportunity for healthy debate. After serving as spectators for last weekend's matches, the Dynamo remained in the 5th spot in MLSsoccer.com's power rankings. San Jose made a sizeable jump after a stunning victory at Seattle and LA dropped below Houston after an even more stunning loss at home to New England. Here is what the writers at MLSsoccer.com had to say about Houston:

The Dynamo are using their break to get Brian Ownby or Alex Dixon ready to go at right midfield, and likely Nathan Sturgis ready to go at defensive midfield. How their depth performs will be a good indication of how close they are to challenging SKC.

Dominic Kinnear is not one to tip his hand, but it's a good bet that some combination of Sturgis/Ownby/Dixon could see playing time when the Dynamo resume action on April 15. With a scrimmage on Thursday against Laredo Heat and a Reserve Game next Tuesday at FC Dallas, players will have ample time to show they belong in the starting lineup against the Chicago Fire.

Elsewhere around the league, SI.com's Avi Creditor believes the Dynamo looked very strong in their off-week and moved them up to No. 4 in his rankings. Brian Straus of The Sporting News was not as impressed and dropped Houston to No. 6 in his rankings, with San Jose and Colorado making the jump ahead of the men in orange.

So what do you think? Is 4-6 still the correct place for Houston at this point in the season? Would you have moved San Jose up as much and/or dropped LA as little?

Let us know what you think!

28 March 1:53 pm

Although my favorite part of Tuesday mornings is generally the promise of a new episode of New Girl, I am also eager to see the latest version of MLS power rankings. After going on the road for the first two weeks of the year and coming away with consecutive 1-0 victories, most pundits around the league had the Dynamo in the No. 5 spot. In week 3, the Dynamo continued their road trip, this time packing their bags for the Pacific Northwest and the racuous environment of CenturyLink Field. After a hard-fought 90 minutes, which featured a deflected goal and a penalty kick, the Dynamo ended up on the wrong end of a 2-0 scoreline. Let's take a look at how that result impact Houston's place in the weekly rankings.

For starters, the folks at MLSsoccer.com did not seem fazed by Houston's loss and kept the men in orange at No. 5 in their weekly rankings. "In the end, it was silly to expect them to get three straight results on the road," they said. And while a result on the road is difficult anywhere, a result in Seattle might be twice as difficult. SI.com's Avi Creditor is concerned about Houston not scoring from the run of play, but not concerned enough to move the Dynamo from the No. 5 spot in his rankings. Lastly, ESPN.com's Jeff Carlisle writes that six points through three road games is a great haul and as a result, the long-time writer keeps Houston fifth on his list.

So what say you Dynamo fans? Is Houston still the fifth best team in the league through three weeks? Leave your comments below!

22 March 9:42 am

With the Dynamo traveling to Seattle for a Friday night matchup at CenturyLink Field, fantasy MLS fans have one less day to begin setting their lineup for the week. Have no fear, we, at HoustonDynamo.com are here to offer you a little fantasy advice heading into the third week of the MLS season.

First, we spoke last week about the central midfield position and the status of Luiz Camargo. Shortly after we posted our thoughts, it was announced that Camargo would not travel to California due to the birth of his son. This week, Camargo should be with the squad in Seattle, however, we would not insert him into the lineup so quickly. Yes, Je-Vaughn Watson did play 67 minutes in Wednesday's friendly vs. Costa Rica, but the Jamaican midfielder is incredibly fit and, as we said last week, head coach Dominic Kinnear is not one to change things up when things are going well.

Here are a few quick thoughts about the two teams heading into Friday's matchup:

  • Only five Dynamo players have scored a regular season goal against Seattle in the past three years and they are all still on the squad (Cameron, Ching, Davis, Clark and Weaver)
  • Geoff Cameron leads all Dynamo players with three goals scored against the Sounders
  • Not surprisingly, Brad Davis leads the Dynamo with four assists against Seattle. He also has nine shot attempts so look for him to continue to be dangerous down the left flank.
  • Goalkeeper Tally Hall has been one of the best fantasy producers in 2012 and has a decent pedigree against Seattle. The Gig Harbor, Wash., native has a 1-1-1 career record against the Sounders. Hall is 0-1-1 in Seattle and in 2011 posted a six-save, Team of the Week performance against his hometown club.
  • For Seattle, Fredy Montero and Alvaro Fernandez lead the way with two goals a piece against the Dynamo.
  • Montero also has 14 shot attempts, with eight of those on target, so you can be assured that Seattle players will be working hard to get him the ball Friday night
  • Under new Fantasy MLS rules, players get one point for every six clearances, blocks or intercepts. They also get one point for every six recovered balls. Those statistics bode well for midfielder Osvaldo Alonso, who many pundits hail as the most underrated player in MLS. With Mauro Rosales out for Friday's matchup, look for Alonso to be on the ball often, both offensively and defensively for Seattle.