Major League Soccer
Lost in Saturday's playoff clinching win over the Philadelphia Union was the fact that the 2012 Houston Dynamo set a team record for points (53) in a season. The win also moved the Dynamo to within one of tying the team record for wins in a season (15), set by the 2007 MLS Cup winning squad.
Interestingly enough, the Dynamo squad with the second lowest regular season point total (2006), was one of two Dynamo teams to win MLS Cup. I guess that lends credence to the saying that it doesn't matter how you get into the playoffs, as long as you get in.
*Won MLS Cup
For our Spanish-speaking fans, Calen Carr talk about the passion and enthusiasm of Houston Dynamo fans in the latest El Movimiento video, presented by Degree for Men.
In his weekly Instant Replay video series, Simon Borg takes a closer look at the controversial calls from the past weekend's games. In the video below, he looks at two calls that were made in the final seconds of Saturday's Dynamo-Impact match.
In the final part of a 3-part 'Between the Lines' Armchair Analyst Matt Doyle looks at lateral and vertical build-ups, one resulting in a Brad Davis score, the other in a Freddy Adu goal.
Head coach Dominic Kinnear is always looking for ways to keep things loose. He has organized flag football games, bowling matches and trips to a local go-kart track. On Monday, Kinnear went to his bag of tricks one more time and organized an intra-squad softball game after training.
It looks like Will Bruin was doing his best John Olerud impression by donning Calen Carr's head gear.
I don't normally write posts encouraging fans to watch non-Dynamo games, but Saturday's match between the Chicago Fire and the New York Red Bulls carries a lot of significance, on and off the field.
On the field, these are two teams ahead of the Dynamo in the standings. The Fire and Red Bulls are currently tied for second place in the Eastern Conference, four points ahead of the Dynamo. With three games to go in the regular season, the Dynamo would love nothing more than to clinch a playoff spot and finish in one of the top three positions, thus missing the one-game wild-card match between the fourth and fifth place teams.
Off the field, Saturday's match is the second MLS match to be broadcast on the main NBC channel. The first was on September 15, when the Portland Timbers played the Seattle Sounders to a 1-1 draw in front of a sold-out crowd at JELD-WEN Field.
MLS is in the first year of a TV deal with NBC Sports and by all accounts, the partnership has been a success, with higher ratings and top-notch broadcasts on both NBC Sports and NBC Sports Network. We encourage all fans to support the growth of the league and tune in to Saturday's match on NBC before heading to BBVA Compass Stadium for our match vs. the Montreal Impact. Below is a complete TV schedule for Saturday's matches.
Saturday, October 6
The latest power rankings are out and following the Dynamo's 3-1 defeat to the Philadelphia Union, the writers at MLSsoccer.com dropped Houston one spot from No. 7 to No. 8. Here is what they had to say about the current state of the Dynamo:
Boniek García is more comfortable and dangerous on the wing. The problem is that Houston are more comfortable and dangerous with him in central midfield. Dominic Kinnear needs to go with that option, and just trust in Mac Kandji, Calen Carr and new man Giles Barnes to hold down the flanks.
This weekend, the Dynamo will take on the New England Revolution, who MLSsoccer.com rank at the No. 17 team in the league. Check out what the writers had to say about this weekend's opponent:
In a season of sorrow for the Revs, Lee Nguyen's year-ending surgery is the latest blow. The attacker's been one of the more entertaining players in the league (even if he's prone to over-dribbling), and his presence will be missed as Jay Heaps' men try to put in a respectable end to the campaign.
So let's hear it Dynamo fans. Where do the Dynamo stack up in your rankings? Are they 7, 8, 9 or elsewhere? And what do you think they need to do to get to the top? Leave us your comments below!
Dynamo striker Will Bruin has made a huge jump from year one to year two. The Indiana University product scored five goals in his rookie campaign after being thrust into the starting lineup on opening day. Although expectations were high for the sophomore striker heading into 2012, Bruin has managed the expecations well to the tune of 11 goals and three assists in 27 games played.
The national media is starting to take note as well, as Bruin came in at No. 11 on MLSsoccer.com's top 24 players under the age of 24. Last year, Bruin was not included on the list.
"It's awesome," Bruin said when told about his place in the ranking. "It shows that my hard work and motivation has transfered from last year to this year. With that said, I still have a lot to work on to get to where I want to be."