One Down

For the perfect epitaph for the New England Revolution's 2008 season, you can't do better than Steve Nichol, WHO SAID IT PERFECTLY LAST NIGHT:

“You can’t overcome everything”

Now I'm not going to get out the crying towel for the Revs. They had a terrific run the last few years and, given an offseason spent in various orthopedic and therapeutic establishments, are clearly capable of starting up another one. If I'm going to play the violin for somebody it will be the Rapids or Dallas or KC or yes, the Crew, who've been in the league every bit as long as the Revolution and have - collectively - spent damn little time sniffing the air up top of the league.

As for the game last night, unlike last week's snooze-a-thon, that was a pretty entertaining game that looked competitive, at least up until John Thorrington's sloppy, reckless, amateurish "tackle" which sent Jeff Laurentowitz to the hospital. It's unlikely that Thorrington had much in the way of evil intent, but a professional soccer player has to play under more control than that. People's careers are at stake out there. Shame on him.

After they carted Laurentowitz off, you could almost see the air begin to leak out of the Revs. The jig was pretty much up and they knew it. I'd mention that terminal idiot Khano Smith, sitting at home with his red card suspension, really could have made a big difference last night, but that's piling on.

So the Fire moves on, New England goes to PT and the East will have an MLS Cup representative other than the Revolution for the first time since 2004.

Since resident Hall of Fame observer Dan "Leather Ball" Loney covers Oneonta far better than I, we'll leave most of the discussion of THE BUILDERS AND ANTIQUARIANS ballot for him to dissect. Or not. He can be unpredictable.

I'll just make one comment:

Don Garber? Bruce Arena? I just don't see how it makes sense to install someone who is still active. Is there some doubt that, absent Garber fleeing to Switzerland with the cash box or Arena pulling out a Glock 9 and nailing an entire officiating crew, both of them will be there eventually? Isn't it much better to drag them up there for a post-career victory lap rather than enshrine guys who are reporting for work tomorrow?

Maybe it's just me.

(PS: Chuck Freakin Blazer? Jeez, does his fat can need THAT much kissing? The mind reels.)

A syndicated piece with SOME INTERESTING INSIGHTS into Darren Huckerby's relationship with Norwich is up on several sites this morning.

Of all the athletes in history, who regularly sob about their love for their team and then go wherever the money is, Huckerby is almost unique in his loyalty to the Canaries.

Of course, what he's mostly doing is very politely making the guy who refused to re-sign him look like a complete jackass - whether that's his motive or not is entirely irrelevant - and if, as widely expected, he wins the MLS Newcomer of the Year award that'll put a thick layer of frosting on the cake.

Either way, one has to enjoy the irony of a guy who Toronto feels they had in the bag until he got a look at the turf at BEEMO almost singlehandedly turning a team around and injecting some real excitement on the field. He's been a terrific addition to the league and so much cheaper than David Beckham.

Aston Villa Boss Martin O'Neill, well known for tossing compliments around like manhole covers, WAS LAVISH IN HIS PRAISE OF BRAD GUZAN after a sterling effort against Slavia Prague.

This is just such a perfect situation for Guzan, being that other Brad's understudy and playing for a team on the come. Yeah, the guy was almost busting open with the urge to make a mov overseas, but this is a unique opportunity for him in a lot of ways and it'll be great fun watching him develop into the keeper a lot of people think he's destined to be.