Against my better judgment I am going to put in my own 2¢* and voice my own personal opinion that neither of these comments is entirely fair. *It's probably not even worth that much. Although I like a lot of players on Portland's squad and the spirit of their fans, I'll admit that the team has frequently disappointed me in recent years by resorting to physicality [even by-the-book, allowable physicality] to gain/keep the upper hand in certain matches. I was disappointed especially because I believe that in most cases they had the talent on their roster to achieve the same ends using smarter, safer tactics and techniques. Even Portland's most hard-core fans acknowledge that the 2017 Championship wasn't a distinctly compelling or satisfying victory. It wasn't the prettiest game to watch by any stretch of the imagination. And although the physicality in that match wasn't by any means 100% one-sided, it may have been the difference-maker for Portland, as it likely has been in a number of key matches over the past [rounding up] seven seasons. However, to call the team outright thugs going all the way back to their inception is, to me, to suggest that dirty, dangerous play is the primary or perhaps sole defining characteristic of the franchise throughout its history. I think it's a bit of a stretch to posit that the team simply muscled their way from opening day to the Championship game in 3 out 6 seasons, to the playoff rounds in 5 out of 6 seasons, and to an NWSL shield to boot. Even assuming the most lax officiating in the world wouldn't make that a highly plausible theory in my mind. Of course I recognize the argument that the system, in failing to adequately punish overly physical play, may encourage it. But over time I believe, as naive as it may sound, that the nature of the sport rewards teams that play better rather than tougher. To suggest that people who vocalize what are often very legitimate grievances about the Thorns' reliance upon physical play are motivated to make such comments by mere jealousy of the franchise I consider to be equally unreasonable. That being said, as a general policy it is probably wise to never assume the complete objectivity of anyone, including me.