It says a lot about MLS that...

Discussion in 'MLS: General' started by saabrian, Sep 8, 2002.

  1. saabrian

    saabrian Member

    Mar 25, 2002
    Upstate NY
    Club:
    Leicester City FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    New England can have 10 wins, 14 losses and 2 draws. Yet with 2 matches left, they still have a chance at winning the division. Even as a Revs' supporter, it would be a travesty to justice if they got the #2 seed. Equally, they might miss the playoffs altogether.

    Yes, it's exciting, but it's excitement caused by mediocrity and that's somewhat less impressive.
     
  2. Flying Weasel

    Flying Weasel Member

    Mar 22, 2001
    Harrisburg, PA
    Club:
    Liverpool FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Yea, not a single team in the East Division has a winning record (more wins than loses). There's a good chance that the division champ will have as many losses as wins. There's something not quite right about that.

    Worse yet, the division champ could have a losing record. It could happen, though I'd put my money on the "champ" being at .500. Of course, the Metrostars could win out and finish at 14-12-2 (44 pts.) which would be a little more respectable.

    Is this situation a result of competitive balance or across-the-board mediocrity?

    I actually prefer the top teams to actually rise clearly above the rest and treat us to levels of excellence which are unique enough to truly be special.
     
  3. FanOfFutbol

    FanOfFutbol Member+

    May 4, 2002
    It is a travesty that ANY of the east teams will get home field advantage in the playoffs. It is VERY possible that the best east team will not have a better record than the worst in the west.

    Currently Kansas City, The Metrostars, and Columbus ALL have 35 points.

    Even the "best" teams can play badly BUT bad teams are much more likely to play bad games and the playoff format the brain dead administrators of the MLS have come up with almost guarantees two or so truly bad games in the playoffs where the MLS should be showcasing its best.

    Last night the two worst teams in the MLS played and at the start of the game BOTH had a chance to end up not only in the playoffs but on top of the east. The game was poorly played and a real boor throughout and the winner looked like a good U16 boys rec team and the looser was even worse.

    This is NOT good for the MLS and it is even worse for US soccer if either of these teams play in "showcase" events and exhibit the clownish level of soccer played last night.

    Yes, there have been good games this year and most teams proved able to produce good to near great play at times. However, you do NOT build an audience for a sport by putting a product like this on the field and a large number of MLS games this year have been this bad or even worse.

    The MLS is, barely, established enough to survive a year like this once but if there is another it could kill the best soccer league the US has ever seen and that would be worse than some bad soccer.

    There are lots of things that the MLS has done wrong and some have been corrected and many others have not or will never be but one of the worst is having a post season structure where a team below 500 can get home field advantage at the expense of a team with a MUCH better record.

    The MLS will survive this season but the post season has been cheapened and the cup tournament made less valid by the presence of the bad teams with 8 out of 10 making the post season there is little incentive to play well in all games.
     
  4. jdm2662

    jdm2662 New Member

    Aug 6, 2002
    Hillside, IL
    The NHL had many teams under .500 in the playoffs for many years, even division winners. They had 21 teams and 16 made the playoffs. In fact, I remember one year the Blackhawks won 26 games all season. They still qualified for the playoffs. They made it to the conference finals that year. It just looks bad. I tell people the MLS is like the NBA, all the good teams are in the west, and all the crap teams are in the east.
     
  5. Flying Weasel

    Flying Weasel Member

    Mar 22, 2001
    Harrisburg, PA
    Club:
    Liverpool FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Teams under .500 in the playoffs--sure, every year. But my quick check of the NHL.com website reveals that only 5 times in the history of the NHL, has a division winner not had a winning record. Usually it was whichever division had the St. Loius Blues & Chicago Blackhawks at the time. Norris Division 86-87 and 88-89. Smythe Division 76-77 and 78-79. West Division 67-98. But not only are division winners almost always over .500, they usually won over half their games.

    Well, Blackhawks won 26 games (26-43-11) in 76-77 and made the playoff but lost in the first round to NY Islanders, 2-0. They won the divison in 78-79 with a 29-36-15 mark and were swept by the NY Islanders again in the second round after a first round bye. I think you must be thinking of 88-89 when they posted a 27-41-12 and then beat the Red Wings (division winners with .500 record) and Blues before being swept by the Calgary Flames in the Campbell Conference Finals.

    Yeah, you're right about the NBA. And that is part of sports to have shifts in the balance of power. But all the teams that made the playoffs, even from the East, were over .500 (Pacers, barely), and division winners were over .600. Of course, with scoring being different making ties after regulation rare and having no ties due to OT, this is is to be expected. Hockey and soccer will always be different in this regard because of ties.
     
  6. saabrian

    saabrian Member

    Mar 25, 2002
    Upstate NY
    Club:
    Leicester City FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Mediocrity

    Anyone who's seen the Revs or Metros or DCU this year knows that it's MEDIOCRITY with a capital all-the-letters.

    It's not like we're seeing scintillating matches that one team is unfortunate to lose. We're seeing spome pretty bad matches that one team is fortunate to win.
     
  7. saabrian

    saabrian Member

    Mar 25, 2002
    Upstate NY
    Club:
    Leicester City FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    The NHL is a classic example of how NOT to run a league if you want the regular season to matter. I LOVE hockey but I rarely watch regular season games (NHL) on television because they don't mean anything until the Stanley Cup anyways.
     
  8. Dr. Wankler

    Dr. Wankler Member+

    May 2, 2001
    The Electric City
    Club:
    Chicago Fire
    Quit worrying about it. As of right now, the choice is either a 10 team league wherein 8 make the playoffs, or the A-League. In a few years, things will, hopefully, be different.

    I mean, attendance is up -- there's a good chance that ALL the teams will average over 10,000 since the first season -- and even in New England, there's a reason for fans to go to matches. Without promotion and relegation, the playoffs are about the only way to give some of these end-of-season matches any sort of meaning at all.

    And if it bothers you that much, just pretend that the two teams that don't make the playoffs are temporarily relegated.
     

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