CARSON CA - AUGUST 28: Jimmy Conrad #12 of the Kansas City Wizards volleys a pass to teammate Shavar Thomas #6 under pressure from Landon Donovan #10 of the Los Angeles Galaxy in the second half of their MLS match at The Home Depot Center on August 28 2010 in Carson California. The Wizards defeated the Galaxy 2-0. (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images)

SBNhanced Power Rankings: Major League Soccer, Week 22

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SBNhanced Power Rankings: Major League Soccer, Week 22

Once a week, the Major League Soccer minds at SB Nation get together and talk about our Country Music Awards picks, Brigham Young's proximity to the Pacific, and Delonte West.

Admittedly, the CMAs and Delonte West are practically the same topic.

When those issues are spent, Major League Soccer's results are organized and scrutinized, sometimes demonized but mostly: itemized. The result is four groupings, and after I spent some time looking at them, I noticed: The groups happened to correspond to how we felt about MLS's teams.

I know! I was excited, too.

So before coincidence overtakes us like the rhythm is gonna get us, here are your SBNanced Major League Soccer Power Rankings:

The Cup Contenders

Real Salt Lake


100% (24 out of 24 points)

Columbus Crew


100% (24 out of 24 points)

FC Dallas


91% (22 out of 24 points)

This is getting old. Week-in, week-out, it's always the same three. We have Real Salt Lake, perhaps the league's best team. We have the Columbus Crew who, if we had power rankings back in the day (of 2008), would be the longest-running tier one team.  And then we have the Galaxy - wait, what?

No doubt that Dallas deserves consideration for the top tier, but it's strange to see the Toros at the mountain top while Los Angeles tumbles.

Postseason, But Little More

Los Angeles Galaxy


75% (18 out of 24 points)

New York Red Bulls


75% (18 out of 24 points)

Seattle Sounders


66% (16 out of 24 points)

But how surprised should be we that Los Angeles is falling? Perhaps we should be surprised they haven't fallen sooner, because although the Galaxy have the league's best record, they are clearly not its best team, nor have they been in some time.  Like, months.

If Los Angeles were in tier one and you were asked to pick the team most likely to lose their next match, you'd point to L.A. and thank me for asking the such an easy question. "Why wasn't that on my SATs?"

The other question with this group is one I asked the SB Nation soccer team: Why so few teams? Jeremiah Oshan from Sounder at Heart explained it best.  The six teams in the first two tiers are the teams we feel strongly about.  They're all likely playoff teams. 

Two teams from the third tier will make it, but as of right now, no team's play can't make them favorites.  It's a horse race with a bunch of 8-to-1s.  Or 5-to-1s.  Or 5-to-2s - you get it!

"Playoffs? Playoffs?"

Colorado Rapids


54% (13 out of 24 points)

San Jose Earthquakes


45% (11 out of 24 points)

Chicago Fire


37% (9 out of 24 points)

Kansas City Wizards


37% (9 out of 24 points)

Toronto FC


33% (8 out of 24 points)

San Jose falls from the second tier, and although Colorado's route of a 10-man Houston pushes them closer to the that level, the Earthquakes' drop creates a crowded third group.  By the standings, the two teams at the top of this group would be in the playoffs, but both Toronto and Kansas City are within one match's points of San Jose.

And with the third pick in the 2011 MLS Superdraft ...

Chivas USA


4% (1 out of 24 points)

New England Revolution


4% (1 out of 24 points)

Houston Dynamo


0% (0 out of 24 points)

Philadelphia Union


0% (0 out of 24 points)

DC United


0% (0 out of 24 points)

We've all seen Houston struggle through a surprisingly tough season, but to see them with no points in this Power Ranking is eye-catching. No points means none of the eight panelists believe that the Dynamo deserve to be in the third tier. Credit to Zach Woosley at Dynamo Theory for keeping it real.

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