Major League Soccer (Mid)Week 23 Preview, Picks: Final Playoff Spots Up For Grabs

Sporting KC and the Houston Dynamo both could use wins over pretty bad teams to keep their playoff hopes burning bright.

As the season hurtles toward its final couple months, the MLS playoff picture is starting to take shape. While neither of Wednesday's matchups are particularly loaded with subplots, both could play a significant role in determining which teams pick up those last few playoff spots.

New England Revolution vs. Houston Dynamo, 8 p.m., Wednesday

It's hard to pinpoint where, exactly, this season went all pear-shaped for the Revs. They started well enough and then added some talent, but the losses starting to pile up and now they are one of just two or three teams that seem to really be out of the playoff race. One of those supposedly talented players, Rajko Lekic, is out for this game. Meanwhile, the Dynamo have been playing much better of late, claiming seven points in their last three matches. They don't need to win this game, but a loss would be a serious blow to their playoff hopes. Pick: Dynamo 1-0.

Sporting Kansas City vs. Portland Timbers, 8:30 p.m., Wednesday

Back when Jeld-Wen Field seemed to be a fortress, Sporting were able to pull out a victory. Among the more notable moments was rookie forward CJ Sapong imitating a falling tree while celebrating a goal. You have to imagine that did not go over too well in Portland, who should already have plenty of motivation to get a victory. The problem is, they haven't been doing too much winning lately. Aside from their shocking upset of the Los Angeles Galaxy, the Timbers have been pretty pedestrian for a few months. If they hope to climb back into the playoff race, they'll need a big result. Pick: Sporting 2-1.

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