Chris Wondolowski had one of the greatest offensive seasons in MLS history, tying the record for most goals scored and leading the San Jose Earthquakes to the Supporters' Shield. It's hardly a surprise that he was the landslide winner of SB Nation's MLS MVP.
This comes as a culmination of what has been the greatest three-year goal-scoring run in league history. No player had ever led the league for three straight seasons, as he has now done, and no player has scored more goals in a similar time span. But until now, he was constantly seen as a mere overachiever who was good at finding space.
Wondolowski showed something more this year. His ability to find space is still nothing short of amazing. But he did a better job of involving teammates and using players like Steven Lenhart and Alan Gordon to his advantage. The truly remarkable thing is that he seemed to leave a lot of chances on the field, meaning this might not even be the best we've seen of him.
How they voted: This wasn't remotely close, as Wondolowski garnered 32 of 35 first-place votes and found his way onto every ballot. The only players to even get a sniff of attention, were Graham Zusi (1 first-place vote, 12 second-place votes), Thierry Henry (2, 7), Osvaldo Alonso (0, 3), Robbie Keane (0, 2), Kei Kamara (0, 2) and Alvaro Saborio (0, 2). No one else even appeared on as many as two ballots.
What the bloggers said: By most measures, Chris Wondolowski put together the greatest offensive season in the history of MLS. For the headline, the San Jose Earthquakes striker matched Roy Lassiter's single season scoring record of 27 goals set in the league's inaugural season.
Wondolowski also added a career high 7 assists in 2012, which combined with his Budweiser Golden Boot securing goal tally of 27 outpaced the previous league high of 33 goals and assists set by Jason Kreis in 1999. Most significantly, Wondo's 2012 season capped off a remarkable three-year run that saw him become the first player in MLS history to surpass 60 goals over three consecutive seasons. A decided favorite for the league MVP early in the season, Wondolowski earned four of the eight possible Player of the Month honors in 2012 and was the runner-up in the Castrol Index MLS player rankings.
Courtesy of his scoring prowess since joining the Earthquakes via a trade with the Houston Dynamo in 2009, Wondolowski has skyrocketed to the top of the San Jose franchise scoring list (64 goals) in half the appearances (74) as previous goals king Ronald Cerritos (61 goals in 148 appearances), surpassing the Salvadoran legend in early October with a hat-trick performance against the Colorado Rapids.
- Robert Jonas, Quake, Rattle and Goal
About the voting: Every writer for SB Nation's MLS blogs was eligible to vote, with 34 submitting ballots. On the individual awards, two points was given for each first-place vote and one point for each second-place vote. Voting was conducted after the regular season and was not meant to include any post-season performance.