MLS Power Rankings, Week 11: Draws Fuel Stability

May 19, 2012; Santa Clara, CA, USA; San Jose Earthquakes forward Alan Gordon (16) scores during the ninetieth minute against Columbus Crew defender Josh Williams (3) at Buck Shaw Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ed Szczepanski-US PRESSWIRE

Real Salt Lake remains our top team, despite having the week off.

More than half of the 11 games ended in draws this week, so it's not all that surprising that our MLS power rankings were pretty stable. The Red Bulls jumped ahead of still-flagging Sporting KC, the Rapids inched ahead of the Fire and the Revolution leapfrogged the Galaxy. The only team to move more than one spot up was Chivas, who are now all the way up to No. 14 from No. 16.

This week's rankings are themed by Childish Gambino (WARNING: Lyrics are definitely Not Safe For Work or young children):


1. Real Salt Lake (average ranking: 1.63; last week's average: 1.88): Were allowed to literally rest on their laurels this week. No one below them really did much to challenge, which explains how they actually improved their average.

2. Seattle Sounders (2.25; 2.35): It was a tale of two halves as they played absolutely awful in the first 45 against the Whitecaps, but Eddie Johnson and Fredy Montero each scored goals to pull out the draw. If those two can stay hot, watch out.

3. San Jose Earthquakes (3.06; 2.59): Alan Gordon salvaged a point with a spectacular late goal, but two consecutive disappointing home performances have taken the shine off a little.

Lights Turned On

4. New York Red Bulls (4.25; 5.06): Five straight wins, three of them without Thierry Henry. Could Hans Backe have really figured out MLS?

5. Sporting Kansas City (5.13; 4.29): Stopped the leaking, but only plugged it with a tie. Have now gone four straight without a win after opening the season with seven straight victories. Suddenly in third place in the East.

6. D.C. United (5.88; 7.35): Two wins this week. Both at home, both over bad-to-mediocre teams. The bigger story is the sudden scoring acumen of their forwards and the fact that Hamdi Salihi, Branko Boskovic and Dwayne DeRosario are all playing well.

I'm Alright

7. Vancouver Whitecaps (7.5; 7.71): Probably deserved three points while largely outplaying the Sounders at home, but couldn't close the deal. They clearly have talent.

8. Houston Dynamo (8.19; 8.06): Tied both of their games this week and really didn't do much to impress.

9. Colorado Rapids (8.94; 8.71): Gave up two goals in the first 15 minutes and still managed a tie against Sporting KC. Is that a positive or a negative?

10. Chicago Fire (9.56; 8.65): A loss on the road to the Timbers is nothing to freak out over, but they aren't building on their momentum either.

Hold You Down

11. New England Revolution (11.94; 12.71): Quietly putting together a solid season and have a Newcomer of the Year candidate in Saer Sane, who bagged two more goals this week.

12. LA Galaxy (12.94; 10.76): Every time you think they are poised to get it together, they slip up. Lost to Chivas USA for the first time in five years.

13. FC Dallas (13.56; 12.88): Whatever struggles they are having can no longer be chalked up to bad luck, as they go back to last year. Maybe they just aren't as good as they look on paper.

14. Chivas USA (14.00; 15.24): Made two big trades this week and picked up a bigger win against their SoCal rivals. Is it just another false dawn?

15. Montreal Impact (14.13; 14.00): Definitely look better than just another expansion team, but also failed to capitalize on the opportunities they had at home against a short-handed Red Bulls team.

16. Columbus Crew (14.88; 14.71): A late goal robbed them of three points, but were thoroughly outplayed by the Quakes.

17. Portland Timbers (15.75; 16.59): They got a win. Finally. You can take your hand off the panic button, but there are still lots of reasons to be worried.

Freaks and Geeks

18. Philadelphia Union (17.69; 17.53): When tying FC Dallas is the best news you've had in weeks, you know something is wrong.

19. Toronto FC (18.81; 18.82): Aren't the least talented team and may not even be the one who's playing the worst, but the results are undeniably awful.

How the poll works: Each voter ranks the teams from 1-19. The teams are then ordered by average, with the lowest average going first and so on. The editor then splits the rankings into five tiers, looking for natural breaks in the averages. We then pick some kind of group of songs to theme them to.

Who participated: Jeremiah Oshan (SB Nation, soccer); Aaron Campeau (SB Nation, soccer); Ryan Rosenblatt (SB Nation, soccer); Drew Epperley (SB Nation, soccer); Jason Anderson (SB Nation, soccer); Phillip Quin (SB Nation, soccer); Martin Shatzer (Black and Red United); Scott Kessler (Brotherly Game); Denzel Eslinger (RSL Soapbox); Robert Jonas (Quake, Rattle and Goal); Daniel Robertson (Big D Soccer); Dave Clark and Josh Yockey (Sounder at Heart); Duncan Fletcher (Waking the Red), Steve Stoehr (The Bent Musket); Ben Schneider (Once a Metro); Alicia Ratterree (The Goat Parade); Brenton Walters (The Vancouver Whitecaps Offside); Geoff Gibson (Stumptown Footy); Sofiane Benzaza (Mount Royal Soccer); Alex Englen (The Daily Wiz); Tweed Thornton and Ryan Sealock (Hot Time In Old Town).

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