Seven matches in and the Colorado Rapids season has had its up and downs. Opening the season with three losses out of four matches followed by a three game unbeaten streak can be attributed to the rash of injuries suffered in the ranks. Recent results can be credited to a rise in team chemistry. With the glory going to a pair of rookies, DeShorn Brown and Dillon Powers. Here are some random thoughts I had about the start of the season and the upcoming game this week against the Seattle Sounders.
*Best of the season- The emergence of the rookies, notably Dillon Powers, have helped this team be competitive. Powers neutralized Kyle Beckerman both times against Real Salt Lake. Forcing the opponents to use the wings as their only option on attack has happened every game he's played in this year. This is why the Rapids haven't given up many goals. He made Beckerman say that Real Salt Lake doesn't care about the Rocky Mountain Cup. I wouldn't be worried about it either if my team was looking up at the Rapids in the table. Although I want him to be invested more in the World Cup qualification process right now which works out for the Rapids and the United States National Team. When the statistics revolution catches up with the world's game I bet there will be a stat for winning headers and a defensive help and keeping possession away from the other team. Powers numbers I suspect will be one of the best in the game. Not to mention that he had the influential pass that landed at the foot of DeShorn Brown for the penalty against Chivas and the first service for the ball into the box to Edson Buddle for the winner in the Real Salt Lake game.
*Worst of the season- It has to be the mistake that Drew Moor made against the Los Angeles Galaxy. But that's what it was, a mistake. Moor was saddled with a two match ban, which ultimately turned into two and a half as a result of Oscar Pareja holding him out last week until the second half. Moor also got the Captains armband back when he stepped onto the pitch. Making a dumb mistake like this will be forgotten. What San Jose Earthquakes Alan Gordon did is much more damaging to the team because of the questions that will be asked that will take the focus off the the matches for the Earthquakes. Also, Colorado earned points in every match Moor was suspended. So him being back to a full 90 can only help the Rapids this week.
* On the field the biggest problem of the season is finishing. Chivas dominated posessession against the Rapids but our defense held strong. Colorado won the possession battle against Salt Lake and Portland. Edson Buddle's playing has coincided with the unbeaten streak.
*Off the field the Rapids biggest issue is a good one to have and that is depth. Brown, Powers, and Clint Irwin have stepped up to show they can start in the MLS. Shane O'Neil and Chris Klute can contribute too. But when Martin Rivero, Jaime Castrillon, and Matt Pickens come back Pareja will have some tough decisions to make. Having assets that are proven can be good in the trade market and at the very least if this season becomes team MASH unit then at least we know that the Rapids can compete with the league.
***If you are easily offended or uptight stop reading now and hope for a win this weekend. If not, something to think about for the future***
* Back in November Colorado and Washington states were the first to legalize marijuana for recreational use. So naturally when the MLS schedule came out and I saw that the Rapids- Sounders game was on April 20th, I knew that the schedule makers had a sense of humor. I also thought of two things. A) We need to come up with a rivalry name between these two teams with a name and trophy. And B) How will the tailgates change next year when Colorado has marijuana tourism?
- I feel we should call the games between Colorado and Seattle the Copa de Mota, since this is already taken. The trophy could be a cup with a bunch of cool ranch doritos loco tacos in it. It would make playing a winless Sounders team a little more exciting. Copa de Mota! April 20th! Dick's Sporting Goods Park!
- When I went to the UFC fight between Jon "Bones" Jones and Quinton "Rampage" Jackson I walked up to the media entrance and smelled a strong odor of marijuana. Then I witnessed something that made me chuckle, and not because of the contact high. It was a medical marijuana smoking section. The C38's already have the best tailgate in town. All other supporters groups can be seen at the party having a beer with them before the match. Except for the tough guys from Salt Lake City, but really they are new to the scene and can't hold their liquor and are socially inept. But next year when the out of town stoners make their pilgrimage to Colorado to see their team and visit a retail marijuana shop, where do you think they are going to smoke? The hotels are not going to change their policy. This is why Amsterdam invented cafes. We need a marijuna smoking section for people. Preferably near the tailgates. Just something to think about.