This week, we're going to be taking a look back at the Ten Keys to 2013 series I put out prior to the season. Number 5 on the list was draws.
As stupid as it may seem, the Western Conference (past the top three) was so god-awful in 2012 that the Rapids were actually in the playoff picture until the very end of the season despite having one of the absolute worst seasons defensively in team history. In fact, they would have probably snuck into the last spot instead of Vancouver had they not been so darn good at dropping points at every single chance because of Oscar Pareja's 'never say die' mentality on the attack. They ended that year with only 4 draws, which is a startlingly low number.
Lo and behold, Oscar Pareja came into 2013 with some much smarter tactics, along with a re-tooled defense, and managed to pull five more draws out of his hat en route to a playoff spot, and a spot that left them a stone's throw away from the top spot in the Western Conference.
This is probably the spot where we'll want our D column to stick, if possible. Pareja doesn't seem the type to effectively turn his team into a draw-machine like Gary Smith did, unless he chooses to go the Porterball style. We'll find out next year, I guess. Either way, yay rooting for ties! We're terrible Americans!