I have an exciting announcement to make before you read further. This article is the first post my new MLS Fantasy Boss writer Tyler Bartels who is currently tearing up the Starting Lineup H2H league! So enjoy and let him know what you think of his Fantasy MLS 2015 Round 3 Review (Part 2).
Sporting Kansas City 0 – Portland Timbers 0
I don’t know how to feel about this game. The possession was even, the players seemed to be even and we were left with a draw. Like most of the games at the beginning of the weekend, it left the viewer feeling empty. Dom Dwyer had his usual shout or two for a penalty and Nagbe continued to look incredibly dangerous, but at the same time look as harmless as a teddy bear. The main highlight, much to most fans’ dissatisfaction, was the solidarity of both defenses.
- Ike Opara (SKC $7.2): Plain and simple, he’s a beast. He had three bonus points this week to go along with his goal. I wouldn’t read much into the game against FC Dallas because they’re on another level right now and he was put in trouble by his teammates. Point being he’s on the cheaper side given his production and you can expect some bonus points out of him. Also don’t be surprised when he scores… because he will score.
- Both Attacks: I expected more from Portland after last week when Nagbe began to look like the attacker we’ve been waiting for. If you have Nagbe maybe hang on to him another week, but there’s not much to do with the Portland attack. It’s similar for KC. I think it’s only a matter of time before Dom returns to league leading goal scorer form and Benny helps him get there. I’m just not sure that time will necessarily be soon, so be careful.
Los Angeles Galaxy 1 – Houston Dynamo 1
The Galaxy got off to a fast start with Robbie Keane embarrassing Houston (off a fortunate assist from Villarreal I might add). That was the high point for them and from then on the Galaxy couldn’t connect for a goal to secure the lead against a struggling Dynamo. LA lacked the killer instinct and paid for it on a set piece goal that saw 3 points slip away. The Dynamo would sneak away with an underserved point thanks to an equalizing goal by Sturgis. If this were FIFA 15 and Keane was allowed to control his players, the Dynamo surely wouldn’t have been so fortunate.
- Jose Villarreal (LA $6.3): at this price he’s a steal. He’s only getting better and you can already see that in the first couple games of the season. This past week Villarreal was in charge of almost all set pieces and played a full 90 while we saw Ishizaki make way early for Alan Gordon. Not to mention Villarreal’s 2 bonus points that could become a trend. Watch out Ishizaki.
- Robbie Keane (LA $11.1): Keane is never a bad pick. I could just leave it at that but remember, he is getting called up by Ireland so if you have him on your team, you may want to consider a transfer this week.
- Houston Dynamo: The team has no clear attack plan. You may want to depend on guys like Brad Davis and Giles Barnes, but that’s not enough for me. Apart from a strong defensive showing in the beginning of the season I don’t like Houston right now from a fantasy perspective. Maybe we can check back if Will Bruin becomes a threat again (or starts) or when Cubo Torres gets there.
- Gyasi Zardes (LA $9.5): I think he’s going to be great this year, but some people just take time. His one goal this season was good, but he’s not convincing right now. His international call up is a good excuse to get him off your team, find a replacement, and pay attention to his progress in case you want to snatch him back up later.
New York Red Bulls 2 – DC United 0
After all the commotion during the preseason over the Red Bulls firing Petke and subsequently losing Henry, there’s a lot to be happy about. BWP is slowly proving he doesn’t need Henry to be good and Lloyd Sam is “filling in” to the best of his ability for Henry. Jesse Marsch and his team pulled off a convincing win over a DC United side that’s no push over on defense. The story for DC United is…. Ya it’s just that, a game to forget. DC United will look to put this behind them and focus on making a statement against the reigning champs next weekend.
- Bradley Wright-Phillips (NY $10.7): A goal, an assist, 1 defensive bonus point, 2 offensive points. 13 points total sounds promising. Even without the goal I’d take 8 points especially if it means consistency. The Red Bulls looked lively and if you’re looking for replacements for guys on international duty he’s not a bad guy to spend big bucks on.
- Lloyd Sam (NY $8.7): I think Sam is worth a pick, because, if nothing else, he’s exciting to watch. He’s quick and can score from anywhere and has 2 goals in 2 games, which is hard to argue with. He put in 8 crosses this past game and had a couple of good passes into space, which I believe will turn into more assists and offensive bonuses over time.
- DC United: It just wasn’t there for DC United this game. If you have any players don’t feel pressured to unload, but I’m not totally convinced on the DC United offense without Espndola. Bookmark them and see how they do this week. If they stand up to a potent LA offense then you know this week was just a fluke.
San Jose Earthquakes 2 – Chicago Fire 1
The main highlight of this game is Avaya Stadium. It looked great, the fans looked great and the Earthquakes won at home! Hopefully that will retain some of those fair weather fans and help foster the growth of MLS. That being said, neither side looked exhilarating in attack. Both of San Jose’s goals came off set pieces, while Chicago continued their sputtering start to the season with a sputtering start to the game. It took until the second half to see their work breakthrough with a goal from Shipp. Maybe this is an indication that it’s only a matter of time before we see a potent Chicago attack? And maybe they just didn’t feel like scoring? Or maybe not…
- Matias Perez Garcia (SJ $8.0): He took 7 corner kicks in this game and both goals in the game were scored off of set pieces. Sure he didn’t get any assists, but it’s only a matter of time. I also think Innocent adds a new means for his vision on the field to be put on display in the coming weeks.
- Harry Shipp (CHI $7.6): If you’re like me you were high on this guy from the beginning and picked him up then. You also then subsequently dropped him as the Fire limped off the starting line. It’s time to pick him up again. He’s cheap, will score goals and take some set pieces. He took 6 shots 2 on goal, which was equal to the rest of his team’s 6 shots 2 shots on goal. If this past week is any indication expect him to be dangerous going forward especially if they stick with the 4-3-3 they went with this game.
- Chris Wondolowski (SJ $10.7): I will start this by saying he will score goals this season. I don’t doubt that. However, he looked poor against the Fire and I know a lot of people were counting on him to pick up the slack this week with buys for the likes of Altidore, Dempsey, and Martins etc. He had one shot that he maybe could’ve done better with and he couldn’t seem to link up with his teammates. He’s just too expensive with better options on the board.
- Chicago Fire Defense: There’s no doubt some cheap starts that are worth looks, but only once the fire can prove they’ve got good defensive shape and are having more consistent games week in and week out. They can’t rely on Sean Johnson to bail them out with saves to stay in games. Right now I’m not big on them, but you may want to hold on one more week to see how they do against Philly. Maybe we’ll see the likes of Palmer get into the attack and couple an offensive performance with a shutout, or maybe not… in which case drop him.
That’s my breakdown for the first half of Round 2. What do you think? Did any players jump out at you who you think deserve to be highlighted? Mention them in the comments below, or send me a Tweet and let me know. Also, don’t forget to get involved with the get community her at MLS Fantasy Boss and over at /r/FantasyMLS.