Vancouver Whitecaps 2 – Portland Timbers 1
The Caps did not deserve to win this game…but they did…just like last week. Unfortunately for everyone Rivero was not the goal scorer. The Timbers largely outplayed the Caps, nearly doubling their possession 65% to 35%, while also not conceding a single corner kick. I need to continue to list stats for this game because they’re ridiculous. Timbers 47 crosses to Caps 7. Timbers 510 passes to Caps 283. Timbers 7 corners to Caps 0. That being said, the Timbers shot themselves in the foot by not capitalizing on more chances, but there were a few bright spots on the Timbers.
- Fanendo Adi ($9.3): He knows where to be and when. He’s going to score goals this season and will only score more once Valeri returns, and Nagbe rounds into form.
- Jorge Villafana ($6.3): Villafana is a player for those of you who think defensive bonus points aren’t “sexy” enough. He gets into the attack and, as we saw this week, he takes corners. He took 4 corners, which with a threat like Adi in the box is a good sign. But like I said, he’s only for those of you looking for a cheap, “sexy” option.
- Pedro Morales ($11.2): I didn’t want to put him with the standouts, but he continues to find a way to get points for the second week in a row and with DGWs coming up I can’t bet against him. Depending on his performances in the DGW I’m going to decide whether or not to keep him. You should be monitoring his performances too, because outside of his assist he was largely absent from the game.
- Octavio Rivero ($8.7): Everyone who jumped on the Rivero train this week in preparation for the DGW was disappointed with his performance (myself included). He had a nice run here and there, but it was ultimately Earnshaw who got the goal I was hoping Rivero would get. He was a let down, but if you picked him up this week in prep for the DGW don’t drop him, make him earn his worth.
- Darlington Nagbe ($8.5): He’s the best performing midfielder for the Timbers right now, but that’s still not good enough. In time he will have his form, but don’t sit on him. He won’t be a one and done. Once he finds his form he’ll stay there for a while so you can always pick him up.
Houston Dynamo 0 – Colorado Rapids 0
I predicted this outcome last week. I recall saying don’t get anyone from the Dynamo attack, because they’re severely lacking in a creative outlet to score goals. The game played out as a stalemate from the beginning. Each side found a few chances throughout the game, but only managed 2 or 3 shots on goal. Just like the Dynamo, the Rapids have yet to find their go to goal scorer. Either Gabi Torres needs to step up his game or maybe Kevin Doyle will be the man they need once he starts playing.
- Clint Irwin ($5.1): I could substitute this for the Rapids defense as well, but you can tell by looking at Irwin’s stats the defense is a solid option. The Rapids have yet to get scored on and the backline continues to shield Irwin so he’s not forced into too many saves. This results in less bonus points, but regardless he’s been averaging 7 points a game.
- Tyler Deric ($5.0): Same goes for Deric. The only question I have is whether or not the Dynamo can truly hold their defensive form. Apart from an unlucky game against Orlando and an unconvincing game against LA, the Dynamo defense hasn’t really been tested. Don’t pick him up this week. I foresee a rough game against a hungry Sounders, who will have Obafemi Martins returning and potentially Dempsey. Bookmark Deric and check back next week.
- Offense: Neither side has a viable offensive option yet, end of story.
FC Dallas 0 – Seattle Sounders 0
There’s not much to say, except this game was a disappointment. If these two teams had met at full strength this game would’ve been spectacular. That wasn’t the case and an early red card to Dallas’ Kellyn Acosta turned the game into the exact opposite. The Sounders should’ve scored through Chad Barrett at least once, but otherwise the Dallas defense came together with solid defending against a Sounders side lacking in ideas.
- Michel ($9.1): Michel is looking like the player everyone wanted at the beginning of the season. He appears to be a sure starter now and even though there was no offense for him to be involved in he racked up 1 defensive bonus point and 2 attacking bonus points. Those combined with his set piece threat and PKs make Michel a good option on a Dallas team that’s likely to score a lot of goals this season.
- FC Dallas defense: Hedges and Lloyd are the most likely to provide defensive bonus points, but Hedges is on the more expensive side. That being said right now those are the only two I would pick up, especially with their goal threat on set pieces. Seitz is doing well in goal, but who knows when Kennedy will come back into the fold.
- International Call ups: There’s not much to be said here. The game itself was a let down, but the bigger let down is that so many crucial players had to be away for the Sounders. If the Sounders just had Obafemi Martins they wouldn’t have had to change formations and could’ve caused a lot more problems for FC Dallas. By the same token, FC Dallas’ offense was plagued by the first half red card, leaving the bulk of the offensive work up to Castillo.
Chicago Fire 1 – Philadelphia Union 0
Both of these teams came into this game winless and in poor form. Everyone probably expected something like a scoreless draw, and the final score would indicate it was close. However, the Fire offense finally came to life, despite the absences Maloney and Accam. Shipp led the way with an assist off a dangerous free kick in the first half, and was responsible for almost every good chance on goal. The Union have a lot of work to do, and the Fire can now rest a bit easier, but need to hold their form.
- Harry Shipp ($7.8): Shipp is only going to score more and get more expensive from here on out in fantasy. He’s relatively cheap and seems to be the life force of this Fire attack. Yes Maloney was gone, but when even when Maloney is there Shipp is the brightest player on the field. He said he switches often with Magee from wing to forward after the match, meaning he’s still a threat to score. He also has 3 bonus attacking points, which is no small accomplishment. Keep in mind the bye week in in GW 6.
- Chicago Fire Defense: If you’re looking for a pick up to help your defense next week, the cheap backline of Chicago could be a viable option against a Toronto attack that could be missing some key players. They have a bye week in GW 6 though so only take one or two guys unless you can afford to stash them on your bench.
- Philadelphia Union: It was just overall bad from the Union. There were 0 shots on goal and they allowed 17 shots from the Fire. They were lucky to only lose 1-0. Edu looked like a fish out of water trying to get involved in the offense and Aristeguita couldn’t connect. Don’t pick up any players from the Union there’s no one to depend on and they need to prove themselves before they warrant being on your team.
- Chicago Fire Offense (except Shipp): The only person to get on the score sheet was a defender. There were chances for other players who had chances, but I don’t see a consistent contributor for now outside of Shipp.
Real Salt Lake 1 – Toronto FC 0
Real Salt Lake came into this game winless and with something to prove. Toronto FC came into this game still trying to define what team it will be this year, but was unable to do that without vital players. The result was Javier Morales doing Javier Morales things, assisting on both goals and earning a win, despite a goal by Jackson to keep the game close. Toronto FC has another bye week coming up, after which hopefully they’ll be able to get a rhythm going and Real Salt Lake has some momentum to build off now going into winnable games in the next couple weeks.
- Javier Morales ($10.9): He got two assists and seems to be involved on every single goal RSL gets. He’s a great option going forward especially against a San Jose team whose defense won’t keep RSL off the score sheet.
- Real Salt Lake Defense: RSL’s defense has a favorable schedule coming up against San Jose and a struggling SKC. That being said the only person getting defensive bonus points and who’s also likely to score on set pieces is Olave. Olave at $8.2 is more on the expensive side, but in my books is the only lucrative option, although cheaper options are available with Beltran, who could get into the attack as well.
- Toronto FC: There’s not much else to say about Toronto. Missing Bradley and Altidore the offense struggled to get going despite excellent service from Giovinco. One can only wonder what they’ll do when they get back. I say wait on Toronto FC until after their next bye in GW 6. Toronto’s early byes has affected momentum, but they’ll get going after the bye week so keep an eye out for them.
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.