Wednesday, June 25, 2014

2014 Final Power Rankings

Well there you have it, the 2014 MLU regular season has come to a close! This past weekend Philadelphia was unable to defeat the DC Current in order to position themselves into the playoffs, allowing the Boston Whitecaps to take their spot. With the final spot in the 2014 postseason now claimed its time to move on to the conference championship and with that my 2014 Final Power Rankings, no surprise the teams that are still playing are the teams at the top.

1. DC Current: 9-1

Last Week: 1  Change: +0

Defeated Philadelphia Spinners 21-19

Make that seven straight wins for the DC Current as they marched into Franklin Field to knock the surging Philadelphia Spinners out of the postseason. During the week there was much talk of the Current "throwing away" this game and allowing Philadelphia to win. In doing so, DC would then play Philly again in the championship instead of Boston. Those rumors were then put to rest, while even with mixed lines and reduced playing time from the superstars, with DC's fourth victory over Philly this season.

2. Portland Stags: 8-2

Last Week: 2  Change: +0

Defeated Seattle Rainmakers 13-12

While still conserving their role players, the Stags were still able to hold off one of the best offensive teams in the league, the Seattle Rainmakers.  Once again the entire team worked together for the victory, allowing bench players to get improved stats stars to take a rest.  Cody Bjorklund still led the team with four points (two goals, two assists). The team will begin to prepare for the Vancouver Nighthawks next week as they are one of the only teams to defeat the Portland Stags this season.

3. Vancouver Nighthawks: 6-4

Last Week: 3  Change: +0

Defeated San Francisco Dogfish 17-15

In a week where a story on the Nighthawks was covered by The National, Vancouver was still able to go into San Francisco and defeat the defending conference champions. Brendan Wong continued his offensive dominance as he broke the regular season points record with 64 this season (48 goals, 16 assists). Vancouver is currently on a four game winning streak, after starting the season with a 2-4 record, and have a huge wave of momentum going into the Western Conference Championship.

4. Boston Whitecaps: 5-5

Last Week: 5  Change: +1

Defeated New York Rumble 21-16

It may not have been the way the intended the season to play out but with Philadelphia's loss and Boston's win on Saturday, the Whitecaps are back into the playoffs. In their match-up against New York that ended up being the game that put them into the playoffs, Jeff Graham looked like a man on a mission as he assisted on six scores, leading all players on both squads in points and assists. This sets up a rematch of last year's Eastern Conference Championship where the Whitecaps will defend their Championship Crown.

5. Philadelphia Spinners: 4-6

Last Week: 4  Change: -1

Lost to DC Current 19-21

Unfortunately the miracle run for Philadelphia comes to close as they were unable to knock off the DC Current at home. The loss of Jake Rainwater proved costly as the Spinners were struggling to move the disc down the field and would ultimately result in unnecessary throws down-field. However Patrick Earles in the loss was able to collect eight points (four scores and four assists). A bright note to end the season, the were 4-2 against all teams that was not DC in the East and finished better than last season's 3-7.

6. Seattle Rainmakers: 4-6

Last Week: 6 Change: +0

Lost to Portland Stags 12-13

The spirit from the Rainmakers was clearly broken before the match even started as Seattle misses the playoffs for the first time. Even with a lead the Rainmakers were out of it and could not build on any momentum. With the loss they fall to 4-6 which makes their win total half of what it was a year ago (8-2) and disappointingly could not match their playoff berth.

7. San Francisco Dogfish: 2-8

Last Week: 7  Change: +0

Lost to Vancouver Nighthawks 15-17

The frustrating season for the San Francisco Dogfish finally comes to an end with a loss to the Vancouver Nighthawks. A common theme throughout the season was missing players for the Dogfish and was a factor again as they were without their best player, Evan Boucher, and could not match-up with Wong and Hibbert on the other side. Losing Beau Kittredge in the offseason was huge this season and hopefully if San Fran can find a new cutter in the offseason, match their 8-2 record and Western Conference Championship from a year ago.

8. New York Rumble: 2-8

Last Week: 8  Change: +0

Lost to Boston Whitecaps 16-21

After a promising start the New York Rumble ended their 2014 campaign on a six game losing streak. Once again the Rumble were unable to play a complete game, allowing Boston to go on a 7-3 scoring run in the final quarter and a half of play. Hopefully New York is able to keep their star players on their roster a build a cohesive unit after a season that was worse than last year's 3-7.

So that will do it for the regular season, there are now only three games left to play and two of them will be this upcoming weekend. Both conference championships will be played on Saturday with both respective winners to face each other in the MLU Championship in Philadelphia. In the East, it will be a rematch of last year's championship except this year DC is the dominating force and Boston was the team that had to rely on a Week 11 win to get in. DC has been undefeated at home this year and will play a huge factor in this the game. The Western Conference Championship will feature two new playoff teams in the Portland Stags and Vancouver Nighthawks. The Stags will host the game but their most recent loss came against the Nighthawks in Week 10 of the regular season, something has to give...

Be on the lookout later this week for my Conference Championships Previews and Predictions on who I think will be the two teams playing in PPL Park on July 19th.

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