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Preseason Power Rankings On First Kick Eve

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Entering the 2012 MLS season the expectations for the Seattle Sounders are high league wide. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-US PRESSWIRE
Entering the 2012 MLS season the expectations for the Seattle Sounders are high league wide. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-US PRESSWIRE

The tiered system is dead, kind of. SBNation.com/soccer's MLS power rankings now require each writer to rank the teams from 1-19 and then they will be lumped into tiers based on the overall vote. This is essentially flipping the system of previous years, but the results are quite similar. Overall the Seattle Sounders are ranked a clear 2nd, in tier one with the LA Galaxy (first) and Real Salt Lake (third). While there are four Sounder at Heart staffers on the voting panel, only one voted the Sounders in first. That was offset by a single voter who had them fifth in the West.

Sitting just outside that top tier are FC Dallas, Sporting Kansas City and the Houston Dynamo. That's basically the cutoff of teams SBN voters see as in the MLS Cup Playoffs at the end of the year. I actually have Sporting up at 3rd overall. In looking at the West v East, the right coast has the lowest two teams (New England Revolution and Montreal Impact) but the West has the next three worst. The schedule shouldn't open too much opportunity for an Eastern team to runaway with the Supporters Shield.

Cascadia Summary
Seattle Sounders - 2
Portland Timbers - 9 (but 6 in West)
Vancouver Whitecaps - 15

My full power rankings

1 - LA Galaxy
2 - Sounders
3 - Sporting
4 - Salt Lake
5 - Dallas
6 - Columbus Crew
7 - Toronto FC
8 - Dynamo
9 - New York Red Bulls
10 - Timbers
11 - Whitecaps (I'm a Rennie fan)
12 - Colorado Rapids
13 - Chicago Fire
14 - D.C. United
15 - Philadelphia Union
16 - Chivas USA
17 - San Jose Earthquakes
18 - Impact (or Sounders East)
19 - Revolution