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MLS juggles schedule for Western Conference semi-finals, finals

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Move clears up a potential conflict for Sounders.

MLS: Chicago Fire at Seattle Sounders FC Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports

An opportunity to get more eyeballs, and avoid a potential conflict, has led to MLS shifting its schedule for the playoffs.

The first change is to a game scheduled for Wednesday. MLS announced that the Sporting Kansas City matchup against Minnesota United will now take place on Thursday, pushing the match back one day. The upshot for MLS, however, is that now the game will be broadcast over the air on FOX, as opposed to FS1. Fox had originally been scheduled to carry Thursday Night Football that day, but the Ravens-Cowboys match was moved earlier this week.

Nice as that added exposure would have been, the change would have left the winner with only two full days of rest before the conference final on Dec. 6. Additionally, should Minnesota United and the Seattle Sounders advance, that would have left MLS with a major problem, as the Seattle Seahawks host the New York Giants on the same day. The Sounders would be the hosting team as the No. 2 seed.

To resolve that conflict, MLS also announced that the Western Conference final will now take place on Monday, Dec. 7. Should the Sounders host, that would give them enough time to remove football lines from the field. The Collective Bargaining Agreement with the MLS Players’ Association also requires a minimum of three days of rest between matches. MLS Cup is scheduled for Dec. 12.

Updated 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs Schedule

All times Pacific.

Western Conference Semifinals (2 games)

(One single-elimination game, winners advance to Conference Final)

Tuesday, Dec. 1

(one game)

  • 6:30 p.m. Seattle Sounders FC vs. FC Dallas (FS1/FOX Deportes, TSN, TVA Sports)

Thursday, Dec. 3

(one game)

  • 5:00 p.m. Sporting Kansas City vs. Minnesota United (FOX/FOX Deportes, TSN, TVA Sports)

Eastern and Western Conference Final (2 games)

(One single-elimination game, winners advance to MLS Cup)

Sunday, Dec. 6

(one game)

Monday, Dec. 7

(one game)

  • TBD (FS1/FOX Deportes, TSN, TVA Sports)

2020 MLS Cup (1 game)

(Eastern Conference Champion vs. Western Conference Champion One single-elimination game that will crown the 2020 MLS Cup Champion.)

Saturday, Dec. 12

  • 5 p.m. (FOX, UniMás/TUDN, TSN, TVA Sports)