The End of an Era: Eulogy for the Dynamic Duo

Bob Levey

As we remember Brian Ching, I can't help but remember that his name has always been linked to another. The duo of Ching and Brad Davis were the faces of Houston soccer from the day the Dynamo came to town, but no more.

Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up...Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves...

- Ecclesiastes 4:9-10,12

Olajuwon and Drexler. Biggio and Bagwell. Davis and Ching. The history of Houston sports is rife with a message that isn't always found in sports: two players linked in the minds of fans and the destinies of their teams. Think about it: for all the success that Hakeem Olajuwon had before Clide Drexler came to town, because of their college career and their time with the Rockets, the two are linked together. Same with Astros stars Craig Biggio and Jeff Bagwell - who have a chance to enter the Baseball Hall of Fame side by side.

When the Houston Dynamo came to town in 2006, the city got another such tandem: Brad Davis and Brian Ching. They've been here eight years, won two MLS Cups, and gotten to the playoffs seven of the eight years they've been here. Sadly, that pair - who I have recently termed the "Dynamic Duo" - has played their final meaningful match together. They'll reunite once more for Ching's testimonial on Friday (n the same side, of course), but their partnership has now moved into the realm of memories.

It wasn't too surprising - both are eight years older than they were when they got here. Age and injuries have forced Ching into a reserve role over the last few seasons, and he's still given the Dynamo reasons to keep him around. Davis has kept going, though he is about three years younger.

While both were in their prime, it was a partnership that was guaranteed to mane others think twice about underestimating the Dynamo. Ching is one of the most prolific scorers in league history (90 goals across MLS regular season and playoffs between 2001-2013), and Davis' left foot has supplied many an assist (110 across MLS regular season and playoffs since 2002). There have been many other players on the Dynamo over these eight years, but the stats of Ching and Davis alone help show at leasy partly how the Dynamo have been so good over such a long period of time.

Sadly, nine years of partnership will come to a close with the final whistle at Ching's testimonial. The dynamic duo of Ching and Davis were the face of Houston soccer - but "were" is now the key word. That era is now passing, and nobody is sure what will replace it. But I have a feeling - a sinking one, I must admit - that this dynamic duo will be the best one the Dynamo ever see. And I'll miss it.

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