One round. 10 matches. That's all that stands between some Fantasy MLS managers and glory. Even if you're not in the hunt for a prize, there's still ego at stake. How high are you going to set the bar for next year? Which players are you going to put your faith in to see you through this final week? Well, that's where I have you covered. Let's examine the 10 remaining fixtures, and see what potential points are there for the taking.
Round 33 (taken from fantasy.mlssoccer.com, all times Eastern):
Wednesday, 9:30PM - CHV at RSL
Chivas USA is the only team with a double-game week, but based on form and having to play at Rio Tinto for the first leg, anyone on this roster is a definite gamble. Real Salt Lake has a chance to vault up to the #3 seed in the West, so expect some Javier Morales magic on Wednesday.
Friday, 8:00PM - HOU at CHI
Both teams only have pride to play for, but Giles Barnes has been on fire, so I wouldn't surprised to see at least one goal from him. Aside from that, I'm looking elsewhere.
Saturday, 2:30PM - LA at SEA
To say that this match is important for both sides would be a huge understatement. LA Galaxy can only take the Supporters' Shield with a win at Century Link Field, but the Seattle Sounders are nigh unbeatable in front of a sellout Seattle crowd. Omar Gonzalez will miss out on the match, but fireworks will be coming from the usual suspects: Landon Donovan, Robbie Keane, Clint Dempsey, and Obafemi Martins. Lamar Neagle and Gyasi Zardes shouldn't be overlooked, either.
Saturday, 4:00PM - DC at MTL
This is the strongest team in the Eastern Conference against the worst, but tread carefully, as neither club has anything at stake in this match. DC has already locked up the top seed, and about the only thing Montreal can hope for is to dish off the Wooden Spoon (worst record in the league) to the San Jose Earthquakes.
Saturday, 7:30PM - POR at DAL
This has all the makings to be the second-most exciting match of the weekend. Portland needs to pick up more points than Vancouver to punch their playoff ticket, but FC Dallas hasn't dropped points at Toyota Stadium since May. Diego Valeri has other ideas, and still managed to put up five fantasy points despite being shut out last weekend, but it's hard to bet against the home team here.
Saturday, 7:30PM - TOR at NE
Two words describe Lee Nguyen's form right now: "en fuego". His name has shown up on the score sheet in nine of the last 10 Revs matches. The only way that changes this weekend is if Jay Heaps rests his starters, as New England has already locked down the #2 seed.
Saturday, 10:00PM - COL at VAN
There are only two teams in MLS with a worse goal differential than the Rapids: Chivas USA and Montreal. There are zero teams in MLS with more goals against (61). Vancouver still has to get a result to make the playoffs. You do the math. Pedro Morales will score a goal.
Sunday, 3:00PM - SJ at CHV
A tired Chivas squad will head home to LA to play against the more-rested (but still plenty woeful) San Jose, and neither team has anything to play for. Stay away from this one.
Sunday, 5:00PM - PHI at CLB
9:30PM - NY at KC
There are plenty of headlines in these two matches. Columbus, New York, and Sporting KC are fighting it out for the all-important #3 seed in the East. Ethan Finlay and the Crew have been pouring in the goals. KC and Philly have both been on a slump (12 points from the last 12 matches and 6 points from the last 6, respectively). Bradley-Wright Phillips is chasing Wondolowski's single-season scoring record. This will be Thierry Henry's final regular season game. All this adds up to plenty of action, and I wouldn't be surprised if both these matches ended up being high-scoring affairs.
And that wraps it up!
So, there are my final takes for the season. Next week, I'm going to try and write an opinion piece outlining some ideas for what I think are some ways to improve Fantasy MLS. Before I do, I want to get your opinion: how do you think this year's Fantasy MLS format was? Were there things you really liked or disliked? Let me know and I'll try and include some of the feedback in next week's article.
Thanks to everyone who has written in questions, listened to me rant, and joined me in this roller-coaster ride that we call FMLS. Special thanks to Ben Jata, who is a fantasy statistics god among men, and Jamie Umbach, for filling my shoes to write excellent articles during my vacation.
Take care -- it's been fun trying to predict this crazy season.
And, of course... don't forget to pick a different captain than me!