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20-team League Format

Discussion in 'MLS: Commissioner - You be The Don' started by Jntg4, Aug 19, 2012.

Moderators: edwardgr, Ismitje, KCbus
  1. Jntg4

    Jntg4 New Member

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    Dec 1, 2010
    Club:
    Chicago Fire
    Did this a week ago for ChiCitySports.com, decided to come to a more active soccer forum to garner opinions.

    I tried to keep most regional rivalries together, unfortunately couldn't manage things like Fire-DC or Fire-Revolution.

    Eastern Conference

    Atlantic Division
    D.C. United
    New England Revolution
    New York Cosmos
    New York Red Bulls
    Philadelphia Union
    Central Division
    Chicago Fire
    Columbus Crew
    Montreal Impact
    Sporting Kansas City
    Toronto FC
    Western Conference

    Northwestern Division
    Colorado Rapids
    Portland Timbers
    Real Salt Lake
    Seattle Sounders FC
    Vancouver Whitecaps FC
    Southwestern Division
    C.D. Chivas USA
    FC Dallas
    Houston Dynamo
    Los Angeles Galaxy
    San Jose Earthquakes

    Top three teams in each division make playoffs, seeded one through three. Second place plays Third Place in single game (I know this doesn't give all teams a playoff game, but other leagues have this too, MLB Wild Card game, and NFL). Winner plays division winner in two-game aggregate Division Finals Series. Winners of Division Finals play the other Division Finals winner in their conference in single game in Conference Championship Game. Winners play in MLS Cup.
     
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  2. When Saturday Comes

    When Saturday Comes Member

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    Would rather have just two conferences.

    Not wild about Toronto and Montreal not in the same division as NY1, RBNY, Philly, DC NER
     
  3. Jntg4

    Jntg4 New Member

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    It would still be the same, I forgot to post schedule format but here's how it works out:
    4 against division teams (16 games)
    2 against conference teams in other division (10 games)
    1 against teams in other conference (10 games)

    36 game schedule, but still play them twice as was status quo until this season (and for some east teams, it still is).
     
  4. bunge

    bunge BigSoccer Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2000
    I'm not concerned about a balanced schedule. I almost think I would prefer a 32-34 game schedule with last year's top teams getting to play last year's worst teams as a reward for being successful.
     


  5. Rampage

    Rampage Member

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    May 8, 2012
    I'm in favor of the four division set up at 20 teams. More first place teams means more second place teams and more interest.
     
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  6. Chicago SC

    Chicago SC Member

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    I don't like the idea of playing a team 3 times, let alone 4. 32 games would mean a team plays 4 teams from each division twice, including their own. I'd start from there. I'm not in favor of single games, either.

    So a 12 team playoff format. First, I would take the top 2 in each division, then the next best 4. I don't like to see good teams sit out because other divisions have mediocre teams.

    Now, how many single elimination vs accumulation rounds?

    R1 knockout
    #12 @ #9
    #11 @ #10
    #8 @ #7
    #6 @ #5

    QF accumulation
    #1 vs Lowest remaining cede
    #2 vs next
    #3 vs next
    #4 vs next

    SF accumulation
    Similar to QF parings

    F knockout @ neutral site
     
  7. Achowat

    Achowat Member+

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    And the Rich get Richer
     
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  8. Chicago SC

    Chicago SC Member

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    Of course I meant aggregate :)
     
  9. Jntg4

    Jntg4 New Member

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    Idk, I think more games against the other teams in the division would be beneficial as it heats up the rivalries even more.
     
  10. Achowat

    Achowat Member+

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    But waters down the importance of each match.
     
  11. SheffWedFan

    SheffWedFan Member

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    20 teams, single table. Everyone plays everyone twice for 38 games. Regular season champion gets a CONCACAF Champions League berth. The Top 8 go the post-season MLS Cup (1v8, 2v7 etc.) in 2-legged knockout until the single-game MLS Cup final. Winner gets a CONCACAF Champions League berth.

    I really don't think it needs to be more complicated than that.
     
  12. Chicago SC

    Chicago SC Member

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    I'm indifferent to divisions v. a single table. Like you, I'd like to see the best teams in the playoffs. I'm thinking expanding the playoffs to 12 teams, with the last four being the "next best," would accomplish that. In my format, the Cup winner and finalist would play a total of 37 or 38 games. In your format, the Cup winner and finalist would play a total of 43 games.
     
  13. (De La)Redstriker06

    (De La)Redstriker06 Member

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    Personally, I felt that one of the biggest problems with the league a couple of years ago was that too many teams made the playoffs. It essentially made the regular season redundant. I personally believe that the reason why the NFL is so much more popular than the NHL, MLB, and NBA is down to the importance of regular season games. So few teams make the playoffs so there is an incentive to watch how the regular season unfolds. Viewers aren't going to tire either because there are so few games.

    I personally think sending 12 teams to the playoffs is too much. Keep it at 10, it keeps half-decent teams in it until September but ensures that teams aren't falling over and puking themselves whilst still somehow stumbling into the postseason.

    I don't know why there would be a need for divisions. Keep the same setup (although if the rumors of NY2 are true it looks like Houston would have to move to the Western Conference). Each team plays in-conference teams 3 times and out of conference teams once for a total of 37 games.
     
  14. ceezmad

    ceezmad Member+

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    MLB Before; 8/30 = 26.6 %
    MLB 2012; 10/30 = 33.3%

    NFL 12/32 = 37.5%

    So even with expanded playoffs, MLB still has less teams and a lower % of teams making the playoffs.
     
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  15. (De La)Redstriker06

    (De La)Redstriker06 Member

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    I get where you're coming from but there is an argument to be made that cross country travel dilutes the quality of play on the field. This even an issue in the NFL where West Coast teams have an absolutely atrocious record playing away games on the opposite coast with 1:00 PM kickoff times. It's an issue in Russia as well but they choose to ignore the logistical nightmare which is why teams from Vladivostok and the Steppes are constant relegation battlers.

    With the balanced schedule last year there were a lot more draws; draws are way down this year. It could be a fluke or it could be that teams are less fatigued and are battling for wins instead of settling for a draw.

    I don't think everything we do here has to be a replica of Europe. Leagues vary from country to country. Latin America favors the Apertura/Clausura set up, some Eastern European countries have a championship/relegation round, and we have an unbalanced schedule- with playoffs.

    For now we aren't going to compete with big boys in Europe in terms of quality (although the gap is narrowing every year) but we can compete by differentiating our product.
     
  16. Achowat

    Achowat Member+

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    You've just added two matchdays. So would you rather stand outside in Toronto in December or New England in February?
     
  17. henryo

    henryo Member+

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    With more SSS in place (i.e. more scheduling control), perhaps the league may consider scheduling more games at warmer cities during colder mouthes and vice versa? That may solve some of the weather issues to certain "degrees"...
     
  18. Achowat

    Achowat Member+

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    And now southern cities get to have the advantage of strong, momentum building form in the early part of the year or get to host all of their games as part of a playoff push at home. It doesn't seem like a good idea for sporting equality.

    And what cities count as "warmer". Have you ever spent a February in KCK? There are 4 teams below the line of the Missouri Compromise. Four (LA and Texas). I don't know that San Jose, Salt Lake, Denver, Kansas, DC, or Columbus (who comprise the "Southern Half of the League") are places where you could make it work. The PNW, Canadian Teams, NE, NY, PHI, and Chicago need to be considered right out.

    The plan to play winter games "where it's not so bad" is one that is often suggested without realizing how Borealic* the league really is.

    *From the Latin "boreale", meaning "northern"
     
  19. henryo

    henryo Member+

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    On the other hand, to give regular season games more meaning and reward higher-placed teams better in playoffs, perhaps the higher-seeded teams may be given a penalty at the start of every match-up (be it the first half of one-off game or the first leg of two-legged ties).

    Would that be enough incentive to do better in each regular season game? (given that every point and every placing counts a lot more in this case)
     
  20. SheffWedFan

    SheffWedFan Member

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    Why does it have to be an either/or situation? It can't be that difficult to slot two extra games in there somewhere. Every other league in the world has to deal with fixture congestion, including some that have equally cold or equally warm climates as the US, and somehow they manage it.
     
  21. henryo

    henryo Member+

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    More mid-week games perhaps? Could be quite difficult for teams in CCL and USOC though...
     
  22. Achowat

    Achowat Member+

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    Isn't that so much of a tremendous advantage that it's just not worth it?

    I mean, Mexico got rid of the "higher seed advances on a draw", because it was dumb, and your plan (give the higher seed an 80% chance of being up 1-0 when the whistle blows) is somehow more damning.

    Playoffs exist so that any team can win. It's a tournament, it's a cup match, it's...exciting.

    I don't know why I'd want to watch LA pack 11 bodies in their own box for 180' just because they went up 1-0 before the match even started.
     
  23. Achowat

    Achowat Member+

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    Then tell me where. If it's that easy, do the work.
     
  24. SheffWedFan

    SheffWedFan Member

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    LA didn't have a game on Tuesday, April 10th. There's one. They don't have a game on Tuesday October 9th. Done.

    Colorado didn't have a game on Tuesday, April 4th. There's one for them. They didn't have one on Tuesday April 24th either. Boom. Done. Four teams with two extra fixtures.

    Extrapolate this to the entire league, adding in a Tuesday after a Saturday twice a year, and it's fixed. Not difficult.
     
  25. EPJr

    EPJr Member

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    the NFL is more popular because its football
    I would not call 10 out of 32 to be "few"
     
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