We start off, as already announced, at home against the Revs on March 4th. After a trip to NY we come home to get our first look at the expansion Minnesota United on March 18th (a game I'll sadly miss). A week off for World Cup qualifying then brings our old friends Oscar Pareja and Dallas to town before we head over to KC the following week. We finish our early season by hosting FSL in the first Rocky Mountain Cup match of the season on tax day.
The good news is that we don't play through any World Cup Qualifying breaks. The bad news is that because of that and our CCL play our late season is going to be very busy. August in particular could be ugly with 4 out of 5 league games on the road, including 3 games in a week between the 19th and the 26th (the last of them being our RMC match in Sandy), and probably a home and away CCL match. 7 games in a month, 5 of which will be on the road.
We finish with another 3 games in a week at the end of September when we go to Vancouver, Dallas, and then host Montreal in a week. After the international break we end the home season with our second home RMC match and then head to Seattle for the final game of the regular season.
Other notes about the schedule:
- FSL, Dallas, and Vancouver are the teams we get 3 times this season. Dallas once at home, Vancouver and FSL twice.
- We go to expansion team Atlanta United on June 24th and expansion Minnesota on April 23rd.
- This year's 4th of July opponent is the Seattle Sounders
- We play 3 games in a row at home once (June 3rd, 18th, and 21st) and 3 on the road once (Aug 23rd, 26th, and Sept 9th). The rest of the season is no more than 2 in a row at home or on the road.
- One Wednesday, one Friday, and two Sunday home matches. The rest are on Saturdays.
- A number of 3 game weeks this year (before you even get to adding in CCL games):
- May 13-20 (SJ, @Chi, @Philly)
- May 27-June 3 (KC, @LA, Columbus)
- June 18-24 (Portland, LA, @Atlanta)
- Aug 19-26 (DC, @Portland, @FSL)
- Sept 23-30 (Vancouver, @Dallas, Montreal)
- Add in the Saturday-Tuesday game on July 1st and 4th and 17 of our 34 games are being played going into or coming off short rest.
- All in all we need to rack up points early int he season and often because the second half of the season is going to be a marathon.
- 5 games on national TV, 2 on FS1, 3 on UniMas
- Bye weeks March 25th, June 10th, July 8th & 15th, Oct 8th. All of those byes are during World Cup Qualifiers or the Gold Cup.
The schedule news comes a day before the Superdraft. The first two rounds will be tomorrow starting at 1pm. The 3rd and 4th round will be Tuesday via conference call . Currently the Rapids hold the 15th pick in the first round and the 2nd pick in the second round (24th overall pick). There are rumors that the Rapids are looking to make a big move up the board to pick up UCLA forward Abu Danladi. He's considered the ost ready and best striker option in the draft...when healthy and focused. He's spent almost as much time injured as playing at UCLA though. Forward Jeremy Ebobisse out of Duke is the more sure bet but isn't seen to have as high a ceiling as Danladi.
I'll update the blog tomorrow with Rapids picks and/or trades as they happen and then do a recap tomorrow night.