The Kick-Off

30 March 5:33 pm

When adopted a new logo for the “Kick Off” series earlier this month, we didn’t expect a great deal of response from fans who wanted the mug back.

But after an outpouring of emotion and questions about where the mug had gone, we decided to reach out, and welcome back the mug. We’ve offered him his own blog series every Friday on to keep us posted on his activities since he retired.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Take a second, and imagine you’re on a beach. The soft, warm breeze drifting over your rim, gliding gently past your handle. The birds are singing, your lady mug friend is by your side, and there’s not a care in the world that can pry you away from the good things in life: sun-splashed afternoons, bottomless coffee, blissful retirement.

And then your phone rings. It’s those morons from, and they want you back. And not only that, but they want you to … wait for it… write a blog, so everyone knows what you’re doing with every waking second of your life.

You wanted me back? You got me. I appreciate all the lonely fans who pined for my return and I certainly understand your sentiment. Your mornings were better with me. I am awesome.

So what did I do this week? I came down to Nashville to catch some CONCACAF Olympic qualifying, and boy was it a drag. 

Anyway, it wasn’t the best of weeks. Not for me, not for anyone who watched that game. I’m just glad I didn’t have to greet everyone on Tuesday morning with the news that the US team isn’t going to the Olympics. Guess I’ll just watch badminton.

I’ll be back with another blog post sometime next week, but in the meantime you can follow me on Twitter. Oh really, you’re already on Twitter? Good for you. Follow me if you want to be cool.

23 March 5:03 pm

Rarely in the brief history of has there been a controversy that has riled up the fans like this one.

No, not the “crabs or wolves” debate. Not the Power Rankings. Not even Shaman Simon.

The issue at hand? The recent mysterious disappearance of the beloved logo for the Kick Off.

For more than a year, the Kick Off Mug (above, right) was the calling card of each morning dispatch curating all the best headlines around MLS and beyond. Now, his replacement (right) is doing his job admirably, so we were admittedly stunned that there was such a backlash, which has grown from a steady trickle of complaints at first into a stream of mug-related discontent.

So here’s the word. It was a sad day when the Kick Off Mug strolled into our offices and told us he was done. He’d adorned his last article, greeted his last reader. It was a career full of highs and lows for the Kick Off Mug, which was the brainchild of a graphic designer who was understandably too upset to comment for this blog post.

He was, without a doubt, the most respected mug on the site. He had his own desk in the office, his own direct phone line from the MLS executive committee, his own coffee mug. He was friends with folks around the league and the world of soccer. All other mugs wanted to be him, all the lady mugs wanted to be with him.

But now the Kick Off Mug has set sail on the sea of retirement, and we wish him well. We’ve asked him to stay in touch and to send us photos as he hangs up his handle in style (above), traveling the world and seeing all those places he never saw while he was hard at work on

So from all of us, thank you Kick Off Mug. Stay in touch.