26 Days 'til MLS: Unexpected player who wins you games

As the MLS season approaches, MLSsoccer.com marks each passing day with a different statistic, observation or talking point, setting the stage for March 2.

26 – Game-winning goals scored by Colorado's Edson Buddle

Around the watercooler, MLS fans rarely mention Edson Buddle's name with the same reverence that they do the likes of Jeff Cunningham, Jaime Moreno, Landon Donovan, Ante Razov, Jason Kreis, Taylor Twellman, and Dwayne De Rosario. For whatever reason, despite the fact that Buddle is the 8th all-time leading scorer in MLS history with 93 regular-season goals, he is often left out of the conversation.

Heck, these days, San Jose ace Chris Wondolowski – who has 25 fewer career goals to his name than Buddle does – garnes acres more press and hype than Buddle.

But whatever the reasons might be – injuries, consistent but low single-season totals, quiet demeanor – one thing is undeniable: Buddle knows not only how to score, but also how to score important goals: He is tied for 7th all-time with 26 game-winning goals.

Strangely, though, he didn't score a single matchwinner in 2012 after returning to the LA Galaxy from Germany. Can he rediscover his clutch form this season, now that he's moved to the Colorado Rapids? After missing the playoffs last year, the Rapids sure hope so. And if he does, we'll all be talking about him a little more.

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Is Edson Buddle one of the top 10 forwards in MLS history? Let us know in the comments below.