MLS Power Rankings, Week 27: Portland Timbers on the slide in latest poll

We talk about parity all the time, but the Western Conference is starting to look exactly as it has since 2009 with RSL, Seattle and LA setting the pace. The East, meanwhile, still feels like a series of coin flips.

Note: Only MLS league games will be reflected in the rankings. The Power Rankings are voted on by the editorial staff at MLSsoccer.com, and all comments are written by Matthew Doyle. All game times are Eastern.

Let us know what you think in the comments below.

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So much for that slump, right? RSL were putting on a clinic even before the red card, and are pretty clearly the best team in the league at the moment – except for maybe the team at No. 2...

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Absolutely put San Jose to the sword on Saturday – this one was never a contest. They've taken 10 of 12 points from West foes over the past four games (and it should have been 12 but for a pair of blown offside calls in Dallas). Who's got the stomach to pick against them at the moment?

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Last: 6

Been waiting for the pieces to come together all summer, and now that it looks like they did, they have to bid adieu to Kei Kamara – perhaps their most important piece. The fact that Benny Feilhaber is starting to play to his talent and Graham Zusi finally looks healthy again ease the blow.

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Give them credit: They didn't give up that franchise-best nine-game unbeaten run easily. The schedule only gets tougher, though, and it's time for Gabriel Torres to be a match-winner.

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Such a weird team – they blow Houston out of the water one week, then barely threaten Zac MacMath the next. The Impact have scored multiple goals just twice in their last nine, and have taken just 16 of the last 39 points on offer. Do we trust the blow-out or the trend?

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Last: 7

Even if they're not playing great, they've still won five of six and are third on points per game. Told ya "In Sigi We Trust" was the right way to go.

  • Last Week: Won at Columbus, 1-0
  • Last Five: W-W-L-W-W
  • This Week: Wednesday vs. Chivas USA (10 pm, MLS Live)
    Saturday vs. Chicago (10 pm, NBCSN)

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Caleb Porter's done great work this year, but clearly this team has suffered one injury too many in both midfield and defense. Six very winnable points coming up should stop the bleeding – and if it doesn't, then it's time for Timbers fans to panic.

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Last: 8

Big round of applause for Mike Petke, who had the courage to do what few first-year head coaches would. If Jámison Olave gets and stays healthy, this team is probably the favorite to win the East.

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We were ready for a coronation after that early goal in Toronto, but the Revs couldn't add the exclamation point. A draw on the road is still a good get, but a contender wins that game by halftime like LA and RSL did.

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This is where the "coin flip" part of the East really takes hold, as there's precious little difference between Philly, Houston and Chicago. Still, the Union get the nod for the depth they showed against the front-running Impact.

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Another big game, another squandered early chance. And perhaps more disturbing is that was really all Houston did of note until the Fire bottled it up – permaturely – in the 60th minute. The possession intervals tell the tale.

  • Last Week: Drew at Chicago, 1-1
  • Last Five: W-L-W-L-D
  • This Week: Wednesday at Columbus (7:30 pm, MLS Live)
    Sunday vs. New York (5 pm, UniMas)
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Last: 11

Look, this has clearly been one of the best teams in the league over the past two months. But that was a six-pointer in which they let Houston off the hook – and left themselves with a ton of work to do to get into the playoff picture.

  • Last Week: Drew vs. Houston,1-1
  • Last Five: W-W-L-W-D
  • This Week: Saturday at Seattle (10 pm, NBCSN)

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The 'Caps basically have zero margin for error at this point, and it looks like their only hope is to get Camilo hot again, because when he's not feeling it, they've proved to be utterly ordinary.

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They can thank LA's evisceration of San Jose for the rankings bump. Nothing but a win at home against the 'Caps will do for this weekend.

  • Last Week: Bye
  • Last Five: L-D-L-W-D
  • This Week: Saturday vs. Vancouver (8:30 pm, MLS Live)

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Last: 14

A record of 4-2-1 over their last seven really isn't that bad, and if they finish their next seven at that clip, they'll have put themselves on the fringes of the playoff race. But this doesn't really "feel" like a playoff team, does it?

  • Last Week: Lost at LA, 3-0
  • Last Five: W-L-W-D-L
  • This Week: Sunday vs. Philadelphia (11 pm, ESPN2)
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Last: 17

José "Guero" Real says their last two games – the draw at Vancouver and the win vs. the Red Bulls – are an example of what this team can be. If Erick "Cubo" Torres sticks around, he has a shot at being right.

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Last: 16

There's been a lot of talent coming through Columbus since 2009, and some good moments. But did any of the young kids actually improve? It felt like there was simply no month-to-month, year-to-year plan to take "talent" and turn it into "contribution." The change was probably necessary.

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The DPs get the headlines, but the development of Doneil Henry and Jonathan Osorio are the "This should give you hope!" stories out of Toronto this year.

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That was D.C.'s season in a nutshell, really.