MLS Power Rankings, Week 18: Dallas grab No. 1

BIGGEST MOVERS: Sporting KC, New England +3 spots | RSL, NY, SJ, ORL -2 spots

1

 
 

LAST WEEK: 2

HIGH: 1 | LOW: 7

A healthy Mauro Diaz in midfield and a healthy Matt Hedges on the backline have Dallas cruising. Their three-game winning streak feels like the tip of the iceberg. 

Latest result: Won at San Jose, 1-0

Last five results: D-L-W-W-W

2

 
 

LAST WEEK: 1

HIGH: 1 | LOW: 20

The Rapids have just one win in their last five, but it's now been more than three months since they last lost a regular season game. And even when their defense is leaky – as it was, by their lofty standards, this past weekend – they still find a way to get a result

Latest result: Drew at Vancouver, 2-2

Last five results: D-W-D-D-D

Next MLS match: Saturday vs. Sporting KC

3

 
 

LAST WEEK: 4

HIGH: 2 | LOW: 9

The Galaxy are now up to a tie for third in the league in PPG, and here are some other numbers: They're 5-1-2 when Robbie Keane starts, they have only two losses since March, and +13 is far and away the best goal differential in the league. Sorry to say it, Galaxy haters, but this probably won't be the year you get to indulge in schadenfreude.

Latest result: Won at Seattle, 1-0

Last five results: L-D-D-W-W

4

 
 

LAST WEEK: 5

HIGH: 2 | LOW: 19

Yes, C.J. Sapong makes that big a difference. Forget the counting stats (though he did pick up an assist) – it's the way his hold-up play and passing allows the Union to shift opposing backlines around that makes him such an asset.

Latest result: Won vs. D.C. United, 3-0

Last five results: L-W-L-L-W

5

 
 

LAST WEEK: 3

HIGH: 1 | LOW: 15

RSL followed a long road trip with four out of five at home, and kind of fell on their faces by winning just one of those games. That was their chance to climb to (or at least near) the top of the West.

Latest result: Drew vs. Montreal, 1-1

Last five results: D-W-L-D-D

6

 
 

LAST WEEK: 6

HIGH: 6 | LOW: 20

The win at New England was significantly more important than losing at a Western Conference team, and so this past week goes into the books as another job well done from the East-leading Pigeons.

Last five results: W-W-W-W-L

7

 
 

LAST WEEK: 7

HIGH: 1 | LOW: 12

As the backline's gotten healthy, good results have started to pile up. Now they'll aim to have DP playmaker Diego Valeri ready for Sunday's Cascadia Cup showdown against the Sounders.

Latest result: Drew at NY Red Bulls, 0-0

Last five results: W-D-W-D-D

8

 
 

LAST WEEK: 11

HIGH: 1 | LOW: 18

Sporting's high pressure has become suffocating over the last month, but errors at the back still continue to plague this team. Their penchant for gifting goals – no matter who's out there – is a concern even as good results continue to roll in.

Latest result: Won vs. NYCFC, 3-1

Last five results: D-W-D-W-W

9

 
 

LAST WEEK: 9

HIGH: 1 | LOW: 9

Thoroughly dominated the Fire and then held on to post their seventh shutout of the season. With the back-loaded home schedule in front of them from here on out, they should absolutely contend for the franchise's first-ever conference title. 

Latest result: Won vs. Chicago, 1-0

Last five results: L-W-L-D-W

10

 
 

LAST WEEK: 8

HIGH: 2 | LOW: 17

The home shutout streak is now over 400 minutes. The bad news is that the overall scoreless streak is approaching 220 minutes after a mostly listless attacking display vs. the Timbers. With two Eastern Conference games ahead, this week is huge.

Latest result: Drew vs. Portland, 0-0

Last five results: W-L-D-L-D

11

 
 

LAST WEEK: 10

HIGH: 1 | LOW: 11

A road point is always good, but it remains clear that Montreal have no idea how to play while ahead. They've given up at least one lead in six of their last nine outings, including this past weekend.

Last five results: W-D-D-W-D

12

 
 

LAST WEEK: 13

HIGH: 8 | LOW: 14

Carl Robinson is trying everything under the sun to try to get things clicking for his team, but those last five results speak loud and clear. New additions to the backline this week should help the leaky defense, which has been conceding two goals per game during their last 11 outings.

Latest result: Drew vs. Colorado, 2-2

Last five results: D-L-W-L-D

13

 
 

LAST WEEK: 16

HIGH: 10 | LOW: 17

New England blew so many opportunities against NYCFC, then finally found the range by throttling Columbus. The question is this: Is there any in-between for this team? Or will it always be a feast/famine binary?

Last five results: W-L-L-L-W

Next MLS match: Saturday at Real Salt Lake

14

 
 

LAST WEEK: 12

HIGH: 6 | LOW: 14

Given all the injuries the San Jose defense has dealt with, certain members of the Power Rankings Politburo are waiting for a call from the Quakes. Simon Borg has volunteered to play sweeper …

Latest result: Lost vs. Dallas, 1-0

Last five results: L-D-D-L-L

Next MLS match: Saturday vs. Toronto

15

 
 

LAST WEEK: 14

HIGH: 14 | LOW: 20

After three good weeks they were just ripped apart by the Union – not even Bill Hamid could save United. They're now staring at two more road matches before a four-game homestand that will go a long way towards defining this season.

Latest result: Lost at Philadelphia, 3-0

Last five results: L-D-W-D-L

Next MLS match: Saturday at Columbus

16

 
 

LAST WEEK: 17

HIGH: 10 | LOW: 20

In six games under Wade Barrett the Dynamo have conceded five goals while posting three shutouts, so the defensive progress is unmistakeable. Offensively, though, there's still much work to be done. 

Latest result: Drew at Orlando City, 0-0

Last five results: D-D-L-W-D

17

 
 

LAST WEEK: 15

HIGH: 6 | LOW: 17

The first game of the post-Adrian Heath era landed with a thud, as OCSC managed to cough up two more home points. Ten of their final 17 games are away from home, which is bad news for a team that's just 1-4-2 outside of Florida so far this year.

Latest result: Drew vs. Houston, 0-0

Last five results: D-D-W-L-D

18

 
 

LAST WEEK: 18

HIGH: 5 | LOW: 19

Three losses in their last five, and only one win in their last 10. Columbus have had a nightmare season with no signs of improvement.

Latest result: Lost at New England, 3-1

Last five results: L-D-D-L-L

19

 
 

LAST WEEK: 19

HIGH: 7 | LOW: 19

They had every chance to at least equalize against LA, but no one – not Clint Dempsey, not Jordan Morris – seems destined to get Seattle out of this rut that, at this point, looks like a season-killer.

Latest result: Lost vs. LA Galaxy, 1-0

Last five results: W-L-L-D-L

20

 
 

LAST WEEK: 20

HIGH: 18 | LOW: 20

Michael de Leeuw made his long-awaited debut, which is just about the only silver lining for a team that's 2-7-2 in their last 11 games. Chicago have no attacking answers, and haven't really improved in possession, either.

Latest result: Lost at Toronto, 1-0

Last five results: D-L-L-W-L

Only MLS league games will be reflected in the rankings. Rankings are voted on by MLSsoccer.com editorial staff and remarks were written by Senior Editor Matt Doyle (@MLSAnalyst).

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