Sounder at Heart Archives for January 2011

FANHOUSE: Which brands do you consider the most authentic? ZEA: D.C. is the first one that comes...

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FANHOUSE: Which brands do you consider the most authentic?

ZEA: D.C. is the first one that comes to mind, with their identity from the very beginning. I had very close ties to them also and worked there for two years, but the way that organization was run, the people they had within it, the way they approached the game, the league, the players.

Full February Day of Football

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Despite our local custom of summer soccer and the occasional snow flurries drifting around the greater Seattle area, today is chock full of games that will be of interest to local fans.

At some unholy hour this morning (which explains the lack of a game thread), the Sounders kicked off a friendly versus the hated Houston Dynamo: the team that knocked Seattle out of its first ever MLS playoff run - a victory that both of Houston's fans were very excited about.

(Did you ever talk to Diego Forlan about those rumors to MLS and Seattle?) "When I started to hear...

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(Did you ever talk to Diego Forlan about those rumors to MLS and Seattle?) "When I started to hear the rumors I talked to him to see if it was true if he was coming to MLS and possibly even to the Sounders. He said, sure, he'd really like to but it's not happening right now. He feels really good about where he is, playing for Atletico Madrid at the time being.

Game Thread: Sounders FC vs FC Dallas Friendly

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Seattle takes on the first of two MLS Cup finalists this preseason. Follow the official live blog here.

Nkufo Fucito Neagle Estrada Evans Carrasco Earls Martinez Wahl Scott Boss

FC Dallas Starters: Kevin Hartman, Jair Benitez, Alexis Pradie, Jackson, Zach Loyd, Daniel Hernandez, Brek Shea, Eric Alexander, David Ferreira, Marvin Chavez, Ruben Luna

That's pretty much an FCD Starting Roster versus mostly backup Sounders.

Major Link Soccer

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Good morning and a very happy President's day to everyone at SAH! George Washington selfishly gave up power in order to establish a representative democracy. Today we honor that sacrifice by offering up all 2010 models at rock bottom prices! Yes, you loyal SAH readers, we're slashing prices across the showroom floor.

O'Brian White with Seattle Sounders for Opportunity to Play

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Over the past few years some players with great college seasons have joined MLS after winning the Hermann Trophy. Darlington Nagbe and Teal Bunbury were the last two, but prior to that Garey, O'Rourke, Wingert, Eskandarian have all had decent careers. This isn't the Heisman. Players that win are good, or better, players in the league.

You Have Sounders Questions, We Have Sounders Answers

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The Sounder at Heart crew has been spending the last few weeks poring over preseason reports, attending practices and trying to figure out the intricacies of MLS roster building. For the most part, we've been sharing our findings with you. But there are surely questions that you have that we haven't directly addressed, or not addressed in the exact way you wanted.

Seattle Sounders Add Trialist - Richard Martinez of PR Islanders and Hofstra

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A player with the Puerto Rico National Team, with the PR Islanders of USSF D2 and formerly of Hofstra joins trialists Lamar Neagle and Jonathan Prieto with the Seattle Sounders during their Florida swing of winter training. Martinez is an either side fullback who has played in the PDL as well. With Hofstra he had 2 goals and 6 assists playing primarily as a centerback prior to his final season.

Sounders Keepers Through Lens of Tools

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Our discussion to tools moves to its final subset, that of the goalkeeper. Back when the post on Keeper tools was discussed in the abstract people most objected to Technical Ability capturing positioning, catching, punching. Hopefully this discussion gets us a bit further.

The ratings are an average of the writers at the time (myself, Jeremiah, sidereal, malcontentjake) as well as Graham from WAGNH.

Sounders Pick Up 5 More National TV Appearances

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Sounders Pick Up 5 More National TV Appearances

With the Fox Soccer Channel deal being announced today (one year for a reported $8 million), we also learned that the Sounders will make five more national TV appearances. That means the Sounders will be on national TV 10 times this year. The March 26 game against Houston was moved to March 25.

Open Flavor Fridays - Beer is for Baking

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Once again talking beer, wine, food and maybe other beverages. Others will talk coffee - I can't as it is my full time job.

Let's get a few things out of the way. If you are not of legal consumption age in your place of residence do not drink alcohol. Do not drink in excess, unless you are around people you know in a private place.

Major Link Soccer

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Good morning one and all. The week has been a relatively slow one for MLS. The Sounders are still in preseason training and are in the process of making tough roster decisions.

Sounders FC Keeping the Core Together: This week Sigi Schmid indicated that about 15 players have locked down a roster spot.

3. O’Brien White (Seattle Sounders FC) – I’ve seen enough of this kid over the years, from his days...

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3. O'Brien White (Seattle Sounders FC) – I've seen enough of this kid over the years, from his days at UConn to his time in Toronto, to know that he can be a special talent when everything is lined up for him. I thought the move to Seattle was a perfect fit for him as he'll finally be able to shake off the dirt that hounded him in Toronto and move forward into a new cHapter of his professional career.

Seattle Sounders, Osvaldo Alonso Agree To Contract Extension Through 2014

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More photos » Ezra Shaw - Getty Images

7 months ago: SANTA CLARA CA - JULY 31: Osvaldo Alonso #6 of the Seattle Sounders FC and Sam Cronin #4 of the San Jose Earthquakes go for the ball at Buck Shaw Stadium on July 31 2010 in Santa Clara California.

Graham looks at Wahl's candidacy for SBN-soccer

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Graham looks at Wahl's candidacy for SBN-soccer

In brief, don't get too excited.

Revolution in FIFA? Grant Wahl v Sepp Blatter

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Likely inspired by events in Egypt, Tunisia, Yemen, Bahrain, Jordan, Algeria, Libya, Iran.... Grant Wahl, US soccer journalist, wants to shake up FIFA. He doesn't want you to take to the streets. He just wants a little bit of support.

And to run against Sepp Blatter for the Presidency of FIFA.

Seattle Sounders Coach Sigi Schmid Narrows Roster Battle Down

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Most of today's quote sheet focuses on the roster battle, as it probably should. The roster has narrowed to 33, and at least 28 will make the roster for First Kick against the Los Angeles Galaxy, 30 could, and with the injured list even one or two more. Heading into today prevalent thought was that the battle was simple.

It's Not Too Late To Make The Supporters' Shield Mean Even More

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It's Not Too Late To Make The Supporters' Shield Mean Even More

Inspired by MalcontentJake's post regarding the Supporters' Shield, I looked at the fact that playoffs are here to stay and that they will always crown the MLS champion. That said, a 10-team playoff has the potential to make winning the Supporters' Shield a more clear advantage.

Using Substitution Patterns to Unlock More Goals

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There are really three purposes for substitutions - injury, general fitness, protecting the lead, or making a comeback. For injury the bench needs a few guys that can play in multiple roles. Roger Levesque seems to be turning into one of those guys for the 2011 Sounders. General fitness comes into play when guys are just tired and so a one for one swap is used.

Cascadia Rivalry Roster Comparison: Forwards

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More photos » Otto Greule Jr - Getty Images

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Much has been said and written about the relative merits of the front lines of the inaugural MLS rosters for the Portland Timbers and Vancouver Whitecaps.

Major Link Soccer

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Happy Monday morning everyone. It's time again for your regularly scheduled links from around the league. The big news in Sounders land involved the last training game on Saturday against Chivas USA. It was a training game that featured more of the senior team, but it was a trio of young players that worked together to get the Sounders the only goal of the day.

Analyzing The 2011 Schedule: Seattle Sounders Don't Seem To Have It Too Bad

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Otto Greule Jr - Getty Images

Seattle Sounders fans should feel good about the 2011 MLS schedule. It really doesn't look like the Sounders have that bad of a road ahead.

For MLS what are the dynasties?

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A twitter discussion between the SBN MLS authors broke out last week over how many MLS dynasties have existed. Black & Red United claims that DC United are the only dynasty. While their initial stretch in MLS 1.0 was awesome (6 MLS Cups, Supporters Shields or US Open Cups from 96-99) , and clearly a dynasty, is it really the only one?

NASL approved for 2011 only

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NASL approved for 2011 only

The USA, Canada and Puerto Rico have pro leagues, and semi-pro leagues for 2011.

The NASL has been approved for one year on a provisional status. MLS already exists and USL Pro at the third level is also approved.

US Open Cup structure should come out shortly.

Seattle Sounders Three Year Window - It started in 2010

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More photos » Otto Greule Jr - Getty Images

This is year three for Sigi Schmid with the Sounders, but does that really make this a year that must result in the MLS Cup?

Preseason Gamethread: Sounders v Chivas USA

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This is the last match in the Arizona swing for the Sounders and they get to face Chivas USA a team that is rebuilding and drinking Corona! Wins and losses are not at all important instead, the shot for the trialists - Lamar Neagle, Seedy Bah and Jonathon Prieto - to be seen and make another statement before further roster reduction is the key.

Major Link Soccer

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Welcome back to the latest and greatest episode of the new series Major Link Soccer. Last weekend the young Sounders Academy teams swept Arsenal of California. This week the senior team took on the best XI of both Real Salt Lake and the Columbus Crew during preseason training games. Both teams are preparing for a CCL quarter final match on February 22nd at Crew Stadium.

Open Flavor Fridays - You know its wrong, but you still do it

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Once again talking beer, wine, food and maybe other beverages. Others will talk coffee - I can't as it is my full time job.

Let's get a few things out of the way. If you are not of legal consumption age in your place of residence do not drink alcohol. Do not drink in excess, unless you are around people you know in a private place.

Sounders Centerbacks through the Lens of Tools

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Seattle Sounders Centerbacks of 2009

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These are the stalwarts of defense.

A Case for the Supporters Shield

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Now that we know the Sounders full "schedule", or, as the proper term may actually be, "fixture list" (since this will be subject to slight changes and corrections during the season) we can begin to digest the task at hand in 2011.

I have already certainly heard and read enough about the MLS Cup already, as the "MLS Cup or bust" mentality I wondered about a couple weeks ago seems to have taken hold of Sounders training camp.

MLS Releases 2011 Schedule: All Six Cascadia Cup Matches Will Be On Weekends

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All six of the Cascadia Cup matches will be played on weekends, which should at least waylay some of the fears supporters had about travel arrangements. The first of the games will be played on May 14 with the Seattle Sounders hosting the Portland Timbers. The Sounders will host the Vancouver Whitecaps on June 11.

Seattle Sounders Vs. Columbus Crew Preseason GameThread

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Jhon Kennedy Hurtado is among the Seattle Sounders who will be starting against the Columbus Crew on Thursday in Phoenix. (Photo courtesy of Seattle Sounders FC)

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The march toward the regular season continues as the Seattle Sounders take on the Columbus Crew at the Westside Complex in Phoenix, Ariz.

Erik Friberg Making Case For Starters' Minutes And Other Seattle Sounders Roster News

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Sigi Schmid didn't reveal much in his weekly conference call with reporters on Wednesday, but it does sound like this team is really rounding into shape. By the time the Seattle Sounders leave for Florida next week, the list of players still competing for roster spots will be anywhere from one to five names shorter.

A Must-Read for MLS fans

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A Must-Read for MLS fans

"Playoff and TV Uncertainty Overshadow MLS Schedule Announcement" from Fanhouse

do it! trust me.

Radiolab Presents: The Loneliness of the Goalkeeper

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Radiolab Presents: The Loneliness of the Goalkeeper

Here's a BBC radio piece (~20 minutes) about the psyche of goalkeepers. It kinda makes you wonder: who in the right mind would want to play that position?

Part 3 of Inside the Superdraft: Round 1 of the draft

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MLSSoccer.com's video series profiling the three Cascadia teams in the runup to and execution of the 2011 SuperDraft has hit part 3. You can watch it here. It covers the first round, including the top 2 picks by VAN and POR as well as the sequence of trades for the Sounders' 11th pick.

There's one thing in particular that I think deserves highlighting.

Preseason Match between Sounders and Real Salt Lake at Grande Sports World

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Real Salt Lake is just two weeks from their first leg match against the Columbus Crew in their quest to advance to the semi-finals of the CONCACAF Champions League. Seattle on the other hand has 5 more weeks of training ahead of them. The two teams have very different goals in this match.

Seattle is still experimenting with new pairings, while the cobalt of the mountains are refining their game plan.

Trialists and Training Camp - Different Doesn't Always Mean Better

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Some people questioned why trialists weren't included in the estimated depth chart. This was two fold, most of the trialists in camp right now I have not seen play, secondly they almost certainly not going to be on the roster. Akeem Adams, Tye Perdido, Kerry Baptiste and more; we've seen dozens flow through Sounders training over the past few years.

SB Nation Power Rankings: Seattle Sounders Barely Miss Out On Top Tier

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It's preseason, so I'm not going to ask you to read a whole lot into these rankings. Not to denigrate our own rankings, but they are what they are: A collective opinion of 17 soccer editors based on little more than what we've read.

I still think they are worthwhile, though, as they give us a sense of how the soccer world sees how our teams are shaping up.

Major Link Soccer

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Good morning one and all. Over the weekend the Sounders Academy teams swept Arsenal of California. The U-18 team secured a 2-0 shutout while the U-16 team went 3-1. Drew White and Darwin Jones were the goal scorers for the U-18 team. The U-16 team won on goals from Miles Rodriguez-Nelson, Chad Radulovich and Austin Sweeney.

Call for U of WA to build new soccer stadium

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Call for U of WA to build new soccer stadium

There are high schools with better soccer facilities. So while a new coach will help, the U needs to move forward on its plan for a 3,000 seater.

Depth Chart: 3 XIs for Sounders Two Weeks Into Training Camp

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The Seattle Sounders are done with two weeks of training camp and we've seen trialists come and go. Nearly all of the Supplemental picks have left as well, and I would expect that only Josh Ford stays the length of camp. Guys like Baptiste, Prieto, Bah and to a lesser extent Neagle have a longer road to run to make the squad particularly with so many returning players.

Qwest as 6th Best Soccer Stadium in MLS?

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Qwest as 6th Best Soccer Stadium in MLS?

I actually can't think that it should be too much higher. Jeremiah looked at the state of stadiums in MLS, and finishing #1 is a hated neighbor.

Bottom two shouldn't be a surprise at all.

Academy Report: U-18s take on Arsenal

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The Academies played California's Arsenal FC this morning in the cold drizzle at Starfire, and I thought I'd swing by to catch the U-18 match, which turned out to be a tale of two halves. It was a good showing from the homem side, with about 20-30 ECS (complete with drum and some flags) and about 20 other miscellaneous supporters along the sideline.

Husky Soccer Planning For Greatness

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The University of Washtington just hired a new Head Coach. It is a coach with connections to the Seattle Sounders, and one that seems to want those connections to be as strong as they possibly can be. As in the other football, he clearly sees his number one goal to put up a fence around the state and keep every great player at here, while picking up good players from around the country, as well.

Open Flavor Fridays - The Imperial Weekend Edition

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Imperial, but not the Empire. We're talking "extreme" beers. Double Indias.

We'll talk beer, wine, food and maybe other beverages.

Let's get a few things out of the way. If you are not of legal consumption age in your place of residence do not drink alcohol. Do not drink in excess, unless you are around people you know in a private place.

Whitecaps Friendly Preview and Open Thread

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More photos » Ned Dishman - Getty Images

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Call it a friendly; call it a preseason game; call it a scrimmage; call it whatever you like.

Major Link Soccer

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Good morning everyone. This week has been filled with reports from around the web on preseason training with the occasional trade or loan rumor. The young guys are fighting for a spot on the team while the veterans are fighting against the MLS salary cap. The transfer window closed across much of Europe this week so the rumors will probably die down.

Jonathon Prieto Gets Praise from Sigi

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The Seattle Sounders staff emails media (which includes a large swath of "new media" as well) a recap of the day's events while they are out of town. Today the following quote showed up;

(On Jonathan Prieto and other individual performances...) "Definitely you pay attention. There were some guys that stepped up.

Akron Soccer: Winning With Style

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Akron Soccer: Winning With Style

In Part 2 of SB Nation's three-part series on Akron soccer, I take a look at the Zips' ability to get results while not sacrificing an attractive style of play.

Ryan Herman, DeAndre Yedlin, Nick Palodichuk Among Seattle Sounders Academy Players Officially Committing To Schools

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At some point today, we'll have a complete list of Seattle Sounders Academy players who signed National Letters of Intent, but we can confirm at least three players who did, as well as one who has not yet signed. Defender DeAndre Yedlin has officially committed to the University of Akron; defender Nick Palodichuk has already enrolled at Duke University; and goalkeeper Ryan Herman has committed to Santa Clara University.

Letter of Intent Day for Soccer Too: Sounders Academy Product Stays Local

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Sure, Coach Sark and Coach Wulff will get most of the attention on "signing day" but let's give a little love to the Husky soccer team. The other football had two NLIs come in and one of the players you likely have seen play already, as he's on the Sounders U-18 team.

Drew White, usually at centerback, will be coached by Jamie Clark (no relation).

Early Returns Suggest Seattle Sounders Should Be Even Deeper This Year

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O'Brian White has been one of the players to impress Sounders coaches early in training camp. (Courtesy of Seattle Sounders FC)

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While it may not have seemed like it, the Seattle Sounders were actually impressively deep last year.

Who are Supporters Shield/MLS Cup Contenders?

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About a week ago I summed up the layered competitions in MLS on twitter this way

Deep teams win Open Cup | Top Heavy teams win Sup. Shield | Lucky Teams win MLS Cup | Great teams make CCL knockouts

Well, with the SBN Power Rankings making a return any day now (as in Monday) let's just look at the two MLS league based trophies.

Akron Soccer: Athletic Excellence, Academic Integrity

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Akron Soccer: Athletic Excellence, Academic Integrity

I spent about two weeks gathering information, doing interviews and putting this package together. This is the first of a three-story package, with Part 2 coming out on Thursday and the final part coming out on Feb. 8.

Sounders Fullbacks through Lens of Tools

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Seattle Sounders Fullbacks

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The discussion of tools and soccer continues as we shift to the outside on defense.

Trinidad And Tabago's Kerry Baptiste Joins Sounders In Arizona

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Kerry Baptiste has scored 69 goals in his past 92 matches with Joe Public. He's now training with the Seattle Sounders. (Photo courtesy of Seattle Sounders FC)

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One of the newest names to join the ranks of Seattle Sounders trialists is Trinidad and Tobago's Kerry Baptiste.

Cascadia Summit Ticketing: Blame The Two-Day Ticket Option

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As many of you know, today's Cascadia Summit ticketing did not go particularly smoothly. Like many of you, I tried to buy tickets through Ticketmaster at 10 a.m. and was greeted with a message telling me that the two-day passes had not been released. I spent about 15 minutes trying to get tickets that way (I was being stubborn, I admit).

Rob Neyer Joins SB Nation Family

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Rob Neyer Joins SB Nation Family

In case you haven't heard, Rob Neyer just left ESPN for SB Nation. He's one of my favorite baseball writers, and pretty sure he's based in Seattle. Maybe we can convince him attend a Sounders game with us.

Cascadia Summit Tickets Go On Sale Tuesday At 10 a.m.

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Cascadia Summit Tickets Go On Sale Tuesday At 10 a.m.

Just a reminder that tickets go on sale for the Cascadia Summit on Tuesday at 10 a.m. Clicking the link will take you to SoundersFC.com where the tickets will be sold. They are $10 for one day or $18 for a two-day pass that will get you into both games in which the Sounders are playing.