Saturday, August 18, 2007

MLS Record Scoreless Streak - Not This Crap Again

After today's game, Toronto FC has gone 552 minutes without scoring a goal. MLS would have you believe that they're 5 minutes away from the record. Only one problem - that's factually incorrect.

I can't believe I have to keep explaining this year after year, but it keeps coming up. In 2005, MLS made a big deal out of Real Salt Lake's scoreless streak, which ended at 552 minutes. They called that the league record, which was then published in the Salt Lake media among other places. The problem is that RSL's streak was only the third longest of all time. There actually were two longer streaks.

The two longer streaks are Kansas City at 637 minutes (1998-1999) and Colorado at 562 minutes (1999-2000).

So why the confusion? The problem stems from the fact that MLS apparently only counts streaks over the course of a single season, and both of those were over two seasons. In fact, if you look at the MLS Facts & Records book (I have the 2006 edition), it lists the Rapids streak at 499 minutes, from 9/18/1999 to "end of season." However, on the very same page are unbeaten and winless streaks, many of which span multiple seasons. Why does MLS count multiple seasons there but not in this category?

Unfortunately, this happened last year during LA's futile period. MLS needs to recognize KC's scoreless streak as the record, or at the very least start referring to RSL's streak as the single season record only. It's especially frustrating because MLS should know better, as they had previously recognized the KC streak.

In fact, when KC's streak ended in 1999 it was called the MLS record on MLSnet:

"Kansas City (0-4) ended its MLS-record scoring drought with rookie Chris Brown's goal in the 87th minute, snapping a string of 637 consecutive scoreless minutes dating back to Sept. 5, 1998."

Maybe in compiling the records, somehow it got forgotten. Hopefully it's not an official policy. But one thing is sure, the language needs to change.

Comments on "MLS Record Scoreless Streak - Not This Crap Again"


Blogger Mark P said ... (12:35 PM, August 19, 2007) : 

MLS technically counts the scoreless streak only as a single-season record. Most sports do the same thing with their records, which is why Tiger Woods didn't technically win a grand slam when he won all four majors in a row between 2000 and 2001...he won a 'Tiger Slam.' Also, when Jimmy Rollins ended the baseball season with a 30+ game hitting streak a couple of years ago, if he had kept it going into the next April, he wouldn't have been officially credited with breaking Joe DiMaggio's streak even if he had passed 56 games.

I guess if Toronto FC gets shut out against United next weekend, it'll be a moot point anyway. ;)


Blogger scaryice said ... (3:25 PM, August 20, 2007) : 

You said:

"MLS technically counts the scoreless streak only as a single-season record."

Why then, did they count the KC 1998-9 streak as the record back then, on MLSnet? Why did that change?

Why then, do they count unbeaten and winless streaks that span multiple seasons? What's so special about the scoreless streak record that it is treated differently?

MLS is wrong about this, and you should stand up and tell them that they're wrong. Can you at least call this record the "longest single season scoreless streak," which is a far more accurate description?


Blogger Allen said ... (5:27 PM, August 20, 2007) : 

Any word on the MLS fixing this?


Blogger henryo said ... (5:39 AM, August 26, 2007) : 

MLS seemed to have recognized this:


Blogger scaryice said ... (10:12 PM, August 26, 2007) : 

Thanks for the link Henry. "Mark P" in these comments in the guy who wrote the article, so I guess bugging him about it paid off. :P


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