Playoff Scenarios: Sporting KC can clinch East with win or draw on Wednesday
Sporting Kansas City can clinch the Eastern Conference regular season title with a draw or win against the Philadelphia Union on Wednesday night.
The draw on Saturday night at New York means Sporting will finish no worse than second in the East and third overall. Besides getting a draw or better on Wednesday night, Sporting could also clinch the East if D.C. United draws or loses against Chicago.
The scenarios for who Sporting would play in the Conference Semifinals is a bit more complicated. Sporting could end up playing any of the other four playoff teams from the East depending on results from the final week of regular season matches.
Below are all the scenarios for clinching the East along with possible playoff matchups.
Eastern Conference Regular Season Title
Sporting KC will clinch the Eastern Conference regular season title if
- They win v PHI
- They draw v PHI
- They lose v PHI and D.C. draws at CHI
- They lose v PHI and D.C. loses at CHI
Sporting KC are already in the Conference Semifinal round and will either play the winner of the knockout round (4th v 5th) if they finish first in the Eastern Conference or the third placed team if they finish second in the Eastern Conference. The Conference Semifinal round will be a set of two matches with the winner advancing based on the aggregate score. Sporting KC will have home field advantage (second match at home) in this round and in the Conference Finals if they face a lower seed.
Possible Scenarios for final Eastern Conference regular season standings
The table below shows each team and the positions they can finish if either a win, loss, or draw in the final regular season match.
|Sporting KC||1st||1st or 2nd||1st|
|D.C. United||1st or 2nd||3rd or 4th||2nd|
|Chicago Fire||2nd||3rd, 4th, or 5th||3rd or 4th|
|NY Red Bulls||2nd, 3rd, or 4th||4th or 5th||4th or 5th|
|Houston Dynamo||3rd, 4th, 5th||5th||4th or 5th|
The standings (with one match remaining for both sides) are below with highest possible points and goals scored (first tiebreaker).
|Teams||Points||Highest Possible Points||Goals Scored|
|NY Red Bulls||54||57||54|