Top 10 Most Exciting MLS Matches of 2015


1. July 12th: New York City FC 4 vs. Toronto FC 4 (100/100)

This stands alone as the only MLS match of the season to earn a 100/100 excitement rating. Which is especially impressive seeing as Toronto FC was missing US national team stars Michael Bradley and Jozy Altidore, who were both playing with the USMNT at the Gold Cup. There was however plenty of star power on the field between NYCFC’s David Villa and Toronto FC’s Sebastian Giovinco. Villa scored two goals, while Giovinco scored a hat trick in the first 9 minutes of the match. This was the third fastest hat-trick in MLS history. Also adding to the excitement was the fact that referee Ted Unkel issued an MLS-record 4 penalties in the box, 2 of which were converted.

2. April 25th: Houston Dynamo 4 vs. Sporting Kansas City 4 (99/100)

8 goals will make any match exciting, but it was the back-and-forth nature of this thriller that makes it the 2nd most exciting match of the MLS season thus far. Sporting KC netted the 1st goal within the 1st 2 minutes of play, but Houston responded just 9 minutes later with a goal in the 11th minute. The Dynamo then added 2 more goals from distance to make the score 3-1 heading into halftime. A pivotal moment came in the 77th minute when Dynamo D Jermaine Taylor received a red card and SKC converted on the ensuing penalty kick goal. This tied the match at 3-3, but the Dynamo were able to score playing a man down just minutes later. Finally Benny Feilhaber ended the madness with a goal in extra time, giving SKC a result (4-4).


3. April 11th: D.C. United 2 vs. New York Red Bulls 2 (99/100)

Not only is this a fierce rivalry, but both of these sides are amongst the MLS elite. Which meant there was a lot riding on this match despite its early season status. The Red Bulls took down D.C. United in late March, but neither side was able to separate itself by the end of the showdown. D.C. United took a 2-0 lead thanks to goals in the 26th and 66th minute by Perry Kitchen, but the Red Bulls didn’t crumble after falling behind. But less than a minute after Kitchen’s 2nd goal, the Red Bulls cut the lead in half with a header goal from Damien Perrinelle. It wasn’t until the 90th minute that Lloyd Sam delivered the equalizer for NY to end things in a 2-2 draw.


4. July 26th: D.C. United 3 vs. Philadelphia Union 2 (99/100)

This match received as high of a rating as it did because of the near upset pulled off by Philadelphia, and the comeback that D.C. United completed to avoid this huge upset. D.C. United is the top team in the Eastern Conference, and the Union have the 2nd worst record in the MLS. Philadelphia took a 2-0 lead within the first 4 minutes thanks to goals from C.J. Sapong and Sebastien Le Toux. Newly acquired Forward Alvaro Saborio would get D.C. United on the board in the 37th minute, but the Union took a 2-1 lead into halftime. United would complete the comeback with a 66th minute goal from Nick DeLeon, and win the match on a 79th minute goal by Fabian Espindola.


5. July 25th: Columbus Crew 3 vs. Toronto FC 3 (98/100)

Toronto FC pulled off one of the most impressive comebacks of the MLS season in this match. Columbus jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the 1st half thanks to goals by Kei Kamara and Tony Tchani, and then added to their lead in the 47th minute on a goal by Ethan Finlay. This would send most teams into a downward spiral, but Toronto FC played great from that moment forward. Three minutes later Giovinco got Toronto FC on the board, and just 5 minutes after that Collen Warner scored to narrow the score to 3-2. For the next 34 minutes neither side was able to convert any of their chances, which set up a thrilling final stretch. Jozy Altidore was fouled in the penalty box in the 89th minute, and drilled home a goal to end the match in a 3-3 draw.


6. July 19th: FC Dallas 2 vs. D.C. United 1 (95/100)

This match earned the rating it did because of how late in the match the winning goal was scored. Also, D.C. United were leading the league at the time, which made this an especially impressive result. No goals were scored in the first 73 minutes of the match, until Kellyn Acosta connected for FC Dallas. But D.C. United tied things up just 4 minutes later thanks to an own goal by Matt Hedges. The match then stayed tied 1-1 until stoppage time, where Fabian Castillo became the hero. Castillo scored a rebound goal in the 91st minute that sealed the deal for FC Dallas.


7. May 30th: Orlando City SC 2 vs. Columbus Crew 2 (94/100)

Orlando City SC turned this match into one of the best of the season thanks to some brilliance in the final minutes. Columbus has played well in the air this season, and scored 2 header goals in this match. The Crew got off to an early 1-0 lead thanks a header from Tony Tchani in the 6th minute. About 10 mins later, Parkhurst (CLB) was sent off for a handling Kaka’s (ORL) shot on net off of a corner kick. Kaka (ORL) drilled the penalty kick and tied the game at 1-1. Shockingly, Kamara scored again for the Crew, putting them up 2-1 despite being a man down. But Ribero evened the match for City with a thunderous strike from outside the box in the 89th minute.


8. March 14th: San Jose Earthquakes 3 vs. Seattle Sounders 2 (93/100)

Not only was this a significant upset, but the Earthquakes managed to pull the result off while playing a man down. Things started with a bang when Clint Dempsey scored the Sounders 1st goal in first 30 seconds. But Earthquakes captain Chris Wondolowski tied the game at 1-1 with a great shot off of a cross. Wondolowski then gave the Earthquakes a 2-1 lead thanks to a mistake by the Sounders defense. The Earthquakes went a man down in the 2nd half, only to score again on a great move and strike from Innocent Emeghara in the 70th minute. This was enough to secure the victory despite some close calls down the stretch.


9. April 4th: Chicago Fire 3 vs. Toronto FC 2 (92/100)

This match was rated as highly as it was largely because this was a huge upset. The Chicago Fire currently have the worst record in the MLS, and Toronto FC is one of the top sides in the Eastern Conference. Joevin Jones started the game off with his 1st MLS goal in the 14th minute for the Fire. Giovinco responded quickly for Toronto, capping a 17-pass sequence with his 1st MLS goal since coming over from Juventus in January. Giovino set up another goal for TFC in the 54th minute, giving them a 2-1 lead. But Fire Midfielder Shaun Maloney scored his 1st MLS goal shortly after to tie the match again at 2-2. Creavalle (TFC) was sent off in the 67th, allowing the Fire to eventually close it out with a goal from Larentowicz in the 68th.


10. July 17th: Los Angeles Galaxy 5 vs. San Jose Earthquakes 2 (91/100)

This is one of the best rivalries in the MLS, and this installment of the California Classic didn’t disappoint. Not only was this the debut of one of the highest profile players to ever suit up for an MLS side, but another MLS star had a hat trick. The only thing keeping this match from being ranked higher on this list is that most of the excitement came from the LA Galaxy. Steven Gerrard enjoyed a win in his Galaxy debut as he assisted Robbie Keane for 2 of his goals, and scored a goal of his own. The Earthquakes jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first half, but the Galaxy completely dominated the match the rest of the way.


13 Theories to Make Sports More Thrilling: NBA Summer League

Summer isn’t always the most thrilling time in the world of sports. The NFL is out of season, and the NBA Finals end in the middle of June. While the MLB is in full swing, it is the 3rd most popular sport in America by a decisive margin. On years that don’t feature a major international soccer tournament, things can get REALLY slow in the world of sports. While the NFL has training camps and practices going on throughout the Summer, the league doesn’t offer any games of interest for fans to watch. However, the NBA starts back up rather quickly on a smaller scale with the NBA Summer League. The problem is that many casual sports fans have no idea that Summer League is even taking place every year. In this piece THUUZ examines how to make more fans aware of Summer League’s happenings, and how to make play and the event(s) more exciting.


First, one must answer why we should bother trying to make NBA Summer League more exciting, and there are a few reasons. As mentioned, there is a lull in sports excitement across the board typically around this time of year. Which means there are sports fans of all types desperate for action that isn’t skeet-shooting or fishing. Another reason is that the NBA Playoffs and NBA Draft are still very fresh on people’s minds come July. For the 29 teams that didn’t win it all, and even the team that did, the NBA Draft is a moment of hope and promise that maybe wasn’t experienced much during the previous season. And once the NBA Draft is over, the ridiculous predictions and expectations begin. Summer League is a perfect opportunity for fans to either grab onto these expectations for dear life, or release them with a “here we go again” type of sigh.imgres-2

Next, we must identify what aspects of the current Summer League format hold it back from being as exciting as it could be. One of the main issues with creating and maintaining buzz around the Summer League is that it doesn’t receive the coverage that other events and seasons do. While some games are shown on NBA TV and every game can be watched via a special NBA package (Summer League Live), the limited and exclusive nature of Summer League coverage holds it back from being a premier event. Also, adding to the difficulty of covering and publicizing the Summer League is the fact that there are 3 different leagues in 3 different locations. In 2015, the 1st Summer League was in Orlando from July 4th-10th, the 2nd in Utah from July 6th-9th, and the 3rd in Las Vegas from July 10th-20th. These leagues vary in terms of quality of facilities, locations, weather, and time. Another aspect of Summer League that can be frustrating for fans is that they only get to watch young players and players trying to crack the NBA. The NBA’s elite are typically at home during the month of July, and can often be found court side snapping pictures with each other.


Finally, the key to curing Summer League of these boring aspects is to find workable solutions that can be implemented without the NBA having to move mountains. In terms of TV coverage, it would behoove the NBA to use its relationship with ESPN to mainstream Summer League action. While it is understandable what the league is trying to do by having exclusive coverage rights, the world of NBA fans would greatly benefit from being able to watch the league’s best young talent on a basic cable network. The NBA will also have to come up with a way to unify the three current forms of the league if it wants to have the best chance of turning Summer League into a national hoops fixture. While the ideas behind the Orlando and Utah Summer Leagues are good ones, the Las Vegas Summer League is the only form of the event with the potential to generate the type of buzz the NBA would be looking for. NBA players and celebrities have been known to hang out in Vegas in the offseason as well, which wouldn’t hurt the potential for press opportunities around the event. Finally, instead of watching LeBron and Kevin Durant make shots at halftime of Summer League games, they should get involved in the games themselves. As much as the 2011 NBA Lockout disappointed fans, there was a certain romance found in watching NBA stars display their skills in small and intimate gyms.


NBA Summer League seems like the type of event that would greatly benefit from more exposure and publicity. As discussed, basketball fans are typically thirsty for action come Summer time, and there aren’t many legitimate outlets for them to get their fix. With the lull that occurs during the Summer in the sports world it would be smart of the NBA to do their best to consolidate the event(s), and turn it into a staple of the sports calendar. Once this is the case, the NBA might even see some other, more unexpected benefits. For instance, the NBA D-League would probably receive a boost in fans, especially early in the season, because folks would want to follow some of the players they enjoyed watching in Summer League. And seeing as the majority of players in NBA Summer League don’t end up in the NBA, bringing more attention to all of these athletes can only grow the brand of the sport worldwide. Hopefully the NBA adopts some of these ideas in the near future, and Summer League can grow into to the potential it has.

2015 Thuuzpys Awards

With the ESPY’s airing tonight at 7:00 PM ET on ESPN, we’ve decided to acknowledge some of the most exciting games of the year with our own set of categories and awards. We present to you… The Thuuzpys!

1. Most Exciting NBA Game – Game 3 NBA Finals June 9, 2015 (Cavs 106 GSW 111 F/OT)


2. Most Exciting MLB Game – Game 7 World Series October 29, 2015 (Giants 3 Royals 2)


3. Most Exciting NHL Game – Game 3 Stanley Cup June 8, 2015 (Lightning 3 Blackhawks 2)


4. Most Exciting NFL Game – Super Bowl February 1, 2015 (Patriots 28 Seahawks 24)


5. Most Exciting PGA Tournament – PGA Championship August 10, 2014 (McIlroy wins)


6. Most Exciting ATP Match – Wimbledon Q/F July 8 (Gasquet in 5 sets over Wawrinka)


7. Most Exciting WTA Match – BNP Finals S/F October 25, 2014 (Williams in 5 sets over Wozniacki)


8. Most Exciting NCAAF Game – Sugar Bowl January 1, 2015 (Ohio State 42 Alabama 35)


9. Most Exciting NCAAB Game – NCAA Tournament 2nd Round March 19, 2015 (UAB 60 ISU 59)


10. Most Exciting MLS Game – September 12, 2014 (Sounders 3 Real Salt Lake 2)


11. Most Exciting Ligue 1 Match – March 15, 2015 (Bordeaux beats PSG 3-2)


12. Most Exciting Eredivisie Match – Eredivisie S/F 2nd Leg May 24 (Heerenveen 2 Feyenord 2)


13. Most Exciting La Liga Match – May 9, 2015 (Valencia 2 Real Madrid 2)


14. Most Exciting Serie A Match – October 5, 2014 (Juventus 3 AS Roma 2)


15. Most Exciting EPL Match – October 19, 2014 (Liverpool 3 Queens Park Rangers 2)


16. Most Exciting Bundesliga Match – February 14, 2015 (Wolfsburg 5 Bayer Leverkusen 4)


17. Most Exciting UEFA Champions League Match – March 11, 2015 (PSG 2 Chelsea 2)


18. Most Exciting Women’s World Cup Match – Q/F June 26, 2015 (France 1 Germany 1 (5-4))


19. Most Exciting ERCC Match – ERCC S/F April 19, 2015 (Leinster 20 Toulon 25)


20. Most Exciting IPL Match – May 15, 2015 (Royal Challengers 83/4 Sunrisers 135/3)


13 Theories to Make Sports More Thrilling: MLB All-Star Game

The 2015 MLB All-Star Game is tonight (July 14th), and there is undoubtedly controversy regarding the current voting system. A couple years ago, the MLB switched from the beloved paper ballot voting system to a new, completely digital one. Fans can vote up to 35 times, and in doing so, spam the vote and decrease the legitimacy of an influential game that determines home field advantage for the World Series. In addition to the game not being legitimate, it has been boring sometimes in the past. There are a lot of random substitutions, and a general lack of enthusiasm from from both players and fans. The fourth installment of Thuuz’s 13 Theories to Make Sports More Thrilling tries to solve the problem of the perennially “meh” MLB All-Star Game.








With only two weeks left in voting, the Royals had players leading seven of the nine AL positions. It would be boring for most to watch the NL All-Stars play the Royals. And even though there ended up being only 3 Royals starters, recent attendance of ASG’s cannot be ignored. In 2000, the attendance at the All-Star Game was 51,323. In 2014, the attendance was 41,048. In addition to the lack of fans at the game, there has been a drastic decrease in the viewers of the All-Star Game. In 2009, 14,610,000 watched the All-Star Game on TV. In 2013, only 11,000,000 watched the game. The fact of the matter is that people don’t care a ton about the All-Star Game, so here are four solutions to make it more exciting.

First, the game could not be divided based off of the leagues. This would make the game more fun, as the home field advantage for the World Series could just be determined by which team had a better regular season record. As Dave Cameron of pointed out, the teams could be decided based off of age. Fans could still vote, but the teams would be the Young Guns, who are star players from ages 19-27, and the Wily Veterans, who are aged 28 and up. While many think that the game is dominated by the likes of Mike Trout and Giancarlo Stanton, players like Miguel Cabrera and Max Scherzer still reign supreme and have an expansive knowledge of the league. It would surely captivate any audience’s attention to see these two mindsets and styles of play face off in what would surely mean a lot to all players involved due to bragging rights.


The second solution takes the idea of the World Baseball Classic, and puts it on a bigger stage. In this scenario, the game would not decide World Series home field advantage, instead the regular season records of the teams would. Here, eligible players could be voted for by fans to join the team based on their country of origin, and there would be four teams — North America, South America, Central America and Rest of World. While the World Baseball Classic divides based off of country and many teams are woefully outmatched, each of these four regional teams could field a star studded-squad. First, North America would face off against South America and Central America would play the Rest of World. The winners of these games would face off in a championship in the international spotlight. This would accomplish several things for the MLB — there would be a greater international audience, more players could play longer and play would extend over multiple days, which would fit perfectly with the MLB’s current strategy of spreading the All-Star Week over several days.

If the MLB wanted to keep the All-Star Game as the deciding factor for World Series home field advantage, this next system could be implemented. Since the current online voting system has been abused, the managers (whose teams won the pennant the previous year) would just choose the best players in their league and field a squad of actual All-Stars and not just fan favorites. These players would play nearly the entire game, instead of just a few innings. The game would be intense and hard-fought, almost like a playoff game. With a game of this nature, fans would be sure to tune in, instead of just ignoring it doing to its lack of influence or meaning, like the NFL Pro Bowl.


Finally comes an idea that has been used in the NHL to great success. Again, the outcome of this game would not determine World Series home field advantage. The managers would get a first pick and choose a team captain from either league. Then the two captains would draft players from either league and build a team to their own liking. Many players have friends on other teams, or admire certain future hall-of-famers, so these teams would have an element of chemistry. The Draft itself could be a spectacle that takes place during the All-Star Week, and could be televised, which the MLB would love. In this scenario, all of the players would have a great time, and the fans would have fun watching their favorite players relax and be themselves.

In conclusion, there are plenty of options for what the MLB All-Star Game could be. But the point remains that something should be done to change the current system. The game holds meaning, but overzealous fans find loopholes in the system and get their team to dominate the vote, and nobody wants to see that. Any of the aforementioned solutions could do great things to attendance and viewership and could revitalize a seemingly flailing event.


Top 10 Most Exciting MLB Games Before The All-Star Break

10) April 25, 2015: Red Sox 4 @ Orioles 5 (F/10)

The Orioles started out on top with a two-run first inning, thanks to a Jimmy Paredes double and a Chris Davis sacrifice fly. However, the Red Sox came right back in the top of the second inning, with a two-run blast from Mike Napoli. It wasn’t until the fifth inning that Paredes came up clutch again with a solo homer. The Sox were able to tie it in the bottom of the ninth inning, when Pablo Sandoval hit a bouncer down the third baseline and Manny Machado stepped on third, but overthrew first base and Dustin Pedroia scored. Then the Red Sox were able to take the 4-3 lead in the top of the tenth inning, with a solo home run from Xander Bogaerts. But the O’s were able to win this one in a crazy fashion, with a Davis sac fly scoring the tying run, followed by a David Lough walk-off homer.


9) July 8, 2015: Cardinals 6 @ Cubs 5

This rivalry is especially exciting this season because both teams are in contention. While they have already played each other 13 times, this was definitely the most exciting of the bunch. The Cardinals took a 2-0 lead in the 2nd inning thanks to consecutive RBI singles by Dan Johnson and Michael Wacha, and added two more runs in the top of the 4th to make it 4-0. The Cubs then scored two runs in the bottom of the 4th to cut the lead to 4-2, and added 3 runs in the 6th to take a 5-4 lead. This score held into the 9th inning, until Jhonny Peralta hit a 2-out, 2-run homer to give the Cardinals a 6-5 lead. Trevor Rosenthal shut the door on the Cubs in the bottom of the 9th to seal the win for St. Louis.


8) April 18, 2015: Braves 5 @ Blue Jays 6 (F/10)

The Braves came right out of the gate firing, with a first inning run, followed by a few more to make it 4-0 by the seventh inning stretch. But Toronto rallied, starting with a Russell Martin RBI single followed by a triple from Steve Tolleson and single from Dalton Pompey, cutting the Blue Jays’ deficit to one. In the bottom of the eighth, Jose Bautista launched a two-run home run, giving the Jays the 5-4 lead. But a Kelly Johnson solo homer in the top of the ninth sent the game to extra innings, where Josh Donaldson crushed a walk-off home run to seal this comeback affair in the favor of Toronto.


7) June 7, 2015: Astros 6 @ Blue Jays 7

Jose Bautista got the Blue Jays off to a good start with a mammoth solo blast in the bottom of the first. However, the Astros tied it back up in the second off of an R.A. Dickey wild pitch. In the third, the struggles continued for Dickey when Jake Marisnick hit a solo home run to give Houston the 2-1 lead. But Russell Martin smashed a two-run bomb in the fourth to give the advantage back to Toronto, 3-2. A crazy seventh inning full of errors by the Blue Jays and key plays by Evan Gattis and Chris Carter resulted in a 6-3 lead for Houston. But the game was not over, and Bautista added his second homer in the seventh. Jose Reyes’ RBI single set the table for Chris Colabello to single and drive in two runs in the ninth to give the Blue Jays this walk-off victory.


6) May 12, 2015: Royals 7 @ Rangers 6 (F/10)

Both teams came out to play early, as the Rangers scored in the first courtesy of a blast from Shin-Soo Choo and the Royals scored in the second off of an Eric Hosmer monster home run. Prince Fielder got RBIs for the Rangers in the third and fifth innings, respectively, giving the Rangers a 3-1 lead. In the sixth, hits by Lorenzo Cain, Eric Hosmer and Kendrys Morales along with a sac fly and an error resulted in a 4-3 lead for Kansas City. A Robinson Chirinos sacrifice fly tied it back up, and then a Mike Moustakas seventh inning bomb gave the lead right back to the Royals, 5-4. Kansas City couldn’t hold the lead for long as a Kyle Blanks single tied it right back up at five. Then in the ninth, a Lorenzo Cain ground ball seemingly gave Kansas City the victory at 6-5, but in the bottom of the inning, Adrian Beltre singled to send it to extras at 6-6. Finally, the Royals put the game away with a monster tenth inning-homer from Alex Gordon.


5) June 9, 2015: Giants 5 @ Mets 0

The Giants generated good offense for the entire game, with home runs from Matt Duffy and Joe Panik. But the real story of the game was Chris Heston, the relatively unknown Giants rookie pitcher who got the first no-hitter of the 2015 season. Heston was masterful against the Mets, with only three batters reaching base, who were all hit by pitches. But Heston’s 11 strikeouts dominated New York, and the Mets couldn’t respond. While this game wasn’t an offensive extravaganza, everyone loves watching a pitcher get a no-hitter.


4) May 11, 2015: Marlins 3 @ Dodgers 5

This game got off to a slow offensive start, but finally the Dodgers got on the board in the fourth inning off of a Justin Turner fielder’s choice. The game remained 1-0 until the top of the seventh, when Marcell Ozuna destroyed a home run to tie it up. However, the Dodgers came right back in the bottom of the inning, with a Joc Pederson RBI single. The Marlins then came up clutch with their backs against the wall in the top of the ninth, and scored two off of a Christian Yelich home run, to make it 3-2 Marlins. In the bottom of the ninth, Scott Van Slyke stepped up to the plate and ended this great contest with a three-run walk-off homer off of struggling close Steve Cishek.


3) April 12, 2015: Mariners 8 @ Athletics 7 (F/10)

This game was quiet until the fourth inning, when RBI hits from Ike Davis, Stephen Vogt, and Josh Reddick resulted in a 3-0 lead for the A’s. The Mariners came back in the sixth with a sac fly from Brad Miller, an error by Reddick that scored two baserunners, and a Kyle Seager single, giving the 4-3 lead to the M’s. Next inning, Rickie Weeks blasted a homer to score three runs and put the Mariners in a good position to win at 7-3. But Oakland did the impossible in the bottom of the ninth, and thanks to run-scoring hits from Sam Fuld and Eric Sogard, tied the game at 7-7, sending it to extra innings. But Nelson Cruz came back in the tenth for Seattle, and launched a solo home run to win this exciting game.


2) April 10, 2015: Red Sox 6 @ Yankees 5 (F/19)

Run-scoring singles by Pablo Sandoval and Daniel Nava in the first and sixth innings, respectively, gave the Sox a 3-0 lead. But an Alex Rodriguez single and a Brian McCann sacrifice fly got the Yankees within one run. Chase Headley then homered in the bottom of the ninth for the Yankees to send the game to extras. David Ortiz hit a solo homer in the 16th to give the Red Sox the 4-3 lead, but the Yankees tied it off of a Mark Texeira home run in the bottom half of the inning. Sandoval hit an RBI single in the 18th, but Carlos Beltran matched it with an RBI double. Finally in the 19th inning, Mookie Betts hit a sac fly to give the Red Sox the lead and the eventual win in this potential game of the year.


1) June 20, 2015: Pirates 0 @ Nationals 6
This game was the single best pitching performance of the first half of the MLB season. While Washington’s bats came alive and scored six runs, thanks to Bryce Harper, Anthony Rendon and Tyler Moore, Max Scherzer was the story June 20, as he completely dominated the Pirates. Scherzer had 10 strikeouts in his no-hitter, which many watched and thought was going to be a perfect game. With two outs in the bottom of the ninth, Scherzer hit Jose Tabata with a two-strike slider, who appeared to be leaning into the ball. Scherzer retired the next batter to get the no-hitter, but many believed that he deserved the perfect game. This was easily the most exciting game of the season so far, as every baseball fan was watching in the end with eager anticipation, and then with total shock.