The Recent Results: HOU had a great 2008 only to be upended in the Western Conference playoffs by NYRB, a team from the East. Don’t get me started again on the wacky MLS playoff format. They still won the West and finished third in goals and first in goals against, so they didn’t have a bad year, though they did finally fail to hoist the Cup.
The Man in Charge: Dominic Kinnear is one of the best coaches in the league and undoubtedly the most successful manager in recent history. He continues to get the most out of his team day in and day out despite losing key players every season. This year he will have to get it done without Dwayne de Rosario, and I bet he will.
On the Offensive: The loss of their be-dreaded Canuck field general will be hard to cope with, but the Dynamo still have some pretty sharp tools on the offensive side of the ball. Brian Ching is probably one of the most underrated players in league history and Stuart Holden could become this season’s breakout star player in the midfield.
For the Defense: Houston has consistently been the best defensive team in the league and I see no reason why this year will be any different. It starts back at the net where Pat Onstad continues to be one of the most reliable keepers around. With Robinson, Barrett, Boswell and Waibel all returning too, I think HOU has to be the best in the West.
Movie They Resemble: I am going to go with Apollo 13 here. Now, I am not selecting this film simply to make a joke where I say “Houston, we have a problem”, because I don’t think the Dynamo have any problems (except possibly depth) and I believe they are poised to be dominant in 2009 once again. Rather, I have selected that film because it had a great cast of actors, but none of them were really the star. They all played off of one another perfectly though, and the end result was an award-winning film. I am betting HOU wins a few award this year too.