DCU's SuperMagic Number: Sewing Up the Top Pick

If the MLS Draft is anything, it's Super. - Joe Robbins

The 2014 MLS SuperDraft will take place early next year, but the draft order will be determined over the next several weeks as the 2013 season draws to a completion. D.C. United is closing in on the top pick, but they haven't clinched it yet. Let's break down who's still in the running and how close the race is.

With the remaining weeks of D.C. United's 2013 season firmly focused on winning the US Open Cup and getting ready for the 2014 season, now's the time to start keeping an eye on the Black-and-Red's draft position for the 2014 MLS SuperDraft. While it's looking likely that the good guys will secure the top overall spot, it's not in the bag yet. So, when can we declare victory and start figuring out what we will do with the SuperTopPick, whether that is drafting the best young prospect or using it to trade for an established player (or allocation money)?

Here's the current Supporters' Shield table:

Team Total Points Games Played Wins Losses Draws Goals Potential Points
Seattle Sounders 49 27 15 8 4 37 70
Real Salt Lake 48 29 14 9 6 52 63
New York Red Bulls 48 29 14 9 6 46 63
Montreal Impact 45 27 13 8 6 46 66
Sporting Kansas City 45 28 13 9 6 41 63
Colorado Rapids 45 29 12 8 9 37 60
LA Galaxy 44 28 13 10 5 45 62
Portland Timbers 43 28 10 5 13 44 61
Houston Dynamo 40 28 11 10 7 32 58
FC Dallas 40 28 10 8 10 40 58
Chicago Fire 39 28 11 11 6 36 57
Philadelphia Union 39 29 10 10 9 37 54
Vancouver Whitecaps 38 28 10 10 8 39 56
San Jose Earthquakes 38 29 10 11 8 29 53
New England Revolution 37 28 10 11 7 39 55
Columbus Crew 35 29 10 14 5 33 50
Chivas USA 26 29 6 15 8 28 41
Toronto FC 23 29 4 14 11 24 38
D.C. United 15 28 3 19 6 18 33

D.C. United is currently sitting on 15 points. With six games to play remaining in the season, they can potentially get to 33 points if they win all their remaining league games. With every other team in the league except Chivas USA and Toronto FC already having surpassed 33 actual points, only the Goats and Reds can still beat out D.C. United for 2014's top overall draft position.

Chivas USA currently has 26 points. If they earn eight more points in their final five games (getting to 34 points overall), they will guarantee that they stay ahead of D.C. United in the league table. Said differently, any combination of Chivas earning points (from winning or drawing) and/or D.C. dropping points (from drawing or losing) that equals eight or more points through the end of the season means Chivas stays ahead of United in the table (and thus United gets a better draft choice than the Goats). Similarly, Toronto is currently on 23 points. So, any combination of Toronto earning points and/or D.C. United dropping points that equals eleven will ensure the Reds also stay ahead of D.C. United in the table.

So that's it. Two teams can still steal the top overall draft choice from us, but their opportunities are running out. We'll track D.C. United's progress in earning the top overall spot in the 2014 MLS SuperDraft over Chivas and Toronto via these "SuperMagic Numbers" (because everything to do with the MLS draft must be Super!).

And here are the SuperMagic Numbers after this weekend's action:

- SuperMagic Number vs. Chivas USA: 8

- SuperMagic Number vs. Toronto FC: 11

Did we get it right? Does the SuperMagic Number need a new name? When do you think D.C. United will be able to officially declare that they have the SuperTopPick of the 2014 MLS SuperDraft?

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