Why they’ll win: Can we write “It’s the Sounders” and call it a day? To expand: Seattle has the MLS-best defense (32 goals against), and Brian Schmetzer’s team is growing in confidence, going 4W-0L-5D to reach the playoffs. Cristian Roldan, their glue, is also back healthy and lifting those around him.
Why they don’t: It’s not always clear where the goals are coming from. DP striker Raúl Ruidíaz, due to form and injury, has only scored one goal since mid-June. Jordan Morris, their top scorer with 11 goals, has scored twice in league play since late May. Héber, acquired in an off-season trade (ostensibly as a replacement for Ruidíaz), has only two goals this season.