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Dynamo 2, Sporting KC 0

Soccer's hot house: Dynamo fans laugh at the NFL "shadow" and a whiny, overheated KC coach

Photo by John Boni
Dynamo fans KC

They poured out of BBVA Compass Stadium and into the remains of a sun-kissed afternoon a happy, loud and largely orange bunch. Oh, there were a few J.J. Watt shirts in the stands for the Dynamo's first playoff game at BBVA, but this was a soccer crazed bunch.

Major League Soccer did the Dynamo absolutely no favors when it scheduled the team's playoff game the same afternoon as a Texans home game (even Bud Selig wouldn't let a playoff game directly conflict with an NFL game in the same city). But Dynamo fans didn't let it matter.

More than 20,000 still bought tickets and rocked the hot house — not to mention top-seeded Sporting KC.

"I'm happy the Texans won," Melissa Arnold told me. "But the Dynamo winning makes my week."

It also might make the series. By beating KC 2-0, Houston takes a huge advantage into the second leg of this Eastern Conference semifinal that will be determined by aggregate goals.

The Dynamo now have to lose by two or more goals in Kansas City Wednesday night to not advance to the conference finals.

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Dynamo goal celebration

It was possible to watch the entire Texans game at Reliant Stadium and get into BBVA before the second half started — not that I ran into anyone else who tried it. With a party this hot, why look elsewhere?

The gametime temperature for this November showdown registered at a Texas-hot 82 degrees. That's the same official temperature the Dynamo had for their new stadium opener back on May 12.

The league office apparently isn't listening to David Beckham's no afternoon games in Houston plea either.

Yes, it's November. It's also Houston.

Of course, Sporting KC really felt the heat when Adam Moffat sent a blistering shot into the net from nearly 30 yards out in the game's 18th minute. It was party  time in the East End. 

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Dynamo KC Brad Davis

Sporting KC had given up only 27 goals in 34 games this season. But for Brad Davis and the Dynamo, everything is different in the playoffs.

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Dynamo coach Dominic Kinnear

When Will Bruin added his third goal of the playoffs in the 75th minute, giving the Dynamo a stranglehold on the series, one thing became very clear: You don't want to play a Dominic Kinnear team in the postseason.

These Dynamo cannot just beat you with the coach's intricately drawn-up set pieces. They beat you whatever way they need to beat you.

One year after that surprise run to the MLS Cup Final, Kinnear has the Dynamo at it again, on the verge of being one step away.

 

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Dynamo Kansas City reach

Sporting KC finished 10 points ahead of the Dynamo in the regular season standings. But Houston knows how to challenge in the playoffs' harsh glare.

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Dynamo Sporting KC coach

How frustrating must it be to be a Kansas City sports fan? Your NFL team is beyond horrible. Your baseball team is always bad.

And the franchise that's supposed to be the shinning light of the city keeps getting knocked out of the playoffs by Houston.

No wonder why Sporting KC coach Peter Vermes complained that the Dynamo kept fouling his players without getting carded by the officials.

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Dynamo fan crazy glasses

It's better to see the playoffs through Dynamo-colored glasses.

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Dynamo KC goal action

It's no great reach to declare the Dynamo the most clutch team in Houston. Those Clutch City Rockets of Hakeem Olajuwon and Sam Cassell would get a kick out of this group.

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Dynamo KC header

Calen Carr didn't just win the fight for this header. His pass set up Bruin's all-important second goal.

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Dynamo KC goalie directing

The Dynamo are the ones in command now, no matter what the barking's about. Bruin's franchise-record 15th goal of the season means even more because of the position it puts his team in.

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Dynamo pregame circle

The Dynamo are not a team of superstars by any means — though Moffat's gift for high-degree-difficulty goals and Bruin's gift for goals period might make it time to reconsider that status — but it's a team that comes together.

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Dynamo KC high kick

The weather will be much cooler in Kansas City Wednesday. But this home-and-away doesn't figure to become any less chippy.

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Dynamo KC header battle

Sporting KC didn't get much of an attack going in the Texas heat.

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Dynamo coach Dominic Kinnear fist

Dominic Kinnear celebrated with a little fist pump, knowing his work isn't done. It's the playoffs, the time the Dynamo really get going.

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Dynamo cheerleader

Of course, she's happy. She doesn't live in Kansas City.