March 15 Los AngelesMarch 19 at New YorkMarch 26 HoustonApril 2 at San JoseApril 9 ChicagoApril 16 at PhiladelphiaApril 22 at ColoradoApril 20 TorontoMay 4 at DCMay 7 at ColumbusMay 14 PortlandMay 21 Kansas CityMay 25 DallasMay 28 at Real Salt LakeJune 4 at ChicagoJune 11 VancouverJune 18 at TorontoJune 23 New YorkJune 26 New EnglandJuly 4 at Los AngelesJune 10 at PortlandJune 16 ColoradoJune 23 PhiladelphiaJune 30 at HoustonAug. 6 at Kansas CityAug. 13 Chivas USAAug. 20 at DallasAug. 27 ColumbusSept. 10 Salt LakeSept. 17 DCSept. 24 at VancouverOct. 1 at New EnglandOct. 15 San JoseOct. 22 at Chivas USA
Quick impressions: *Portland comes to Qwest Field at 8 p.m. May 14; and Vancouver visits at 7 p.m. June 11. The Sounders go to Portland at 2 p.m. July 10 and to Vancouver at 4:30 p.m. Sept. 24.
*That last date is heartbreaking, because it comes one week before the renovated retractable-roof BC Place stadium opens in Vancouver. That means the Sounders will play in the Whitecaps' temporary makeshift stadium.
* All Sounders games once again will be televised on KING, KONG or as part of the league's national broadcast packages.
* Speaking of those broadcast packages, no announcement from the league yet regarding continuing with the Fox Soccer Channel deal or moving elsewhere.
* The league also still hasn't announced its playoff format, although coach Sigi Schmid doesn't seem concerned about that yet. That doesn't really affect anything in terms of what we're doing right now," he said yesterday. "That becomes more of a factor obviously as we get into the season and we start playing games."
*The league shook up the order from the Sounders first two seasons, at least in that Seattle has generally taken its Toronto trip very early in the season and its Columbus and San Jose trips late.
*The team has six two-game road trips, but nothing longer. There is one three-game homestand.
* However, MLS still doesn't seem interested in the concept of clustering road trips. The Sounders will play at LA on July 4 and at Chivas Oct. 22, for example; and at Houston on July 30 and at Dallas on Aug. 20.
* As in the past, the TNT is going to ask for your help in selecting at least one of the road trips that we will take this season. Don't worry about Portland or Vancouver ... we'll be there. But once we get our other travel plans down, you're input will be sought in a separate blog post.
*Here's the release from the Sounders.