The Thorns Prediction Game

Seems like forever since we’ve been here, eh?

The last time we saw the Thorns play for something other than pure entertainment…

And much as I think the “WICC” was a silly thing to plunk in the middle of the NWSL season at least the midweek matches had a sort of fun, goofy “WoSo After Dark” feel to them; nobody got seriously injured, so, entertaining? Sure!

The “final”? Ugh. Bad enough the plucky Monterristas got hammered, the hammering was delivered by Les Plutocrattes, which sets my teeth on edge.

(And no, just because it was Lindsey Horan who drove in two of the nails doesn’t make it better. She’s not a Thorn right now. If she comes back here? Yay, cheers, we love you! But right now she’s a potential opponent, and we don’t like them or cheer for them.)

So the Final…not so much.

…was back on the 10th, when they went to Washington, endured the inevitable “weather delay”, went behind on a bizarre Bella Bixby stumbles-into-her-own-goal Own Goal, and then gutted out a two-goal comeback win with a Sinc tap-in and a Weaver golazo that pretty much torpedoed Washington’s already-sad season.

Our punters, always ready to hope for the best, largely got the result correct, but only two – Roses and ABell4 – got the score. That got them top honors, while ABell’s good yellow card guess (tho, Brooksie? Girlfriend is a walking yellow card…) got her nose past the post and into first place.

Shockingly, nobody had “Bixby OG” on their bingo card, but everyone assumed Sophia Smith would bring the heat and so the scorer predictions were beaten up badly by the late scratch.

Daniel Stratton and Thrakkorzog both got “fun” points for their slightly cynical tales of (respectively) Hina-san explaining US government to her teammates, and the state of the league’s flirtation with pseudo…sorry, cryptocurrency.

(1-2 win, Bixby (OG), Sinclair (UA), Weaver (Sugita) – YC Brooks)

NameLast MatchSeason Total
Constant Weeder336
Daniel Stratton517

This week could be truly ugly; two games in three days. First it’s The Damned Courage away this Wednesday, then a top-two tussle with San Diego this weekend.

The Damned are showing signs of life, coming off a weekend 4-nil thrashing of Chicago, with the Thorns nemesis Diana Ordonez picking up another brace. This one could be a real slugfest…or a real yawner. We’ll have to wait and see.

(Last meeting, August 5, 2022 at Providence Park, 3-3 draw)

How this works:
Add a comment to this post. As your first line, put your predicted result, for example 3-1 Thorns.

In the body of your comment, start with the goals and assists, like so:
Smith (Klingenberg)
Salem (Free kick)
Moultrie (Unassisted)
Williams (PK)

Next, name the first yellow card recipient: Merritt Mathias
Then a red card. (NOTE: no points awarded for correctly calling a red-card-free match, so take a guess.) Madison Pogarch for mimicking mooning the referee after getting an undeserved yellow.

Make your fun prediction,and give a “thumbs up” to anybody else’s prediction that tickles your fancy: The two teams meet up in the parking lot before the game to burn an effigy of Paul Riley. Nadine Angerer produces not one but two lighters from her pockets.

· Correct score: 5 points
· Correct result (draw/win/loss): 3 points
· Each clean sheet: 2 points
· Each goal-scorer: 1 point
· Each FK/PK/assist/lack of assist: 1 point
· Goal/assist bonus: 1 point
· Player with the first yellow card of the match: 1 point
· A player with a red card: 1 point
· Most liked/most outrageously accurate prediction: 2 points

Some ground rules and explanations/clarifications (the fine print):
Comments must be posted before kickoff, but you can edit or amend an earlier prediction right up to the starting whistle.

Keep your scoreline predictions realistic. No crazy scores just to pad out your odds of getting goals and assists.

The goal/assist bonus is an additional point if you predict the correct scorer and assistant on the same goal, for example, you say Hubly scores from a Boureille assist and that is exactly what happens. P.S. if you say exactly that, and it happens, I will hunt you down and buy you a beer!

Be clear whether you think a goal will be unassisted, assisted, or from a PK/FK. Unassisted = no assist, run of play; Assisted = player who got the assist; PK/FK = not in run of play. For the purposes of this thread, Penalty Kick and Free Kick are the same thing. No entry means unassisted.

A question for the readership: The Oregonian newspaper’s recent dive into the Peregrine FO’s goings-on – specifically some pretty disturbing revelations about CFO Mike Golub’s acting like some sort of dickish-high-school-alpha-jock – was just another in the seemingly-endless stream of unpleasant news from inside the ownership group.

Is there any interest amongst our little group for an open thread about this? Asking because while I truly hate it, it’s hard to ignore this elephant in the room.

I just don’t know if there’s any virtue to be had in kicking it around. Thoughts?

John Lawes
Latest posts by John Lawes (see all)

13 thoughts on “The Thorns Prediction Game

  1. I think it deserves examination. There are so many layers. And if a guy tells you what a good guy he is, he just isn’t. Anyone who needs to say that is trouble.

    I’m also extra wtf that they turned that dusty electrical closet into Rhian’s office (or is it Karina’s? I can’t get into the Oregonian article because I hate giving them my money).

    1. The insanely long wait for Yates to sum things up doesn’t help.

      Linehan had a pretty important point at the podcast in the link; that Paulson and especially Golub have some pretty big footprints in the NWSL. So it is kind of an important question exactly what sort of people they are and what their priorities might be.

  2. 2-0 Thorns
    Sinc (Kling)
    Smith (Moultrie)

    YC O’Sullivan
    RC O’Sullivan

    Daniels doesn’t know how to play Portland without being booed anymore and repeatedly loses the ball to us because the quiet is so jarring to her. O’Sullivan repeatedly knocks Smith down, and the refs stay true to their course all season, pretending they haven’t seen anything, until she gets to feeling invincible and takes out Oregon/Pennsylvania’s sweetheart, Kling. That’s a step too far and she is called for it.

  3. It is your blog, happy to read more. If you want to do a piece on the Oregonian expose, happy to engage with it, not surprised by any inappropriate behavior by management at this point.

    As much fun as it is to think that 4-0 win was against the Spirit, it was actually against the Red Stars. The team that looks ready to crash out of the playoffs. 3 points, 1 win against Gotham, in their last 5 games, isn’t good. Short of Racing they don’t even have an easy draw, let alone a win on their schedule left.


    Smith (Moultrie)
    Coffey FC


    YC Kurtz
    RC Nahas

    In honor of 10 years without One Tree Hill. Nahas pulls a Dan Scott throwing all the objects he can find on his way down to the locker rooms as they are down 3. His behavior is seen by the refs but not the video cameras. He is not allowed back on to the field, 2nd half and no one has any idea why. This inspires his team to comeback in Hollywood fashion and including a last minute equalizer.

    1. Fixed the Washington-Chicago mixup. My bad.

      The other thing that got me thinking about the O piece was this massive protest at Old Trafford this past weekend ( Now, admittedly, a big part of what drove the fans into the street was the horrific start MUFC has had this season.

      But the misconduct of the Glazers in running the club into debt and years of futility as their formerly hapless City rivals win title after title…that’s built up a LOT of ill-will.

      But…how does that help, other than get the troublesome actors out? How does that get better owners IN? I can’t help but think of Newcastle, finally out from under the scumbag Ashley, only to be snapped up by Prince Bonesaw and the oil sheiks…

      So I don’t want to just bang on about what’s happening. If we do this I’d like it to be a way for us as fans to come up with some ideas on concrete actions we can take to make the club (or clubs, if we’re also Timbers fans…) better.

      So I’m still on the fence about using the break after this weekend to post something like that.

      1. Fair enough, there are no ethical hundreds of millions/billionaires. Likely the best you are going to get in the sports is someone like Allen or Ballmer who are adult children throwing money away to live childhood dreams vicariously through other people. Even then reports of sexism are going to likely be frighteningly commonplace, and hiring/backing friends in places of authority is going to be common as well. You can try to get around this with German collective ownership model, but Bayern has shown how easy that is to abuse. It is fair, there is no real answer to make sure a better ownership comes in.

      2. These quotes seem to validate sketchy behaviors in the past…
        1. “My entire career, it’s never been raised as an issue…That said, we’re in different times now. ”

        My interpretation: “I got away with being a slimeball for decades, but because victims are empowered to speak out now I can’t any longer.”

        2. “If how I conducted myself, with truly the best intentions, made anyone feel uncomfortable, I take that really seriously. ”

        My interpretation: “Damn it! I got caught…I better be more careful about whose shoulders I rub in the office and where. Speaking of which, my intentions in touching women who didn’t want to be touched were from the heart. I’m not sorry for offending anyone, but I do intend to find who complained and fire them – that’s how seriously I take this.”

        3. “I’m really good at what I do, and I’m a really good person, but I can be better.”

        The stupidity of this statement pretty much speaks for itself….

        1. The Golub thing really bugs me because of the nearly exact duplication of the sort of asshole behavior I remember from the alpha-jocks in high school…but this is a fifty-something dude who’s the CFO of one of the two big sports corporations in Portland. I mean…outside the asshole jocks everyone I know hated that shit IN HIGH SCHOOL, and for the senior staff and owner not to know that sort of asshole-ishness wasn’t okay for a workplace? Duh.

          And, yeah; if you have to tell people you’re a good person? You’re probably not a good person.

  4. 3-2 Thorns

    Smith (Kling)
    Sugita (Kuika)
    Kuika (UA) – she hits ~1 goalazo per 537 attempts, so its time for another….

    Ordonez (Daniels)
    Debina (O’Sullivan)

    YC: Rocky
    RC: O’Sullivan

    Inspired by recent pre-game parachute-related events, a masked Portland fan crashes the pre-game warmup…literally…missing the center circle by ~45 yards and tangling himself in the goal net. Security hurries over to extricate the man, only to find that it’s Diego Chara himself under the mask. By game start they have yet to untangle the poor guy, so the decision is made to leave him, where he proceeds to harass Casey Murphy relentlessly, earning his 10th yellow card of the MLS season…or his first of the NWSL season, as no-one is quite sure what the rules are in such cases.

  5. Thorns 2-2 NCC

    Coffey (unassisted on the score sheet, but really Bixby fed Coffey the ball)
    Smith (Rocky)
    Debinha (unassisted)
    Ordonez (O’Sullivan)

    YC – Kling
    RC – Provezano

    Sam Coffey’s dad and sister drive down from PA for the game, use their press credentials to crash the post-game interviews just to tell Sam how proud they are of her in front of everyone.

    Please post your thoughts, especially if they are geared towards meaningful action. Appreciate the work you put in on this site!

  6. Thorns 4-4 Courage

    Smith (Sugita)
    Smith (PK)
    Weaver (McGrady)
    Sinclair (unassisted)

    Kerolin (Debinha)
    Kerolin (C. Pickett)
    Ordonez (Pinto)
    Ratcliffe (Speck)

    YC: Daniels
    RC: Baucom

  7. Thorns 3-2 Courage

    Smith – Sugita
    Weaver – Rocky
    Sinc – Weaver

    YC – Kerolin

    Can’t come up with a fun prediction – but enjoyed all others. I just vote for all that come before mine – not sure if that’s the expected level pf discernment, but that’s how I roll :).

    I think the comment that hurt my heart was Paulson’s “defence” of Golub, saying “he’s a hugger”. The blindness of that statement, the lack of understanding…. Probably we should all share thoughts, but it’s hard not to feel frustrated and helpless. I understand people who want to stop going to games as a statement to the FO, but to stop supporting the Thorns players because they experience a hostile work environment isn’t the way I think I want to go. If Paulson makes no changes, what is there to do? Sigh.

  8. Wasn’t feeling too great about this game before the starting XI’s dropped, and now I’m really not feeling great after they have. I’m gonna go for a draw because I’m trying to be optimistic?

    3-3 Draw (again).

    YC: Kurtz
    RC: Kerolin

    Smith (UA)
    Smith (Moultrie)
    Sugita (Moultrie)

    Ordonez (Fuka)
    Ordonez (C. Pickett)
    Kerolin (UA)

    I don’t have any exciting storylines, but I voted for my favorite masked Chara tale.


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