The views of the author are not necessarily those of the 107IST or its Board of Directors. Since news of the Riley scandal, we have used our buying power to send a message to the FO that we expect more. But the further we run into the playoffs, the more money we give them. As a quick aside, I'm not saying not to go. Hell, I'll be there too. But with every win, I just picture Merritt rubbing a magic genie's lamp. Wishing for another game. He knows he's got us. He knows we're all going to be there for the boys. So he rubs that lamp, and he wishes for another home game so he can laugh about how he beat us and our boycott. Needless to say, I feel a crisis of conscience.
Tuesday night as I watched the match between the Revolution and NYCFC, it felt like I was the only Timbers fan pulling for the Revs. As a fan of the game, I felt like New England was the more deserving team. Just like all those redemption stories from your favorite sports movies. Underdog team is joke of the league, until legendary coach trying to recover from embarrassing failure comes along and turns it all around. Slow-mo cut to hoisting of the cup, slow fade to aerial shot of the stadium, chop the onions, cue "We Are The Champions", roll the credits.
But to be completely honest, I wanted the Revolution to host us in the final. I want to see us win a final in our stadium as much as anyone, but for weeks all I can think about is the timing. As each and every one of us clung to our lucky rabbits foot or scarf, I kept picturing Merritt rubbing that genie's lamp.
So what do we do? We can't boycott buying tickets for the final. He'll make money on those tickets one way or another. Throw in the fluctuating prices for conference final tickets we saw in the box office/Seatgeek, and not being able to secure your reserved seats for the final, it opens a door to price out some of our core supporters. And how deflating would that be to the players who fought like hell to get us that home final? They deserve us being there, loud as ever to create the most electric game they may ever play in. So what do we do?
And again my mind goes to Merritt rubbing his lamp, but this time I remember the history of the legend of genies in the first place. The Jinn, which is usually considered to be more sentient monkeys paw than the ever impressive, long contained, often imitated, but never duplicated Genie of the lamp we may be accustomed to. Granting wishes with an unexpected twist. Like Wishmaster. Or the D'Hoffryn in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Or the Star Wars prequels. Or that time you heard Ryan Reynolds was cast as Deadpool, but it was in X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Or the first MLS logo that my brain won't let me remember anymore (thanks little guy).
But we still have one more game to go before we get to that point, and Merritt still has one more wish. He wants a final in Portland. It has the makings to be one of the most watched MLS finals to date, and everyone wants us front and center. With a win on Saturday, the stage is set. We buy our tickets, Merritt gets his last wish, the crowds file in, the cameras roll, the mics go live, and the intro to "Friend Like Me" starts to play. What do we say?
-- Thomas Harrison, Timbers Army