FIRST ROUND (June 4-8): Two PDL or USASA teams will get a first-round byes, and the eight other teams from the PDL and USASA will be regionally paired.
SECOND ROUND (June 25-26): The four-first-round winners and the two USASA or PDL teams with byes meet the six PSL teams.
THIRD ROUND (July 16): The six second-round winners will join the eight A-League teams and MLS's D.C. United and the MetroStars (as the last-place finishers in the MLS 2002 regular season).
ROUND OF 16 (Aug. 6): The remaining eight MLS teams will meet the third-round survivors. Brackets will be drawn based on geographic considerations.
QUARTERFINALS (Aug. 27): The eight winners in the round of 16 meet.
SEMIFINALS (Sept. 23-24): The four quarterfinal winners meet.
FINAL (Oct. 15 or 22): The two semifinal winners meet.