2. MLS PLAYOFFS: Who's got the edge?

The MLS playoffs kick off this weekend with quarterfinal, first-leg matches. In this round, teams play two games, to be decided by total goals, with the higher-seeded team playing the first game on the road. Away goals carry no extra weight and there is no overtime. Penalty kicks will decide aggregate ties.
Find out how Senior Editor Ridge Mahoney made his playoff predictions by clicking here.

WESTERN CONFERENCE
No. 4 Colorado vs. No. 1 Dallas (Saturday, 9 pm ET, Fox Soccer Channel)
Mahoney pick: Elevation and snow may favor the Rapids in the first leg, but the pick, without great conviction, is Dallas.

No. 2 Houston vs. No. 3 Chivas USA (Sunday, 4 pm ET, ESPN2)
Mahoney pick: A Chivas USA triumph wouldn't be a major upset, but over two games, Houston should prevail.

EASTERN CONFERENCE
No. 1 D.C. United vs. No. 4 New York Red Bulls (Saturday, 2 pm ET, Direct Kick, HDNet, CSN-DC, FSN-NY)
Mahoney pick: D.C. United finished the regular season 16 points ahead of New York and unless United has just nothing left, it wins.

No. 2 New England vs. No. 3 Chicago (Sunday, 1 pm ET ABC)
Mahoney pick: These teams are surging into the playoffs on good runs. New England is 6-2-2 since the All-Star break, Chicago is 8-4-1, but New England has the edge.
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