Then and nowBy pshea • Nov 14th, 2010 • Category: Features
The Mile High Stadium locker room in 1997 was a lot bigger than the changing room at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, so it accommodated many more people.
With friends, wives, reporters, and girlfriends joining the champagne showers at Mile High, team owner Philip Frederick Anschutz made an announcement. The room fell silent. He was buying airline tickets for all wives, girlfriends, and media.
Without skipping a beat following the gasps and the announcement, goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann asked, “Can you make sure my wife and my girlfriend don’t sit next to each other?”
Today’s team didn’t have as much space and champagne on Saturday, but the vibe was equally ecstatic. If anything, the 2010 team has a little higher voltage. The 1997 roster brimmed with confidence, but today’s version seems more capable, perhaps because they don’t have a Cinderella storyline.
Although they were seeded low this year, Colorado’s overall record showed success against every team in the league at some point during the season. Within the parity bounds of MLS, they seemed capable of becoming champions all year long, except for the palindrome-like turnabout in their 11th game: 6-3-1 to 1-3-6. Then, following a 3-1 loss to the Columbus Crew on August 21, the Rapids went on a 5-2-3 tear into the playoffs.
Enos Stanley “Stan” Kroenke had an international flight to catch on Sunday and did not attend the game on Saturday night.