Merlin is back and better than ever! If I remember correctly, I had over a 70% win rate last season, and I hope to do better than that this time around. I’ve got my wizard’s hat on ready to predict the games starting on Friday.

FRIDAY 11/30:

ORLANDO over St. Louis – The SeaWolves start their season at home against an improved Ambush team. Look for Orlando to start the season 1-0 with a win over St. Louis, 6-4.

ONTARIO over Turlock – The Express gave thanks to their fans over the weekend by signing their entire roster, and getting a head coach. They don’t have a lot of time to prepare as they face newly acquired Chris Toth and the Fury. Ontario wins 9-3.

SATURDAY 12/1:

BALTIMORE over Mississauga – Baltimore will raise another banner at SECU Arena on Saturday. I wonder if they will have any room left over to actually play on the field against a MetroStars team ready to show the league what they have to offer. William Vanzela will show the MetroStars what he has to offer. Baltimore wins 7-1.

UTICA over Harrisburg – New Harrisburg head coach Pat Healey will have a headache coming out of the gates as he faces some familiar foes in Utica City. This will be a rebuilding year for the Heat, and the score will show it. Utica wins 8-4.

MILWAUKEE over Kansas City – Some of the best games I’ve ever watched have involved these two teams. This season Kansas City has brought back several players from their days as the Missouri Comets. Milwaukee has brought back everyone from last season’s Central Division title. The Wave start their 2018-2019 campaign with a 7-3 win.

FLORIDA over St. Louis – This game could go either way. St. Louis will be coming off of a loss to Orlando, while Florida will be playing its first game. Hugo Silva will be the key to a Tropics victory. Florida wins 5-4.

TACOMA over Turlock – After losing to Ontario, the Express head up north to face Danny Waltman and the Stars. Tacoma will come out with guns-a-blazing. Tacoma wins 8-2.

UTICA over Baltimore UPSET ALERT! – Are any of you shocked by this prediction? If so, you’ve been hiding under a rock for quite a while. The Adirondack Bank Center will be rocking on a Sunday afternoon as Baltimore will take the field against Utica. I see this being a highly contested match-up. The key will be possession. Whoever holds the ball the most will win. Give me Utica over Baltimore 6-4. Not to worry Blast fans, you’ll get your revenge next weekend on your home turf.

MONTERREY over El Paso – The Flash vs. the Coyotes without Christian Gutierrez. Franck Tayou vs. the Coyotes without Christian Gutierrez. Franck Tayou wins 4-2 over El Paso, and the Flash beat the Coyotes 10-2.

RIO GRANDE VALLEY over Dallas – The newly improved Barracudas host Dallas in the final game of the weekend. Two teams that will be battling for a playoff spot in the Southwest Division start off their season against each other on the Barracuda’s home turf. In tennis, it is important to hold your own serve. And in arena soccer, it’s important to win on your home field. Rio Grande Valley wins 8-5.

MASL Nation, I know you’re as excited as I am to start another season of arena soccer. For teams in Orlando (since 2008), Mississauga (since 2001), and Utica, this is your first taste of this wonderful game. For fans in Dallas, you were without it for a year, but now you’re back. Welcome back! Come back next week for more predictions!