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MLS takes in the big picture

Updated: July 24, 2012, 7:21 PM ET
By Roger Bennett | ESPN

This is not your older brother's MLS. As the buzz descends on Wednesday's All-Star Game against Chelsea, America's oft-maligned domestic soccer league has gamely garnered an average attendance of 18,732, witnessed the construction of 14 purpose-built stadia nationwide and become a fixture (albeit an erratic one) across multiple broadcast networks.

Despite this steady growth, the MLS' 17th season has been one of quiet though dramatic behind-the-scenes transformation. The ...

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