Zorko the Magnificent, will his magic hold up?
Community, for those of you who have read all of my articles it would have become painfully obvious that my favourite part of the season to analyze is the second half of the year.
Well today that is where we begin.
It’s round 11 2014, Brisbane have just had their bye round and Zorko is coming off a pitiful score of 12 in his round 9 clash against North Melbourne. This is to be his first 100+ score of the seven he will produce in the remainder of the season. Zorko put on a clinic, scoring 131 Supercoach points and amassing 23 disposals, 2 goals and 7 tackles in a win over my disappointing Blues.
I was depressed I’ll admit but through my sorrow I saw a light and that light was Zorko the Magnificent.
|Games last season:||21|
|Average last season:||98.95|
|100+ Games last season:||10 (including seven 120+ games)|
|Sub 80 games last season:||7|
|Price range last season:||$403K-$548K|
|Missed games last season:||One in round 23 (the round from hell)|
|Significant history:||4 Best and Fairest awards in QAFLCaptained Queensland U21 sidePicked by GCS with a priority pickFive 150+ scores since debut|
Zorko was not without fault last year as he had five sub-80 scores for the season including his score of 12 in round 9. But his upside was so tantalizing that I have found a way to forgive him for the stress he put me through in 2014. After scoring 121 in round 1 and 161 in round 2, Zorko looked set to have an amazing year. This thought however was crushed as Zorko managed to only score in the triple figures once in the next seven games before the bye. I know that I was not alone in thinking I had made a massive mistake but I had a feeling in my gut that he could turn it around and boy oh boy did he do that.
From the bye onwards Zorko averaged 107.7 for the rest of the season, far better than his average of 86.1 from round 1-9. While 107.7 isn’t massive by any stretch of the imagination, both you and I dear reader know that I’ll be delving a little deeper into Zorko’s output than that. In his final 8 games in 2014 Zorko averaged 115.3, now this is an average I can get excited about. He cracked 100 Supercoach points in 5 of his final 8 games including a 159 and a 162 (his second 160+ in 2014)! Even more remarkably if we remove his poor performance of 56 against Melbourne in round 19 Zorko’s average hurtles its way to 123.9.
Another statistic that excites me is the fact that in 2014 Zorko averaged 122.7 in games where Brisbane won. As someone who thinks that Brisbane will win more games in 2015 than they did in 2014 Zorko looks very appealing. The downside however is that in losses Zorko doesn’t do too well, averaging just 87 Supercoach points.
Now I know that I can’t just remove poor scores and accurately assess a player, however in this instance I think it’s almost viable. The Brisbane Lions coaching staff have said in several articles in the off-season that Zorko is likely to remain in the midfield. To me this means that with the quality of Beams being thrown into the guts, the Lions midfielders will see a higher quality of ball and a higher quantity of potential Supercoach points. Now it’s obvious that Beams and Christensen will steal some points from the rest of the team but I also think this will be balanced out by more Supercoach points being awarded to the Lions in general.
As for Dayne Zorko I believe that with all of the talent being injected into the Lions this off-season his Supercoach average will increase from 98.95 to at least 105 if not pushing for 110. However I think his ceiling of 160 will greatly decrease. I’m not expecting Zorko to get any 150+ scores next year (5 in the last 3 seasons), in fact I don’t think he’ll break the 130+ barrier very much either. I believe that his average increase will stem from him raising his low scores. I don’t think that in a midfield with Beams, Redden, Rockliff and Martin/Leuenberger that Zorko will be getting the low scores he is prone to getting (scores of 46, 59, 12, 47 and 56 in 2014). I expect him to lift his floor (opposite of ceiling) from the low 50’s to the mid 70’s at worst. If he lifts his basement but he is incapable of scoring 150+ then we should still see his Supercoach average increase to over 105 for 2015. In the best case scenario Zorko maintains his high ceiling but also raises his floor, this is an outcome that would excite me.
Now community I am merely analyzing and hypothesizing over what may happen in the 2015 season. If my predictions come to pass we must then ask ourselves “is it worth selecting Zorko in 2015?”
If you were to select Dayne Zorko in your starting squad it would clearly be as a premium keeper in the forward line however with other FWD/MID’s such as Swan, Deledio and Goddard it’s going to be bloody hard to fit him in. The only way I see him fitting into a starting lineup is if you don’t want to risk a position on Swan (ageing, poor year in 2014 etc.) or Goddard (ageing, plays for Essendon etc.).
It’s far more likely that I will look to pick up Zorko at a later date just as I did last year. His price will inevitably drop in the early part of the season and he may be available as an upgrade or to replace an underperforming player.
Though I’ve read that he’ll be in the midfield because Christensen and Robinson will be in the forward line, I am still worried that he’ll spend more time up forward than I would like him too.
There is also a chance that only half of my predictions will come true and he will suffer from Beams and Rockliff stealing all of his points.
- Has a massive ceiling, cracked 160+ twice in 2014.
- Brisbane Lions will likely score more Supercoach points than last year meaning that Zorko could snaffle them up.
- Entering his 4th season and naturally will be fitter and smarter on the field.
- MID/FWD eligible provides flexibility and can prevent unnecessary trades.
- Averaged 115.3 over his last 8 games of 2014
- Can be a Supercoach match winner
- I have used him as captain before #YOLO
- Averaged 100 in 2012 (16 games), 82.91 in 2013 (22 games) and 98.95 in 2014 (21 games)
- Averaged 122.7 in wins
- Susceptible to very low scores
- Safer options for MID/FWD available
- Better midfielders around him could negatively affect his scores
- A little too pricey at $530K
- Sub-90 average in losses
Zorko could be a league winner, he could propel your team up the ranks, and he could even win the bloody Brownlow! However he could also be the worst forward line selection of the year. With players such as Goddard, Deledio, Gray and Swan available in our forward lines it’s pretty hard to justify picking Zorko at his risky starting price.
The flipside of that is that over his last 8 games in 2014 Zorko averaged a massive 115.3 whereas: Swan averaged 75.6, and Goddard 93.5. Zorko is clearly the choice based on those stats however there is still inherent risk in picking him.
My personal opinion is to pick him up later community…
it might be a genius move picking him early but to play on the sensible side and avoid disaster we should probably avoid selecting him in our starting lineups. The upside that Zorko could provide our teams is mostly reliant on Brisbane performing, and with games against Collingwood, North Melbourne, Richmond and West Coast to start the season, Brisbane will likely struggle early resulting in lower scores for Zorko.
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