This preseason has taken everything from me.
It took Sam Docherty before it had even begun. Then Zac Williams. Then, when Champion Data released positions, it took our forwards.
It got worse.
It took our ruck options. Then our rookies. Then, finally, it took Jock BLOODY Reynolds from our clutching hands.
It robbed me of my sleep, my health, my sanity.
Now it’s trying to take Pearce Hanley. It’s trying to take Kreuzer. It’s trying to take Patrick Dangerfield.
All the teams have become convergent and convergent as all our options are taken away from us. You have to do this, you have to do that. This year, more than any, we’re being shoved into a cookie cutter. And I hate it.
So I took some time away. I took a few days away from the internet, away from people tweeting teams at me in the thought-bubble that is Twitter, and seriously looked at my side. I completely restructured.
And I still hated it.
I’m done. You win, preseason. You win, you cold-hearted prick. ARE YOU HAPPY NOW? IS THIS WHAT MAKES YOU HAPPY?
There you go. Look at it. Just look at it dead in the eyes and just say it. I’m insane. And you know what? Being insane is liberating. It’s beautiful, in its own twisted and dark way. Just like this backline, which is beautiful in its own twisted and dark way. You see a line berefit of points, a dusty plain of tumbleweeds and misery.
I see a field of opportunity.
These blokes will make cash. All of them… with the possible exception of Lachie Keeffe, who may actually lose cash if he plays, but that’s not the point. Keeffe is part of Something Greater. Trust me, we’ll get to him. Laird doesn’t need to be justified. Riley Bonner, however, does, because I’ve spent all preseason saying I don’t rate him as a selection. After enough backflips to turn me into a pretzel, Riley Bonner is going to play, he is going to average 75 to 80, he will make cash and I can flick him just before his bye.
He will grow and bloom into a beautiful money flower, as will Naughton, Doodee, Murray, Finlayson and Coffield. They can take part in the old adage that premiums always haemorrhage cash from their starting price. People will ask ‘but who will you downgrade your defensive rookies to if none arrive?’ To them I say I will upgrade them, not downgrade. Hanley is first on my radar, followed by whoever else loses cash like a expansionist club in a state that hates then.
Anyway, although a thousand cash blossoms may bloom in the backline I’m not going to spend any more time on it because every three months a forward line permium option gets torn to pieces by a crocodile in North Queensland.
“Not bad for a team of demented monkeys, from the caves to the city to a permanent party” – Father John Misty, Total Entertainment Forever.
If my backline is a cave – the pits, rock bottom, a barren field, whatever you’re going to abuse it as down in the comments – my midfield will be a permanent party. Look at it, JUST LOOK AT IT! It makes my eyes moist just thinking about it. Patrick Dangerfield you beautiful human, you’ll be right for round one. And if you’re not, I’ll pick you anyway you beautiful bastard.
Dangerfield scored 239 points more than the second-best option in 2017. Two hundred and thirty-nine. That’s a lot. That’s a big number. An exceptionally large number considering Dustin Martin averaged 119, which according to the calculator means even with two less games than Dusty he still scores the same. And if he misses more than two? Then… I…. shut up, he’s not missing more than two.
Titch speaks for himself, Clayton Oliver is a bull and is switching with Merrett on a daily basis. Fyfe is Lyfe, my reasoning behind Macrae can be found here and Lachie Whitfield has shone this preseason and I have every reason to believe he will continue to shine during the season.
I do not have Cripps. Part gut, part POD, part Kev’s writeup of him which has me doubting he’s the essential pick everyone says he is – which even I – the human pretzel – have been saying he is. Sorry Corn Boy, Lek’s gonna have to do enough loving for the both of us. I need my PODS.
“If Kreuzer backs up the number one position in 2018 I’ll eat a shoe” – me to Lek before recording a podcast.
Anyone know any shoes that don’t taste like shoe? Or alternatively, anyone know any good ruckmen who don’t taste like they’re terrible or injured or both?
The less said about this prick of a line the better. Where do we start? How about the lack of rookies you sociopathic AFL coaches? Would it kill you to play a Jack Higgins or a Riley Bonar through the midfield and give us some options down there? Oh and Adam Simpson, thanks but no thanks. I’ll pass on Ryan and will follow the sage old advice of ‘Do Not Touch – Willie’ on your version of Cyril Rioli.
As for the “premiums” – McLean should be a lock in most sides alongside Devon Smith. Sicily is a flog of the likes we haven’t seen since Goddard in his pretzel-punching prime, which to be honest wasn’t a very long time ago now I think about it.
Cameron and Mundy are still changing hour by hour – I think they’re the combination I hate the least, but I’m constantly playing around to try and fit one of Heeney, Billings or Menegola in the side. Unfortunately that means the other one becomes Matt Taberner and I will not let this preseason drag me down to that level. For all the nightmares it has made me act out, that is one line I will not cross… until Thursday night.