Gday community, Patch here. We’ve had a few issues this week around recording, so a podcast will be coming out tomorrow. In the meantime, it’s time to dish out some praise and a few bakes of some blokes who may have won us or cost us finals in this tense part of the year.
We’re at the business end now, and blokes in the habit of burning us – I’m looking at you, Shaun Higgins – have come back to bit with a vengeance.
We’ll start with the positives, the blokes we’re cheering on to do well and bring us home. And we’ll start at the top – Patrick Dangerfield. After years of me being on his back about not pumping out 140+ scores consistently: he’s back, baby. Most would argue he never left but his 160 on the weekend was a mammoth display, which anyone who VC’d him will be leaping at. His mate, the Little Master Gary Ablett, also had 158.
Jack Macrae celebrated his return to plenty of teams with a 153, while Lachie Neale (134) and The Bont (134) were both excellent PODs for those who had them. Meanwhile, Brodie Grundy, Zach Merrett and Clayton Oliver all scored 121, which is an exceedingly excellent score. Isaac Heeney also celebrated a return to form in Sydney’s win over the Dees.
Bloody Dustin Martin. If you’d told us one player was due to score 200 points against the Suns (which we’ll get to in a minute), most people would have picked Dusty as the man to do it. Instead, he returned a paltry – by his standards – 91 against the fledgling Gold Coast. Dayne Zorko had a rubbish 66 after I talked him up as a captaincy option, which is 100 less than I was expecting from him.
And then there were the burn-men. While Michael Walters hasn’t burnt many in seasons past, he’s gone on many ‘never-again’ lists after an inconsistent year riddled with injury. While he scored an admirable 96 before doing his hamstring, the injury is the final straw for Walters.
And then we’ve got Shannon Hurn and Shaun Higgins. Both of these gentlemen are well-known burn-men. We know their history. We know their past. And they’d been playing really well this season. Really, genuinely well. But it was a con. IT WAS A GODDAM CON. They were playing the long game, waiting for when we were at our most vulnerable, waiting to kick us in the teeth. And they have.
There were a bunch of really disappointing scores from some players, which weren’t in and of themselves villain-making scores, but Rory Laird (84), Josh Kelly (injury-affected 82), Stephen Coniglio (82), Mitch Duncan (78) and Max Gawn (84) were all deflating to our side’s scores.
Jumping Jack Riewoldt can have my children after pulling out a 219 on the weekend. I didn’t know he had the double ton in him. I just didn’t pick it. A mammoth 10 goals and a lot of … well, everything… gave him a metric ton of points.
Josh P Kennedy pulled out a 107 after a few disappointing weeks, Alex Witherden racked up a 110 and Jack Billings still managed to score 107 despite the Saints being pummelled. He’s back in that high half-foward/wing role and I’m heavily considering a discounted Billings for 2019. Maybe.
After copping a heavy tag, old mate Tom Mitchell could only manage
Josh Dunkely. Can someone from the Dogs tell me if he’s someone we need to watch in 2019? Is he the Next Big Thing from the Doggies? Will he be a Thing? Aliir Aliir looks really good at footy, and I’m fascintated to see if he can turn that into 2019 Supercoach relevance. I’d suspect not, but maybe. One to watch.
Adelaide defender and burn-man Brodie Smith made his return to the Crows’ outfit this weekend, and tonned up. Price dependant, we may all be starting him in defence next season, assuming we don’t get rogered by the price calculation.
Also – Brayden Sier. I get annoyed at seeing all these rookies making their debuts late in the season, and Sier is a perfect example of why. A Wines-like machine whon cranked out 119 on the weekend – he’ll be 300k next year. No rookie prices for us, and we lose him as a starting option. Gosh hecking darn it.
RIGHTEO, that’s it for me, community – who stood out to you this weekend? How are you travelling in finals?
Remember as well, Damo is looking to source his final cheat-sheet of the season from YOU, the community – who were your best (and worst) starting picks for season 2018?