Round 16 AFL Previews
By Roy Horgan
IT’S A NUMBERS GAME!
0 – The number of games Port Adelaide have won against top 8 sides this year. Pretenders!
2 – The number of disposals Sandilands had before his hammy went twang.
2.85 – The odds on sportsbet for Dusty to win the Brownlow.
5 – The number of minutes Jonathon Patton was stuck on the interchange bench in the last 8 minutes of GWS’ draw with the Cats.
4 – Four losses out the their last 8 games for the Crows. Poo!
6 – The number of weeks Jack Viney will be out after having surgery on his shoulder.
6 – The number of weeks Tom Bugg is suspended for after his piss weak coward punch on Mills. Enjoy your holiday ya hero!
11 – The Tigers have the 11th best attack in the game. Good thing for them that their defense is rock solid.
11 – Eleven out of twelve losses for the Saints in games played outside of Victoria before last weekends win against Freo.
17 – The number of points I predict the Vietnam Swans will win by against the Malaysian Warriors this Saturday at RMIT.
27 – How many points the Brissy Lions were behind the Dons in the last quarter before storming home to take the win.
29 – The number of first round draft pick players on the GWS list.
32 – The average amount of beers consumed each session at Vinyl Bar happy hour by Vietnam Swans veterans Andy G and Billy Crang.
33 – Just 33% of the Bulldogs scores are coming from clearances this year, as opposed to 41% in 2016.
46 – The draft pick Carlton gave up to get Liam Jones from the Dogs who then used it to pick Caleb Daniel. Early days yet but the way Jones is playing down back Carlton could actually break even in this deal.
72 – The number of votes given by the coaches to Dangerfield so far this year. 1 behind Dusty but 15 ahead of third placed Yeo for the coaches player of the year award.
119 – The number of champion data points averaged per game by Sam Docherty, second only to Dangerfield.
172 – The number of Super Coach points scored by Michael Walters in his stunning 6 goal game last weekend.
300 – Gazza Ablett hit the magic 300 games mark last weekend… What a legend!
2015 – Before last weekend, Round 21, 2015 was the last time a game was drawn when the Saints tied with the Cats.
21,934,674 – The approximate number of people laughing at the fact that Collingwood won’t make the finals and that Buckley, by his own admission won’t be coaching next year if they don’t. See ya Bucks!
Previews – Round 16
Adelaide v Western Bulldogs
This should be a ripper Friday night game of footy with both teams struggling for form but capable of playing some amazing footy when they’re on. If the Dogs lose this one then there’s a very good chance of them not making the top 8 and missing finals which would be an abomination after winning the flag last year. The Crows looked unbeatable early in the season but their last couple of months have been very average. They must win this one at home or risk missing out on a top 4 spot. I keep waiting for the Dogs to click in to gear and start playing like they did last year but I’m starting to think that ain’t gonna happen. Adelaide at home will be too strong for the Dogs and I’m tipping them to get up by about 3 goals.
Hawthorn v Greater Western Sydney
Hawthorn have looked good on occasions but inconsistent form has plagued them so far this season whereas GWS have looked amazing most of the time but have also had some inconsistency issues to drop games they shouldn’t have. The Hawks midfield are average at best and after last weeks draw I expect the GWS midfield machine to come out breathing fire and smash them on the inside and blitz them on the outside. The Hawks may put up a fight for a half or even three quarters but GWS should romp this one in by the end. GWS to win by 40+
Collingwood v Essendon
I love seeing the entitled powerhouse VIC clubs floundering and being irrelevant and this shapes to be a so-so game of footy even if a large crowd at the game suggests otherwise. The Scum can only afford to drop one more game in the next 2 months or they’re out of finals contention for good and FIGJAM’s (Fuck I’m good just ask me) coaching career is down the toilet where it belongs. The Dons have looked really good at times but their severe lack of back bone the last 2 weeks have them sitting pretty to miss the 8. Both teams suck but the druggies seem slightly less suckier and should get up over the Scum by about 21 points.
Sydney v Gold Coast
Beware the sleeping giant! Sydney still have one of the best lists in the game, solid across every line and with plenty of match winners it’s no wonder that they’re storming up the ladder. The Swans would have to be the team that every other team don’t want to play right now and even after a good win last week I can’t see the Gack Coast being competitive in this one. Luke Parker is back in All Australian form and Isaak Heeney has taken his game up to an elite level and the Swans midfield should bully the Suns into submission and get plenty of ball up to Franklin to really hurt them. Sydney to win by 65 points!
Brisbane v Geelong
Geelong showed a hell of a lot of fight to get a draw last weekend against GWS without skipper Selwood in the side and should be very confident coming up against cellar dwellers the Lions. The Lions have shown a bit lately though and playing on their home turf at the Gabba they’d have to think they’re a sneaky chance of causing an upset here. The theme for the lions of the last few years though is to have a good win and then get absolutely pantsed the following week. Selwood and Dangerfield should really do a number on the lions midfield who are missing captain Beams and carrying an injured Rockliff and should get up by 30+ points at least
St Kilda v Richmond
I’m tipping this to be a cracking game with the Saints fighting for a top 8 spot and Richmond starting to look like a top 4 candidate. Both teams will see this as a winnable game and teams are pretty evenly matched across all lines. Richmonds defense is absolutely stellar, lead by Alex Rance the Tigers look to be mounting a genuine crack at a flag on the back of a rock solid back line. With match winners Cotchin, Martin and Riewoldt in form the Tigers are looking the goods but the Saints on their day play a high intensity style of game putting tonnes of pressure on their opposition and at their best are definitely good enough to knock off the Tigers. This could go either way but i’m betting on the Tigers to get up in a close one by 13 points
North Melbourne v Fremantle
Wow, talk about a game that no one gives a shit about! Without a doubt the two most boring teams in the comp going at it doesn’t get me excited. Lets hope that if you do get stuck watching this one that you’re at one of Saigon’s awesome sports bars and can focus on sinking beers and getting shit faced rather than paying attention to this tripe. About the only way to make this game interesting is to splash a bit of coin on the result but personally I wouldn’t want to bet on either of these teams. If you absolutely must though, I’d tip North to win by 17.
Carlton v Melbourne
Interesting game this one with Melbourne not being as good as we may have thought and Carlton actually looking better than expected and definitely heading in the right direction. The Dees being without both of their co-captains is a huge loss and Dom Tyson also a chance of missing further depletes their midfield. A lot will be asked of Oliver and Petracca. On the flip side Carltank’s mids are really clicking with Kreuzer, Gibbs and Murphy looking the goods, Docherty in all Australian contention down back and Liam Jones being a revelation since being moved to the back line. I’m tipping an upset here with the Blues to get up by 25 points
West Coast v Port Adelaide
Port so far this season have been incapable of beating any teams in the top 8 and I can’t see that changing this weekend. What they have been able to do is smash the bottom teams and get close to the top teams to give themselves a good percentage and with an easy draw should definitely make the 8. The Eagles are a touch behind Port on the ladder and after a good win in Melbourne will be very confident of knocking off their fellow flat-track bullies at home. If this game were being played in Adelaide i’d give the Power the nod but with it being played in Perth and the Eagles actually showing some grit last weekend I think they’ll prevail in a tight contest. Eagles by 7 points.