Apr 30, 2021
A highly unhelpful guide to Round Seven
The only guide to the round that admits it’s completely unhelpful. What it lacks in insight, it makes up for with wild theories and detours onto unrelated topics.
It’s your unhelpful guide to Round Seven.
Richmond vs Western Bulldogs (MCG) 7:50pm Seven/Fox
The Tigers last week proved Melbourne’s credentials, now this week they get to do the same for the undefeated Bulldogs.
That’s the problem with being the premiers, everyone wants to take you down. It’s another reason to never succeed, no one bothers you then.
Adding to the Tigers woes is the absence of Dust Martin, who is in New Zealand while he recovers from concussion.
Martin decided to take the risk of being stuck in the Land of the Long White Cloud if there’s a Covid outbreak.
Personally, being stuck in New Zealand sounds like a nice option if last week’s performance is any indication of Richmond’s form for the rest of the season.
Not that I think that’s likely. The Tigers might be a dip below their best but writing them off seems foolish at this point.
I’m sure the Bulldogs are not thinking any such thing.
After all, last year the Tigers used a 41-point smashing of the Bulldogs to get their season going.
This year though, things look a little different. The Bulldogs haven’t lost a game all year, which suggests to me that they may be a very good team.
There is a very strong correlation between winning and being a good team. It’s almost like winning is the main aim of football, something that often gets lost in the media analysis of statistics, trades and drafting.
I would even go as far to say that wins may be the most important stat in footy, after meters games and kicks while thinking about why The Matrix trilogy went downhill so quickly.
Bulldogs to win.
Collingwood vs Gold Coast (MCG) 1:45pm Fox
The footy world’s collective sadness over the struggles at Collingwood just shows how supportive footy fans are of each other.
With the club sitting in 17th position, the week was dominated of course by whether Port Adelaide could wear their ‘prison bar jumper’.
I would hazard to guess that’s not the most important issue for Pies supporters at the moment, who would prefer to hear more about what the club is doing to stop them sucking harder than one of those whiz-bang vacuums that cost more than a car.
A game against the Suns would seem like a chance to get a much-needed win, but the Gold Coast beat the Swans last week with a high-intensity pressure that must have Pies fans concerned.
I’ve actually been surprised how restrained Pies fans have been so far about their teams plunge into awfulness.
A loss here and things might get ‘hectic’ as the kids say. At least I think that’s what the kids say. I can’t really keep up anymore. Kids could say anything is a new saying and I’d believe them.
This is partly getting old, but it’s mainly due to not really caring about other people, regardless of their age.
Pies to win.
Adelaide vs Greater Western Sydney (AO) 2:10pm Fox
I’m still not sure why the Crows decided to let Hawthorn win last week. Perhaps they just didn’t feel like winning. All of us have some level of self-sabotaging behaviour built into us, mainly as a defence mechanism against getting hurt.
At least that’s what the guy the court made me talk to told me.
Sometimes it’s realising that you deserve to win.
Not the Crows though, they only deserve to win on occasion.
That goes for the Giants too. They only deserve to win sometimes.
Jesse Hogan will make his debut for the Giants, and it will be interesting to see if the third time is the charm for him.
Hogan has said he struggled with the intense focus in Melbourne and Perth on AFL players, so being in Western Sydney should really sort that all out, given the majority of people there are unaware there is even an AFL team there.
I think the Crows will win this, but I’ll be nervous if they’re 32 points up in the third quarter.
St Kilda vs Hawthorn (MS) 4:35pm Fox
The Saints have quietly gone about building one of the most awful seasons in recent memory.
A truly awful season needs to start with the belief that things should go well that year, only then to plunge the depths of the ladder.
Watching your team miss easy handballs and turnover the footy so regularly it seems like they think it’s the aim of the game is one of the most painful experiences in life.
It’s right up there with puberty and watching Kane Cornes and Eddie McGuire ‘debate’ each other.
For Hawthorn, this is a chance of a consecutive win. This was once something not considered exciting at the Hawks. They used to only get excited about consecutive premierships.
It just goes to show you how tough life is.
Hawks to win.
Sydney vs Geelong (SCG) 7:25pm Seven/Fox
I’m still a bit perplexed with Geelong’s rather brutal destruction of West Coast last week.
It really came out of nowhere. Like listening to Channel Seven’s footy commentary and thinking ‘that was actually an insightful comment.’
The big question is, how much of that was Geelong and how much of it was the Eagles playing like a group of the most uncoordinated people in the world had all been press-ganged into playing footy?
It’s probably in the middle somewhere.
The Swans have shown they can play great football but losing the expansion double against the Giants and the Suns has taken the gloss off the season a bit.
That’s the problem when you have a team full of young people, they can be erratic.
Unlike old people, who are never erratic, just look at the Federal Parliament backbench for example.
I’m tipping the Swans.
Brisbane vs Port Adelaide (G) 7:25pm Fox
Brisbane have not had a lot of luck in 2021, and this week was no different, with Lachie Neale having surgery on his ankle, meaning he’ll miss eight weeks.
Dayne Zorko said in response, "We're not really a Lachie Neale midfield-based team.”
But they are a bit. I’ve always thought that having better players is preferable to having not as good players.
This ‘next player up’ talk is all well and good, but it really does rely on the next person up not being a huge liability.
I mean, if a pilot passes out mid flight, ‘next person up’ doesn’t really work if no one onboard has flown a plane before.
Port have a few injuries but none of them are Brownlow medallists. That’s the problem with having Brownlow medallists, they can get injured.
It’s sometimes better not to have them.
The Power spent the week being told what they can’t wear, which is something I didn’t know you were allowed to do anymore in 2021.
The jumper debate has gone on so long it would be exhausting if I cared about it in any way.
There was even talk of it going to court, which seems something a court really should be spending its time on.
My big take out of the debate this week is that Eddie McGuire has forgotten he’s no longer Collingwood President.
Port to win.
North Melbourne vs Melbourne (BA) 1:10pm Fox
Say what you like about Melbourne’s strong start to the season, the fact remains they are still winless in Tasmania this season.
That’s the true measure of a team.
The Dees proved themselves last week, but the problem in the AFL is you have to keep proving yourself.
Not this week of course, this is against North who are not chasing a premiership but a solitary win.
Adding to North’s woes, they’ve just flown back from hotspot Perth, and have had to quarantine for a lot of this week.
Ben Brown will also debut for Melbourne against his old side who didn’t want him, apparently because his ability to play football isn’t part of their strategy.
Brown has been playing in the VFL, so while this is a step down for him, I expect him to be thrilled to finally get in the senior side.
Melbourne to win.
Essendon vs Carlton (MCG) 3:20pm Seven/Fox
People have been talking excitedly about Essendon’s rebuild, which I don’t understand.
They are 2-4, the same as Carlton, and while they’ve had some moments, I’d hardly say they’ve given us reasons to trust them that this time is different.
Carlton’s main news is their President Mark LoGiudice stepped down this week, which shocked some people, which was strange given he was about to reach his 12-year-term limit for a board member.
There’s probably no less surprising stepping down in the history of Carlton.
New President Luke Sayers now has the small task of turning around twenty plus years of on-field ineptitude. No pressure.
The thing about tipping this game is both sides have shown an almost supernatural ability to let their fans down.
As Gorilla Monsoon used to say, ‘it’s the meeting of the irresistible force and the immovable object.’
I’m tipping the Bombers.
West Coast vs Fremantle (OS) 4:40pm Fox
The Western Derby is always a fun game, and it’s a chance for the Eagles to bounce back from embarrassing themselves last week against Geelong.
If they needed any further motivation, Shannon Hurn will become the Eagles' games record holder on Sunday in his 291st AFL game.
The Dockers haven’t won the Derby since April 19, 2015. That’s not ideal. They’ve even been trying to win the Derby in this time.
One of the big issues the Dockers have had during this ten-game losing streak is that they’ve let the Eagles score more points than them in each of their games.
If they are any chance to win on Sunday, the Dockers must score points than the Eagles, there’s no other path to victory I can see.
Can they do it?
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