Jul 12, 2019
A highly unhelpful guide to Round Seventeen
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 Seventeen.
West Coast vs Collingwood (OS) Seven & Fox 8:10pm
The Eagles did Victorians a big favour last year. If Collingwood had won the Premiership, we’d still be hearing about it. With the Eagles winning it, in Victoria we’ve never heard mention again the Grand Final even happened.
The Victorian media report it like this, 2016, a fairy tale Bulldogs Premiership, 2017, a fairy tale Richmond Premiership, 2018, Which interstate star could be returning to Victoria?
West Coast couldn’t be catching Collingwood at a better time. In recent weeks the wheels have come off like Mal Meninga announcing his political career.
Collingwood couldn’t be catching the Eagles at a worse time, with West Coast finally showing some of that form that led them to that rumoured Premiership in 2018.
There’s been a lot of focus on Mason Cox being out of form but to be fair, he’s had a lot of help with a ton of Pies looking far from their best. It takes a team effort to play as horribly as they have recently.
Still, you’d be foolish to completely write them off, they are after all still third on the ladder. Don’t get complacent. Civilisation got lazy and now measles and Nazism is making a comeback, let’s not let Collingwood do the same. Stay vigilant.
Eagles to win.
Sydney vs Carlton(SCG) Fox 1:45pm
Neither side is playing finals so the interest here is for Crows fans. How much can the disastrous success of the Blues under David Teague ruin your draft pick?
This week Carlton director Chris Judd wrote off Teague being appointed full time, before the club tried to walk his comments back, which was hard given Judd is on the selection panel.
Judd said they wanted an experienced coach, after the Bolton experiment failed so badly. At the same time, Mick Malthouse and Denis Pagan weren’t exactly lacking in experience.
Carlton have shown they can ruin a coaching career whether it’s a premiership coach or someone who’s never coached before.
Even if Teague is not being considered, why would you say so publicly? Perhaps the success their having felt awkward, so Judd decided to cut that off before it became a habit at the Blues.
The Swans late season form has unfortunately come too late for them this year, and Sydney fans will have to figure out what to do in September, something they’re no used to.
As a Melbourne supporter, let me offer some tips:
- Become obsessed with the draft and convince yourself an eighteen-year-old you’ve never heard off is going to turn your club, and your life, around.
- Get hopeful you’ll land a big free agent then watch the media conference where they sign with Geelong as you cry into your two-day-old pizza
- Convince yourself that next year things will be different.
Sydney to win this.
Hawthorn vs Fremantle (UTS) Fox 2:10pm
Hawthorn’s bad seasons are often better than my team’s good seasons, so it always amusing when Hawks supporters carry on as if this season has been like a tour of ‘Nam for them.
The Hawks are even still technically in finals contention, although it would be a stretch to see them get there.
Grant Birchall returns after a long absence. How long has he been out? Well, when he last played, people thought Bill Shorten was going to be our next Prime Minister.
Fremantle has turned in some of the worst performances in their history in the last few weeks, which is an amazing achievement.
It would be like if Madonna put out one of her best albums now.
Ross Lyon continues to troll Dockers supporters, telling them he will coach next season, "I can guarantee you I'll be around.”
That’s just bullying.
Hawks to win.
Essendon vs North Melbourne (MS) Fox 4:35pm
Essendon has been in the news this week, with former star and Bomber Thompson helpfully teaching us all that you can have 33 grams of methamphetamine and 481 MDA pills in your house and not get convicted of trafficking.
I’d assumed it was lower than this, so the good news is we can all stock up.
Both these teams are hoping to make the eight, after mid-year resurrections and a loss here would certainly end those dreams for North and probably would for the Bombers.
A win here and Rhyce Shaw would have to be seriously considered for the full-time role.
The most North thing would be for Shaw to go to St Kilda because North was trying to land Longmire and wouldn’t commit to him, only for Longmire to sign with Sydney and North to then get someone nobody wants, like Brad Scott.
The AFL’s crackdown on punching is as weak as ever, with Ben Cunnington, fined again for striking, not suspended. That means he has paid $15,500 in fines this season, fined four times for striking and once for making careless contact with an umpire. Remember, the AFL are serious about stamping out punching by funding their Christmas party.
Normally I wouldn’t want to see Essendon make the finals, but it would be amusing to see them get in just to watch all the Bombers fans who hate Worsfold trying to deal with a cavalcade of mixed emotions.
Yet, I think the Roos will win this.
Gold Coast vs Adelaide (Metricon) Fox 7:25pm
After starting the season with a pulse, the Suns have flatlined in recent times, and again the call has gone up to move them to Tasmania.
The Suns problem isn’t necessarily attendance, they’ve arguably had better crowds than the Giants, but they’ve been so poor on the field that they’ve probably cost Adelaide their number one draft pick.
My problem with the Suns is their board has been consistently hopeless. They’ve predicted premierships in the past, only to deliver police investigations into cocaine use.
I bet the Gold Coast had never even seen cocaine before some Suns players took it up there.
Forget sacking the coach, sack the Board if we’re going to continue on with this experiment or the Suns will end up just like the Gold Coast–Tweed Giants, the Gold Coast Seagulls, the Gold Coast Gladiators, the Gold Coast Chargers, the Gold Coast Cougars, the Gold Coast Rollers, the Gold Coast Blaze and Gold Coast United FC.
As for Adelaide, it says a lot that even playing the Suns, you wouldn’t bet your house on them.
Losing the Showdown in such a manner last week has every Crows player under pressure, which isn’t good, they don’t seem to be able to handle pressure.
If Adelaide lose to the Suns, I expect two things to happen, Crows supporters to riot on the streets of Adelaide in protest and Port fans to riot on the streets of Adelaide in celebration. Either way, the city of Adelaide would be stuffed.
Crows to win.
Geelong vs St Kilda (GMHBA) Seven & Fox 7:25pm
The Cats almost flawless season has had a few wobbles in recent weeks, including a surprising loss to the Bulldogs last week.
A loss to St Kilda would have every alarm bell in Geelong ringing, but I can’t see it happening. Perhaps the loss to the Bulldogs was a reminder to Geelong that just turning up doesn’t get the job done.
The good news for the Cats is this is at home, and St Kilda hasn’t won there this century.
St Kilda feels like it’s in limbo. Most people think the coach is gone, so the season just needs to play out to see who will coach them next.
I hear David Teague will be free.
Geelong to win this.
Richmond vs Greater Western Sydney (MCG) Fox 1:10pm
Not ideal for the Giants here, who’s record on the MCG is a disaster on the scale of my social life.
The Giants have gone from being seen as a legitimate premiership threat to a team looking like having one of those off-season reviews into their football department.
Now they face the Tigers who have started to come out of their slump, are getting injured players back and starting to look like a smokey for the premiership.
Richmond supporters have been getting excited on social media this week as they had a 9-6 record at the same point of the season in their premiership year.
If they did bring managed to repeat the effort of 2017, it would count as back-to-back in Victoria.
Tigers to win this.
Western Bulldogs vs Melbourne (MS) Seven & Fox 3:20pm
The Melbourne Football Club in 2019 have been like the Titanic if the Titanic had hit multiple icebergs immediately after leaving port and sunk several times, not just once.
The Dees hit another iceberg this week, with Tom McDonald, who had finally regained form, being ruled out for the rest of the season with a knee injury.
Now they face the Doggies who beat the soon to be reigning premiers last week and whose rebuild seems to be overtaking the Demons.
A win here and the Bulldogs remain mathematically in the hunt for finals. There’s nothing more exciting about being mathematically a chance of something because who doesn’t love maths?
The emergence of Aaron Naughton has been particularly impressive, he’s equal first in the league for contested marks, and he’s just 19.
The only thing I was first in at 19 was ‘most awkward moments with other humans.’
Doggies to win.
Port Adelaide vs Brisbane (AO) Fox 4:40pm
Port Adelaide is the Zinger burger of the competition. Will it be hot or cold when you get it? You just never know until you take that first bite.
Winning the Showdown was huge, it no small feat beating the Crows in Adelaide.
Unfortunately, the Showdown is against Adelaide and Brisbane have been a lot more impressive than the Crows this year.
The Lions took down the Giants in Greater Western Sydney in front of a hostile intimate gathering.
Now they look to get the Power on their home ground and this being Port, it entirely possible.
Brisbane wins this, and a top-four finish starts to become very likely.
Tipping Port games I fraught with danger, so I’m going for the Lions on the basis that the Power let you down after building up your hopes.
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