Jun 03, 2022
A highly unhelpful guide to Round Twelve
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 Twelve.
Western Bulldogs vs. Geelong (Marvel) 7:50pm Seven/Fox
This is being described as a ‘crucial’ clash, which in June you never want said about a match your team is involved in.
‘Crucial clash’ is up there with ‘still mathematically possible’ as phrases you don’t want to hear in relation to your team.
Other phrases you never want to hear in relation to your team include:
· Has a significant war chest
· Mark Neeld appointed head coach
· Moneyball recruitment strategy
· Traded Trent Croad for pick number 1
· Believe they have the necessary pieces in place
After missing the light training run last week, Bailey Smith returns for the Bulldogs, while less excitingly, Gary Rohan returns for the Cats. I mean, no underwear company has put Gary on billboards.
Both these teams have hardly set the world on fire so far this season.
Geelong have been as inconsistent as my neighbour’s home brew, while the Bulldogs started badly and have slowly gotten better, the opposite of my neighbour's home brew.
I’m tipping the Bulldogs.
Adelaide vs. West Coast (AO) 1:45pm Fox Footy
West Coast mid-season draftee Jai Culley has famously gone from working in a chicken shop to playing for West Coast, surely one of the most tragic tales in sport.
At least at a chicken shop, you’re making people happy.
The good news for Jai is at the Eagles, he has a chance to not only get a game, but he may also already be their best player.
After going winless since April 23, the Crows will finally pick up four points, and in further good news, they get Tex Walker back.
Of course, it is technically possible to lose to the Eagles, if that does happen, do whatever you can to listen to Adelaide talkback radio after the game, it will be a work of art.
Crows to win.
Gold Coast vs. North Melbourne (TIO) 4:35pm Fox Footy
Wins over the Swans, Fremantle and a rather stunning belting of Hawthorn have the Suns travelling so well that talk of Alastair Clarkson going there has lessened significantly.
In fact, after the way they took apart the Hawks, perhaps it’s Hawthorn who should consider Clarkson.
A second game in a row in Darwin and against North points to the Suns continuing to enjoy this mid-season renaissance.
North Melbourne had some good news today, they’ve partnered with Jimmy Brings, an on-demand alcohol delivery company, and I have to say, it’s the perfect partnership.
If you’re watching North, you need alcohol, and I’m not even sure we should be enforcing age limits in this case.
Suns to win.
Melbourne vs. Sydney (MCG) 7:25pm Seven/Fox
After the loss they had to have, Melbourne have called for the cavalry, with Christian Salem, James Harms, Ed Langdon and Tom McDonald all coming back from injury and Adam Tomlinson getting a call-up.
The big news is with Steven May out, the Dees catch a break with the tribunal upholding Buddy Franklin’s suspension for striking Trent Cotchin.
The appeal was one of the most optimistic things I’ve seen in a long time, and it wasn’t exactly a surprise to see it fail.
What was surprising was the hearing and the fallout.
The AFL approached the case like Hannibal Lecter was on trial. At one stage Franklin was called a "coward", which angered the Swans, who demanded an apology.
This the AFL actually did, which is amazing, Adam Goodes had to get not one, but two documentaries made before he got an apology, so this is progress.
And Buddy deserved an apology when Buddy struck Cotchin, he looked him in the eye while he did it like a true hero.
This will be a real test of the 2022 version of the Demons, it’s a test I think they’ll pass because if there’s one thing Demons fans have historically, it’s optimism.
Hawthorn vs. Collingwood (MCG) 2:10pm Fox Footy
Hawthorn are going to have an actual ruckman in Ned Reeves play this week, a novel and exciting luxury for them.
It’s something they’ve desperately needed as football keeps teaching us that having a few tall guys around is not just helpful for reaching things on the top shelf.
Hawthorn were truly awful last week, and aside from the win against Brisbane, they’ve been in trouble for a while now.
The warning signs were all there when they lost to Essendon, a team they will struggle not to lose this week.
Collingwood however have been annoyingly competent in recent times, beating Carlton last week, which will comforting on one level, just opened another lot of concerns.
Such as, are Collingwood improving? Does Craig McRae know what he’s doing? Why can’t what’s happening to the Eagles happen to the Pies?
I mean, this is a side in touch of the eight, meaning it’s even possible they play finals. Like the world doesn’t have enough things to worry about at the moment.
I’m tipping Collingwood.
Fremantle vs. Brisbane (OS) 5:20pm Fox Footy
The all-conquering heroes and AFL premiership favourites Fremantle return to Western Australia.
While their official anointing as premiers is still months away, Dockers fans will be thrilled with this turn of events.
Not that they get much rest, facing off against Brisbane, meaning a win here would see them knock off their two biggest challengers in the space of a fortnight.
It’s why I say, (googles Fremantle’s coach’s name) Justin Longmuir is coach of the year at this point of the season.
After beating Melbourne, Brisbane should be a mere formality, I’m sure that’s how the Dockers fans are approaching it.
But if you crunch the stats, Brisbane are actually above the Dockers on the ladder, and have a better record! This is why you always do your research because you gain insights others don’t.
Further research however reveals that sometimes lower down teams on the ladder beat the higher up teams! Can you believe it?
Apparently, that’s why we have to play more than one round.
I’m tipping Fremantle here.
Bye: Carlton, Port Adelaide, St Kilda, Essendon, Greater Western Sydney, Richmond
You can help support me in producing this ridiculous nonsense I churn out on a regular basis. Find out more here: https://titusoreily.com/support-titus