May 10, 2021
The Monday Knee Jerk Reaction: AFL Round Eight
On a Monday, you want irrational reaction. You want emotion to trump reason.
What you really want is idiotic hysteria.
You’ve come to the right place.
Richmond (63) v Geelong (126)
It seems every time Richmond are spoken about, it's necessary to state they can still win the premiership, but it seems they are keen to try to dissuade us of that belief.
Against Geelong, they seemed to be in control, up until halftime, with no sign of what was to come.
What was to come was Jeremy Cameron and Geelong booting seven straight goals in the third quarter.
Instead of looking like Premiership contenders, the Tigers looked broken, as the Cats demolished them in a manner so brutal it made UFC seem like a kids show.
Aside from Shai Bolton taking the Mark of the Year, the Tigers had few highlights, but Geelong sure did.
They looked every bit the Premiership challenger, with Cameron’s six goals showing their strategy of recruiting the top players in the league is working.
Who would have thought?
Gold Coast (54) v St Kilda (63)
Trailing by 15 points at three-quarter time, it seemed the Saints season would return to the mediocrity that had defined its early rounds.
There’s a big difference between St Kilda with Paddy Ryder and without, like the difference between beer and non-alcoholic beer. One works, the other doesn’t.
It says a lot about the game that the highlight was a halftime melee, although there have been more violent melees at childcare centres.
There have been tea parties with more chance of serious injury.
For the Suns, this was a disappointing loss. Up at three-quarter time, at home and against the Saints; these are the ingredients for a victory.
To mess this up is like trying to make a cup of soup and burning down the house as a result.
Greater Western Sydney (107) v Essendon (105)
Every team needs a ‘brand’ apparently, and Essendon’s is narrowly losing matches in a fashion that causes their fans the most anguish.
Not since Telstra has a brand made its central premise the complete frustration of its own customers.
On the positive side, the Bombers never gave up, fighting back after a poor third quarter to boot five of the first six goals in the final term.
The Giants keep finding ways to win though, they’re now knocking on the door of the top eight.
I always get nervous when people from Sydney’s western suburbs knock on the door but it’s better than when they don’t knock.
There may not be a big big sound from the West of the town just yet but now there is a noisy rustling.
North Melbourne (76) v Collingwood (94)
The worst-case scenario has been avoided for Collingwood, so they’re just living in the second worse scenario.
Jordan De Goey showed that against substandard opposition, he can perform, while in a shock to everyone, Darcy Moore proved he’s better in defence.
Yet the win was hardly convincing, with North showing they’ll give the effort required, just not across all four quarters.
It leaves David Noble still searching for a win with the desperation of me trying to find chocolate in the house late at night.
The win lifts Collingwood to the dizzying heights of 16th and is a huge blow to their wooden spoon chances.
Melbourne (67) v Sydney (58)
It wasn’t pretty. Wet, slippery conditions and intense pressure from both sides made this messier than a Royal family get together.
Sydney started strong, but again, Melbourne’s ability to control the game, and most importantly, not give up huge scores when the momentum was against them was the difference.
A big part of this was the work of Steven May on Buddy Franklin. May played Franklin so close he was in danger of being charged with stalking.
Melbourne’s newish forward line worked when it mattered, especially Tom McDonald, whose turnaround after a couple of forgettable seasons must be seen to be believed.
It’s still odd to see a Demon side not fold under pressure and remain calm no matter what occurs.
The MCG was absolutely rocking after the win. Not since Labor's proposed changes to franking credits were stopped have I seen so many happy Melbourne supporters.
To be 8-0 is something Demons fans are still struggling to come to terms with.
I’m happy, sleeping well and looking forward to the future. It’s unsettling.
Port Adelaide (87) v Adelaide (38)
Controversy in this one, as after their light training run, the Power changed into the infamous prison bar jumper as part of their ongoing campaign to troll Eddie McGuire.
It worked too, with Eddie taking the bait as per usual. I’ve seen three-year-olds with more self-control.
I can see why Port are so passionate about the jumper, just imagine how much better Scott Lycett would have looked in a prison bar jumper when he tried to sling Ned McHenry into the ground, through the Earth and catapult him out the other side into space.
That Chinese rocket landed with less impact.
Oh, the Crows had minimal involvement in this game.
Hawthorn (60) v West Coast (98)
Wow, Hawthorn are awful. It probably doesn’t get talked about enough, what with Collingwood imploding with the subtlety of Rio’s Carnival and North Melbourne refusing to win.
On top of not being good now, it’s hard to see the future for Hawthorn, what the recruiting sub-par players from other teams in exchange for draft picks.
So bad were the Hawks, they enabled West Coast to win on the road.
To begin, it seemed we were on our way to a nil-all draw. The first quarter was the first goalless opening quarter at the MCG in 50 years.
It was so boring to watch I decided to get up off the couch and do some ironing to add some excitement to my day.
West Coast got things going, their numerous injuries offset by Hawthorn’s numerous injuries.
The Eagles fragility this season is well known, so any away win is worth its weight in brown and gold.
Western Bulldogs (107) v Carlton (91)
If torturing your own fans was an Olympic sport, Carlton would be Usain Bolt.
Up by 27 points late in the third term, the Blues made the mistake of heading to their changerooms at three-quarter time to sing the team song.
Accidentally getting the number of quarters there are in a game wrong (the clue is in the name) is embarrassing.
With Carlton accidentally thinking the game was over, the Bulldogs managed to gain control, and win by 16 points.
It was a real scare for the Bulldogs, but that Marcus Bontempelli guy is really good. He kept his team in the game early on and never gave up.
Carlton showed flashes of brilliance, Eddie Betts wound back the clock and Harry McKay managed to again impress.
But this is the Blues, their ability to make their fans despair is unparalleled.
Not a single Carlton fan was surprised when things went south, but that didn’t make it hurt any less.
Brisbane (95) v Fremantle (71)
Brisbane are looking a bit ominous lately, overcoming a sluggish start to remind us all that they too are in the premiership hunt.
Despite Fremantle never giving up, the Lions showed a poise absent in the early rounds.
Charlie Cameron even returned to form, bringing out his motorcycle celebration. That’s a real concern for carbon emissions if he gets going.
Sure, the emissions are imaginary, but remember how upset people got when Adam Goodes threw that imaginary spear? And that could have resulted in just one imaginary death.
Imaginary carbon emissions are an imaginary threat to the entire planet. How this isn’t a bigger controversy is beyond me.
All I’m asking is Cameron commits to celebrating with an electric motorcycle, using imaginary electricity sourced from imaginary renewable sources.
If only Australia’s governments offered more incentives for electric vehicles, perhaps then Cameron would be more likely to make such a commitment.
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