Aug 16, 2021


The Monday Knee Jerk Reaction: AFL Round Twenty Two


Footy is a passion, not some cold hearted, spread sheet dominated rational exercise. 

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.


Greater Western Sydney (106) v Richmond (67)

This was the perfect game for the Giants. Not only did they pretty much lock in finals, they also managed to get through the game without Toby Greene getting suspended.  

Back in July, Jack Riewoldt said, “But good luck if you're playing us in the last seven weeks no matter where we sit on the ladder.”

And it seems Richmond’s opponents have had a lot of luck since then.

The death or Richmond’s dynasty has been declared so often it really doesn’t bear repeating, that didn’t stop the commentators stating that a lot during this game.

In fact, aside from Tigers supporters, I felt the commentators seemed the most upset about the decline of Richmond.

They kept talking about Richmond coming back even when it was obvious they were no chance. They also seemed to be oblivious that the Giants were playing.

It was sad and I hope they’re getting the support they need.


Hawthorn (64) v Western Bulldogs (37)

For us non-Hawthorn supporters, these wins just add to the wonderful amusement the entire Clarkson sacking has delivered.

It’s something we all need in these tough times, and I’d never thought I’d say it, but I’m loving Hawthorn winning.

And beating the Bulldogs is no small feat, even with the loss of Josh Bruce causing them a few issues.

Most concerning for the Bulldogs was Jaeger O’Meara and James Worpel weren’t even playing for the Hawks.

Much like the Hawks did to the Demons earlier in the year, the Hawks dragged the Bulldogs down to their level, then beat them there.

They just made it a scrap.

I don’t think Dogs supporters should panic just yet, but they should make sure they know which panic station they’re assigned to.

Geelong (85) v St Kilda (71)

The Saints led this by 31 points in the first quarter prompting not one, not two, but five Saints supporters to text me to say, ‘We’ll lose this.”

They sure know their team.

Not that Geelong did this easily, and got lucky when Max King, who was on fire early, went off injured and came back not quite himself.

As fast as the Saints started, they stopped almost as quickly, as Geelong decided the best way to get into the game was just to not let the Saints have the ball, a very effective tactic.

As the match went on the Cats threw their weight around more, with Tom Hawkins' slamming Darragh Joyce’s head into the ground resulting in him being subbed off.

Luckily for Hawkins, he plays for Geelong, so the Match Review Officer briefly glanced at the footage before giving it the all clear.

In the end, a Patrick Dangerfield mark in the dying moments secured the game for Geelong, it was close enough to goal that even he couldn’t miss it.

Port Adelaide (140) v Carlton (45)

When Carlton was up by 23 points, no Blues supporters texted me to say, “We’ll lose this,” because it just didn’t need to be said.

But even they couldn’t see Port kicking 19 consecutive goals as they ripped apart any semblance of a rebuild at Carlton.

The only reason for Carlton’s existence it seems is to make Australia’s pandemic response look well run in comparison.

Much has been said about Carlton doing this during Marc Murphy's 300th game, but in many ways, at least he went out in the manner he’s been forced to endure for his entire career.

Adam Saad ended the game on the bench in tears, hardly the first person who has been bought to tears by the Carlton Football Club.

Port’s performance was fantastic, but it’s hard to know how much was their ability and how much was Carlton’s complete lack of ability. It was probably a little of column A and a little of column B.

With the pre-finals bye cancelled, Port will be thrilled they got a rest in any way.

Brisbane (142) v Collingwood (57)

Look, I appreciate Carlton and Collingwood try and cheer us all up in these difficult times, but…

Actually there is no but. It made for a lovely Sunday.

Collingwood looked like a team who have finished their season but are contractually obligated to show up.

Their demeanour was much like mine being dragged to a dinner party, I’m there because I have to be, but that doesn’t mean I’m putting in any effort while I’m there.

The Lions did want to be there and realised in the second quarter that here presented a great opportunity to really get that percentage up.

Playing a bad team covers a multitude of sins, and all the Lions recent problems seemed far away.

Their forward line worked, their midfield focused on looking after their SuperCoach owners, and their defence could relax, knowing they were playing Collingwood.

North Melbourne (77) v Sydney (91)

Despite North’s late-season improvement, they have secured the wooden spoon, their first since 1972.

I’m highly critical of them here, I don’t think they’ve achieved the wooden spoon in the spirit in which it meant.

They kept trying to get better all year and even worked hard in this game.

There are teams higher up on the ladder who gave up much more than North ever did this season.

No wonder people want to move them to Tasmania. Any club that refuses to half-ass it should be moved interstate immediately.

Although, I think the way the mainland is going at the moment, the most likely scenario is every AFL side will move to Tasmania. They’ll go from having no team to 18 teams.

Sydney obviously sensed the pre-finals bye was a no starter, so rested Buddy Franklin, and getting this win made that a good idea.

Although the Swans are 4-1 without Franklin this season, so it’s obvious they just don’t need him, and shouldn’t play him again this season, especially if they meet Melbourne in the Finals.


Melbourne (104) v Adelaide (63)

There’s been a fair bit of talk about Dees fans not being able to see their team play in a Grand Final this year, which is so far getting ahead of ourselves it makes me shudder every time someone says it.

As much as I’d like to believe this, I don’t think Covid-19 arose just to ruin Melbourne supporters’ lives.

We didn’t need any help.

I’d take just going to a footy game right now, forget a Grand Final. I’d like to be around people, to hear the nonsense footy debates that are so fun.

All things considered, I’ve come around to the view that a global pandemic is a bad thing and frankly, I could do without them.

I’d like it to be over.

It’s why when I see people breaking the rules, having parties with more than 60 people, I get so angry.

I get angry on two levels. The first is the threat to public health, the second, that some people have 60-plus friends. It seems excessive.

I have so few friends that people I don’t even know that well contact me just to clarify that we are not friends. They do this pre-emptively before I’ve even begun to think of them as a friend.

That all said, I’d take a Melbourne premiership even without a crowd, because I figure, us Dees supporters can’t really be too choosy at this point.

If that does happen, I’d love to go on and then win some more with fans there.

I’d love to have an era. It looks like fun.

Oh, I haven’t mentioned the Crows. Probably for the best.

Gold Coast (30) v Essendon (98)

Oh dear.

If Essendon beat Collingwood next week, they almost certainly play finals.

So, who do you barrack for? 

Collingwood, because the great evil is Essendon being in the finals?

Maybe, but barracking for Collingwood doesn’t feel right.

This is like Sophie’s Choice but worse.

Based on this game, the Bombers should make the finals. They dominated the Suns who looked tired, except for Touk Miller who has had one of the great seasons.

But even he couldn’t drag his team up to Essendon’s level, with Darcy Parish and Zach Merrett running amok.

Everyone’s favourite player, Jake Stringer, kicked five, while Sam Draper dominated in the ruck.

A resurgent Essendon does give me one reason to like the lockdown, you don’t have to see their fans at work.

Fremantle (79) v West Coast (64)

No one beats Fremantle seven years in a row.

Winning the Western Derby was made all the sweeter when it put a significant dent in the Eagles chances of playing finals.

That said, I reckon the Dockers did West Coast a favour there, like stopping a kitten from wandering into traffic.

It’s disappointing for the rest of the eight who would have loved coming up against the Eagles in the Finals.

West Coast came back in the second half, but with no lighting strikes, the final quarter was just too short for them to get the job done.

Both teams can technically make the finals, but it seems unlikely. This means we could see a finals series mainly played in Western Australia but with no Western Australian teams.

That makes a lot of sense in these strange times.

I hope you’re all hanging in there. I’d offer some words of wisdom, but I don’t really have any.

Perhaps set your expectations even lower?

You can help support me in producing this ridiculous nonsense I churn out on a regular basis. Find out more here:




Aug 16, 2021

Stuff the era, a dynasty sounds better.


Aug 16, 2021

Hawthorn join the battle to sign Alistair Clarkson

Bernadette White

Aug 16, 2021

No Titus, not in the panic station. We never panic. More like the resignation station. Emotionally divested as a self protective mechanism. (FFC supporter)


Aug 16, 2021

"That said, I reckon the Dockers did West Coast a favour there, like stopping a kitten from wandering into traffic." A superbly constructed metaphor and oh so true.


Aug 16, 2021

You had me at the Toby Greene comment.
Given the current situation Melbourne is in, a surprisinly light & entertaining take on the round.
A Grand Final at Optus with no local teams, therefore no booing, on a lovely sunny day will make great television viewing as long as the biased commentators are still isolating.


Aug 16, 2021

I'm a Crows supporter. I pay good money to follow you and I deserve to have my team bagged as much as any team! Comments like "Deciding that Lynch in career best form is a solid basis for not keeping him". You know, that sort of thing...


Aug 16, 2021

@BORRISIMO We could only dream that BT wasn't commentating...

Jacqui Parry

Aug 16, 2021

Re: Geelong?? Pretty sure Joel “Bravewood” was on the field but not mentioned in despatches?? I presume he likes playing in finals so it will take a fair bit of baiting to get him to “go off” next weekend.

Wonder who will get that job?? Mmmmm maybe James Harmes??

Luckily Melbourne players don’t do that stuff- least wise not for a while anyway.

You can rely on our squad zoning their inner Jimmy Stynes and only swearing in Gaelic. Will have to get Sinead to check whether or not there are any Irish umpires??

Hoping for a cracking game against the Cats and not too much “bravery “ from the opposition.



Aug 16, 2021

Congratulations Titus the quality keeps on coming! Would like to nominate Jeff Kennett for this year's Douglas Wilkie Award. Instead of the traditional destruction of the Sherrin, we suggest Jeff offers his own furphy on a platter. After all it does resemble a split worn out leather bag with the bladder about to fly asunder. Of course Clarko, as goal umpire will not be waving the white flags on a 7 pointer and Sam Mitchell s a la the sorcerers apprentice, can scurry about with the quartered oranges. The eminent Hawk revival fanciful as it seems, may not be up to much snuff. As the taliban have reminded us all, "you have the watches but we have the time."

Puertorican Pete

Aug 16, 2021

If the Clarkson end at Hawthorn is good, wait until Carlton stuff around long enough to not sign him. They then stay stuck in this abyss of mediocrity, to the point where the AFL offers them up for relocation to Tasmania, and the Taswegians knock them back and ask if the Suns or Fitzroy are available instead.

The g train

Aug 16, 2021

Beautifully illuminating as always, Titus. The Truth is found not via reasoning and comparison. It is not found in the ratio of things. It’s via irrational idiotic emotional hysteria.

Re: the StK and Carlton losses. After both built very handy leads, which loss was *more* inevitable? Would humbly suggest neither—they were both *exactly* 100% inevitable. I was going to text you, Titus. That StK were going to lose when they were up by 31 points in the first quarter—but why text the absurdly obvious?


Aug 16, 2021

Jake Stringer. Everyone’s favourite player.
Had trouble with my pelvic floor muscle after reading that.😂


Aug 16, 2021

'...except for Touk Miller who has had one of the great seasons.'

Easily the most underrated player at the moment. If he played for a Victorian team he'd be in the media every week.

Across the Face

Aug 16, 2021

Titus, we've never met, but I'd just like to confirm in writing that we are not friends.

Also, it's unlikely that we will ever become friends. Of course it's theoretically possible, but so is a gigantic tsunami completely engulfing Tasmania before the AFL gets around to moving North Melbourne down there.

There, that's settled.


Aug 16, 2021

If there is one thing that us Saints supporters know, it is that we could be 31 goals up at quarter time and still be expecting to lose.

Halftime Spray

Aug 16, 2021

>>>>As the match went on the Cats threw their weight around more, with Tom Hawkins' slamming Darragh Joyce’s head into the ground resulting in him being subbed off.

Luckily for Hawkins, he plays for Geelong, so the Match Review Officer briefly glanced at the footage before giving it the all clear.

Halftime Spray

Aug 16, 2021

(cont) it the all clear.

Halftime Spray

Aug 16, 2021


At least he gave the footage a brief glance, so there's been some progress in that regard.

Paul Blake

Aug 16, 2021

Everyone’s favourite player, Jake Stringer. One of the oddest sentences ever.

Running Dog

Aug 16, 2021

Us Dog fans know where the panic stations are, Titus- wherever there's bathtub gin. Not many people know this, but we invented them, and even recommended that a few be installed on the Titanic. Obviously they were a terrific success. And in fact, to this day, if you're ever stuck for words, and it's stressful, just mention the Titanic. It breaks the ice.


Aug 16, 2021

Big fella have you noticed dean Marietta retired on the very day West coast sparrows decided they didn't want to extend the season past the Dockers game ? Very odd timing and now the sparrows know they need to bring a new teammate oops sorry umpire in for next season. Glad the pies are going down lower than dodgey shares. The DEES took the chance to warm up for the cats by just toying then kicking away from the crows. Get on the DEES bandwagon and ENJOY the ride. GO DEES


Aug 16, 2021

Melbourne and Geelong in the GF at Optus Stadium - don’t despair, there will be booing, once us WA team supporters decide who we dislike more. Probably Geelong, considering Melbourne’s kind assistance to the Eagles in 2018. Unfortunately Collingwood’s not available.

George Komoneski

Aug 16, 2021

The ‘Foot in Mouth Award’ of the round must surely go to Jonathon Brown for his comment about Alir Alir during the Port vs Carlton game.
‘The football must seem like a watermelon to Alir Alir.’
Oh dear .

Darren Elias

Aug 16, 2021

Why Titus gets the big bikkies: 'No one beats Fremantle seven years in a row.' & 'This is like Sophie’s Choice but worse.'
Sir, I like the cut of your jibe.

Atrocious Conditions

Aug 16, 2021

@ GEORGE KOMONESKI Like many (all?) today's football commentators, he wasn't hired for his intelligence.

Roger Gibbins

Aug 16, 2021

You get invited to dinner parties?

Big Carl

Aug 16, 2021

There was a big one going on in St.Kilda East on the weekend.

The Ho Brothers (Brayden, Brody and Brock)

Aug 16, 2021

This announcement just in from Chris Scott:

Kabul is now under Taliban control. I'll just repeat that. Kabul is now under Taliban control. I want you all to remain calm.


Aug 16, 2021

As much as I’d like to believe this, I don’t think Covid-19 arose just to ruin Melbourne supporters’ lives.

We didn’t need any help.

As a Dees supporter, a truer word has never been writ!


Aug 16, 2021

"The only reason for Carlton’s existence it seems is to make Australia’s pandemic response look well run in comparison."

Can't wait for the next Olympics when AFL Commentary is introduced as an event.

You can order your gold medal cabinet now.


Aug 17, 2021

Do you really believe the MRO actually looked at Hawkins incident before giiving it the all clear? Surely the Geelong immunity was just invoked from the start.
As an aside how good was it to have the commentary of the Hawks Dogs game with Kellie Underwood and Brentan Speed? No endless amusement at their own humour, congratulating the other commentator for their insight and no telling me what a great game I was watching- tried something I havent heard in a while- describing the game- who'd a thunked that might work?


Aug 17, 2021



Aug 18, 2021

@Colly, whatever childish point you were trying to make, I'm not sure anyone understood it. You've called yourself "Colly", you've gone red and blue, which covers a few clubs, with one dog sniffing another dog's rear, and then you've commented "Dee"mented. So I have no idea whether you're supporting the Pies, the Bulldogs or the Dees. Thankfully, and I think I speak for everyone here, I also don't care.