Aug 30, 2021
The Monday Knee Jerk Reaction: Finals Week One
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.
Port Adelaide (86) v Geelong (43)
Geelong proved on Friday that Port can beat the top sides.
Cats fans watched on in horror as their team once again showed they prefer to go the long way round in finals.
Absolutely nothing went right for them, a combination of the Power’s relentless pressure and the Cats making poorer choices than a bunch of drunk jockeys at an Airbnb.
The first half saw Geelong decide their best target up forward was Aliir Aliir, kicking it to him so regularly it had to be a conscious decision.
Aliir Aliir was so good he’s the only person in Australia I trust to stop the Delta strain. Forget flattening the curve, he would crush it.
As the Power midfield got on top, Geelong was distracted from the task at hand by having to launch a search party for Gary Rohan, who had gone missing. Unfortunately, while looking for him, many members of the search party also went missing.
It was with some relief they found him in the second half, he was in defence because that’s why you get Gary Rohan, for his defence.
For the Power, they had Orazio Fantasia running amok up forward, and Ollie Wines showing the Geelong midfield the respect John Coates shows to a state premier.
Geelong looked tired and slow, while Port looked like a team that can not only beat a top team but could beat all of them.
Sydney (73) v Greater Western Sydney (74)
Certainly, the most exciting game of the weekend, and I hope you’re sitting down, Toby Greene got in trouble.
It’s easy to pick the Giants best in this one, the Sydney forward line, who missed shot after shot in the final quarter, seemingly in an attempt to sneak up on the Giants through points.
It almost worked, but it would have been a hell of a lot easier just to do it through goals.
The poor goal kicking will haunt Swans supporters this offseason, but it’s not the end of the world, the Swans have unearthed enough young talent to be excited about the future.
As for the Giants, they got lucky in this one, but they unearthed some new talent in the form of Tim Toronto (that’s what BT called him so I assume it’s a new player).
Remember when getting players names right was a basic requirement of commentating?
Aren’t we fortunate that correct names have been replaced by annoying theatrics, blokey mateship and talking over Daisy Pearce because she’s making too much sense and making everyone else look bad?
The Giants will be hoping their luck holds as Toby Greene heads off to the tribunal for bumping an umpire.
It was 100 per cent on purpose, yet a lot of people seem to have decided defending Toby Greene is the hill they’re going to die on.
That seems strange given the rather extraordinary, sustained effort Greene has put in to prove beyond doubt he is a goose.
Still, in a world where people are taking horse worming medicine, it’s hardly surprising that people have decided to just believe Greene is somehow hard done by.
Melbourne (93) v Brisbane (60)
There were times in this game when I was confident Melbourne could beat Brisbane, but I wasn’t confident they could beat Charlie Cameron.
Cameron’s five goals and Melbourne’s inaccurate kicking kept this closer on the scoreboard than it really was.
Not that I didn’t have a fairly major panic in the third quarter when Melbourne stopped scoring, and the Lions began coming back.
The difference though from every other year of my life, is Melbourne’s defence, an entire team effort and a thing of beauty.
It handled everything except Cameron and Lachie Neale, who had 46-disposal and 13-clearances.
Unfortunately, when Neale looked around for support, he found only Melbourne players, like Clayton Oliver, who plays the game like a red-headed T-1000 from Terminator 2.
He just never stops.
Brisbane just had too many players who didn’t handle the pressure, while Melbourne did.
Life is already confusing enough these days, but Dees fans now need to deal with the idea their team are premiership favourites.
I need to lie down; I’m not built for this much excitement.
Western Bulldogs (85) v Essendon (36)
The Bulldogs managed to end their three-game losing streak, while the Bombers managed to continue their 6,203-day streak since they last won a final.
I blame Essendon’s strategy. For some reason, they decided to not score any goals in the second half and let the Dogs boot 11 of the last 12 goals.
While the Bombers couldn’t kick goals at all after halftime, the umpires were functioning beautifully up forward for the Doggies, booting five.
Ben Rutten said after the game it wasn’t the umpires that cost them the game. With an attitude like that, I’m not sure why he’s at Essendon.
The game itself was not that entertaining, but Twitter afterwards was a lot of fun.
You had Bombers fans going spare about the umpires (with some reason), opposition fans celebrating Essendon losing a final and the streak still being alive, and then some truly spectacular debates between the two groups.
This being social media, the entire debate was done in the spirit of goodwill towards all, with constructive arguments being made and everyone respecting the fact that Bombers fans were feeling a bit low and doing everything to cheer them up.
It was a beautiful moment and showed civility is very much still alive.
For the Bulldogs, they have got their season back on track, and now they only must fly from Tasmania to Brisbane, and if they win up there, to Perth.
When most of us are locked in our houses, the Doggies have the complete opposite problem.
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