Chook’s Rooks – Partial Lock-out

For better or for worse, right? We’re pretty much married to our Greater Western Sydney rookies now, making this a bit of an awkward Chook’s Rooks, wedged into a week where our Giants are locked but before we get to see which other rooks have landed a gig in their respective round-one teams. It’ll have to be brief then, which is kinda lucky given I’m also in the midst of writing school reports, my basketball column for our local paper and my debut piece for the Ass Coach – not a sleazy mag for personal trainers, but the subscription service that adds all the bells and whistles to AFL Dream Team. Anyway…

Locked in (or out) last week

Overall, our GWS rookies made a pretty spectacular start to their Dream Team careers, with one hundred, three 90s and a further five players with 70 or more. Mid-forward Adam Kennedy was the highest scorer, registering 116 points from a healthy kick-handball ratio of 17-11 and, importantly, 11 marks. Pre-lockout, Kennedy had been vying for my eighth midfield spot with James McDonald and got the nod based on his dual-position status, but you wouldn’t have been unhappy with the old farmer, who knocked out a near-ton with 98. Unfortunately, he also nearly knocked out popular mid-pricer Luke Parker with a high hit, breaking the Swan youngsters jaw and drawing a two-week penalty from the tribunal. If your major pre-lockout decision was McDonald or Stephen Coniglio, then the latter, at about $70k more, looked to be the wrong choice based on the Sydney game, scoring almost half as much as the former. I wouldn’t write Coniglio off yet, though, as he played with plenty of poise, suggesting strong job security and, surely, some solid scores in the near future.

Solid scores is what we can also expect from fellow midfielder Dyl Shiel, although not in the first match given his lack of match preparation. He started brilliantly, picking up 20 points in the first 18 minutes, but trailed off before being stranded on 36 points when handed the red vest. Taking his place on the field was Calvin’s correct guess at the starting sub, Dom Tyson, whose vest-affected score of 25 – combined with his high price of $170k – would’ve seen him drop a few dollars if the prices changed after just one round. Luckily for owners of the high draft pick, that 25 will only count towards one price fluctuation and, given the rotation policy in place at Blacktown, Tyson should get the chance to share the vest around. And Tyson wasn’t the lowest scorer on the ground on Saturday night. As forecast, Sydney rookie and GWS discard Harry Cunningham copped the vest for the Swans, restricting him to a 19-point cameo.

In the ruck, Jon Giles refused to be bullied by Sydney behemoth Shane Mumford and finished fast to record 77 DTs. It was a good enough result to give me the confidence to forge ahead with the much-discussed one premium/three rookie ruck structure, assuming that at least two of Orren Stephenson, Jarrad Redden and Billy Longer are named tomorrow night. The big-bodied ruckman are the ones that’ll worry Giles the most (even see him sidelined some weeks, I reckon, with Sheedy opting for Brogan instead), so a decent score against Mumford hints to some solid output against some of the less brawny big blokes.

Tommy Bugg justified his selection as the most popular rookie-priced defender in Dream Team with a first-up 97, forcing a lot of coaches to consider picking a non-starter this week to get their grubby hands on his score if they picked him as an emergency. Nathan Bock looks to be the best option, but only if you were totally sold on the former Adelaide backman’s potential before Bugg went ballistic. I’m in the Bugg emergency camp, but will be picking seven on-field backs who are playing this week and be happy enough that Bugg’s century will count towards his first price rise down the track. I’m far less happy that, despite having Bugg cemented in my D7 spot all pre-season, I switched him to the bench just 90 seconds before lock-out and, inexplicably, put teammate Jacob Townsend on in his place, hoping for a differential to the masses, I guess. Townsend had only just joined my team in place of Sam Darley after I failed to confirm whether Darley had hurt himself in the Giants’ reserves game that afternoon. (You’re in as soon as you’re on the verge of your third game, Sam, I promise). Anyway, it didn’t look to be a terrible move about two minutes before half-time when hard-nut Townsend led Bugg 34-32, but then Townsend was somehow penalised with a free kick against as Kieren Jack drove his knee into his head, leaving him trailing Bugg 31-32 and with a gash above his temple. Bugg went on, of course, to record 65 points in the second half, including a monster third term, while Townsend managed to add only eight to his total. I’m not devastated with the Townsend pick, though, as it looks like they’ll get a few games into the boy and his first half showed his scoring won’t always be so depressing. Bugg, if he can avoid full-body cramps in the future, looks to be a beauty!

This week

Well, let’s see what happens at the selection tables of the 16 AFL clubs yet to get their seasons underway. The absence of Melbourne midfielder James Magner, Western Bulldogs pair Clay Smith (mid) and Tory Dickson (fwd), and Richmond defenders Brandon Ellis and Steven Morris from their respective VFL affiliates bodes well for their chances of making AFL debuts in round one. We’ll know for sure tomorrow if Magner has recovered sufficiently from his finger injury to take his place in the Demons team, while the Eliis-Morris news will arrive as smartly as this afternoon. Smith and Dickson gets a lot trickier, as the Bulldogs don’t play until Sunday, meaning we won’t have their final teams until shortly before lockout on Friday. In fact, Sunday’s games include a few rookies we’d like some guarantees about that, unfortunately, we might not receive. Darren Pfeiffer (mid-fwd) and Chad Wingard (mid) may or may not be in the Port Adelaide team that takes on St Kilda on Sunday, while Koby Stevens (mid) and Gerrick Weedon (fwd) are in the hunt at West Coast given its injury toll. A few other names to look out for on teamsheets tomorrow are Aaron Hall (Gold Coast forward), Lachie Neale (Fremantle mid), Billie Smedts (Geelong def-fwd), Cam Guthrie (Geelong def), Simon Hogan (Geelong mid), Marty Clarke and Peter Yagmoor (Collingwood backs), Jackson Paine (Collingwood def-fwd), Tom Ledger (St Kilda mid), and Jamie Cripps (St Kilda forward), but you won’t need more than a few of these blokes if you loaded up on Giants last week.

Follow on twitter: @ChookDT


  • Good info (inb4″first”comment)

    FWIW I actually kept Darley, and have Bugg on the field, other back rookie is Morris – lets see if he plays Thursday with teams released later today, not that it matters for my team – just be interesting to see!!

  • I’ll cop Bugg and Kenedy’s bench scores towards their price increase.
    I’m happy with my starters even if they may not get as high a round 1 score.
    Guthrie as my 7 def. Porps and D.Smith as my 6&7 forwards.

  • Nice one Chook. I’m one of the people who didn’t load up with Giants so I need quite a few of those named above to play.

  • I think Jackson Paine is a def/for, not def/mid as you’ve noted above. Otherwise I’d put him in my squad if he was named!

  • If your just naming rookies that will play (and you must to mention Pfiffer) Boumann is almost a cert to play for the Hawks. Might be more of an option in SuperCoach though although if he can get on the end of some of the short kicking in Hawks backline could rack some points up!

    • Boumann’s ability to get games is subject to the current injury of Gilham and whether Roughead plays round 1. I doubt once they are back to full fitness he will get a game.
      Also not sold on his potential. I doubt he will get used much in the chipping around with Suckling, Birchall, Gibson and maybe Schoenmakers there.

  • Lachie neale not too far away, anyone have any news on Zorko ? Heard he isn’t far away on SEN

  • Poor Crippa no one ever gets his name right. Must say I do have an urge to call him Jason from time to time…

    • Oh god, errors all over the place this morning! Apologies. Fixed a couple, but no doubt there’s Tim Mohr.

  • hey chook.. what can you tell me about sexton at gc??

    word is is may get a start this week.

  • Why has no one been mentioning a word about mohr? Scored a very respetable 74 on my bench which I’ll happily take if clarke doesn’t get a call up round 1. Also does anyone know Camerons total game time played. Is he destined to be a dud or what?

    • Excellent question!

      I too would love someone’s input on this

    • Cameron 94% game time

      • oh dear Brak, I was hoping you wouldn’t say that. Oh well you can’t nail all the right rookies straight off the bat. Made some pretty nice choices so far though. If zorko’s not due to play for 3-4 weeks, might make a perfect upgrade target for cameron when zorko’s set for his 1st price rise and camerons fattened up a bit.

    • he is a young skinny KP player – will take time and bulking up before he is a regular DT contributer

  • Hey lads, I would love information on these rookies:

    Smedts and Guthrie: What is their JS like?

    Magner: Is he playing round 1? And if not is he likely to slot straight back in when fit?

    Clay Smith and Dickson: Is there room in the WB best 22 for these gun rooks? I still can’t lock them in with any certainty.

    Any info would be great!

    • From Geelong website:

      Billie Smedts is also a strong chance to play his first premiership season game for the Cats, while Cameron Guthrie, Steven Motlop and Taylor Hunt are all in the mix.

      I too want to know Guthrie’s JS.

  • I doubt my rookies will change much in the next few days.

    Still debating whether to keep Aaron Hall or get in Gerrick Weedon.

    What do you guys think?

    • I think hall’s value and game time will trump Weedon in the first half of the season.

      Depends how Kenneday’s foot goes.

      I’ve went Hall.

    • I probably wouldn’t be going Weedon, his JS isn’t high and will throw up some shocking scores in the forward pocket if the Eagles aren’t winning.

  • 858738 1 spot left

    go the eagles!!!

  • Whats going on with Tom Couch?

    • Not too sure, might be a good mid season upgrade.

      I think everyone has probably jumped on The Magnet though…..

    • there might be more elvations today and tomorrow, not sure. Seeing as Melbourne’s injury list is long they have to elevate more then one rookie

      • Going to depend on Neeld’s game plan. If Magner is fine and he doesn’t think he needs two additional grunt players (with Magnet being one) and needs more outside, why would he give up the optionality on Couch by upgrading him now?

    • Patrick Neale tweeted that he’s been elevated for Jetta about 3 hours ago. I’d say that means he’s in with a real chance to be named in Melbourne’s side for Round 1.

    • Couch has been elevated for jetta

  • 4 spots left here 345509 (pickled onions)

    and a bunch here

    880523 (mmm delicious chow)

  • Thanks Chook, very insightful once again.

    Sorry to post this here getting to last minute now.

    Cash league 505422 2 spots left $50 to enter, cheers.

  • Am thinking Docherty for my last mid space but concerned that wont play for a while given no nab cup . . . not heard much about if he is injured and likely return. Does anybody have any update?

  • Loaded the team with 7 Giants but I still need 6 other rookies to play, I was planning on having at least 5 of them out before round 11 but Mcdonald is out for 2 weeks so the chances of him being full price by round 11 is pretty slim which means that i need 5 from the last 6 to play close to every game, then I can start trading round 8 through to 10. I am not sure if it was a good idea starting with that many Western Sydney players but I will find out when the teams are announced.

    Predicting round 11 will be a loss.


    All those with Parker dont worry. Longmire loves him, he’s a gun and still a chance for next week!

    • One incident, two negative outcomes…

      All in the first week of the season! – Disappointing still

      • parker is a hard cvnt, might hang onto him, though there is alot of potential breakouts around his price range

    • Thanks for that link Genghis, I never thought you would make my day :-) ………….I would have kept him anyway, but its good to know.

  • Even when Brogan is fit, Giles will continue to play in the Giants side.
    He’s a great forward target! Which is in need of a serious boost.
    Cameron not quite on the money just yet. (Great hanger Saurday night though.)

  • Team pretty settled, just waiting on teams to lock down M8 & F9. Big toss up for me if all rook’s on my watchlist are named!

    Billie Smedts is not one of them unfortunately, vest looms…

    Timmy Mohr was E on my bench, happy with that what a legend!

    Kennedy’s 116 will come in handy if there is a late withdrawal in my forward line, hopefully not to be the case in Round 1.

    The most frustrating thing in the first few weeks is which rookies to start on the field & which rookies to bench or E… last year i reckon I lost approx 70 points a week for maybe 6 weeks because of this!!

  • Any opinions. Drop Hmac to unleash Giles as 2nd ruck.
    Who would be worth bringing in? Haven’t paid attention to rucks for a long time

    As stands – Mumford, Hmac, Giles, Orren

    • Doesn’t matter, turns out Giles is locked on the bench no matter what I do..

      • I have a very similar situation dude… hale, hmac (giles, stephenson). After giles 77 I am seriously considering dropping hmac and using the cash elsewhere. Prob is I didn’t have giles named as an emergency BUUUUUT….. read a few comments up on brapinalongs post and you’ll see that lobbe and renouf are out for port this week which will almost surely result in redden getting a start. So in theory (and what I’m strongly considering doing) you could replace hmac with redden (if named) and then bring giles onto the ground next week. Dig?

        • I wouldn’t do it to be honest. I see a lot of people wanting scores which is the wrong way to look at it.

          You’ll be in a better spot if you keep Hmac and decide to cash him in at round 3/4, than if you go rookie rucks now and something goes pair shaped. It’s much easier to downgrade than it is to upgrade.

          I’d give Giles and Redden both 2-3 games before making a decision. Up to you.

          • yeah you’re right, js is a concern for redden and stephenson and you really can’t lose with having hmac for a good few weeks. You talked me out of it. If I win the car, the spare tyres all yours :0)

        • dools you are takin advise from a guy who did not know that you cannot activate a player who has already played in the round…

          • What does that matter? He’s talking about downgrading Hmac for cash now that he’s seen Giles can output a decent score.

            Nothing to do with the already locked in Giles.

      • duh he has already played – those players are locked in where you had them for the round mate.

  • Although not totally rookies, I am considering swapping old man Lenny with either Josh Caddy or John McCarthy as my M4. Will give me $130K to spend elsewhere.
    McCarthy’s pre season has been excellent and Essendon tried to move mountains in order to recruit Caddy last year – similarly, he has done nothing wrong this pre season. Both priced at $150K.
    Wondering what the thoughts of any GC or Port fans out there are.

    • I can see J-Mac averaging 80 for the Power as he will be playing predominantly midfield. Will probably throw up the odd hundred if he continues to kick a few goals. Could be a good stepping stone to a gun midfielder, but not a keeper for mine.

  • Just read in The West ( Western Bulldogs coach Brendan McCartney annouced both Smith and Dickson will make their debuts this weekend.

  • If Hall does get named, should I get him in?

  • Will Sam Kerridge play?

    • Really unlikely, Crows have not 1 injured player. So breaking into that best 22(21) will be very difficult for the kid.

  • how long is luke parker expected to be out for?

  • Tom Couch has been upgraded

  • thought on Callinan? He’s also a rookie who’s just been elevated. I’m going for Callinan over Porplyzia with the view that Callinan will present himself more than Porps up the ground. I just hope he doesn’t get green vest fever!


  • “The big-bodied ruckman are the ones that’ll worry Giles the most (even see him sidelined some weeks, I reckon, with Sheedy opting for Brogan instead)”

    Giles isn’t exactly a small dude. He’s 200cm/99kg. If he can handle Mumford, I can’t see him getting monstered by anyone other than Sandi.

    • Everyone keeps saying that big bodied ruckmen will put Giles on the bench… he held his own against Mummy who is a best of a man! He should be ok most weeks.

      • Yeah, was clumisly trying to make the same point… if they’re the ones that we antipate he’ll have the most trouble with, and he’s scored okay, then bolsters my confidence in him.

  • Any chance Lee Spurr will make it off the rookie list, and play round 1?.. Just not sure if I should put Morris in or wait and see if Spurr gets elevated..

  • Good to see Ellis named on the wing $$$$

  • Didn’t anyone realise that Giles and Cox have the bye at the same time?

    If Redden and Stephenson are both out then oh noes no ruckmanz

  • Assuming both couch and Aaron hall get named, who would you go for?

  • Please help me!
    I have Bugg as my emergency in my Backline atm and I want cash out on his 97 but im not sure who to get out, my backline is: H.Shaw | B.Deledio | B.Waters | R.Conca | R.Hargrave | M.Clarke | B.Ellis | Bench: T.Bugg (E) | J.Townsend

    • Think about what your doing in the bigger picture for a second.

      Your playing a non playing player who will…

      1) Have to be traded out if they don’t get games
      2) Loose out on at least 1 round worth of value for that player – probably more
      3) Missing out on the profit of the player you took out (Ie Ellis/Morris) to get the score

      Unless your picking someone with good JS who is just missing round one due to a ban, you are burning a trade and losing cash for a GWS player that will probably avg 70 over the season.

      Just be content you had him. Your not playing anyone this round? whats the big deal.

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