Shane Savage – Deck of Dream Team 2014

jan05_shanesavageName: Shane Savage
Club: St Kilda
Position: Midfielder
AFL Fantasy: $364,900
AFL Dream Team: $367,800
Bye Round: 10 (Lions, Essendon, Fremantle, Melbourne, St Kilda, Swans).
2013 Average: 67.2
2013 Games Played: 15
Predicted Average: 92

Why should I pick him?

Shane Savage made shockwaves during trade week when he landed at St Kilda. It wasn’t his departure from the Hawks that shocked the footy world though; it was that he was traded for Ben McEvoy. The Saints also landed pick a top 20 pick in the trade, but to trade out a potential future club captain suggests just how highly rated Savage is.

Savage was vested in one third of his games at the Hawks in 2013. Scores of 33, 48, 4, 34 & 30 from limited game time has seriously brought down his price. When he wasn’t substituted, Savage averaged 86pts per game, with a lowest score of 54, off-set by scores of 97, 102, 105 & 115.

The great thing about Savage is he plays a fantasy friendly role. He kicks the ball almost two and a half times more than he handballs it, and he works hard, averaging almost four tackles a game when he plays a full game, getting points even when his team isn’t in possession; something that may be very important at St Kilda.

Savage has a minimal chance of being tagged in the 2014 Saints team, with Jack Steven, Leigh Montagna and Lenny Hayes ahead of him, with Jack Newnes and Sam Fisher more likely to get the offensive shut-down player from the opposition.

Savage starts his run against AFL minnows Melbourne & GWS, so look for him to start off with a bang.

Why shouldn’t I pick him?

Any time a player changes clubs, there is always a question mark over their role and security within the clubs best 22. Although Savage should be fine to continue his running, link-up game with the Saints, there could be a question mark over his fitness, having been given the sub-vest so many times in 2013. He has been eased into pre-season training with his new club due to hip-soreness, but should be ready to go for round one.

The other major issue for Savage is his price. Although priced 20pts below his vest-free average, Shane still manages to put himself in that awkward, Midfield only, mid-priced category. The midfield should get you the most points, so the question is; are you confident Savage will score enough points over that of rookie-priced midfielders Jack Martin, Claye Beams, Jared Polec, Xavier Ellis or Dom Tyson, to justify forking out for his higher price tag?

Deck of DT Rating

QUEEN – Savage has a major upside. He’s entering his fifth year in the AFL system, and should be vest free for much of 2014 with other, younger players around him at his new club. He could be a genius pick in an AFL Draft game if available in later rounds, and he may even prove his worth in Fantasy Classic, but for me, his risks outweigh his rewards, purely due to his awkward price.

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