Numbers… it’s what DT is all about. Price changes; averages; break-evens… the list goes on. In what is now the final week before the beginning of Season 2012, I’ve stripped the records clean and scoured the AFL for some numbers different to those we spend our days staring at… Staring at in the hope that one day we’ll all of sudden have a magic epiphany; and all of the secrets of the DT Universe will be revealed.
Let’s have a looks at this week by the numbers…
5 – the number of Giants I currently have in my squad for 2012. With some opting for up to 6/7 in their 30, the new kids on the block should dominate team lists as did the Suns last year. Personally, I’m with TBetta and think the ‘right amount’ is between 3-5 Giants (all rookies of course). Too many and you’ll be cussing at Sheedy when his well documented ‘rotation policy’ comes into effect; too few and you’ll be missing out on some of the best Cash Cows the DT world will ever see. Let me know your ‘number’ in the comments.
8 – predicted finish for the Adelaide Crows in 2012. Whilst many conform to the view that NAB Cup form means nothing (and in some cases I agree), the statistics don’t lie: 19 of the past 24 preseason cup winners have gone onto make the top 8 that year. This can only mean good things for the Crows chances in the coming season.
8.9 – % of coaches willing to give Khunt another go in 2012. After showing next to nothing in his first year in the AFL, he is touted for a midfield role this season, which should see him put up some decent numbers. However still… really? With young guns like Bugg and Darley from GWS; as well as Morris and Ellis from Richmond; plus Smedts (Cats) and Clarke (Pies) is he really worth the extra risk?
10 – combined number of 100+ individual scores recorded against GWS and the Suns on Saturday, showing once again that there will be plenty of big numbers put on the new boys in 2012. Whilst the Gold Coast is one more year along, they are clearly not exempt from this as they will once again be a favourite opponent for DT Captains this season.
15 – possible number of debutantes that could be named for GWS for Saturday’s inaugural clash with Sydney. In what will be the most inexperienced line up fielded by an AFL team in a long time, Kevin Sheedy’s charges will be out to be competitive in what could be an absolute massacre. Its just lucky for them they don’t have to play Collingwood first up.
42 – amount of hitouts by Swans ruckman Shane Mumford v Gold Coast. With a final score of 133, Mummy has shown that he is ready for a massive year as he looks to establish himself as one of the elite big men in the AFL. Let’s just hope he can stay away from the Judiciary this year.
75 – % time spent on ground by Giants veteran James McDonald on the weekend. On paper, it seems he has done little to sway coaches to pick him this year; however upon careful inspection (and after playing the full 4 quarters for the first time this preseason) it appears that Kevin Sheedy has been slowly building up JMac’s fitness to be ready for Saturday night’s season opener. Given the Giants will already be lacking AFL-hardened players, McDonald’s leadership and guidance will be critical to how the young boys from Western Sydney fare.
95 – points scored by Carlton big man, Matthew Kreuzer v North on the weekend. He has shown promising form during the NAB Cup in what has been an otherwise forgettable preseason for the Blues. Given his awkward price tag of $326k, Kreuz will provide coaches a real headache in their rucks as he gives a glimpse of what could be his breakout season in 2012.
150 – my predicted score for Adam Goodes this weekend against GWS. Whilst many will use the Vice-Captain loophole as insurance, Goodes may very well top score in Round 1 in what should be the highest DT scoring Swans score sheet we are likely to see in 2012. Watch out for him in Calvin’s Captains this week!
44,902 – the record for the largest crowd attendance for a debut club’s opening H&A match. Preliminary numbers indicate the Giants are expecting between 40-45,000 fans to attend their stand alone fixture versus the Swans, in what will hopefully be a great start to the season.
Whore of the Week
After a meagre preseason campaign, Crows reigning B&F winner Scott Thompson put in a timely reminder to coaches on the weekend in a display that is sure to rocket him into calculations once again. In an arguably b.o.g. performance, he scored 135 points; which came from 27 disposals, 6 marks, 11 tackles and 1.0 goal. Special mention to Jack Riewoldt and Brett Deledio, who both topped the 140 mark against GWS on the weekend. In what is likely to be a precursor to Saturday’s Sydney Derby, 5 Tigers topped the 100 mark, with Jumping Jack and Lids the best of the lot. Coaches shouldn’t take too much out of this match though, as the performance was against a very inexperienced, injury affected Giants side. Given Richmond’s opening draw, don’t expect these kind of numbers regularly from the Tigers in 2012.
This is the player who has attracted the largest attention (or close to) and subsequent selection in people’s teams around the grounds in any given week. Given the season proper is still yet to kick off, there is no data for % ownership changes yet. However the first Coach’s Pet of 2012 goes to GWS big man Jonathan Giles. From Port Adelaide discard to Dream Team fame, the 24 year old has the hopes (and expectations) of the entire DT world on his shoulders as he looks to make the most of his chance in 2012. Currently in 48.2% of teams (2nd only to Buddy Franklin), he is surely the most selected rookie in recent history. With a lot of potential; and now some decent NAB form to back it up, time will tell if he lives up to the hype and becomes a rookie sensation.
Based on a simple Dollars/Points ratio, I give you a simple way to display value (admittedly biased towards rookies given their low starting cost).
Since appearing on Kevin Sheedy’s prospective R1 team list back in February, he hasn’t done a whole lot to convince us to pick him. However after an impressive 22 disposal, 97 point outing against Richmond on the weekend, Giants rookie Adam Kennedy gives us the most to smile about this week. He will only cost you $1,074.23 per point scored and will likely be a great cash cow for 2012. Available to pick as a DPP MID/FWD, Kennedy should be considered for a spot in your squad come Thursday’s partial lockout. Whilst he’s got plenty of wraps already, I feel obliged to note popular rookie ruck Jonathan Giles, who comes close on the value scale costing only $1,154.90 per point for his 102 on the weekend – all but confirming a spot as the # 2 ruck for many coaches.
From the Clouds
After an injury-ravaged 2011, Lions youngster Mitchell Golby was virtually unknown coming into this season. However scores of 100, 73 and 94 (top scoring twice) have pushed the rebounding defender into the ring with fellow mid pricers Ryan Hargrave, Brian Lake, Reece Conca and Christian Howard. At just $265k he’s not a huge risk, however his ability to translate his scores into the H&A season remains to be seen. With Josh Drummond still missing through injury, Golby should get his chance to impress from Round 1. Get him in!
This is it… the final days before the 2012 season. All of your hard work and research has come down to these final few days. With only GWS and Sydney on show this weekend, we will have to wait another week to see our full team perform. However it should be enough to whet our appetites for what should be a massive year. Just remember – once the partial lockout is enforced, your Giants and Swans will be stuck in their position as they are at that time. So you need to decide if you’ll start Giles on field or leave him on the bench – this week!
I’d also just like to throw a few tips for 2012 out there – to get in before the season starts. Hawthorn for the premiership; Scott Pendlebury for the Brownlow (closely followed by Sam Mitchell); Lance Franklin for the Coleman medal and GWS to win 3 games in 2012.
Be sure to keep checking the site this week as heaps of awesome articles/tips are released to help you finalise the make up of your teams. Good luck with the first week of DT and here’s my advice (for what it’s worth): Trust your research and stick to your guns; pick with your head, not your heart; and don’t let the majority put you off a unique pick – you have to risk it to get the biscuit! Stay tuned for my ‘Numbers’ article for Round 1 in two weeks.
Feedback appreciated as always. Also – if you’re not already… follow me in the Twittersphere: @McRathDT