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Mad Monday: Ghost Protocol

Early Edition: With AFL Dream Team League Finals fast approaching, Griff takes a look ahead to discover just how much danger is on the high seas. Seamen – Stand to attention! It’s time for Mad Monday.

Welcome to tonights edition of Mad Monday. I’d like to start by telling you a little story.

In 1872, the brigantine Mary Celeste (pretty name) was found abandoned, heading for the Strait of Gibraltar (wherever the hell that is), missing her crew but otherwise intact. It was still carrying six months of supplies and somehow, it was still under sail. The last entry in the ship’s log however, was written 11 days prior to her discovery. In 2012, the AFL Dream Team ‘duffman’ is in similar circumstances. A team that is coach by a social Dream Teamer, the duffman has several supplies of trades, is still scheduled to navigate league waters, however, clearly there is no one at the helm. Both are perfect examples of Ghost Ships!

Having left Goddard, Bugg, Magner and Franklin on the field, and no emergencies set, the once workhorse like team, is now just coaxing into port like the HMAS Richmond coaxing into Cairns (too soon?). With no crew to be seen, the team should be an easy, certain victory for all opposition who come up against it on the high seas before finals (a bit like playing GWS). Scoring just 1,245 last round, the Ghost Ship Duffman, provides a percentage boosting win just ripe for the taking.

So with only three rounds to go before AFL Dream Team Finals, or more significantly, sixteen rounds into the season, for some, it has all been too much. The Hurricane of the Multi-Bye Rounds threw many coaches off course, or worse, overboard and the Long Term Injury Triangle, (located near Bermuda I believe), has caused crewmen to vanish from vessels without a trace. Seamen – the Ghost Ships are everywhere! [The End]

Navigating league seas are difficult at the best of times, hell, in one of my social leagues I’m sitting fourth overall on points and yet I’m languishing a mere 14th on the ladder. Luckily for me, when I look at my run home, I have the ride of the perfect storm. Three teams that for one reason or another have nobody left at the helm. Due to these Ghost Ships I could still make the finals; and from there, anything could happen.

So are these Ghost Ships a good, or bad thing for the game? Their bad, that’s a stupid question! What are you at a Karmichael Hunt press conference asking if a kick to win just four premiership points in front of 11,000 (against the Suns ‘bunny team’) compares to scoring the last second, match winning try in international rugby in front of a crowd of 40,000? Ahem. Anyway, in a luck of the draw scenario, some teams will benefit greatly from these Ghost Ships, smashing out a 500 point win against the same team, who if they had played in round two, would have beaten them by 80 points. If you draw them, you’re lucky, if you don’t you’re not. The real danger lies in mistaken identity.

Alas, not all Ghost Ships are as safe as they appear (much like Greg Broughton’s position under Ross Lyon), and there are pirates amongst us (Don’t think Calvin, he’s a good pirate!). Do not look upon the open seas and assume that the poor scoring vessel you are approaching is unmanned, make sure you do your research and approach with caution, or before you know it’ll you’ll have a mutiny on your hands (see: Brett Ratten).

Case and point: Infamous AFL Dream Teamer TKOL had a horror round this past week, and scored a mere 1,957, around 200 points below the average of those in his league, the TKOL Challenge. Looking at this score, his next opponent may assume that he is just ghosting into seasons end. But upon closer inspection, his team contained Suckling’s 30 and Broughton’s 36, Rockliff’s 81, Cloke’s 41 and Goldstein’s 59. If these players were to score the opposing value next week to maintain their average, TKOL would be pushing closer to 2,250+ next week.

What will happen when Collingwood play GWS (in Round 18), will Sidebottom, Beams, Swan and Pendlebury even play? Could you have less crew than a Ghost Ship just two weeks out from finals? What about the Crows run home? Will Sanderson still look at resting key players like Thompson, Dangerfield or Jacobs? Or worse, does the Ghost Ship contain the souls of Marc MurphyNat Fyfe, Hamish McIntosh or Aaron Sandilands, left dormaint but ready to attack from beyond the grave when you are most vulnerable?

This game has never been easy, and Ghost Ships add more luck to a draw than most, so take them as they come. If you are going for league wins, don’t trade on the weeks you only need 1,400 to win, and if you are captain of a Ghost Ship, log in and cause as much chaos with all those trades as possible.

So as you set sail towards the finals, look at your draw, and for those who can still trade, ensure you use them wisely. Do not assume that the 14th ranked team will not score well, and do not assume Ghost Ships are all they appear. For those who draw the perfect storm, ride your good luck, and for those who have given up on league finals, give those who want the league win as much hell and fury as the Kraken being chicken winged by Chris Judd!

All this posses the questions; how many Ghost Ships are in your league? How is your run home looking? And how are you shaping up for AFL Dream Team finals? Share you thoughts scallywags!

Keep Dreaming,


Born Adelaide, Lived Darwin, Resides Canberra. A Crows fan as a child, I have became a big supporter of the GWS Giants in their foundation year. I love my footy, multimedia design and beer(s).



  1. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 3:25 pm

    hahaha judd owners will most likely cop a minimum 5 weeks, dirty play.

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      July 16, 2012 at 4:37 pm

      5 weeks? You are delusional

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        July 16, 2012 at 5:02 pm

        he went straight to the tribunal, that’s just what people have been saying, don’t kill the messenger.

        • feathertopDT


          July 16, 2012 at 5:15 pm

          Idiot. You’re delusional. Throwing stones at a giant. Everyone does it, he is one of the greatest players of all time and any indiscretion and everyone hammers him. Leigh Adams has a dislocated shoulder. I’ve had a bad one myself and getting out of bed the wrong way can pop it out… Judd deserves 1 to 2 weeks but 5….Turn it up

          • Avatar


            July 16, 2012 at 5:35 pm

            Now i know you’re a little arse-sore carlton supporter who is devastated that his team has gone to shit and won’t even make finals, but just chill out. Even with all those years of tanking you’re still left with only a few good players.
            You’re the stereotypical carlton supporter who can’t see that Judd is only a shadow of his former self when he was back in his prime. For the record i think Judd is a great player, but to praise him as your god as shown by your little hissy fit is simply pathetic. You are the delusional one.
            But let’s see what the tribunal think you wuss.

          • Avatar


            July 16, 2012 at 5:37 pm


          • The Butcher

            The Butcher

            July 16, 2012 at 5:37 pm

            3 weeks for the eye gouging, pressure point, shoulder dislocation ornament of the game.

          • steve


            July 16, 2012 at 6:12 pm

            he might be one of the great players of our era but if you think that justifies yanking someones arm out of its socket when they are pinned under a pack and unable to defend themselves then you my friend are an absolute knob jockey. and yes he will get 4 weeks maybe hes just frustrated at playin in such a shit team.

          • Avatar


            July 16, 2012 at 6:52 pm

            Just look at his past, littered with cheap shots and fucking pokes into eye-balls. I mean wtf, you want to hurt someone, give em a bump not fucking gouging their eyes or dislocating their shoulders

          • feathertopDT


            July 16, 2012 at 7:01 pm

            Hissy fit? Wow take a look in the mirror man..
            Anyway, i agree that Judd deserves weeks I never said he didn’t if you read it properly. But Juddy is one of the nicest and smartest guys going around and this attack on his character is not justified.

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            July 16, 2012 at 7:22 pm

            Look at his history…pressure points???? Your arguments got as much weight as a fart feathertop.. carlton for 11th..just!

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            July 16, 2012 at 9:14 pm

            This whole attack on Judd is ridiculous! He’s one of the great champion’s of the game and many non-Carlton supporters are using this incident as an opportunity to take pot shot’s at his character and reputation as a person. There’s no doubt the horrible chicken wing incident deserves weeks, but it was NO worse than Taylor Walker’s dangerous sling tackle on Morris, these things happen on the footy field and Judd will be punished for it. But attacking Judd as an individual? Did he sleep wih a teammates wife like Carey…no. Did he end up in rehab due to constant drug obuse like Cousins…no. He’s a respected leader and elite player and these arguments regarding Judd’s character reek of cheap shot’s from people jealous of all the praise Judd receives, seriously, look up ‘tall poppy syndrone’ on google.

            By the way, i’m a Hawthron supporter.

          • Avatar


            July 17, 2012 at 8:13 am

            Elbowing, pressure points, eye gouging, now this, hardly the behaviour of a champion. Time for paybacks with 5+

    • Avatar

      Robb Stark

      July 16, 2012 at 5:46 pm

      I want him to get five to be honest.

      • Avatar


        July 16, 2012 at 6:15 pm

        Yeah 4-5 weeks I reckon.

        I dont care what club you support, we all saw the footage.

        Judd, of all people, should understand what acts like this can do to a persons shoulders.

        • Avatar


          July 16, 2012 at 6:54 pm

          If I got away with winning a brownlow after splitting an eyebrow open with my elbow intentionally, I would feel invincible too.

  2. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 4:33 pm

    Hey boys, is it time to bring in marc murphy with judd going out of the side, and his cheap price?

    • Avatar


      July 16, 2012 at 4:37 pm

      He’ll get tagged like a mofo with Simpson and Judd out of the side.. If you want a real risk maybe Gibbs as I can’t think of anyone else who would going into the middle in Judd/Simpson replacement

      • Avatar


        July 16, 2012 at 5:00 pm

        Based on most of this year, Ratten will throw Thornton into the midfield before Gibbs. Gibbs either has allergies to the paint they use for the centre circle, or he is possessed and thinks the circle is a demon trap which will drag him back to hell. These are the only explanations I have for Gibbs fixed backline position.

        That said, Murphy will be tagged. I’d look at someone like Redden, Pendles, or even Selwood into the fold if you don’t want to run the Murphy tag risk.

        • feathertopDT


          July 16, 2012 at 5:21 pm

          Hell Gibbs plays more back than Darren ‘Chained to the goalpost’ Glass…

          • Avatar


            July 16, 2012 at 6:33 pm

            question: i’ve got 4 trades left. if i trade gibbs > murphy next week it’ll finish my team (if Gibbs wasn’t such a spud this year my team wld already be finished…). but leave me with 3 trades for the finals. It’ll be virtually cash neutral to do this and I’ll have about $110k left over as well. my benchwarmers are all getting games each week as well. good idea?

  3. Avatar

    Ridley U

    July 16, 2012 at 4:39 pm

    Sensational Griff!!! Some of your best work.

    My team might as well become a Ghost Ship this year with many so called decent players doing their best impersonations of ghosts haha

    I do reckon your writing skills are lost on many though…..

    • Avatar


      July 16, 2012 at 5:03 pm

      Cheers mate. I rely shd kp mi txting ezy 2 reed 4 da kidz. but 2 hard bro.

  4. Avatar

    The Croweater

    July 16, 2012 at 4:48 pm

    Good read Griff, very enjoyable.

    Do you guys think McEvoy can continue his good form?

    He is averaging over 100 in his past 3 and they were against pretty decent teams/ruckmen: 113 v NM (Goldy), 91 v Ess (Ryder/Hille) and 100 v BL (Hudson) He is $80k cheaper than the other guy I can trade in, Maric but he only averaged 80 in his first 5 games before he was injured.

    Also, what do people think of Tom Derickx’s influence on Maric’s scores?

    In their only game together, Maric scored one of his lowest scores this season in 88 against Melbourne (shit) without their best ruckman Jamar. However, it could be because of fatigue and the rest could mean he can come out firing for the rest of the season.

  5. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 4:49 pm

    With guaranteed top spot in my league (even if I lose next 3) and 9 trades left, should I save 8 incase I’m in all 4 finals or use 3 to upgrade before the finals and leave myself with 6?

    • Avatar


      July 16, 2012 at 4:56 pm

      Firstly, wow!
      Secondly… Personally If I were in your position I would only trade if someone is about to explode, or bottom out, and you really want them! Eg, Goodes last week, Murphy next week, etc. Based on how the year has gone, a comet will hit the round 22 West Coast v. Collingwood game, and you’ll need a few trades to bandage the damage come Prelim/Grand Final.

      • Avatar


        July 16, 2012 at 5:29 pm

        thanks for your help, I thought everyone would save trades for the finals?? I’ve been pretty lucky with injuries though

        • Avatar


          July 16, 2012 at 6:19 pm

          I want to see your team firstly! 9 trades and a complete team? Can’t be true!

    • Slappers


      July 16, 2012 at 5:03 pm

      i would upgrade before finals…

      having 6 trades in finals… your a lucky son-of-a-______

  6. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 5:03 pm

    Thanks Griff, you’re always a good read!

    What do people think about Gumbleton’s JS? I know Crameri, Hurley, Zaharakis and Ryder will all more than likely come back into the team in the next couple weeks but he played a pretty decent game.

    He’s a little bit dear but he’s an option for me to make Cloke -> Beams a possibility!

  7. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 5:15 pm

    not quiet a ‘ghost ship’, but one of my team mates wives, has put a team in where she selected the bottom price players from each position. (most 85k)
    Liz;s Ladies.
    She has zorko, Sam dunell, and Dellolio for a score for 324.
    so she must have had zorko as captain.

  8. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 5:18 pm

    Awesome piece Griff, one of my fave’s on this site :D

    I’m a little concerned about Broughton’s immediate JS at the moment. Well aware I was buying into a rollercoaster (part of the fun of DT) but for now it’s feeling more like a gravitron after too many dagwood dogs at the show! Now contemplating upgrading him and playing Shaw/Spurr as my seventh defender for the rest of the year (my main cash league is pretty weak).

    Keep up the great work, it is much appreciated by many for sure!

    • Avatar


      July 16, 2012 at 6:03 pm

      Broughton is following the Duffield path of doom

  9. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 6:19 pm


    Ghost ship my arse, lol, ;)

    • Avatar


      July 16, 2012 at 7:37 pm

      Oh we’re on in dreamteamtalk. Yeah those guys are ghot ships, lol. ;)

      • Avatar


        July 16, 2012 at 7:39 pm


    • Avatar


      July 17, 2012 at 9:33 am

      Haha. It’s actually two pirates and a ghost ship I am up against, and not in the Dream-Stats league. That one I’ll limp into the finals like the Crows in the Naughties.

  10. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 6:23 pm

    Yeah good read Griff!

    2 players who have made my DT2012 experience painful, Hargrave and Broughton.

    Both could have easily been Lake and Birchall at team selection. Here’s to POD :,(

    • Avatar

      Just Go Bang!

      July 16, 2012 at 10:22 pm

      Tell me about it. Sick of those two names. Luckily I can leave one of them in D8, or even D9 behind Sam Shaw… tempting.

  11. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 6:40 pm

    Great Article!!

    Can anyone explain to me why this does not work:

    Drummond selected to trade out of team. Opens a DEF spot in team.

    Michael Johnson subbed from FWD to DEF. Opens a FWD spot in team.

    Adam Kennedy subbed from MID to FWD. Opens a MID spot in team to trade in Marc Murphy.

    Why can’t this be accomplished with one trade??? It will not let me sub Kennedy to the FWD line after the first 2 steps.

    Thanks in advance.

    • Avatar


      July 16, 2012 at 7:16 pm

      The problem is that you still have Kennedy, should’ve been long gone.

      • Avatar


        July 16, 2012 at 7:19 pm

        Don’t give stupid advice. It is ones like you that lower the quality of awesome sites like DT Talk.

        Does anyone have real advice on the problem???

        • Avatar


          July 16, 2012 at 7:23 pm

          Lol, that was some advice. Obviously virtual sports coding doesn’t allow multiple substitutions coz they probably didn’t consider it as an option. So your stuck with it.

    • Avatar


      July 17, 2012 at 8:18 am

      I emailed them re this, response was double subs not allowed. I hope they change it next year, it cost me a trade.

  12. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 6:47 pm

    Great article Griff! Very funny and oh so true. We have one in a very competitive DT Talk Guns league. Shame because he dragged our ranking down.
    We will put that in the memory bank for next year.

  13. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 6:52 pm

    Is it just my iPhone that I can’t reply to specific comments or questions? There doesnt seem to be a button to reply, just the text box which places your comment in time order. It’s a bit annoying when you are wanting to give a suggestion or comment on a specific question/ statement.

    • Avatar

      The Croweater

      July 16, 2012 at 7:15 pm

      The mobile version of DT Talk doesn’t let you reply to comments, only post.

      However, somewhere there should be a link that says turn off mobile version or use normal version or something like that. When you click that, it will give you the normal version of DT Talk (computer version) which will work as per usual.

      Hope this helped.

  14. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 6:53 pm

    RL, the Strait of Gibraltar is the entrance to the Mediterranean Sea, one of the most important waterways in the world.

    Gee, I hope your DT skills are better than your geography when we meet in round 18. :-)

    • Avatar


      July 17, 2012 at 9:32 am

      Sarcasm. But yes, I really need some late season wins! Maybe next year I should host a DTTalk Rookie league and just carve up (Not really – I’ll still find a way to lose my league games). Bring it on.

  15. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 7:08 pm

    very good , funny readgriff : I could be a different ghost ship soon — no trades but still going well at this time : 2306 with godes martin buddy on the pine on the weekend and 2182 overall : no trades i hear you all say but my goal was to finish in the top 1,000!! did some outstanding trades during the season chad , zac , dids , waite murph goodes to name a few – anyway it will be interesting to see how long i last. I will keeping posting on mondays – .

    i saw the earlier post from the guy with 9 trades and a full team i would love to see that team

    good luck back to the ship with no trades

  16. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 7:14 pm

    So do I upgrade Broughton or Hargrave? Would love to upgrade both! And who would I get? Anyone except Goddard, Lids, Birch, Scotland or Carrots.

  17. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 7:15 pm

    Nice write up Griff, I admit that my ship was ghost like for a few weeks, but am now back at the helm, ignoring all icebergs and throttling up to “Fast”

    Iceberg right ahead…what?

    • Avatar


      July 16, 2012 at 7:40 pm

      You are carving now mate!

  18. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 7:27 pm

    Thanks Croweater!

  19. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 7:32 pm

    One trade left. Three Options

    1. Trade Townsend to Broughton, Rhyce Shaw, Taylor or Gilbee

    2. Trade Marley Williams to Couch, Didak, Christantion or Joel Corey

    3. Keep for the General come finals time

    All opinions, comments or alternatives welcome and will be taken into account

    Cheers in advance

    • Avatar


      July 16, 2012 at 7:46 pm

      get the best dt player you can. read my earlier post – i have no trades maybe best
      to wait a couple of weeks to see what happens

    • Avatar


      July 16, 2012 at 8:15 pm

      None of those are very good options and worthy.

      Option 1. I am trying to get rid of Broughton, you wanna trade him in?

      None of the people (and price range) you are looking at are worth it.

      So hold dearly onto that last trade you have until someone falls over.

      • Avatar


        July 16, 2012 at 10:38 pm

        Agree, hold the trade just in case one of you’re gun players goes down with injury, or has a brain fart like Heater and places a bet.

        • Avatar


          July 17, 2012 at 1:20 am

          If you want a Broughton you can have mine.

  20. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 8:36 pm

    Judd is a doosh

  21. Avatar


    July 16, 2012 at 9:17 pm

    Cheers Griff, as always an enjoyable read.

    Ghost ships? Haven’t seem any mate. :P

  22. Brak


    July 17, 2012 at 1:05 am

    I hate when you see that ghost ship ahead next round, your team is struggling with injuries and suspensions and needs an easy win to cement that top 4 spot and you start thinking about how good your percentage will be, then suddenly it returns from the dead with a double trade whammy and scrapes into the 8 with 10 or so trades left just as your players start to get rested.

  23. Avatar


    July 17, 2012 at 10:58 am

    Great work Griff,

    As Demetriou would say, “it is not a draw, but a fix-ture”. I have had a dream run to date, but playing 3 hard games against “Tryers”. Already cemented in top 4 so looking towards finals. A real issue for some though will be trades – some of these Ghost Ships have many trades left. If the coach reappears and makes 2 trades each week, your final game might be against a side with 6 new ultra-Premos in it. If your team has no trades a couple of players visit KFC or sleep in, or get The General then you could be without 6 Premos – BIG turn around and your team could turn into the Costa Concordia!!!

    Keep up the good work.

  24. Avatar


    July 17, 2012 at 2:34 pm

    we had a ghost ship last season and he had about 14 trades with 6 rounds remaining and one of his mates who was awesome at dream team took over and with about 4 rounds to go the ghost ship was full steam ahead racking decent scores. I was bordering 8th and 9th position with percentage being the factor, and played the beefed up ghost ship and managed to win but only by a few points. guys who had played him earlier in the season though were thrashing him by a few hundred and had way higher percentages and so ended up 9th on percentage. very very annoying…

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