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The Talking Point: Dane Swan

Three hours ago, if you told me that in the lead-up to the first week of DT finals, the highest scoring player in the competition would be suspended for getting pissed on a Sunday, I would have told you to **** yourself.

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Three hours ago, if you told me that in the lead-up to the first week of DT finals, the highest scoring player in the competition would be suspended for getting pissed on a Sunday, I would have told you to **** yourself.

But here we are. With qualifying and elimination finals on the horizon, Dane Swan will miss two pivotal games against Sydney and North Melbourne and has left a large portion of coaches sweating in anger. However, to those with a few trades up their sleeves, now is your chance to gain some handy leverage over the competition.

If you are in possession of two or more trades, then I think the right call is to trade him. Being the most expensive player in the competition at $617,900, you can pick from any midfielder you please. Let’s look at some of the main options.

Gary Ablett ($574,600)

If you don’t have him, then this is a no-brainer. The little master boasts the second-largest average in the competition (behind Swan), averaging 126.31 points for the year and 141.7 over his last three games. No need to analyse the Suns’ draw or anything else for that matter, just pick him.

Scott Thompson ($455,100)

If you’re looking for a smoky, then I reckon Thompson’s your best bet. His current owners won’t be happy, as this ‘smoky’ appears certain to increase in popularity. Not only because he’s scored the seventh most points in the competition and has an average of 107.78 points per game, but his fixture over the next four rounds is quite enticing – apart from this week.

Thompson comes up against the Fremantle Dockers and Ryan Crowley this Saturday afternoon at AAMI Park. Last time the Crows met the Dockers was round 10 at Paterson’s Stadium, where Crowley troubled Thompson all day to the point where he was moved deep into the forward line – which didn’t help. Thompson finished with 65 points, his second-lowest score of the season. However, the Dockers still lost this game by 29 points, largely due to Rory Sloane running amuck and kicking three goals to go with his 33 possessions. Though I think it’s unlikely that Ross Lyon will change the choice of tag, Thompson had scores of 154 and 143 the last two times he played the Dockers prior to this year, so if he is allowed some roomthen we know what he is capable of. If you are in danger of elimination this week then perhaps tread carefully, however if you are confident you will remain in Grand Final contention after the completion of round 20, then there are certainly benefits to be had.

After Freo, the Crows play Brisbane at the Gabba, Melbourne at the MCG then the Gold Coast at AAMI Park in what should all be solid victories for the Crows and Thompson. Though I can empathise with fears that he may be rested, I would think it’s unlikely as a home final in Adelaide could well be decided by percentage.

A gamble that could decide your premiership fate.

Dayne Beams ($514,700)

2012 has seen Beams emerge as a star player of the competition, averaging 114.18 points per game and being the sixth highest-scoring player of the year. When Swan missed games in rounds nine and 10 of this year, Beams scored 132 and 98 points against the Crows and Suns respectively. In the run home, the Pies play Sydney at ANZ Stadium, North at Etihad, West Coast at Paterson’s and the Bombers at the ‘G. You can speculate over how much extra attention Beams will receive in the next two weeks in the absence of Swan, and you can try to analyse whether or not the Pies have a good run home; the bottom line is this kid is a gun,and it will not surprise me one bit if he scores the most points between now and the end of the season.

If you don’t have him, now is the time to put an end to the pain he would have been causing you.

Looking elsewhere?

Aside from these three options, Jobe Watson, Matthew Boyd, Scott Pendlebury and Joel Selwood look the next best bets. Watson is very reliable and will do whatever it takes to hold onto the Bombers’ spot inside the top eight. Boyd has enormous scoring potential and will continue to soldier on in what has been a tough year for the Bulldogs. Pendlebury seems to have been forgotten as an elite DTer and will likely remind us all by season’s end, while Joel Selwood will continue to thrive as the Cats continue to grow stronger heading into September.

All are good selections.

If you’re down to your last trade

If you have sufficient cover, or just don’t like the idea of departing with your final trade(s), then holding onto Swan is completely reasonable. You know he is going to explode when he comes back, and in the mean time Sam Gibson, Adam Treloar and Devon Smith are doing an incredible job of providing bench cover. The trade you save now could be used to greater effect deeper into the finals.

If you’ve run out of trades

Don’t panic, so have most of us. Swear at something then cross your fingers that your bench cover will step up to the plate and adequately fill the void. If your bench cover is non-existent, don’t worry, just hope that your opponent’s cover is even shakier than yours.

Any questions or discussion via twitter @tomcraigie



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    August 7, 2012 at 8:24 pm

    Jack Anthony??

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      Big Feller

      August 7, 2012 at 8:33 pm

      Maybe Tom Libratore!

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        The x Factor

        August 7, 2012 at 10:22 pm

        may be able to sneak zac dawson in with a bit of dpp magic!!!!!!

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    August 7, 2012 at 8:27 pm

    0 trades left, no Swan.

    Life is grand.

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      August 7, 2012 at 8:34 pm

      I thought it was only $500. But enjoy anyway.

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        August 7, 2012 at 9:38 pm

        You are correct sir.

        DTLife is half a grand…….

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      August 7, 2012 at 8:40 pm

      come at me Jungle

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        Austin Pwrz

        August 8, 2012 at 10:33 am

        please keep your sex talk to a minimum

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      The x Factor

      August 7, 2012 at 10:23 pm

      lets see what your’e saying about no trades come three weeks time! :p

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    August 7, 2012 at 8:28 pm

    No trades,. swan AND stanton on my mid bench.
    as long as franklin and robbo both play ill be ok with gibson and treloar covering (and in stantons case outscoring) my premos on the bench

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    August 7, 2012 at 8:28 pm

    Thoughts on Cotchin? Any reason why he wasn’t mentioned?

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      Tom Craigie

      August 7, 2012 at 9:17 pm

      Nothing wrong with Cotchin, he and Mitchell would have been the next players named.

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    August 7, 2012 at 8:29 pm

    ‎3 trades left, sitting 5-8 in all my leagues.
    This week Swan to Murphy/Harvey, Darley to Scotland.
    Next week Hanley to Waters.
    Leaves me with no trades left but a full side with ok bench coverage. Ellis, S Shaw, Gibson, couch, N Riewoldt, T Adams.
    Good trades/bad trades??

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    August 7, 2012 at 8:36 pm

    3 trades left.
    sitting 5-8 in all my leagues.
    This week Swan to Murphy, Darley to Scotland.
    Next week Hanley to Waters.

    Leaves me with no trades but a finished side with OK bench coverage. Ellis, S Shaw. Gibson, Couch. N Rievoldt, T adams.

    Good trades/Bad trades???


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    August 7, 2012 at 8:42 pm

    does anyone have any news on stanton getting up this week?

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      August 8, 2012 at 5:16 pm

      flying High,
      went looking for info on Stants.

      Had a laugh at how the cynicism is universal by fans, toward their clubs injury estimations.

      In other’s impossible to tell, but the club says they expect him to play this week after resting him with the General. hmm

      and the Big Footy fans, think that’s hilarious, and that he has a nick in his hammy, which might mean, up to 3 weeks.

      Darn. I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

      I might end up trading him out, and benching Swan.

      Soooo dificult. :-D

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    i still believe in you gumbleton

    August 7, 2012 at 8:42 pm

    sam mitchell?

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    August 7, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    TEAM NAME: Whatagreatteam
    DEF: H. Scotland, B. Goddard, C. Enright, B. Deledio, M. Suckling, D. Heppell, B. Lake (S. Shaw, T. Bell)
    MID: D. Swan, M. Boyd, G. Ablett jnr, J. Selwood, J. Redden, B. Gibbs (A. Miles, S. Gibson)
    RUC: D. Cox, B. McEvoy (J. Giles, O. Stephenson)
    FWD: M. Pavlich, R. O’Keefe, M. Robinson, D. Martin, S. Sidebottom, P. Dangerfield, D. Zorko (J. Cameron, A. Treloar)
    CASH LEFT: $-2,053,900

    Sitting 3rd on ladder
    4 trades left
    $229.600 cash

    trading Lake to Waters this week.
    Opponent has Swan and Gibson for cover as well.

    Was thinking of keeping Swan as I have Gibson to cover for him as well as the second chance.
    Your thoughts?

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      August 7, 2012 at 10:54 pm

      yea ur team name is a contradiction, but other than that it’s a great team :p

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      August 7, 2012 at 10:57 pm

      Yeah, your team name is a contradiction, that being said trading lake to waters will contradict my previous statement

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    August 7, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    For those of us that finished top 4 and have reasonable cover It would be madness to trade the pig. He will be back for the prelim and grandly pushing out 160’s… I’m holding.

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      August 7, 2012 at 9:08 pm

      Totally agree. Madness to trade him. Gibbo can cover for 2 weeks. :)

      oh yeah, FU SWANNY!

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        August 8, 2012 at 1:30 am

        This forces my hand. Upgrade martin -> Thompson or Watson

        Upgrade porps -> Fyfe.

        Bench swan.

        Will have only 2 trades left, but hopefully some breathing space next week with no game to play.

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    August 7, 2012 at 8:53 pm

    Porps to Fyfe, DPP Fyfe with Couch to midfield, hold Swan. Be nice if Buddy/Robinson play. Given Fyfes price..good option

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    The x Factor

    August 7, 2012 at 8:58 pm


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    August 7, 2012 at 9:09 pm

    That’s the best news I have had all week!!!!

    For all of those that have the pig (which happens to be everyone in all of the leagues that I am) I am truly sorry! Horse Shit!!!!


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      August 7, 2012 at 9:29 pm

      Laugh now, because if you make the pre-lims Swanny will lay the smack down upon thee without mercy! ;)

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        August 7, 2012 at 10:53 pm

        The thing is Boomer that the pig is my final upgrade.

        Sort of hoped that at some point he would have a few bad games and i could pick him up a little cheaper (during the season). Now however I don’t need to pick him up to the preliminary which hopefully gives me a slighter easier run going in the first week of finals whilst most hold him (i would imagine).

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    August 7, 2012 at 9:14 pm

    I reckon it all comes down to where you are on the ladder really. That and if you have some trades up your sleeve (2+).

    If your in the top four and have some decent cover, I’d say holding would be the best option. However, if your in the bottom 5-8, even with cover, I’d say trading is the way to go.

    Need the best possible output possible if you don’t have that fall back semi final I say.

  15. Brak


    August 7, 2012 at 9:20 pm

    Gibson or Martin to start? I’m not trading out Swan, was expecting him to be rested so at least it is in the first two weeks and I have decent cover.

    If buddy not back Porps to Fyfe (although crows say porps will play, he wont outscore fyfe)

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      August 7, 2012 at 9:27 pm

      I’m starting Gibbo over Martin, Gibbo’s in great form whilst Dusty’s form is merely solid, I just don’t trust Dusty to get the job done as much as Gibbo.

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    August 7, 2012 at 9:56 pm

    didint have swan all year.. figuring he will have to be out eventually for some reason. need to win last week to make top 4, trade swan in for stanton last week.

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      August 8, 2012 at 1:41 am

      Did the same thing mate. No Swan all year thinking the same thing, then bring him last week & WTF??!!
      Still don’t have him in SCoach, asked the question a couple of weeks ago if I could win the league without him.. I’m just now starting to dream…

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    PurpleArmy (aka Space Goats)

    August 7, 2012 at 9:57 pm

    Swanny can play VFL in the 2nd week of his suspension….Geez if he actually tried he’d get 60-70 possesions….haha

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    August 7, 2012 at 10:07 pm

    Collingwood players having major brain fart’s during the business end of the season is becoming a disturbing trend.

    Didak, then Didak & Heater, then Heater again, now Swanny, who will it be next year?

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    August 7, 2012 at 10:17 pm

    What should I do?? Please Help.

    Have pulled off some good scores am sitting 4th and versing 1st.
    If I win I can afford to hold onto Swan as I will have the week off.

    Def: Deledio, Scotland, Carrazzo, Goddard, M.Johnson, J.Gram, Ellis ( BROUGHTON, )

    Mid: SWAN, Ablett, Scotty T, Mitchell, Jelwood, Boyd ( Gibson, J MAC )

    Rucks: Cox, McEvoy ( redden, campbell )

    Fwds: Sidebottom, Dangerfield, Franklin, Chapman, Martin, C.Pearce, Zorko ( Treloar, D.Smith )

    2 TRADES LEFT !!

    Should I go Swan > Beams and save last trade or also get in Birchall.
    Or swan bench gibson cover. C.Pearce > Fyfe.
    Or Swan > Fyfe and Broughton > Waters.

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      August 7, 2012 at 11:09 pm

      Why one would have C.Pearce in the first place baffles me.

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      August 7, 2012 at 11:13 pm

      Don’t trade swan, Gibson is great cover. Heck, I’ve been playing him over Rockliff and with Ellis as D7, I would trade broughton to a premium defender keeping 1 trade for another FMDT moment

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    August 7, 2012 at 10:23 pm

    Bucks: Swanny, I want to rest you for a couple of games before the end of home and away.

    Swanny: No way, I have a Brownlow to win, I want to play.

    Bucks: Sorry mate, that’s my decision, we need to invent an injury for you.

    Swanny: No effing way, I refuse to lie about an injury I don’t have.

    Bucks: Righto, how about you go out and get rat-arsed on Sunday night and we’ll give you a two week club suspension.

    Swanny: Can I play VFL the second week? Promise I’ll take it easy.

    Bucks: Yeah righto.

    Swanny: Done.

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      August 7, 2012 at 11:25 pm

      Cool story bro

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        August 8, 2012 at 12:28 pm

        It’s called: light humour, bro. Obviously lost on one so cool

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    August 7, 2012 at 11:05 pm


    Pendlebury, Watson, Swallow, Cotchin


    Dangerfield, Chapman, Stevie J, Sidebottom, Pavlich


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      Rambo Tambo

      August 8, 2012 at 1:08 am

      Pendles & Stevie J/Pav, can’t split them

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    August 7, 2012 at 11:27 pm

    Hate to be a pain lads, but should i start lake or spurr on the field this week?? Dont think its worth trading with only 2 left and the inevitability of some idiot getting rested during the grandy or something like that, haha

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    August 8, 2012 at 12:01 am

    If you’ve finished top 4 and confident of winning this week keep swanny… The next game you’ll play he’ll be back smashing some massive scores.. As a said earlier you would be mad trading the biggest point earner in history!!

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    August 8, 2012 at 1:18 am


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    August 8, 2012 at 7:49 am

    Yawn. Sum of article, pick the highest averaging midfielder that you don’t already have.

    Let’s look at this a little closer. Firstly, let’s assume you want to trade Swan and you actually have the trades to do it (I used my last one a month ago). Let’s also assume it’s not your last trade, as I’d suggest you’d only use it this week if you’re top 20 overall and/or desperate to win a league game.

    You can afford anyone, with change to spare. This is the first week of finals and for anyone out of contention for the car, the game is now all about beating your mates and/or Dr Dreamteam.

    The first thing that I would do is check out the run home for each club. As follows;

    Adelaide – Freo, Bris, Melb, Suns
    Brisbane – Carl, Adel, Port, Dogs
    Carlton – Bris, Ess, Suns, Saints
    Collingwood – Syd, Nth, WCE, Ess
    Essendon – Nth, Carl, Rich, Coll
    Fremantle – Adel, Rich, Nth, Melb
    Geelong – WCE, Saints, Dogs, Syd
    Gold Coast – GWS, Haw, Carl, Adel
    Western Sydney – Suns, Melb, Saints, Nth
    Hawthorn – Port, Suns, Syd, WCE
    Melbourne – Saints, GWS, Adel, Freo
    North Melbourne – Ess, Coll, Freo, GWS
    Port Adelaide – Haw, WCE, Bris, Rich
    Richmond – Dogs, Freo, Ess, Port
    St Kilda – Melb, Geel, GWS, Carl
    Sydney – Coll, Dogs, Haw, Geel
    Western Bulldogs – Rich, Syd, Geel, Bris
    West Coast – Geel, Port, Coll, Haw

    What this tells us is that it’s probably not the best idea to get an Eagle, Swan, Cat or Port player. On the other hand, Adelaide, Brisbane, GWS and Richmond have pretty good runs home. Cases could be made for a few other teams, as well. It is also worth bearing in mind that teams like Sydney, Geelong and Hawthorn may rest players in the lead-up to real finals (yes, football beyond the DT season!) once their position is assured.

    So with finals at stake you either want to go unique against your likely opponents or make your existing uniques count for more by trying to match up on them. I’m always a fan of a unique pick and so personally, I would lean in that direction. It is up to you, of course, which strategy you prefer and how strongly you think your squad lines up against your mates.

    With the above in mind, I would be looking very closely at these players for a Swan downgrade;

    Sloane – Scored 150 on Freo last time they played and has the Suns in the grand final. Would expect him to play while older heads like Van Berlo and Thompson might get the week off. So many players here think he’s the Next Big Thing so picking him is a good excuse to watch his form leading into 2013.

    Cotchin – Genuinely the Next Big Thing, if not already a Current Big Thing. Swan’s absence also boosts his brownlow chances, for the record, and the man is a machine. With Richmond’s run home, I would almost even prefer to get Tuck instead for a higher ceiling now that his job security is assured. Tigers also play four teams with good DT potential but damaging taggers (Picken, Crowley, Hocking, Kornes) although Cotchin has been good enough to score well despite attention.

    Ward – GWS have a surprisingly good run home, as you could be told by anyone who bothered to look at the fixture before deciding to keep Giles instead of trading him out over the last month. Scored 126 last week and wouldn’t be surprised in the slightest if he averages over 115 over the next four weeks. Your opponent almost certainly won’t have him so could be a good POD.

    Pavlich – Might be a forward but he’s one in very good form recently. Has impressive figures against 3/4 of his remaining opponents and the DPP link could be handy. You could do a lot worse IMO.

    Those are my thoughts, anyway, for whatever they might be worth. Knowing that Swan is coming back for the last two weeks of finals – unless he goes out drinking again – I’d be inclined to keep him unless (as above) you’re in the top 20 or desperate for a league win. Any of the above four (five, counting Tuck) options give you a lot of spare change which would be very useful if you’re still carrying someone like Broughton or Lake.

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      August 8, 2012 at 8:47 am

      Awesome summary mate. You should have got theDT boys to turn it into an article ;-)

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      Genghis Khan

      August 8, 2012 at 9:00 am

      Immpressive stuff there mate. Scotty Thompson is the best option IMO. The run home is awesome and he’s gonna win the Brownlow. Sloane will go alright over the last month as well.
      Couple of smokies would be Andy Swallow and Shane Tuck…

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      August 8, 2012 at 9:38 am

      What about Delidio? I have been trying to get him into my FF team all year – and here is my chance – also get the DPP potential with Goddard, just in case more disaster strikes. I have two trades left and finished 5th in League so must win.

      Liked the Callan Ward option – great POD…

      Excellent article

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    August 8, 2012 at 11:10 am

    to to cover for swan, sam gibson or adam goodes (DPP) ??

    cheers appreciated

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      Genghis Khan

      August 8, 2012 at 11:21 am

      Gibson comfortably. Goodes DT career is OVER.
      My worst trade in this year just about…
      GK has spoken…

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        August 8, 2012 at 1:17 pm

        what about Gibson v D.Martin ?

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        August 8, 2012 at 1:27 pm

        What about Gibson v D.Martin?

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    August 8, 2012 at 1:24 pm

    At school, on class, on DT talk, classic or stupid???
    Id say classic.

    P.s. great article

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      August 8, 2012 at 4:10 pm


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    The Bloke

    August 8, 2012 at 2:08 pm

    Who would you pick for cover on field?

    Devon Smith vs SUNS
    Adam Goodes vs COLL

    Devon has tonned up the last two weeks and is likely to do so again against a weak gold coast.
    Adam has not tonned up since rd 15, but we all know what he is capable of

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    Robb Stark

    August 8, 2012 at 3:21 pm

    The COTCHINATOR. In form, consistent and a gun of the competition.

    Although he vs’s the dogs and should smash them I’m a bit worried about the Picken tag.

    Thoughts ?

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    August 8, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    This shouldn’t be a problem. All he has to do is set up an internal tribunal review commitee consisting of bootstrappers, cleaners and Joffa and get them to reduce the other internal tribunal’s suspension by one week and he’ll be back next week. Shouldn’t trade him.

  31. Avatar


    August 8, 2012 at 7:16 pm

    Can you guys set up a poll?

    Don’t have Swan/keeping him/trading him – please?

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      August 8, 2012 at 7:17 pm

      yeah sounds good buddy

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    August 8, 2012 at 7:59 pm

    people who are scarerd to get cotchin for a unique seriously GET HIM. I have had him all year and has never let me down, is a gun of the competition. GET COTCHIN

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