Seven rounds into the 2022 AFL season and we’re seeing just who the contenders, pretenders, who possible sacked coaches are and which teams are akin to having the bye.
We put together a five-leg multi of the one power Punters can never gain – hindsight in a little weekly blog we like to call 5 Lessons Learned.
(1) Brisbane and Freo can have a crack at the Dees
While many pundits predict that season 2022 is a case of Melbourne vs. Daylight, perhaps the Brisbane Lions and even Fremantle would consider themselves a chance.
The Lions managed an impressive 24-point win over Sydney at the SCG, holding off a four goal Buddy blitz in the third quarter which shows that this side just knows how to win no matter what’s thrown at them – like all good sides should.
Fremantle, on the other hand, managed to beat the Cats in Geelong and if they can keep dominating in Perth along with some wins on the road – the Dockers might (and we mean might) just be a proper contender right now.
Could either of these teams actually beat the Dees when they meet during the season?
Brisbane is currently the second favourite to win the flag at $5.50, Sydney $9 and Fremantle $12.
(2) Cripps or Clayton? Why not have both!
Who’s favourite for the Brownlow this year?
Who will take Charlie home?
In the words of one the worlds great philosophers – Why don’t we have both?
At the MCG, Clayton Oliver racked up 33 disposals in another dominant performance as the Dees got the job done over Hawthorn.
Then a few hours later down the road at Marvel Stadium, Patrick Cripps managed 35 touches and 10 clearances as the Blues chalked up the four premiership points over the Kangaroos.
Brownlow betting has become a highly competitive field, with Cripps the market leader at $6 and Oliver at $9 (behind Lachie Neale/Christian Petracca $6)
Either way, my gut feel tells me that the 2022 Brownlow will be joint or even triple winners if current trends persist.
(3) Essendon won’t play Finals
The Dons loss to the Western Bulldogs yesterday means she’s game over for season 2022 for Essendon.
Essendon is best placed to play the kids and has a crack every week, but long-suffering Bombers fans can forget about September, despite Mick Malthouse’s bold prediction that the Dons would win the flag.
On September 4th this year, Essendon’s finals drought will be old enough to open its very own Ladbrokes account.
(4) Cairns is good for a footy trip, not a footy game.
St Kilda’s one point loss to Port Adelaide on Saturday night in a very low-scoring affair proved that Cairns is no place to playing your home games.
Had it been at Marvel Stadium, the scoreline of 4-18 would not have occurred in the perfect conditions under the roof as opposed to the dewy humidity up north.
The Saints would have been 6-1 had they beaten Port, but a 5-2 start is still respectable.
Dropping close games to Port this year and the Crows the year before up North will have St Kilda fans begging the club to drop the deal with the QLD government to play up there, when these losses are having a significant impact on the ladder rather than in the clubs bank account.
Cairns hasn’t been a kind place to the likes of Richmond and St Kilda who have played home games there in the past, along with some other clashes that were played in monsoonal conitions.
Should games be played in Cairns in the future, Punters would be best placed to back the “away” side and most certainly the Under.
(5) Prime Time will still have bad games
Richmond beating West Coast to the tune of 109 points on Friday night, had some pundits bagging the league’s controversial floating fixture, despite this game being set in stone when the draw was first released.
There seems to be an expectation that the prime time fixtures on a Friday night means that every game must be a blockbuster and a thriller – that just isn’t the case.
One-sided beltings, boring contests and even low scoring affairs do not discriminate based on the timeslot.
There will be one-sided games played on a Friday night, Saturday arvo, Saturday night, all day Sunday and even on public holidays.
Floating fixture or not, this will still be the case as that is how the footy gods always intend.
Does it really matter that you got bored at halftime when watching two teams you don’t even barrack for play on Friday night?
There’s still the entire weekend to look out for a better game, it’s just the nature of the footy life cycle.
We all love thrillers and blockbusters, but they are a special treat, a sometimes food – it can’t just be all the time and no matter how you schedule – the dud clashes are going to be played.