There was only six games to dissect from round 12 of the AFL season but there was plenty of cracking games of football.
A few accepted the challenge and came away with valuable premiership points, and others failed when tested.
Our AFL 5 Lessons Learned – Round 12 2022 can be found below.
(1) The Dogs Won’t Get A Double Chance In September
Friday night’s game between Geelong and the Western Bulldogs was an important one for two clubs that were both expected to be playing finals football in 2022.
While it is still certainly possible that both will progress their season beyond August, it will be incredibly tough for the Dogs to now finish in the top four and therefor secure a double chance.
Last year’s Grand Finalists currently sit 9th with a 6-6 win/loss record through 12 rounds.
After their round 13 bye they play GWS and then the Hawks but from there things get real tough.
For six consecutive weeks they play teams currently in the top 8 including the Lions at the Gabba, Swans at the SCG and Geelong at GMHBA Stadium.
The Western Bulldogs are rated an even money chance to play finals football in 2022 at $2.
(2) Melbourne Are Overrated
Before you jump down my throat, by definition the Dees simply have to be overrated.
The defending premiers were undefeated through 10 rounds and considering their dominance in the 2021 Grand Final there were plenty that had conceded they would go back to back in a canter.
But two weeks is a long time in football.
Not only have they now lost two on the trot but there are a few that have put their hands up as genuine challengers.
There is no need to panic though as Melbourne remain the clear favourites to lift the premiership cup at the end of the seasons and it would take a brave person to suggest they won’t.
Leigh Matthews once quoted (Predator) “If it bleeds, we can kill it” when his Brisbane Lions were taking on a seemingly invincible Essendon team in 2001 and these last two losses by the Dees have breathed new life into the competition and a new sense of confidence from other teams, that Melbourne are certainly beatable.
They remain $2.75 favourites in 2022 Premiership betting.
(3) Nick Daicos Is Your 2022 Rising Star
The two 2022 Rising Star favourites went head to head at the MCG on Sunday afternoon and one of them stood out from the other.
Nick Daicos gathered more disposals than any other player on the field gathering a career high 36 touches in his side’s narrow victory over Hawthorn.
He gained 797 meters for his team (the most of any player) and had 11 score involvements.
Jai Newcombe wasn’t bad either.
He collected 24 disposals, made 11 tackles and seven clearances.
Not bad for a bloke that was overlooked by the Gippsland Power and struggled for a spot at Box Hill before the Hawks snagged him from Poowong in the last season’s mid-season draft.
Newcombe remains favourite for the Rising Star award at $2.75. Daicos is the second elect at $3.00. Nic Martin is $4.00 and Sam De Koning $5.50.
(4) Damian Lillard Was In Melbourne Over The Weekend
Did you know NBA superstar Damian Lillard was in Melbourne over the weekend?
It was only reported by every media outlet in the country!
The Portland Trail Blazers star got plenty of airtime on the broadcast during the Cats vs Dogs game on Friday night and was the talk of the town.
Give it a spell.
Our obsession with American sports athlete borders on embarrassing at times and it was none more evident than over the weekend.
(5) Fremantle Are The Most Versatile Team In Football
The Dockers have bounced back from two losses in a row to defeat Melbourne and Brisbane in consecutive weeks.
Justin Longmuir has turned his team into a possession heavy football team that retains the football very well and they have proven a difficult team to score against throughout season 2022.
In fact, they have had the second least amount of points scored against them behind the Dees, a team they kept to just 56 points in round 11.
Research the overall Team rankings for every conceivable statistics and you won’t find Fremantle at the top of many and this is testament to their overall ability as a football team.
They are very defensibly sound but when they needed to put the foot on the pedal on Sunday afternoon against Brisbane, they scored heavily in the second half.
They are also a very good stoppage team.
Fremantle rank first in stoppage clearances in the competition and they had 12 more than their opponent on Sunday. This is a team that ranks fourth in the same category.