So Join In The Chorus And Sing It One And All!
Pretenders, Contenders with a splash of controversy
So Join In The Chorus And Sing It One And All!
Pretenders, Contenders with a splash of controversy
Round 23 has been completed, finals are here (CARN THE ROOS!) so its stime to look back at the ladder predictions made at before round 1:
So what did I have way back in March compared to actual wash up. Well I wasn’t that far off the mark. Biggest miss was having Collingwood in 8 and Port not. I predicated Hawks in 2nd and North in 6th….
|6th||North Melbourne||North Melbourne|
|9th||Port Adelaide||West Coast|
|12th||Western Bulldogs||Gold Coast|
So I got 7 of the top 8 right, I did say the Saints would battle for the wooden spoon (only battle they won I guess). Gold Coast were in the 8 until GAblett went down but they were still a big mover.
I predicted Freo to take the Flag. It could still happen. They have found some great form and Fyfe is back but Johnson is gone. Sydney and Hawthorn will be the teams to be beat and we know at least one, if not both, will be there.
I’m excited North made it and they have beaten Sydney, Hawthorn, Fremantle, Port Adelaide and Richmond in season but of course the two teams they have beaten is Essendon and Geelong. Elimination round is vs Essendon this week and if North win and so does Hawthorn, North plays Geelong the following week!
Next I’ll chat about how the Kneejerkers went in AFL Fantasy and Elite this year.
Clearly my hype around Andrew Swallow has not paid off.
Bringing him in before round 13 after Watson was injured, has produced scores of 78 and 84.
And last week he gets injured (was kind enough to get his BE first)
The Cash we were hoping to make has capped out at just over $2k. Now you need to dump him.
Hopefully you didn’t go too big with the cash already and you can bring in a premium mid like Barlow or Goddard.
With all my ranting and fanboy dribble for Swallow, I will be trading him out but I will be bringing in another North boy that just 1% of teams have. This lad has been averaging 115 in last 3 games and 124 in last 5. He finished with 127 last week and has a highest score of 147.
Levi Greenwood. Midfielder $555,690.
This man has been a machine since round 7. Where ever there is the ball, you will find Greenwood. His huge scores are not vs minnows of the league either 147 – Port, 120 – Gold Coast, 146 – Geelong, 133 West Coast oh and 127 – Melbourne. This week North play Brisbane again. Last they meet he scored just 91 points with 27 disposals.
It is hard to ignore North players with such an easy line up to the finals. Look at the 4 teams North play for the Fantasy finals – GWS, Bulldogs, Crows and Demons. To get there, North plays Saints, Blues and Cats (remember the 146 last time). Yes they have the Hawks as well but hey.
Levi Greenwood – great POD and on fire. Just saying.
Since the pre-season of 2014 started, I have been spouting words of wisdom on AFL Fantasy do’s and dont’s.
At no point do I ever claim I actually know what I’m talking about by the way.
We are now entering into round 13, the mid point of the season, the time when your team should be just about complete. It is also a good time to reflect on how well your team is going. Also the time, if you are doing well, to panic and question every trade you do from here on in.
So did I listen to my own advice?
Team from round 2 (Original Line up):
DEF: K. Simpson, D. Swallow, M. Hibberd, W. Langford, T. Langdon, M. Suckling, C. Enright, A. Georgiou
MID: D. Beams, G. Abblett, J. Watson, J. Macrae, M. Barlow, T. Cotchin, J. Polec, D. Tyson, X. Ellis, H. Cunningham
RUC: T. Hickey, A. Sandilands, T. Derickx, D. Currie
FWD: D. Martin, M. LeCras, T. Mitchell, M. Pavlich, C. Wingard, J. Caddy, G. Rohan
For starters you can see I didn’t listen about Currie not getting a game. Fortunately I was proven wrong and he did get a few games in and it wasn’t until round 7 that I traded him out.
Best Selection from the Start:
From the start has been Kade Simpson. I have always been a fan of how he plays and the potential to score big has always been there. My reasoning was he was a proven defender and new gameplay should give him more run. This has turned out true with big scores of 145 and 143 in the bye weeks and and average of 102 with only one score under 80. For a defender, this is great.
I have used the 2 trades every week so far and there isn’t a lot of grief from the results…… so far. Bringing in Aylett and dumping Enright is probably my worst trade this season. In my defence, Enright was less than impressive and slightly injured and I was hoping for the cash boost. It never came.
I have been fairly lucky with injuries as well with only a few forced trades such as LeCras (to Merret), Hickey (to Jacobs) and Barlow (to N.Jones). Going to Jacobs over Mumford is the big winner clearly. As all fantasy coaches recall, the week where the Mummy was a late withdrawal killed many scores. Why did I go Jacobs? It was basically because of the inconsistency of GWS.
Langdon is looking more of a keeper each week. In fact he was my highest scoring defender last week with 87. Yes I rate him higher than Polec mainly because he is still in my team, hasn’t capped out in value, has DPP and doing a great job.
Nathan Jones was brought to cover the loss of Barlow. With Melbourne having some quality players now in the team, a coach that can get the best out of any player and the fact he has been a gun for many years but gets overlooked because he does play for Melbourne, Jones was going to play and reward me. And he did with scores of 93, 115 and 135 in the following weeks.
What does the team look like now?
As of the completion of round 12:
DEF: K. Simpson, D. Swallow, M. Hibberd, M. Jaesch, T. Langdon, M. Suckling, J. Bews, K. Aylett
MID: D. Beams, G. Abblett, J. Watson, J. Macrae, T. Rockliff, T. Cotchin, D. Swan, N. Fyfe, C. Shenton, Z. O’Brien
RUC: S. Jacobs, A. Sandilands, T. Derickx, F. Thurlow
FWD: D. Martin, B. Harvey, L. Dahlhaus, R. Gray, C. Wingard, T. Walker, S. Lloyd
Watson will go, obviously. I will be following my own advice and bring in A. Swallow. The extra $100K comes in handy, his BE is 74 so will go up. I do want to bring in either (or all) JPK, Barlow or Stevie J. With Stevie J’s BE at 154, what I am hoping is when his price bottoms out, it should be about the same time Swallow caps out and it could become a sideways trade.
Cotchin is on the block (as was Macrae until the 139) and if it wasn’t for Watson getting injured, Cotchin was gone for Swallow. Gunston and Wingard will need to be upgraded before the finals as well. Sucking and Langdon will probably go as well eventually.
Injury free I was focusing on the backline to bring in a Bartel, McVeigh or Hanley but now this must wait.
Has my team worked so far this year?
Yes. I am currently ranked 1012th overall which is my best ranking in all the years I have been doing AFL Fantasy. I scored over 1700 in each of the bye weekends by sticking to my 8/10/12 plan, team is averaging 2017.92 and I am leading the OTS League. This does mean I am now in the panic and second guess my every trade from here on in phase of the season.
Michael Barlow, Steve Johnson, Tom Rockliff and Andrew Swallow are the most popular trades for Watson according to Twitter. #AFLFantasy
— AFL Fantasy (@AFLFantasy) June 10, 2014
Have been saying to keep an eye on him for the last few weeks. Andrew Swallows pulls out a ton last weekend and now eveyone gets on board 😉
Even the Traders talk him up for a Watson to Swallow trade
Round 11 done and the Kneejerkers scrapped to 2066 due to late withdrawals, concussions, corked thighs and poor performances.
The big panic for a lot of coaches was the late withdrawal of Dane Swan just 90 mins before the Friday night match. I too went into a panic. After the week of debating, planning and reading, I thought my entire trading plan was going out the window.
Deep breaths later, I stuck to my guns and held Swan on the bench and had Hallahan take his spot on the field. Thats all good, he should be good for a score of 80. No he gets a 64 meanwhile my latest IN before the round of Shenton scores 83.
A question some are asking, what to do with Swan? Trade him out for a Barlow maybe? Hold on to him and hope the pig is back vs Melbourne this week? To make it tougher, Collingwood and Melbourne play on the Monday which means we wont know the teams until after lockout.
Rodney Eade has given his injury assessment stating Swan should play.
My plan is to hold him with my priority to strengthen the backline. But if you have more of a luxury trade this week, Barlow is a very good choice, averaging 106 over the last 3 rounds, and is priced nicely for a sideways trade.
How about the Swans? Wow, did not expect the 110 point drumming to the Cats on Thursday. They are playing exciting footy and very exciting Fantasy footy currently. Eight players over the 100 mark last week and eight players averaging over 100 in the last 3 weeks. Lets look at the 5 you must be watching.
|Position||Price||BE||Round 11||L3 Rd Ave||L5 Rd Ave||Overall Ave|
|Josh P Jennedy||MID||$ 578,302||88||123||133.67||124||112.1|
|Craig Bird||FWD / MID||$ 449,313||29||131||117.33||108.8||87.88|
|Luke Parker||FWD / MID||$ 528,344||88||108||116||111||103.1|
|Kieren Jack||MID||$ 527,535||84||123||114.33||113||100.11|
|Lance Franklin||FWD||$ 435,357||48||113||111.33||97||84.78|
As you can see, these 5 are hitting some great form and will be going up next week in price, some quite heftily. What other coaches say? Get on Parker straight away.
He is the number one forward of the fantasy comp. I had the chance to get him but I was concerned about his output now that Tippet and Franklin were finding their rhythm. The concern is still there. Normally you would take a score of 108 from a forward without hesitation but this was in a game where the Swans dominated by 110 points so should he have had more because of the huge attacking game? For the record, I picked up Harvey instead of Parker.
Franklin is on fire over the last 3-5 weeks (not including the Melbourne game of 41), his price is drool worthy and his BE makes it a decision you need to make straight away. But lets look at the Melbourne score, and the North Melbourne game and the GWS game. This is where Buddy can hurt but, you know what? All forwards will do this to you some weeks. Don’t worry about the sub par scores, get on Buddy. The price and form of the Swans makes him a must.
Craig Bird I’m not sold on. 131 last week vs the Cats makes him tempting, his price makes him tempting and his Dual Position makes him tempting and maybe its the crash of form last year that yells no, i’m just not sure. JPK you can’t go wrong and Jack is another good pick up for his price.
Last week I quickly spoke about Andrew Swallow. After his long term injury he has now played 3 games. Last week vs the Eagles he looked more comfortable and less rust in his legs. His hard ball gets are back, last week sometime too hard which did cost a couple of frees against. What I did highlight is his tackling side of the game. Previous 5 years he averages over 7 tackles a game. Let us have a look at him so far. Swallow started as a sub in his first game, rotated fairly regularly over his second and still spent more than normal time on the pine last week. It works out over the 3 games he has a TOG of 71.7%. This will increase as his return to fitness increases.
In this 71% TOG he has already accumulated 18 tackles (6 per game which is equal 18th in the AFL), averaging 8.3 contested possessions, 9.3 uncontested possessions and is increasing his Fanatsy score each week (62, 72 and 102).
Swallows original price tag was $512,00 and because of his slow ease into the game he has already dropped to $439,402 with a BE of 92. This means he will probabaly have 1 maybe 2 more price drops before he starts hitting his stride and averages the 100 mark.
Do we pick him up? Looking at round 13-14 to pick up a player, you should by then already have a very strong midfield with players averaging more than 100 but! If you still have a Nathan Jones type player, Swallow could be the $400k player to downgrade to. You know he will increase in value and output. North Melbourne has one of the easiest runs home and once he makes the extra cash, you could upgrade to a bigger pig. If you have a rookie topping out but you dont have enough for the full upgrade, maybe the extra $100K you need comes from Swallow. Or maybe you just want a cheaper option on the bench that you know will always perform.
What ever need you have for your team, keep an eye on Andrew Swallow.
Trades this week (remember its very early in week and teams not announced)
Langdon OUT –> McVeigh/Bartel IN
Wingard/Llyod OUT –> Cameron IN
Round 10 is complete, the final bye of the season is complete. Thank gosh for that.
The Kneejerkers had a mixture of results during the byes but overall I was quite happy.
I planned from the start of the season to have a 8/10/12 set up when round 8 arrived (first of the byes) and as tempting as some players got to pick up, I stuck to it. The results?
OUT – Merret, Enright
IN – Robbie Gray, Kurt Aylet
Result: SCORE – 1738
Win in OTS League, Captain Fyfe with 260.
OUT – Chapman, Polec
IN – Dane Swan, Taylor Walker
Result: SCORE – 1782
Loss in OTS League. Captain Ablett with 254
OUT – Georgiou, Cunningham
IN – Matthew Jaensch, Jed Bews
Result: SCORE – 1747
Loss in OTS League. Captain Ablett with 156
As you can see, a very consistent score throughout the byes. Hindsight does make me question the Swan move but at the price he was, it was too hard to resist. Jaensch, I am happy to pick up and it does give me some cash in the bank but again, looking back and seeing I could have picked up Bartel (155 this week) does make me cry a little. But I have a plan and I am trying to stick to it. Bonus is my over rankings improved each week, after round 9 I did break into the top 2000 and after round 10 I improved again to currently sit at 1153.
What does the Kneejerkers look like after the byes and what is the plan?
Well the plan from here is to strengthen the forward line. Maybe bring in a Dangerfield, Parker or Harvey and make Tex my bench cover. I am concerned about some of my almost premium mids though.
Macrae had a ripper start to the season but either he is getting tired or being tagged harder. With 4 weeks in a row of scores in the 80s, maybe it is time for him to depart. Nathan Jones was always going to be a brave POD and just before I cut him free, he scores 110 to stay in the team even with his bye but with two scores under 70 before that, alarm bells are ringing and then there is Swan. Was it a good move to bring in the traditional Fantasy pig? Or should i have spent extra coin for Pendlebury the new Fantasy pig?
This will be my debate but I think I will end up sticking with my plan for the Forwards and I probably will succumb to the need of having a North player so that would be Harvey.
Saying that, Andrew Swallow has now played 2 games under his belt after coming back from an Achilles injury. Scores of 62 and 72 were expected as he will be rusty since he hadn’t played since round 18 2013. This man is a sneaky premium midfielder and a tackling machine. In the last 5 years his tackling numbers have been 152, 183, 145, 164 and the short 2013 season still had 107 (that’s over 7 per game). He is already average over 4 tackles in just 2 games. He was priced at a premium of $512,000 but with limited time on the field he has already dropped by over $64,000 and still has a BE of 107. Next week North play West Coast at Patersons but after that, it maybe worth having a closer look in bringing him in for a Macrae or Jones.
Round 6 is complete, round 7 is upon us and then it is the early season byes. This is where if you have been carefully planning since day dot, you find out if it was worth it, or its the time coaches start panicking about having no mid field in round 8 and of course there are the thoughts of ‘Sod it, I’ll tank a round”.
Question is, what is the best way to go about it?
Answer is…..fked if I know.
Let’s weigh up the the trade or tank options.
For a coach to plan for the byes, they need to take into account which players have a bye and in which round (yeah thanks captain obvious). The ideal team structure for the byes is to have a 8/10/12 line up. This means in round 8 you have 8 players on a bye, round 9 you have 10 and round 10 you have 12. This, of course, is the set up before the byes.
The idea behind this is so you can trade 2 players that have played and are about to have a bye to be trade for someone who has just had their bye.
Sounds simple and in theory it is. Usually it means sideways trading is involved and you need to prepare more than a week ahead. This tactic is the simplest way to have a full team every week during the byes.
BUT! This also means you could miss out in bringing fantasy guns when their price takes a drop. Dayne Swan is the immediate one that comes to mind. Swan, at the start of the season was the 2nd most expensive player in the league but with a really start his price dropped from $636,600 to the lowest point before last round, $537486. We all know he is a champion and he will bounce back. Scores of 145 and 122 prove that and his current price of $550,134 will only go up. You have to jump on him right?
Well most coaches would already have a mixture of Stevie J, Ablett, Beams, Pendlebury, Cotchin, J Selwood in their line up, that are already missing the round 8 because of the bye. You bring in Swan and you are basically surrendering the round 8 because, if you are a decent coach, you wouldn’t have anyone left to field.
You do need to remember though, you maybe relying on rookies, bench players and the like to fill the gaps during the byes. So maybe you are going to get low scores anyway because of these players or maybe these players, like Currie, will not play anyway?
This brings in the question, Do I suck it up and tank round 8 to make sure I get a fantasy pig at the lowest price he will be and then I will have very strong teams for rounds 9 and 10?
Tanking for the novices, is deliberately losing a match. In fantasy teams, it means having a lot of doughnuts on the field and surrendering your league match. It would also make your overall ranking take a massive hit. And this is the key point to which tactic you follow.
Taking a tanked round probably wont hurt you in your league because you would make up for it with big wins in the next two rounds. If you are going for the overall ranking and grand prize, you should be looking at posting your best score every week and couldn’t afford to tank.
For me, what am I doing. Well I started the season with the byes in mind. I planned to have as close to the 8/10/12 set up as possible but with injuries forcing a couple of things, I now sit at 10/8/12. Swan is so deliciously priced it is hard to not bring him in but that would be a tanking move as I would have 4 missing from the mids alone and a bench player that currently isn’t playing. And my Forward line does need some attention.
My current train of thought is to bring in Swan, take the hit and bring in N Riewoldt the following week (or after his bye) as he is the form forward but should take a price hit with last weeks performance providing a BE of 145. Of course if I do it next week, I leave a another hole in the round 10 bye. Decisions, decisions.
What a rucking crisis? Thousands of coaches afraid of the sun after last week’s great ruck dropouts. First it was Hickey giving as a nice warning that he is too fragile. Many coaches jumped off onto the the ruckman of the season so far, Mumford. Whoops.
Down goes the Mummy for minor knee surgery on the eve of his match. Thank gosh we have Currie to cover that donut. Wait, what? Currie late withdrawal because of the rain. Oh and Leuenberger does his knee. It was happy times.
Happy? Well for me it was, I made the last minute decision to not got for Mumford and picked up Jacobs and I already had Derickx as my emergency. So I had 125 good reasons to be happy.
Well the rucks were covered but I still had Kennedy-Harris, Rohan and Tom Mitchell on the field. Still, a score of 2073 I am happy with.
That brings me to this week’s trading. First let’s look at the Kneejerkers currently…
As you can see, it wasn’t all smooth sailing. Josh Caddy continued his under performance and Tom Mitchell is experiencing 2nd year blues. Mitchell hurts as he dropped by over $55,000.
What do we do with trades this week. The dilemma?
Mitchell and Caddy are leaking cash and under performing but Kennedy-Harris and Rohan are less than helpful on the field as emergency cover.
And then how can you ignore Sam Lloyd’s debut for the Tigers (107) and less than $200k. Fasolo backs up his 76 with a healthy 71 and has a Breakeven of 9. Of course I can talk about the other rookies shining in the Mids and the Backs such a Crouch and McDonald but I am happy with Ellis and Langford as coverage. This means I have 4 possible outs with 2 good looking ins.
So what would you do?
Trade Mitchell / Caddy for Fasolo / Llyod and gather a lot of cash? But how secure is Lloyd’s position and you are bringing him in based on one match.
Trade Kennedy-Harris / Caddy for Fasolo / Lloyd and get some cash? But you still have Mitchell on the field, bleeding cash and the Swans do not look like turning things around anytime soon.
So there it is folks, what to do, what to do?
Round 3 happened. It was not pretty for me and by the sounds of it, not pretty for many other fantasy coaches in the Classic League
A score of 1948 after a great start hurt, dropping to rank 9165 overall. How did this happen?
Le Cras breaking an arm was a good start but having 10 players fail to score more than 80 was the killer. Polec, Tyson, DMartin, Caddy, TMitchell and Langford (Enright cover) were the big disappointments but the biggest painful score came from the ruckman, Hickey. A score of 39 is atrocious. I knew he would struggle against the Eagles but I thought he would get at least a respectable score.
Trading this week?
Le Cras of course is out and as with every other fantasy coach, Jackson Merret looks to be the obvious choice. When he is priced at a lazy $382,972 with an average of 92.2 including scores of 111 v North Melbourne and 94 v Hawthorn you can see why people are jumping on him. No I will not comment on the game vs the Carlton under 12s and the cheap 131 he score.
With a BE of -2 it is the instant cash injection all coaches dream of, $80k for the trade and a a low BE is made for fantasy.
So that’s the 1st trade sorted out.
Hickey – do I stick with him? We know he won’t be a premium ruckman and was always there to make money but with a Break Even (BE) of just 45 is it too early to pull the trigger? With the extra cash, Mumford, the ruckman of the moment, could slot in very easy. Seems like an obvious choice.
Except for 2 reasons.
Chapman had a ankle injury last week and the rumour is, Essendon will not fly him to Perth to let him rest. Eagles v Bombers is a Sunday match so I wont know until Friday night if this comes true.
Wingard IS out this week with his injured ankle which does mean my bench needs to step in. But that bench consists of Green Vest Kennedy-Harris (29 average) and Rohan (44 average). Not a great prospect for a league match.
Question is, do I take the hit this week with a Rohan and possibly KH score on the field and bring in Mumford OR do I ride the Hickey train one more week and trade KH out for someone like Fasolo?
At this point I’m staying with Hickey. He should bounce back vs Adelaide and with the extra $100k for the Merret/Fasolo trade, even with Mumford’s BE of 45, I should be able to pick up the mummy next week.
Now the 1st two rounds are completed in the Elite Draft league and I havent been able to share my team with you. Consider it shared:
I think I lucked out with some of the pick ups I received.
My rucks have been the talk of the One Troll Short league with managing to get Cox, Hickey and Lobbe. Other key players have been Chapman, Suckling, Beams, Zorko and MThomas. I have done some Free Agent trading and did manage to grab Bugg, MCrouch and Fasolo. This has given me great coverage in all parts of the field.
And so far this has worked with scores of 1561 and 1407 giving 2 wins and sitting on top of the ladder. The draft game is intriguing. You arent looking at trades each week like the Classic form and your tactic is so very different. I am now thinking I would like more strength in my Mids but to do that, I need to convince another player to release that strength so what do I offer?
I have 3 strong rucks but to lose one means I’m short an emergency in the rucks. Hickey would be my choice to move on but would anyone take him after his 39? I’m keen to see how this plays out.
What? How did I get the rucks of choice? We had an auto draft so you need your preference players listed before hand. My thoughts were most coaches will have the Premium Mids as first choice but Mids are always high point players so I want to make sure I get the high points players from the weaker (points) positions so after the top 8 Mids I listed 3 rucks, after the next 8 mids I had 3 defenders but defenders that were back from injury, rookies or expecting breakout year in case other coaches had the premium defender listed higher and then after the next 8 mids i did the same with the Forwards as I did the Defenders, breakouts/return from injury players in a group of 3. I did bet on the fact some of the coaches did nothing with their preference list so they would just get the highest ranked players whether they are injured or not. (I made sure all long term injured players were placed in the 300s.)
First time I tried the Draft and I am happy with result.
I think I have made up for the no AFL Fantasy postings of the last two weeks with this one. I shall stop my rambling and monitor the Chapman story. Oh you may get spammed this weekend as I’ll be at the GWS v Bulldogs match on Saturday and the Sydney v the mighty North Melbourne Kangaroos on Sunday. You have been warned.