ONE down, 22 to go! The preseason is behind us and all our carefully made out plans have us dancing in the streets, tearing our hair out or somewhere in between. Despite just one round of footy being played, there is still plenty of news and noteworthy stories from the first weekend that needs to be analysed.
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2039 – SIGH. It wasn’t a terrible week at Large Fry’s & Coke HQ, but it wasn’t amazing either. After a huge preseason I was pretty happy with the 22 I locked in to start the fantasy year and the likes of Luke Parker (127) and Christian Petracca (98) delivered for me. Unfortunately, Luke Davies-Uniacke (27), Aaron Naughton (41), Allen Christensen (60) and Michael Hibberd (54) didn’t get the message.
Tom Mitchell, MID, $912K (that’s not a typo) – 156
BOW down. The Notorious P.I.G. started 2018 in dominant fashion, sending a message to the fantasy world. Tom Mitchell amassed an AFL record 54 possessions as he continued to make Collingwood his whipping boy. We shouldn’t act surprised considering he had 177 and 135 against the poor Magpies last year. Titch is on another level.
Tim Kelly, MID, $253K – 81
I’M giving Kelly a shoutout for his solid performance on debut. The mature age recruit was a popular cash cow choice for a bunch of coaches and he didn’t disappoint in game one. With 27 touches and a goal to his name, we might be lucky enough to pencil Kelly in for 80ish every week, which would be an awesome output from the first-year Cat.
Image from sen.com.au
Max Gawn, RUC, $635K – 138
PERHAPS the first pick by everyone when the fantasy gates opened this year was locking in Max Gawn at ruck. The 8th most selected player had a day out for the 50% of coaches who made that move, as he scored over 130 for the 10th time in his fantasy career. Expect more big numbers from Maximus moving forward.
Cameron Rayner, FWD/MID, $268K – 35
THE newest No. 1 pick didn’t have a debut to remember chalking up just eight touches. Rayner actually lost money this week and his score could have been even worse if it wasn’t for a third-quarter goal. While it’s not a good sign for Rayner owners we do need to remember it was just one game. Fingers crossed, it doesn’t become a habit.
Tom Rockliff, MID, $694K – 52
WAS Round 1 a passing of the baton? From one fantasy great to another, Rocky scored 104 points less than King Titch, leaving 15,000 people screaming every profanity under the sun in Rockliff’s direction. Many of us thought that his move to the Power would see him return to his glorious best with 120+ on offer week in, week out. He might need a jumpstart if Rocky’s going to produce those numbers.
Image from sportingnews.com
Michael Hibberd, DEF, $630K – 56
THERE was an air of uncertainty around Michael Hibberd’s potential as an elite defender this season. His past history justified nearly 25% of coaches jumping on the bandwagon. I wonder how many of them will be jumping off after his two-mark, 56 point game though. You’re better than that Hibbo.
IN – UNDERPRICED gems like Stephen Coniglio (MID, $693K – 146) and Patrick Cripps (MID, $710K – 130) will be the most coveted players in this week’s trades. A positive showing from Nic Natanui (RUC, $436K – 93) could make him a downgrade target for Paddy Ryder (more from him soon) owners with Nick Holman (MID, $209K – 89) and the aforementioned Tim Kelly the pick of the rookie targets this week.
OUT – THE entire fantasy world will be glued to the news surrounding the woozy Zach Merrett (MID, $769K – 23). With Essendon facing a trip to play Freo over in Perth, he might be left out after suffering a concussion in the Crows game. Early reports are that Merrett is up and about and should play but watch this space. Nat Fyfe (MID, $667K – 67) and the three duds I mentioned earlier also find themselves as discard options should coaches swing the axe. Reigning All-Australian ruckman Patrick Ryder (RUC, $618K – 46) is facing roughly six weeks on the sidelines with Achilles tendinitis while unlucky Bulldog Tom Liberatore (MID, $469K – 9) suffered a season-ending ACL tear.
- I’M going to offer everyone a unique piece of advice and it’s something that a lot of coaches around the globe might not be considering. You don’t have to use your two trades that you are allocated each week (three on bye rounds). While I think it takes a special scenario if you are stoked with your team and don’t have any injury issues or players to replace then feel free to avoid trading this week. However, be sure that a potential cash cow isn’t dropped when the teams come out or that there aren’t better options out there.
- WE have another Thursday night game this round with a Grand Final rematch at Adelaide Oval. Dusty, Matt Crouch and Rory Laird are probably your best bets for a loophole captain, however, it would take something special from them to take the C off Titch.
- GOOD Friday will see the Roos and Saints start early this weekend, which could become a problem. The game starts at 4:20pm AEDT, with the final squads for Sunday announced at 5pm AEDT, so make sure you aren’t hanging yourself out to dry by picking up a guy who might not be a confirmed in until after lockout kicks in.
- FINALLY, as of this week, I will be bringing back my weekly article with the DT Talk fellas so be sure to check out the 2018 edition of Fry’s Forgotten Few. The first instalment should be out Thursday.