The only guide to the round that admits it’s completely unhelpful. What it lacks in insight, it makes up for with wild theories and detours onto unrelated topics.
It’s your unhelpful guide to AFL Finals Week One
Adelaide v Greater Western Sydney (AO) 7.50pm
The last time the Giants travelled to Adelaide, in round one, it certainly wasn’t heaps good.
In fact, it was a belting to the tune of 56 points and was an early sign that GWS might not be the certain premiers many had predicted, and the AFL had tried to engineer.
In fact, all season, the Giants have gone out of their way to prove they are not the instant heir apparent, even putting in a 44-point loss to Geelong in round 23 to remind everyone they are a fair bit off.
The Giants have dropped Steve Johnson for this one, but the big question is, can they gel as a side with many players only returning from injury in recent weeks?
If they do, the terrifying prospect of an all Sydney Grand Final remains intact, a scenario currently creating more fear in Victoria than this sideshow on the Korean Peninsula.
Leon Cameron wrote a lovely note of thanks, this week to Rory Sloane’s appendix, the greatest tagger the Giants have ever had.
It was careless of the Crows to allow another player to suffer a burst appendix. Take them all out I say. Surely, every non-essential organ should be removed from an AFL player anyway. The players should have negotiated cash for their organs in the recent Enterprise Bargaining Agreement.
I’m surprised the AFL’s merchandise unit hasn’t thought of selling player’s organs before. Actually, they probably have.
The Crows have recalled Tex Walker and Daniel Talia and should have the fire power to get it done here.
Geelong v Richmond (MCG) 7.50pm
Only a Tigers victory can prevent a flood of memes that threaten to flood the internet, causing it to crash and never be resurrected.
The global shutdown of the net will lead to the collapse of the world’s financial system, triggering riots, the breakdown of society and the establishment of fiefdoms run by regional warlords.
We will be plunged back into the dark ages. So, no pressure Richmond.
On the plus side, this would mean we wouldn’t have to read about how great Cathy’s life is on Facebook. We know you love your husband Cathy, there’s no need to tell him through Facebook every five minutes.
Damien Hardwick says he’s encouraged his players to ‘embrace the hype’ this year, a significant shift from Richmond fans’ ‘fear the hype’ approach.
Imagine if Richmond could ever harness their hype? They’d have the greatest club in the history of the world.
Richmond fans are right to fear finals; they haven’t won one since 2001. That’s the year the first Lord of the Rings movie came out. You know you’re struggling at a task if it takes longer than the Lord of the Rings Trilogy. I completed my Masters of Epidemiology during the first movie, for example.
Still, the Tigers are on a roll, with Richmond announcing Dusty Martin will remain a ‘Tiger for life’ recently.
I’d always expected to see a headline with ‘Dustin Martin’ and ‘For Life’ in it but in a different context.
Cats fans and AFL Umpires were thrilled to hear Joel Selwood has managed to get back from his ankle injury.
Geelong has won the previous 13 games against the Tigers, which is a relatively decent track record.
The Cats have always found a way against Richmond, for example, the last time they played, the Greatest Player of all Time Alex Rance, was beaten by Harry Taylor, who is not even a forward and technically retired three years ago.
I think the Cats will win this one.
Sydney v Essendon (SCG) 4.20pm
In fairness to the Swans, they gave losing a good try earlier in the year but found it wasn’t for them, so they just stopped.
It makes this trip rather daunting for the Bombers, who have returned to the finals after overcoming an international conspiracy that tried to destroy their club, led by the Swiss, who are usually neutral in most things.
The good news for the Bombers is they played very well last time against the Swans, only to give up a nineteen-point lead with less than five minutes to go. If Essendon works as hard at winning this as they did at losing that one, they’re a real chance.
What would be worrying Bombers fans is Buddy Frankiln’s delight at terrorising their team.
He’s always turned on his best against them, and this year, the AFL have announced he doesn’t have to follow the rules of the game if the resulting goal looks amazing. This means he can run up to seven kilometres without needing to bounce the ball.
The AFL said they were inspired by the NBA’s approach to enforcing travelling.
While Essendon have shown patches of brilliance this season, it’s hard to see them beating a seasoned finals team like the Swans on their home turf.
Port Adelaide v West Coast (AO) 7.50pm
West Coast may have only snuck into the finals like a Stephen Bradbury in the night, but they would be thrilled to be playing at Adelaide Oval, having won five of their last six games there.
In fact, they should probably consider playing all their home games there and might have to, considering the footbridge the WA government ordered for the new Perth Stadium hasn’t shown up, always a danger when buying something online.
Etihad Stadium has previously been the gold standard for being impossible to get into, but even their management hadn’t considered making it impossible to even approach the stadium.
The Power’s woes against top eight sides is well documented, but West Coast are one of the few they have defeated this year.
Port's ability to kick down not up should see them well placed here.
Did you know the Eagles only made the finals by 0.5 percent? I did because that’s all I’ve thought about for the past two weeks, like some crazy obsessive who lives vicariously through other people.
Anyway, what I’m saying is tipping this is hard.
I’m going to tip the Power.
A big thank you to everyone who came and saw my Insufficient Intent Tour over the past week. It was a lot of fun, and I hope to do it again next year.
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