Player Watch #5 Isaac Heeney - 100 games!

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caesar88

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Apr 26, 2016
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Senior players might look stale because they carry the team.
The much lauded younger brigade haven't stepped up (yet).
Lloyd, Heeney, Mills, Florent, Melican...to a lesser extent Hewett, Hayward...should be driving the fortunes of the team but they all have one thing in common...they rely on JPK or Bud or Macca to lead the way.
Because their coach won’t pull the trigger on them and give them a greater responsibility. Our game plan revolves around the 33 year old McVeigh commanding the back line, 31 year old Kennedy always starting at centre bounces, and 32 year old Buddy being the focal point of our forward entries. And we wonder why the youngsters are dependent on them?
 

caesar88

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Hes been selected almost 90 times and put on AFL field

He has been very good, but hes supposedly superstar potential
Yeah but one quarter in midfield then 3 up forward. Then whole game forward then whole game in the midfield. Then 2 quarters forward with one quarter down back. Just stuffs around with his form. Horse doesn’t know what to do with him.
 

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Number37

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Because their coach won’t pull the trigger on them and give them a greater responsibility. Our game plan revolves around the 33 year old McVeigh commanding the back line, 31 year old Kennedy always starting at centre bounces, and 32 year old Buddy being the focal point of our forward entries. And we wonder why the youngsters are dependent on them?
Have any of them stepped up when any of those 3 haven't been at their best?
Not really. Or nowhere near often enough.
Rohan was let go for supposedly having no impact or going missing.
Lloyd has 30 every week and has zero impact.
He is symptomatic of where we are at. He plays a 'role' that does little other than play a 'role'.
Unless Buddy kicks miracles from the boundary or JPK bosses a quarter we look ordinary.
Perhaps it is the coach's fault that players aren't going to that next level. Or perhaps they have reached their ceiling.
'It's all the coach's fault' is the easy way out.
 

Skeparovic

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Jul 14, 2014
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I'd love to be able to leap high enough to take a MOTY contender while recovering from an ankle injury!
Gun midfielder Isaac Heeney isn't expected to do too much work ahead of the Carlton game as he continues to battle the ankle injury he picked up in the Swans' second JLT Community Series win over Gold Coast, but he still should take his place in the side.

https://m.sydneyswans.com.au/news/2019-04-01/jack-mccartin-in-line-for-blues

Some players are rediculously athletic and can do things even when injured that us mere mortal fans can only dream about. Isaac is one of those extremely talented players. Watch out for when he reaches full fitness again and see more nominations for MOTY and other special plays throughout a match.
 

Kirkswan

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May 10, 2014
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Have any of them stepped up when any of those 3 haven't been at their best?
Not really. Or nowhere near often enough.
Rohan was let go for supposedly having no impact or going missing.
Lloyd has 30 every week and has zero impact.
He is symptomatic of where we are at. He plays a 'role' that does little other than play a 'role'.

Unless Buddy kicks miracles from the boundary or JPK bosses a quarter we look ordinary.
Perhaps it is the coach's fault that players aren't going to that next level. Or perhaps they have reached their ceiling.
'It's all the coach's fault' is the easy way out.
I actually disagree with the bolded bit, I think Lloyd is playing the required role waiting for the rest of the team to play theirs. I think the sh*t heaped on Lloyd is just rubbish really.

I also think that Heeney is coming along just fine. He is currently injured and is playing through it, so if it clears in the next couple of week then great! If not, then I might have to wait until next year to see him be brilliant again. But, there is STILL no doubt in my mind that he will be a Brownlow Medal contender for probably the next 5 years!
 

caesar88

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Apr 26, 2016
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Have any of them stepped up when any of those 3 haven't been at their best?
Not really. Or nowhere near often enough.
Rohan was let go for supposedly having no impact or going missing.
Lloyd has 30 every week and has zero impact.
He is symptomatic of where we are at. He plays a 'role' that does little other than play a 'role'.
Unless Buddy kicks miracles from the boundary or JPK bosses a quarter we look ordinary.
Perhaps it is the coach's fault that players aren't going to that next level. Or perhaps they have reached their ceiling.
'It's all the coach's fault' is the easy way out.
As I've said, Heeney was the best midfielder in his draft year, ditto Mills. Neither are being played as midfielders. How that is not the coach's fault is staggering.
 

Kennedy Parker

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Heeney vs JPK at 22yrs (this was JPK's first year at the swans)
Fairly similar in disposals, Heeney obviously has more forward impact perhaps due to rotation, as we all know JPK would go on to improve exponentially in latter years

1554130811255.png
 

Kennedy Parker

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Heeney vs Hanners at 22yrs (Hanners was coming off a ripping GF performance and got his first AA at this age)

Certainly Hanners ahead in development at this stage and a genuine star, was a bit more outside back then

1554131014695.png
 

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Kennedy Parker

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For a bit of added context, I think the 2018 Swans team that Heeney played in is quite a bit weaker in terms of its midfield unit than the 2013-15 teams that Hanners, Parker and the other former Swan (won't name him as it might start a longwinded argument ;)), it's easier to get into the game when your teammates are all firing. Another factor is that Heeney probably spent a significant amount of time forward and his influence during those stretches of games will depend on players up the ground getting the ball to him.

That being said, he hasn't quite lived up to expectations of superstardom yet, Hanners and Parker at the same age had really started to break into the top brass of mids in the AFL. Even Kennedy probably had a bit more influence as the game was slower paced in 2010 so averaging 20 disposals could well be more significant than 20 today. One simply hopes that he follows a similar career trajectory to Kennedy where he has some massive improvements through his mid-20s and really starts to dominate games with consistency.
 

Number37

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I actually disagree with the bolded bit, I think Lloyd is playing the required role waiting for the rest of the team to play theirs. I think the sh*t heaped on Lloyd is just rubbish really.

I also think that Heeney is coming along just fine. He is currently injured and is playing through it, so if it clears in the next couple of week then great! If not, then I might have to wait until next year to see him be brilliant again. But, there is STILL no doubt in my mind that he will be a Brownlow Medal contender for probably the next 5 years!
Is Lloyd capable of playing a role that requires 30 dinky kicks per game? Yes. Does it to perfection, won him a B&F.
If your B&F is a player whose role is 30 dinky kicks per game IMO you won't be challenging at the pointy end.
Every team needs someone playing off half back that can take the game forward. All the good teams half such a player.
Is Lloyd capable of being such a player. IMO, no.
Our best footy in the last 10 years was 2014 with Malceski and Rohan playing off half back.
One of my favourites goals is the one Sam Reid kicked in the 2012 GF from outside 50.
It is a perfect example of Eski... pulling the trigger AND having the vision and skills to pull it off.
IMO Lloyd doesn't have the vision, nor the skills for that kind of play.
That's not "heaping sh*t" on Lloyd. IMO it is a fair criticism.


 

Number37

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As I've said, Heeney was the best midfielder in his draft year, ditto Mills. Neither are being played as midfielders. How that is not the coach's fault is staggering.
Heeney has played midfield when not limited by injury.
Mills was excelling playing off half back.
We have had a midfield consisting of JPK, Parker, Jack, Hanners, Macca...all premiership midfielders. (+ Mitchell)
Heeney + Mills haven't been able to force their way past any of those into the midfield.
 

caesar88

Brownlow Medallist
Apr 26, 2016
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Heeney not in the same league as Brayshaw now, same with Mills and Oliver/Hopper :(

I'd like to see Mills especially playing as a midfielder
But at the time they were. Point is neither have been given the opportunity to fulfil that potential because their coach won’t pull the trigger on them. Who knows either of them could be better than Brayshaw or Hopper or Oliver and we might not even know it. It ticks me right off.
 

caesar88

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Heeney has played midfield when not limited by injury.
Mills was excelling playing off half back.
We have had a midfield consisting of JPK, Parker, Jack, Hanners, Macca...all premiership midfielders. (+ Mitchell)
Heeney + Mills haven't been able to force their way past any of those into the midfield.
Those names you listed have needed an awful lot of help since 2016. You can spin it any way you like. Horse has two top midfielders and he won’t play either of them as midfielders. Even his staunchest advocates have to accept that is a massive failure no matter which way you look at it.

Ps. the two elite junior mids we used first round picks on can’t break their way into the midfield, but our small forward can?
 

Grand Uncle Horace

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Heeney has played midfield when not limited by injury.
Mills was excelling playing off half back.
We have had a midfield consisting of JPK, Parker, Jack, Hanners, Macca...all premiership midfielders. (+ Mitchell)
Heeney + Mills haven't been able to force their way past any of those into the midfield.
Heeney has infrequently played midfield and Mills rarely. Jack and Macca rarely get mid minutes and arguably Hanners got too many in 17/18. The relevance of a premiership won in 2012 to debate about Mills and Heeney playing in the mids is complete mystery.

The reason why they have been unable to 'force their way in' is Horse.
 

BloodySwan

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Oct 2, 2016
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50 games is normally where you know what sort of player someone is going to turn out to be like. Heeney is currently 82 games in. For a player who was pick 2 in the draft (would have been had we not matched) he has really under delivered. You can argue some of it is injuries, some of it him being used in the wrong position but some of it lies on his shoulders too.

Early days yet but this season he has had less disposals, less marks, goals, rebounding 50s, etc, etc. Understand he's carrying an injury right now but the expectation for him to perform is not unwarranted.
 

caesar88

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50 games is normally where you know what sort of player someone is going to turn out to be like. Heeney is currently 82 games in. For a player who was pick 2 in the draft (would have been had we not matched) he has really under delivered. You can argue some of it is injuries, some of it him being used in the wrong position but some of it lies on his shoulders too.

Early days yet but this season he has had less disposals, less marks, goals, rebounding 50s, etc, etc. Understand he's carrying an injury right now but the expectation for him to perform is not unwarranted.
Uh you don’t think you can see what sort of player Heeney will be? He already has everything required, he just needs consistency and the ability to dominate games. If he achieves those, he is the most complete player in the game. But it’s very difficult to achieve consistency when your position is changing on a weekly basis, and it’s very hard to dominate games when you’re being kept away from the coalface. I would say Heeney has been brilliant, his coach has just squandered him.
 

Number37

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Those names you listed have needed an awful lot of help since 2016. You can spin it any way you like. Horse has two top midfielders and he won’t play either of them as midfielders. Even his staunchest advocates have to accept that is a massive failure no matter which way you look at it.

Ps. the two elite junior mids we used first round picks on can’t break their way into the midfield, but our small forward can?
You can spin my spin all your want...

Heeney has played midfield when he hasn't been injured.
Heeney has been a tad disappointing as a mid. IMO.
Mills was excelling at half back.

Elite junior mids means exactly what?
I got a ribbon in kindergarten for being a good speller. Means sweet FA (not the fantasy league) now that I am an adult.
 

RUNVS

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You can spin my spin all your want...

Heeney has played midfield when he hasn't been injured.
Heeney has been a tad disappointing as a mid. IMO.
Mills was excelling at half back.

Elite junior mids means exactly what?
I got a ribbon in kindergarten for being a good speller. Means sweet FA (not the fantasy league) now that I am an adult.
Please point to a game where Heeney has been a midfielder for almost all the game? Please point to a game where Mills has been a midfielder for almost the entire game?
 

Number37

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Heeney has infrequently played midfield and Mills rarely. Jack and Macca rarely get mid minutes and arguably Hanners got too many in 17/18. The relevance of a premiership won in 2012 to debate about Mills and Heeney playing in the mids is complete mystery.

The reason why they have been unable to 'force their way in' is Horse.
I don't think it is a complete mystery.
Makes sense to me.
Horse has stuck with JPK and Parker as #1 and #2 mids ...
Hewett is the run-with mid.
Everyone else rotates through.
Sounds like a good plan to me.
 

Number37

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Please point to a game where Heeney has been a midfielder for almost all the game? Please point to a game where Mills has been a midfielder for almost the entire game?
Was it Hawks last year where he kept butchering the ball?
Played a lot of midfield minutes that game.
 

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