Toast Complete Champions for our Club

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Grand Uncle Horace

Hall of Famer
May 24, 2017
32,069
38,891
Old South Grandstand
AFL Club
Sydney
** Sorry. This needs a Toast prefix, but my eyes could not find it. Maybe a friendly Mod could oblige. **

I was struck the other day when someone associated the number 14 more with Paul Kelly (who I revere) than with Bobby Skilton. It got to me thinking about many things, not least in how blessed the Bloods have been with some grand players over our long journey.

It is a generational thing I guess. I never got to see Pratt, (Basher) Williams or Nash play for us but I was imbued with their deeds by older rellos. To this day I celebrate Hudson with more games did not break the 150 record set by Pratt. It really would have been a grave injustice.

I count myself immeasurably lucky to have lived to see 2005. I still pinch myself.

The point of this thread is for us as Bloods fans, irrespective of age is to:
1. List their 3 out and champions they have seen
2. Identify their favourite Clubman in their time following the Bloods
3. Suggest who they think was the most under rated player in their time following the great Club.

There is obviously no right or wrong answers. Hope that Board members from every generation get something from this thread.

So I will kick it off.

The three champions that I was lucky enough to watch:
1. Bobby Skilton - forget the 3 Brownlows, the bloke was extraordinary every time he took the field.
2. Ron Clegg - my first hand knitted Sth jumper had 23 on the back. The bloke could play anywhere. He once took 32 marks in a game at CHB. In those days the Marks were invariably contested. Had great footy IQ and the skills to match. (I have hopes for Buddy still but he is still just the 2nd best Number 23 to play for us)
3. Adam Goodes - first saw him as a laughing stringbean forward booting 6 for Ballarat Rebels in their GF win. I was absolutely beside myself when we took him as a mid to latish pick. As we all know Adam became a champion player and an even better person.

Best Clubman

Heaps fall into this group and our Club has been lucky to have so many. Players like Johnny Rantall, Brett Kirk, Luffy and Denis (crazy horse) Carroll spring readily to mind, but for me Barry Round was the epitome of what a wonderful Clubman was all about.

Most under rated Player

There are heaps of those. Ackerley and Lambert spring to mind as well as Hughie McLaughlin. But for me it was the Number 6 in our 2005 Premiership team - Craig Bolton. FFS as well as blanketing every forward he even developed and trialled a sleep rough wether proof swag for homeless folk.

So Ok I hope people have a bit of fun with this during the quieter months ahead of what should be a great season for the Bloods.
 
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Kennedy Parker

🌸🌷🌹🌺🌻🌼
Jul 9, 2015
28,125
58,250
Αρκαδία
AFL Club
Sydney
Other Teams
Sydney Sixers, Gold City Royals
Champions
1. Dean Towers
2. Kurt Tippett
3. Sam Reid

Clubman
Jordan Dawson

Underrated
Josh P Kennedy
 

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Kapers

Premiership Player
Sep 25, 2019
3,334
6,903
AFL Club
Sydney
This is definitely affected by my age, buuuuuut,

Champions
- Kennedy. He's been around for basically as long as I've been an active supporter, and it's tough to ignore just how huge he's been for the club.
- Goodes. Only caught the tail end of his career, otherwise, he would be higher
- Buddy. Honestly, I think he's the best of all time (yes, better than Dusty. The difference between Lance and the second-best forward is further than Dusty and the second-best mid).

Clubman
- Sinclair. Love this bloke.

Underrated.
- Papley. Not even close to the end of his career, but there has not been another player (skewed from how much I watched the swans) that I've seen win games off his own boot as much as Papley. He even kept Vic in it in the all-stars game before they destroyed the rest.
It's been an absolute joy to watch him, and I hope he can get a norm smith before he ends his career, because if there's one player I would want to have ball to turn a game it's this bloke.
 

Kirkswan

Premiership Player
May 10, 2014
4,901
9,470
Sydney
AFL Club
Sydney
Champions:
- Goodes
- Franklin
- Maxfield
(Three is not enough...!)

Clubman:
- No fricken idea... I'm not there...

Underated:
- Whoever we're picking on this week... maybe Florent? (Or was that last week?)
 

GotTheGoodes

Bloods
Mar 15, 2010
21,054
34,269
Australia
AFL Club
Sydney
** Sorry. This needs a Toast prefix, but my eyes could not find it. Maybe a friendly Mod could oblige. **

I was struck the other day when someone associated the number 14 more with Paul Kelly (who I revere) than with Bobby Skilton. It got to me thinking about many things, not least in how blessed the Bloods have been with some grand players over our long journey.

It is a generational thing I guess. I never got to see Pratt, (Basher) Williams or Nash play for us but I was imbued with their deeds by older rellos. To this day I celebrate Hudson with more games did not break the 150 record set by Pratt. It really would have been a grave injustice.

I count myself immeasurably lucky to have lived to see 2005. I still pinch myself.

The point of this thread is for us as Bloods fans, irrespective of age is to:
1. List their 3 out and champions they have seen
2. Identify their favourite Clubman in their time following the Bloods
3. Suggest who they think was the most under rated player in their time following the great Club.

There is obviously no right or wrong answers. Hope that Board members from every generation get something from this thread.

So I will kick it off.

The three champions that I was lucky enough to watch:
1. Bobby Skilton - forget the 3 Brownlows, the bloke was extraordinary every time he took the field.
2. Ron Clegg - my first hand knitted Sth jumper had 23 on the back. The bloke could play anywhere. He once took 32 marks in a game at CHB. In those days the Marks were invariably contested. Had great footy IQ and the skills to match. (I have hopes for Buddy still but he is still just the 2nd best Number 23 to play for us)
3. Adam Goodes - first saw him as a laughing stringbean forward booting 6 for Ballarat Rebels in their GF win. I was absolutely beside myself when we took him as a mid to latish pick. As we all know Adam became a champion player and an even better person.

Best Clubman

Heaps fall into this group and our Club has been lucky to have so many. Players like Johnny Rantall, Brett Kirk, Luffy and Denis (crazy horse) Carroll spring readily to mind, but for me Barry Round was the epitome of what a wonderful Clubman was all about.

Most under rated Player

There are heaps of those. Ackerley and Lambert spring to mind as well as Hughie McLaughlin. But for me it was the Number 6 in our 2005 Premiership team - Craig Bolton. FFS as well as blanketing every forward he even developed and trialled a sleep rough wether proof swag for homeless folk.

So Ok I hope people have a bit of fun with this during the quieter months ahead of what should be a great season for the Bloods.
Ok mate. Here's my attempt...

3 champions I've watched:

1. Paul Kelly -
He is the reason I support the bloods... That fateful late afternoon, footy on the TV, I see the Pies (I think) belting us in a miserable wet muddy contest... the Swans players not interested, not chasing, not tackling... except one. Kels was throwing himself into packs, going back with the flight & standing in front of blokes double his size without a backwards step. Frantic. Courageous. Fighting. Never giving in. He won my lifelong support that day & he will always be my favourite player because of it.

2. Adam Goodes - Probably the most unique & amazing of the players I've ever seen play the game. He could turn a game on it's end and completely dominate with deft touches, hard running, speed, agility, strength & skill. One of the most influential I've seen. When he turned it on WE were seemingly unstoppable! More-so than his skill on the footy field is the man he has become off it. Him & MickeyO are changing lives & bringing better futures to kids who have deserved better from society but not had opportunity. Goodesy is a champion on & off the field. A footy player I loved & a man I respect.

3. TBA - I need to have a think about this & come back to it. It's too hard (& I have a baby I need to go cuddle).

Best Clubman - Brett Kirk

This one is an easy one! Kirky bled red & white more than any player I can think of. While he was playing he was a favourite of mine. His commitment, bravery & determination was second to none. There was no playing for frees or bending at the knees for Kirky. He went in bloody hard & focused. Sacrificing his body for the team like most would not. He pulled every bit of talent & skill from himself & lifted those around him. He didn't focus on the stats & things he could do to make him look better. He focused on the things the team needed. The 1%ers, hard ball gets, blocks, taking the impact of an opponent, pressuring, backing up, scrapping at the bottom of packs & boy could he tackle!! He was always communicating & leading (ask Nick Davis!). Bloods culture ran through him. He personified it. He lived it. And it showed on the field. That cultural shift & all the success that followed because of it was driven & lead by guys like Kirky. Guys that embraced it & lead from the front. If you want to know what a clubman looks like, look at Kirky in his last game. Blood. Emotion. Passion. Giving absolutely everything until the very last siren.

Most under rated player - Sam Reid

Constantly bagged for being injured or not producing goals/marks/possessions... Despite him playing a good amount of career games (to this point) IMO & his role being so flexible he is shifting between FF, HB, CHF, Ruck, FB, FP, BP... The bloke is a great mark, a fair kick & has a crack. He is a leader on the field (just watch him & don't let your preconcieved bias cloud your judgement). Clearly does everything asked of him, important to our structural flexibility & a seemingly good fella... Like with the Reg Grundy hate early on, I just don't get it. A player who has committed to our club over such an extended period, who seems to try hard & sacrifice individual glory for the team is someone I'd think deserves much more respect than he often seems to be afforded.
 

Grand Uncle Horace

Hall of Famer
May 24, 2017
32,069
38,891
Old South Grandstand
AFL Club
Sydney
Ok mate. Here's my attempt...

3 champions I've watched:

1. Paul Kelly -
He is the reason I support the bloods... That fateful late afternoon, footy on the TV, I see the Pies (I think) belting us in a miserable wet muddy contest... the Swans players not interested, not chasing, not tackling... except one. Kels was throwing himself into packs, going back with the flight & standing in front of blokes double his size without a backwards step. Frantic. Courageous. Fighting. Never giving in. He won my lifelong support that day & he will always be my favourite player because of it.

2. Adam Goodes - Probably the most unique & amazing of the players I've ever seen play the game. He could turn a game on it's end and completely dominate with deft touches, hard running, speed, agility, strength & skill. One of the most influential I've seen. When he turned it on WE were seemingly unstoppable! More-so than his skill on the footy field is the man he has become off it. Him & MickeyO are changing lives & bringing better futures to kids who have deserved better from society but not had opportunity. Goodesy is a champion on & off the field. A footy player I loved & a man I respect.

3. TBA - I need to have a think about this & come back to it. It's too hard (& I have a baby I need to go cuddle).

Best Clubman - Brett Kirk

This one is an easy one! Kirky bled red & white more than any player I can think of. While he was playing he was a favourite of mine. His commitment, bravery & determination was second to none. There was no playing for frees or bending at the knees for Kirky. He went in bloody hard & focused. Sacrificing his body for the team like most would not. He pulled every bit of talent & skill from himself & lifted those around him. He didn't focus on the stats & things he could do to make him look better. He focused on the things the team needed. The 1%ers, hard ball gets, blocks, taking the impact of an opponent, pressuring, backing up, scrapping at the bottom of packs & boy could he tackle!! He was always communicating & leading (ask Nick Davis!). Bloods culture ran through him. He personified it. He lived it. And it showed on the field. That cultural shift & all the success that followed because of it was driven & lead by guys like Kirky. Guys that embraced it & lead from the front. If you want to know what a clubman looks like, look at Kirky in his last game. Blood. Emotion. Passion. Giving absolutely everything until the very last siren.

Most under rated player - Sam Reid

Constantly bagged for being injured or not producing goals/marks/possessions... Despite him playing a good amount of career games (to this point) IMO & his role being so flexible he is shifting between FF, HB, CHF, Ruck, FB, FP, BP... The bloke is a great mark, a fair kick & has a crack. He is a leader on the field (just watch him & don't let your preconcieved bias cloud your judgement). Clearly does everything asked of him, important to our structural flexibility & a seemingly good fella... Like with the Reg Grundy hate early on, I just don't get it. A player who has committed to our club over such an extended period, who seems to try hard & sacrifice individual glory for the team is someone I'd think deserves much more respect than he often seems to be afforded.
Great post.
 

Bloods86

Club Legend
Mar 7, 2011
1,823
3,283
Adelaide
AFL Club
Sydney
Other Teams
AUFC, Everton, Socceroos, Power
Difficult to do quickly, so many great players I've seen (mostly on TV, but sometimes live post-2005 when I moved to Adelaide and we came over). Too many class acts or favourites - Bayes, Cresswell, Dunkley, Luff, Maxfield, Nicks, Micky O, Roos, Seymour, Craig Bolton, Fosdike, Paul Williams, Kirky, Jude, ROK, Tadhg, Benny Mathews, LRT, McVeigh, Richards, Nick Smith, Grundy, JPK, Jack, Hanners, Buddy, Rampe.

But...

3 Champions:

1. Paul Kelly - I was only mid teens when he finished up, but might actually be a main reason I support the Swans (growing up in regional SA with zero other Swans fans that I knew of). I recall liking them as battlers/underdogs in 95 (and that final round, final Barassi game comeback win vs the Pies), being really happy Kelly won the Brownlow so I think that was when I started following the Swans. Toughness, class all round.

2. Adam Goodes - pure class, dominated multiple positions, great bloke and leader, capable of the tough stuff, battling through injuries and spectacular moments. Could have ended up with 3 Brownlows really.

3. Plugger - can't go past him. Unmatched in being prolific in front of goal. One of my enduring memories from early years of support is the point in the prelim. Just wish I'd been able to see him live (same as Kelly).

Best Clubman

The usual suspects will get named like Kirk, and probably some of the above, or older players I never saw. But I'm going to go a little left field.

Alex Johnson - at least in my time, I don't think there's a player who, as well as experiencing ultimate success (and playing an important role in that), went through so much pain and obstacles just to be able to play for us. He got involved in development, being a runner throughout. Tried to support the club as much as he could. The joy at the club when he finally got back for those couple of games was palpable, but then the devastation and feeling that that was it, was obvious too. Would love another off field role for him at the club sometime.

Most Underrated

Most vividly in memory, Nick Smith. Reckon George Hewett was probably our most underrated of the last few years. Plenty of others, beings Swans players, never got the accolades they might elsewhere e.g. Nic Fosdike, the combo of Richards, LRT and Grundy got some respect through sheer will rather than endless talent.
 

Callipygian

Team Player
May 18, 2021
30
55
AFL Club
Sydney
The three greatest players I have seen play for the Swans are: Plugger, Goodsey and Buddy. I particularly think Goodsey and Buddy's leadership qualities have been underrated (although Goodes' leadership is getting more recognition since his retirement). Kel is unlucky to miss but I was a greenhorn when I saw him play and unable to appreciate how good he was. I would put Kel above Buddy and Plugger as a great Swan as opposed to player because his whole career was with us and he did so much for the fabric of our club.

My favourite clubman was Kirk in his day and is now Rampe. And I reckon Gulden is the one the baton will pass to when Rampe is gone. Absolutely love Ramps competitiveness and the way he gives all he's got, as well as his humour and charisma.

Most underrated: our defenders. Constantly get the job done working in close cooperation, with few widely acclaimed stars. Also: Maxfield was club captain but I'm still not sure he gets the plaudits he deserves - integral to founding the Bloods culture. Continued to give to the club after his playing days.
 

Gimmeafree

Debutant
Sep 21, 2021
107
207
AFL Club
Sydney
Other Teams
No other team, no other sport
Champs: Paul Kelly / Adam Goodes / Kennedy
Clubman: Kirky
Underrated: Stuey Maxfield

to add some extra categories

Bravest: Darren Cresswell (who can forget him banging his knee back into place)
Recruitment Flops: Ryan O’Connor, Tippett, Andrew Bomford. Reckon they thought they were getting Blumfield when Bomford turned up.
 

Mister B

Brownlow Medallist
Oct 18, 2005
19,443
19,184
Melbourne
AFL Club
Sydney
3 champions I've watched:

1. Adam Goodes

2. Paul Kelly

3. Tony Lockett

(I was born post Bobby Skilton's career and would no doubt have him top 3 in the place of Plugger)

Best Clubman - Brett Kirk / Paul Kelly

Most under rated player -
LRT (shame on all of you who have failed to mention him, you disgust me.)
Jude Bolton
Wade Chapman
 

GotTheGoodes

Bloods
Mar 15, 2010
21,054
34,269
Australia
AFL Club
Sydney
3 champions I've watched:

1. Adam Goodes

2. Paul Kelly

3. Tony Lockett

(I was born post Bobby Skilton's career and would no doubt have him top 3 in the place of Plugger)

Best Clubman - Brett Kirk / Paul Kelly

Most under rated player -
LRT (shame on all of you who have failed to mention him, you disgust me.)
Jude Bolton
Wade Chapman
LRT wasn't under rated... I rated him very highly!!!
 

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