Podcast Every WC Player of the 2010's ranked

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Into The Black

It's better to burn out than to fade away
Aug 16, 2019
247
515
AFL Club
West Coast
It's really tough isn't it? Mainy the best ball winner easily but his disposal was the worst. Embers the balanced type and Gaffy the most outside.

Great stuff to mull over a few beers! Who would be best with which surrounding team mates etc
Good conversation for sure. The other thing is the generation. Different game when Mainy played to how it is now. Always found it difficult if not impossible to compare players in any sport to past champs. Calls for a bit more mull and a few more beers :think:.
 

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ronpingwins

Club Legend
Apr 1, 2013
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Means the top 5 is Shuey, Hurn, McGovern, Kennedy and Priddis.

Ultimate troll if Priddis is number 1 lol.

You know you want to ronpingwins...
There's only 1 Brownlow medalist amongst that group, isn't there?

I feel like history has been kind to him a little? Or at least softened towards him. I wouldn't have been able to put him top 5 if I did this 2 years ago.
 

Ambrose Burnside

Premiership Player
Dec 8, 2006
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There's only 1 Brownlow medalist amongst that group, isn't there?

I feel like history has been kind to him a little? Or at least softened towards him. I wouldn't have been able to put him top 5 if I did this 2 years ago.
He also came second with a superior season the year after he won.

Fyfe fined about three times that year for whacking blokes too. Pridda should be a two-time Brownlow medallist.
 

Forward Press

Premium Platinum
Jul 5, 2011
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He also came second with a superior season the year after he won.

Fyfe fined about three times that year for whacking blokes too. Pridda should be a two-time Brownlow medallist.
Also one season away from having as many Brownlows and more premierships than Nat Fyfe.

Yes yes I know we probably could not have won in 2018 with him there but still, it's a funny hypothetical.
 

ronpingwins

Club Legend
Apr 1, 2013
1,580
2,866
AFL Club
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#5 Shannon Hurn

Ah ol Bunga. He has started to receive the credit he deserves over the last 2 year, with improvement in the team and a spike in his number. But he has been top quality for a long time now, always high in the league for total kicks, he has been an absolute weapon with the distance and accuracy of his kicking, as well as his decision making. His kicking allows him to make kicks into the corridor that others can't, setting up many scores. He was initially expected to move into the midfield eventually when first drafted, however we discovered we couldn't move him from half back. Ultimately, the biggest success we've had this decade has been when we've built the gameplan around his strengths.

Hurn entered 2010 coming off a runner-up effort in the B+F, he really broke out as his tank had built up to the standard and he was able to use the ball more consistently. He went backwards in 2010 though, partly due to injuries. He couldn't get a run of games together due to calf issues and suspension. He was still a class act when out there though, 203 kicks and 31 handballs for the year were telling. Turn got his body right and became a crucial part of our rise to top 4 in 2011. He finished 4th in the B+F, although still underrated externally. His football smarts and brick wall of a body meant he was a very effective defender, despite a lack of pace. He seemed a man amongst boys, even with AFL players. He directed play, using his kicking to set up scoring, or maintain possession when we needed to slow the game down, as his maturity allowed him to understand what was needed. A strength of Hurn's that doesn't go down in the stats book is his kicking in from a behind, he would regularly hit targets outside 50 with ease, I think we had one of the highest score from kick ins, which turn took every time. Standout games include 30 touches (25 kicks) and 14 marks against GC, effectively slowing it down when they got momentum, and 25 touches and 3 goals against Port in a BOG effort, dobbing them from about 60.

Hurn's reliable use from defence continued in 2012. Getting high teens-mid twenties touches became close to the norm for him, rather than a big game. His aerial work became a big strength, although not the tallest, he took 22 contested marks for the year, he was too strong for any opponent and outbodied them. He drifted forward a little more often, 0.5 goals per game isn't anything to write home about, but he kicked multiples a few times from long range. His standout game was probably against North, 24 touches (23 kicks), 9 marks (2 contested) and 2 goals from half back, harshly denied a Brownlow vote. He wasn't about individual accolades, more a key cog in the team, but he again placed high in the B+F with a third place finish. His 2013 was frustrating though. Similar to 2010, he missed a large chunk through injury, although he was still good out there, including 5 contested marks against North. The 2 years he had wrecked by injury this decade, were interestingly the teams most disappointing by far, showing his importance to the squad.

He again got injured for a month in round 2 2014, however he returned and was at his best. Under Simmo he found more of the ball as he pushed up the ground a bit. He had 66 inside 50's compared to 47 rebound 50's, a ratio that was historically reversed significantly for him. His inside 50's were perfect, setting up many scores. Hurn's form had made him one of our best players, which allowed him a crack at acting captain when Glass retired. He obviously nailed it as he got the full time gig amongst multiple competitors. Hurn was a brilliant leader in 2015, although his form wasn't as strong. With injuries hitting the defence hard, Simmo had to pull him back from the role up the ground he was moulding him for to help cover holes. He was effective in intercepting and organised a makeshift defence well, enough to take it to a GF, but his individual output wasn't dominant, more reliable. His standout game came in the QF, leading a side without much finals experience against a seasoned Hawks team, Hurn set the tone with his aggression, using his body to bowl over multiple Hawks. Hurn was our leading disposal winner that night with 26, and despite normally getting the majority of his touches uncontested and not reaching double figures for contested in 18 months, he turned that ratio around with 13 contested (and only 9 uncontested, despite gaining 26 overall. I don't really understand how that's calculated). His GF was disappointing, he had a few nice kicks and set up Darling's goal, but his overall performance and leadership was down. He seemed as overawed by the occasion as the others, when the team needed a captains goal early in the second, 4 goals down at the time, he hit the post with a set shot 40 out straight in front, particularly disappointing for someone with his skills.

2016 was an extension of 2015, although slightly more free. He still played that quarterback role, accumulating masses of kicks as his leadership continued to grow. He was once again top 5 in the B+F and one of our best in the EF. His 2017 was his best yet. He snuck under the radar a bit, but his late season form was clear AA level and he ended the season the form player of the team. He wasn't just relying on being fed the ball at half back, he was finding space and winning it all over the place. More measured in his kicking these days, rather than hitting long targets, he perfected the art of the casual 40-50 metre pass. Standout games were 28 touches and 2 votes against the Dogs, 34 touches, 14 marks and a Glendinning in the Derby, where the opponents lack of skill meant they kicked it directly to him repeatedly. Hurn polled 2 more votes against the Saints and probably should have polled for 29 against the Pies. He was now genuinely one of our most influential players, but due to the teams uninspiring form, it mostly went unnoticed.

2018 was an exceptional year for the team and Hurn's form continued from late 2017, even building on that. He was the undisputed best non KPP defender in the league. He was roaming the ground finding the ball everywhere. 29 touches and 3 votes in round 3, he picked up a second Glendinning a few weeks, and by round 7 had polled in 3 games. He averaged 21 touches and 8 marks over the year, a massive increase. He was duly rewarded with AA, although inexplicably they awarded the captaincy to famed non-leader, Buddy. Hurn was dominant in the air, influencing contests everywhere and rarely missing a target. He had 430 kicks for the season, nearly 100 more than his previous high. Hurn held himself in good stead during the finals, he wasn't overawed and flew for several classy intercepts in the GF, having a very positive influence aside from 1 turnover in the first. Hurn somehow took his form to another level in 2019, taking his average up to 25 touches a game early, as well as accumulating masses of rebound 50's. In what has become an annual tradition, Hurn collected his 3rd Glendinning medal early in the year for a 32 disposal game. His form was electric, unassailable in the air, or any contest really, he seemed to be getting better and better the older he got. He was now by far the consensus best non KPP defender in the league. He was one of the most influential players in the league and was finally getting due recognition. A turning point was against the Dogs, where the calf issues that hadn't given him issues in over 5 years started to grow weary. He missed a few weeks, include the dour SCG game, and his form waned a little. His form waned a little, still elite, but not the dominance of early in the year. He was probably in our top 3 in the SF loss. People were noticing our captain now though, winning his 2nd AA in a row, although inexplicably they awarded the captaincy to famed non-leader, Fyfe. Bunga has played 269 games for the club, nearly all of them to a reasonably high quality. He has been the best disposer of the ball over the decade and could be a games record holder next year. After an extremely successful captaincy stint, Bunga made the brave call to step down, to help usher in a new leader and prolong his own career. Lets hope he gets his calves right and we can have another few years of that 2018-early 2019 form.
 

RookiePick

Brownlow Medallist
Aug 13, 2014
17,979
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#5 Shannon Hurn

Ah ol Bunga. He has started to receive the credit he deserves over the last 2 year, with improvement in the team and a spike in his number. But he has been top quality for a long time now, always high in the league for total kicks, he has been an absolute weapon with the distance and accuracy of his kicking, as well as his decision making. His kicking allows him to make kicks into the corridor that others can't, setting up many scores. He was initially expected to move into the midfield eventually when first drafted, however we discovered we couldn't move him from half back. Ultimately, the biggest success we've had this decade has been when we've built the gameplan around his strengths.

Hurn entered 2010 coming off a runner-up effort in the B+F, he really broke out as his tank had built up to the standard and he was able to use the ball more consistently. He went backwards in 2010 though, partly due to injuries. He couldn't get a run of games together due to calf issues and suspension. He was still a class act when out there though, 203 kicks and 31 handballs for the year were telling. Turn got his body right and became a crucial part of our rise to top 4 in 2011. He finished 4th in the B+F, although still underrated externally. His football smarts and brick wall of a body meant he was a very effective defender, despite a lack of pace. He seemed a man amongst boys, even with AFL players. He directed play, using his kicking to set up scoring, or maintain possession when we needed to slow the game down, as his maturity allowed him to understand what was needed. A strength of Hurn's that doesn't go down in the stats book is his kicking in from a behind, he would regularly hit targets outside 50 with ease, I think we had one of the highest score from kick ins, which turn took every time. Standout games include 30 touches (25 kicks) and 14 marks against GC, effectively slowing it down when they got momentum, and 25 touches and 3 goals against Port in a BOG effort, dobbing them from about 60.

Hurn's reliable use from defence continued in 2012. Getting high teens-mid twenties touches became close to the norm for him, rather than a big game. His aerial work became a big strength, although not the tallest, he took 22 contested marks for the year, he was too strong for any opponent and outbodied them. He drifted forward a little more often, 0.5 goals per game isn't anything to write home about, but he kicked multiples a few times from long range. His standout game was probably against North, 24 touches (23 kicks), 9 marks (2 contested) and 2 goals from half back, harshly denied a Brownlow vote. He wasn't about individual accolades, more a key cog in the team, but he again placed high in the B+F with a third place finish. His 2013 was frustrating though. Similar to 2010, he missed a large chunk through injury, although he was still good out there, including 5 contested marks against North. The 2 years he had wrecked by injury this decade, were interestingly the teams most disappointing by far, showing his importance to the squad.

He again got injured for a month in round 2 2014, however he returned and was at his best. Under Simmo he found more of the ball as he pushed up the ground a bit. He had 66 inside 50's compared to 47 rebound 50's, a ratio that was historically reversed significantly for him. His inside 50's were perfect, setting up many scores. Hurn's form had made him one of our best players, which allowed him a crack at acting captain when Glass retired. He obviously nailed it as he got the full time gig amongst multiple competitors. Hurn was a brilliant leader in 2015, although his form wasn't as strong. With injuries hitting the defence hard, Simmo had to pull him back from the role up the ground he was moulding him for to help cover holes. He was effective in intercepting and organised a makeshift defence well, enough to take it to a GF, but his individual output wasn't dominant, more reliable. His standout game came in the QF, leading a side without much finals experience against a seasoned Hawks team, Hurn set the tone with his aggression, using his body to bowl over multiple Hawks. Hurn was our leading disposal winner that night with 26, and despite normally getting the majority of his touches uncontested and not reaching double figures for contested in 18 months, he turned that ratio around with 13 contested (and only 9 uncontested, despite gaining 26 overall. I don't really understand how that's calculated). His GF was disappointing, he had a few nice kicks and set up Darling's goal, but his overall performance and leadership was down. He seemed as overawed by the occasion as the others, when the team needed a captains goal early in the second, 4 goals down at the time, he hit the post with a set shot 40 out straight in front, particularly disappointing for someone with his skills.

2016 was an extension of 2015, although slightly more free. He still played that quarterback role, accumulating masses of kicks as his leadership continued to grow. He was once again top 5 in the B+F and one of our best in the EF. His 2017 was his best yet. He snuck under the radar a bit, but his late season form was clear AA level and he ended the season the form player of the team. He wasn't just relying on being fed the ball at half back, he was finding space and winning it all over the place. More measured in his kicking these days, rather than hitting long targets, he perfected the art of the casual 40-50 metre pass. Standout games were 28 touches and 2 votes against the Dogs, 34 touches, 14 marks and a Glendinning in the Derby, where the opponents lack of skill meant they kicked it directly to him repeatedly. Hurn polled 2 more votes against the Saints and probably should have polled for 29 against the Pies. He was now genuinely one of our most influential players, but due to the teams uninspiring form, it mostly went unnoticed.

2018 was an exceptional year for the team and Hurn's form continued from late 2017, even building on that. He was the undisputed best non KPP defender in the league. He was roaming the ground finding the ball everywhere. 29 touches and 3 votes in round 3, he picked up a second Glendinning a few weeks, and by round 7 had polled in 3 games. He averaged 21 touches and 8 marks over the year, a massive increase. He was duly rewarded with AA, although inexplicably they awarded the captaincy to famed non-leader, Buddy. Hurn was dominant in the air, influencing contests everywhere and rarely missing a target. He had 430 kicks for the season, nearly 100 more than his previous high. Hurn held himself in good stead during the finals, he wasn't overawed and flew for several classy intercepts in the GF, having a very positive influence aside from 1 turnover in the first. Hurn somehow took his form to another level in 2019, taking his average up to 25 touches a game early, as well as accumulating masses of rebound 50's. In what has become an annual tradition, Hurn collected his 3rd Glendinning medal early in the year for a 32 disposal game. His form was electric, unassailable in the air, or any contest really, he seemed to be getting better and better the older he got. He was now by far the consensus best non KPP defender in the league. He was one of the most influential players in the league and was finally getting due recognition. A turning point was against the Dogs, where the calf issues that hadn't given him issues in over 5 years started to grow weary. He missed a few weeks, include the dour SCG game, and his form waned a little. His form waned a little, still elite, but not the dominance of early in the year. He was probably in our top 3 in the SF loss. People were noticing our captain now though, winning his 2nd AA in a row, although inexplicably they awarded the captaincy to famed non-leader, Fyfe. Bunga has played 269 games for the club, nearly all of them to a reasonably high quality. He has been the best disposer of the ball over the decade and could be a games record holder next year. After an extremely successful captaincy stint, Bunga made the brave call to step down, to help usher in a new leader and prolong his own career. Lets hope he gets his calves right and we can have another few years of that 2018-early 2019 form.
Fine wine
 

ronpingwins

Club Legend
Apr 1, 2013
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#4 Matt Priddis

Possibly the most divisive player of the decade. Make no mistake, there are a number of supporters that would have him in the bottom 4 rather than the top 4. Despite being our only player that could consistently win clearances for a large part of the decade, he copped a lot of backlash. The view was we couldn't win a flag with him in the team. Some of the criticism was warranted, no doubt, but it was always taken to the extreme. He was slow, one sided and a bafflingly poor kick at times. Priddis was also the absolute core of our midfield for a long period, where we were an above average team. The frequency that he won clearances were the highest in the league, and ultimately he was rewarded with a Brownlow, the first since Cousins.

The Priddler entered the decade as a key cog, but still considered an average player. He won 5.5 clearances per game, but wasn't offering much else. He was seen as the epitome of mediocrity. It began to change though in 2010, a season he finished runner up in the B+F and polled 13 Brownlow votes, despite playing just the 19 games. Round 3 against North showed what he was capable of, he won 13 clearances and 21 contested possession. He had 36 overall, with 27 of them handballs. North couldn't lay a finger on him, as he won the ball from stoppages over and over again. He followed it up with a BOG 30 touches against the Bombers. The fortnight after was where our issues with Priddis were evident. He had 16 and 17 touches, comprehensively beaten in the middle. At this point, against the very best, or the very big bodies, Priddis would get beaten to the ball at stoppages. The name of his game was winning clearances, and if he was getting beaten, then he was a liability. There were concerns that when the team rose, he would be found out in big games. His form continued in a strong fashion in a poor team season, but his bad games were still popping up. He was playing such an important role as our main midfielder, that we couldn't afford the inconsistency he was offering.

Priddis answered his critics with a brilliant 2011, although they weren't listening. Consistency was one of his biggest strengths, as well as his use of it, his hands were slicker and more effective with a better set up around him. His season high disposals was only 33, but he rarely dipped below ~25. The improved form, or at least effectiveness of Priddis, was the catalyst for the teams rise. He was so consistent with accumulating clearances and tackles that it was hard to pick a standout game. He had a period midseason where he polled 12 votes in 6 games and very briefly led the count. His finals were ok but slightly underwhelming, our best ball winner in the QF, but he was well beaten by Pendlebury and Swan. The SF was brilliant, accumulating 14 clearances and an early goal, which caught the attention of Cameron Ling, who reduced his effectiveness the following week. He finished runner up in the B+F and tallied 19 Brownlow votes.

2012 was a continuation of this form, although he was at times outshined by his flashier teammates, including Gaff/Shuey/SSelwood. Priddis opened the season with 17 clearances. He did the dirty work to allow the others to use their pace on the outside. His hands were utilised more, with his kicks going down but his handball average going up (the highest in the league), as he kept improving in feeding others. It led to less individual accolades, polling only 9 Brownlow votes and no placing in the B+F. Standout games included popping up for 3 goals at the GABBA, 34 touches (21 contested) in Tassie and kicking a clutch goal from the pocket against the Cats. Despite a strong season, he struggled in the SF against the Pies, only managing 5 clearances and 23 touches, well beaten by Beams/Pendles/Swan. It was these games that frustrated fans, the team was mostly good enough, but had a soft underbelly in the middle and Priddis represented our failings, someone who wasn't quite amongst the best. Priddis got better again in 2013, excluding the Port game where he got concussed early, he'd upped his clearances to 7.5 per game and was just about the best in the league at it. Despite people focusing on what he could do, he was winning a mammoth amount of clearances and tackles. As the midfield around him floundered, the Priddler stood out more and was pretty much our only consistent performer in there. He was regularly among the best players on the ground, accumulating 13 votes and finally winning a B+F.

Priddis was essentially the face of the midfield. There was talk he was holding the team back, with Matt the focus for the rucks at stoppages, players like Shuey and Gaff weren't getting involved enough and more perceived all rounders like Swift and Stevens had their careers fall by the wayside. Was having such a limited player as the main man good for the team? Was it what was holding us back from success? The coaches invested in Priddis and as our only mid that was winning the ball frequently, he started getting attention. The team missed finals again in 2014, and fans were divided about him, was he our lone hand, or did he epitomise mediocrity? Then he won a Brownlow. Who saw that coming?
Someone did. Was the thread made a year in advance? Sure, but it said 'potential winner', that could be any time. Was the thread made in jest? Well, there's a bit of truth in anything ever said, that's what I think.

There's a bit of a conspiracy around this Brownlow, with suggestions votes were altered in the final round to avoid the embarrassment of an ineligible player leading. People were also baffled that he polled so many votes. Did he deserve it? Let's take a look.
R1 28 touches and a goal against the Dogs. Could have pinched 1 really, Glass and Mackenzie polled the 2 and 1, so they were almost trying to avoid awarding him.
R2 Poor game, 0 votes.
R3 28 and a goal for 3 votes. Didn't win a lot of contested ball, a poor quality game where Luke Dunstan polled the 2, there were no alternatives.
R4 Poor game.
R5 33 touches, fed out a lot of handballs, mostly uncontested. Didn't deserve to poll, with Bennell getting our only vote.
R6 2 Votes for 35 touches against the Blues. Probably lucky to get 2 not 1, Shuey 28 and 2 goals an alternative.
R7 Poor Derby, 0 votes. 3rd below average game by round 7.
R8 26 touches, but 13 clearances his standout to get him 2 votes. JK the clear 3, LeCras with 22 touches, 4 goals and 4 assists deserved more, lucky to be ahead of a dominant Hurn performance too.
R10 Warrior performance at the G against Pendlebury. Could have gone either way with the 3 and 2 for them, 2 is deserved.
R11 Turned the ball over twice in the opening minutes to concede goals against North. Horrid use all night really, but he pinched 2 goals and 32 touches in a 6 goal loss to somehow poll 1.
R12 0 votes, meh game
R13 1 vote against GC for 32 and 12 clearances. Eh, Hurn and Ablett unlucky
R14 Another 2 against the Saints in a poor quality game. Rosa a deserved 3, Billings unlucky not to get 2, LeCras in the midfield was probably better too.
R15 Again struggles in a derby.
R16 Wins 21 contested touches in a wet loss to Sydney to get 1. Not a classic performance, but again no one to steal votes from him
R17 Shuey miles ahead of anyone to get the 3. Priddis got 2 for an average 25 touches, again rewarded due to no one else having an above average game.
R18 30 touches, 9 clearances and a mammoth 18 tackles in the wet to get 3 votes. The team could only manage 6 goals and lost one they shouldn't, with his 8 poor inside 50's a factor.
R19 31 touches and a couple of goal assists against the Crows, a well earnt vote
R20 Mammoth game, 42 touches (22 contested) and 12 clearances. Clear BOG.
R21/22 Meh. Average games.
R23 Somehow polled 2 votes against GC. 10 contested touches only. Probably his most surprising votes of the year, not a poor game though. Shuey with 27 touches and 9 clearances/Lycett 21 and 29 hitouts/LeCras 20 touches and 4 goals all viable alternatives to him.

It was a good year, but he overpolled. He had no competition from teammates for votes, and it was a low count, with GAJ going down midyear and Fyfe suspended. It was that in-between period after the GAJ/Swan/Judd dominance and before Danger/Fyfe/Martin/Titchell took it to another level. I'm open to the possibility of the R23 conspiracy, but he polled surprisingly all year, so it wasn't that strange.

Priddis went from a mildly known player to one of the biggest names in the game off the back of it. As a Brownlow medalist, he had a reputation to uphold and didn't want to become another Woewodin. The award seemed to bring the best out of him, as 2015 was by far his best year. He went even further down the rabbit hole of hand balling at every opportunity, to great effect. His weaknesses seemed to be cut out of his game. He upped his disposals from 28.5 to 29.6, clearances 6.7 to 7.6, but tellingly his goal assists went from 7 to 23. That was where his game really changed, we were getting more score involvements from him, which made having him win mass amounts of first possessions a huge competitive advantage. In a 6 week period midseason where the team broke out, he was BOG 4 times, polling 15 votes, and they weren't Priddis 2014 votes, they were well earnt. Week in week out Priddis was a dominant force, this was his peak as he was unstoppable in the middle. His only down games really were the derbies, where Fyfe had his number. Unlike 2014, you could genuinely say Priddis was in the best handful of players in the league. He just missed out on going back to back in the Brownlow, he was robbed by Fyfe but had proven he was no Woewodin. His critics had disappeared, most of them hiding away in Thailand, never to be heard from again. Priddis was a late out for the QF, sentiments had changed so much as we were written off based on this, it was a disaster. He returned for the PF and had a slow start, but then lifted in the second half which got the team moving, kicking the opening goal and setting up Sharrod's. He was one of the favourites for the Norm Smith, but it was a disappointing game. Not a shocker, but he was overawed by the occasion and beaten by the best.

Priddis opened 2016 brilliantly, he had 27 touches by half time of round 1 and finished on 43. He was living up to his reputation as one of the best in the league. He unfortunately repeated his poor outing at the G against the Hawks, before winning a Glendinning. He still had a very strong season, but had gone slightly backwards. He had some elite games and still polled 17 votes, however he carried an injury for bits of the year and wasn't at his most effective like the previous year. 2017 was the most disappointing season. Partnered up with Sam Mitchell, it was thought the 2 slickest hands in the business would be unstoppable, an avalanche of clearances would result. But they were too slow. Priddis lost a step and his hands were a touch slower, he started fumbling and couldn't release like he used to. His body was breaking down and he was a liability out there. His critics came back out of the woodwork, claiming he was never any good in the first place. The club was in a tricky spot, he had such a high standing within the playing group that he was virtually undroppable, while the fans grew weary of him as he represented the clubs inability to go too far the other way and give games to kids, like Partington, Swift or Stevens. It seemed like the end was looming however the club announced a 1 year extension midseason, this was framed as good news but was met with scorn by the public. As Priddis and the team continued to struggle (presumably he was carrying an injury too), he announced his retirement, despite having extended his contract weeks prior. From the tidbits dripped to the media, it sounds like it was a forced retirement, with Simmo unable to play him in the form he was at. He was 'rested' a few times late in the season, before returning for finals. His EF was one of his best games in a while, winning a lot of ball and kicking a clutch set shot. He racked up the clearances in the SF to mostly detrimental effect. He won 3 Brownlow votes for the season, down from 17, 28 and 26 in the previous seasons.

Priddis retired a champ. For a decade he was among the best clearance winners, tacklers and handballs in the game. He was the engine room for a team that was above average overall. In his peak, he was genuinely in the top 5 players in the league, and was unlucky not to be a dual Brownlow medalist. His critics will say we could never have won a flag with him, ultimately he didn't prove them wrong, but boy he went mighty close in 2015.
 

RookiePick

Brownlow Medallist
Aug 13, 2014
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My gut feel is Priddis needed longer in 2017 to get over his back issues. Unfortunately the desire to get his insane ball winning back on the field meant he was thrust back in ASAP to both his and the teams detriment and ultimately resulted in Priddis calling it a day earlier than he had to.

Sandover and Brownlow medallist and appeared in a grannie for the club. A paragon of the ideal of getting the most out of oneself. If the bloke had one fast twitch muscle fibre in his body he could have been an all time great IMO.
 

Ambrose Burnside

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Dec 8, 2006
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Then he won a Brownlow. Who saw that coming?
Someone did.
Some terrible Sheed comments in that thread too!
 

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CM9000

BigFooty Optimist
Aug 19, 2016
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He was the hero we deserved for those years, but (as 2018 proved) not the one we needed.
Priddis would be a premiership player if Tom Sheridan didn't drop that mark in the 2015 PF and let Hawthorn win. We wouldn't have made the GF without him that season.

To say a lack of him overall led to the 2018 flag is flat out wrong. We won in 2018 because a player slowing down retired, who was having a negative impact on the team due to injuries the previous year, not because he wasn't there at all. If we had Priddis in 2015 form playing last year, we still would've won the flag.

You're making a connection that isn't there.
 

ioppolo

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He was one win away from being a premiership player in 2015. The 2015 GF itself was a bigger issue than Priddis himself, the team as a whole failed miserably
 

Carbine Chaos

Blue Tree Project
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Priddis would be a premiership player if Tom Sheridan didn't drop that mark in the 2015 PF and let Hawthorn win. We wouldn't have made the GF without him that season.

To say a lack of him overall led to the 2018 flag is flat out wrong. We won in 2018 because a player slowing down retired, who was having a negative impact on the team due to injuries the previous year, not because he wasn't there at all. If we had Priddis in 2015 form playing last year, we still would've won the flag.

You're making a connection that isn't there.
It’s all good mate. I’m not going down the Priddis thread path again, I think my feelings on him as a player are clear haha.
 

ronpingwins

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#3 Jeremy McGovern

It's not often that a player starts getting games at AFL level, and within their first 10-15 games is one of, if not the best in the league in their role. But this is what happened with Gov. Although he'd been on the list for 3.5 seasons before getting a debut, and was initially playing as a forward, he became a unique, surprisingly dominant player very quickly. Gov was on the list for 2011-2013, without getting a game. Playing as a forward, he didn't get seniors games until his second season, but impressed with his ability to clunk a mark and find the ball around the ground. He got games in the Foxtel cup, where he lifted a gear as one of Claremont's best. He was also promising in his pre season games for the Eagles, he got a few NAB cup games and looked immediately comfortable. He was still somewhat of a no name, aside from his appearance in 2011's 'The Hero and the Footballer', so it was strange seeing this rookie listed kid taking contested marks, he looked like a future star based on that, with some wondering why he wasn't already in the team. Despite the urging from some former players, Freo and other clubs didn't offer him a deal, meaning he was promoted to the senior list in 2014 under Simmo, but he needed to start getting games at this point of his career. It didn't start well, not committed enough at pre season, he got sent away to fat camp. It seemed to do the trick.

McGovern got his first game against the Blues in round 6, filling in as a key defender. It didn't seem like this was a plan to work him into the team, as he was subbed and dropped the next week, however he impressed in his debut. He took a couple of nice marks and drifted forward to kick a goal. He returned 6 weeks later in Tassie against the Hawks, to play in the role he'd been trained in, a key forward. It's fair to say he hit the ground running, taking 10 marks (4 contested) and 2 goals. He looked a natural CHF, comfortable leading up the ground, but also sitting forward and taking contested marks. He followed it up with another 10 marks (4 contested) and 3.3 against GC, including the match winning goal. It looked like we had a star forward to partner JK and Darling, the only question now was whether we were too tall. His next 2 weeks were of a similar vein, including an incredible 7 in the derby. He had averaged 2.5 goals over the month, but also an incredible 4.5 contested marks, record breaking pace and he was very quickly establishing himself as one of the best marks in the league. He had a difficult few weeks after that, with 2 wet games at home made him a bit of liability, as the team was too tall up forward. Gov only managed 3 touches and 1 mark against the Swans, being subbed, before being forced into the ruck with Cox going down against the Tigers. Despite already playing 3 tall defenders, there was a change of plans against the Crows, with Gov moved back with the view that he and Schofield were mobile enough to not make us too top heavy there as well. In a high scoring game, Gov racked up 24 touches in a great display, showing his aerial threat as well as being a little bit of a quarterback and setting up play. He finished the season in this role to reasonable effect, he wasn't dominating but the team was functioning significantly better with him back there.

We weren't sure whether he'd move forward again in 2015, or we'd stick with him back. As Emac and then Brown went down, the answer became pretty clear. He was literally our only tall defender on the ground when Brown went down, fortunately the Dogs only had Redpath and Tom Boyd as key targets, but we were still vulnerable. In his 14th game of senior football, Gov played one of the all time great defensive efforts, gathering 26 touches, 12 marks (5 contested) and 2 Brownlow votes. As the Dogs went forward to their key targets, who had the competitive advantage of 10+ cm on any defender we had, Gov kept marking every entry, repeatedly getting in front of the forwards and protecting the goal, which probably saved us 5 or 6 goals. Somehow, the Dogs made no use of their extra targets, as they had no idea how to get past the colossus. It was a ridiculously good performance from McGovern, which he started to get lauded in the media for. McGovern even earnt the nickname 'Mitch' by some commentators, due to his marking exploits. His form was solid for most of the season, with some talk that he could sneak into the AA squad, snuffed out when he copped an injury midseason. He was a strong presence in the air, but it was his ability to read the play, zone off and intercept mark that made him so effective, it covered the holes lost by not having Emac/Brown out there. McGovern was the most effective interceptor in the game, and one of the best seen in a few years. His finals were ok, a particularly strong PF was followed by a mostly ineffective GF, where he was moved forward for the final quarter and kicked 2 goals.

McGovern was trained as a swingman in preseason, the guy who would dominate in defence then go forward when needed, like Adam Hunter. It was to very mixed effect in the first month, still capable in the air, he wasn't really a scoreboard threat. He was a permanent defender at the SCG and played his best game since the opener of 2015 against the Dogs. He had 23 touches, of which a remarkable 19 were contested, which never happens for non inside mids, as well as 12 1%'s and 4 contested marks. The Swans couldn't get past him, there was a period early where they were on top but they literally could not find a way past the wing because Gov was blocking the way. As soon as he went off the goals piled against us, despite a hefty loss he still polled a Brownlow vote. Gov took his game to a new level this year, he was a better defender, but he was also finding it more and using his brilliant contested mark to greater effect, taking 49 instead of the 28 the previous year. The norm became that teams couldn't get past him, and when he intercepted we'd get a quick rebound and score. There were multiple games where teams were dominant in terms of inside 50's but due to Gov intercepting, or finding their targets in pockets to avoid him, which resulted in inaccurate goal kicking, they'd find a way to lose. Teams were essentially forced to change their attacking entries due to this, often retaining possession for long periods of time, or having forwards lead to pockets, for more difficult shots. He was rewarded with an AA jacket, which he struggled to get on. There was still some debate about whether he was the best defender in the league, but he was by far the best and most effective CHB.

He improved further in 2017, he was unstoppable and was proving to be one of the best defenders of the millennium. Round 1 opened with 21 touches and 12 marks (4 contested), drifting forward for 2 assists. He had similar numbers the next week, including 12 1%'s. He was so much fitter than he was when he broke through, which allowed him to get to more contests and stay involved for longer. As his reading of the play was so good, he just knew which contests to get to. He was forced forward again vs the Swans, he no longer looked a natural up there but pinched a few goals and assists. He continued his dominant form for the early part of the season, including 22 touches and 13 marks in the derby as Freo kept hitting him up even when you didn't think it was possible. JK went down for a period midseason, leaving a hole up forward. Despite being the best defenders in the league and a weapon in defence, we made the call to deploy him as the replacement forward for an extended period. It was to mixed effect, he had 2 mediocre games against Geelong and GC, before taking 9 marks (5 contested) and kicking 3.3 in an inaccurate, but good performance. But was that for the greater good of the team? Tom McDonald kicked 5 for the Dees, including the winner, which you wonder whether that would have happened if he'd stayed back. He was mercifully moved back and continued his dominance. As we were being strangled by Port in the EF, hanging on for dear life, Gov pulled out a vintage performance. 25 touches, 15 marks (5 contested) and 12 1%'s as he kept them at bay over and over again despite the repeat inside 50's, Emac gets the credit for the moment, but it was Gov's performance that saved us. He earnt his 2nd AA for a brilliant 61 contested mark season, as he established himself as one of the great interceptors.

His confidence was through the roof and his form again got better in 2018, as he was one of the main drivers to our ascent to a flag. His dominance was week in week out as he took 67 contested marks for the year, as well as polling votes in 3 separate matches. After failing with another test of McInness, we were unfortunately forced to move him forward for a fortnight, while he kicked 2 goals in each of those games, we lost both of them, which was very much a rarity that season, highlighting his importance to the team. JK and Darling returned which moved him back, he promptly took 12 marks from 22 touches in a BOG performance. Teams started tagging him, this happened when Port dribbler Aidyn Johnson was assigned the task. It proved to be very effective, Gov had no influence, Johnson kicked 3 goals and Port looked headed for an upset win. In the final minutes Simmo played the 'Hunter Forward' card, where he immediately took a contested mark in typical McGovern fashion, where he kicked the winning goal after the siren. The tagger returned in the form of Chris Mayne in the QF, as Gov obliterated them in the first quarter, taking 7 marks. He was held a little but still had a great game. He trundled through the PF without much he needed to do, which was fortunate as he suffered a significant injury in the first. There was doubt all week whether he'd get up for the GF, with all sorts of rumours floating around about what had happened to him. Turns out some of them were true, as he'd spent the week in hospital with internal bleeding, not that you'd know with what the club revealed. He played remarkably well for someone who was very much not well, pulling out a typical McGovern game to be amongst our best. He will always be remembered for his mark in the final minutes to set up Sheed's goal, which just summed him up, reading the ball coming in, paying no attention to his man and flying for it at the perfect moment. He broke the record for intercept marks this season and had a three peat of AA's.

His 2019 was still fantastic, although it felt like he was a little down. He only took 46 contested marks, as well as not polling any votes, he didn't have any vintage individually dominant games. He was still rewarded with his fourth straight AA. The view was teams had to play differently with him in the team, the numbers were down because teams were more than ever coming up with strategies to move the ball forward around him. This is what makes him one of the greats, his intercepting is so good that teams have to change the way they play because of him. It's been a decade of quality over quantity for McGovern, basically every full season he has played he has been an AA. Can he get better? He has 4 AA's already with many years to come, there's no reason he can't continue down this path and pick up even more accolades.
 

Forward Press

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Shuey and Kennedy for top two. Sounds about right and glad both became premiership players.

McGovern's story though is one for the ages, we absolutely nailed that draft. You don't hear of many players that an opposing team modifies a game plan to avoid him, so in that respect he's elite.
 

ronpingwins

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#2 Luke Shuey

There was a time in 2009 where things were a little on edge. We had accepted we needed to do a rebuild, but were unsure of how long it would take. There were a couple of nice prospects coming through, but it appeared none of the myriad of midfielders drafted had the capabilities to be elite, mostly looking like B-Graders. I recall an interview then with Dean Cox where he was asked to nominate the young midfielder that could lead the rebuild he was hyping up. I expected him to suggest Masten or Swift, but he nominated someone who was at the time an unseen mystery box called Luke Shuey, raving about his pace and skill. Shuey was a mystery to us in 2009 because he was unable to get out on the park. He had minor hype when drafted, with most people expressing surprise he was taken before Tom Swift. In his first preseason he lost his sister, which meant he had a long period away from the club. He returned for about half a WAFL reserves game, before breaking his leg. It was enough that you wouldn't have thought twice if he requested a trade home. He showed character though, as this seemed to instill some loyalty into him.

Shuey got a bit of a run in the NAB cup and looked nice, he was obviously extremely highly rated internally and earnt a round 1 debut off it. He kicked his first goal within minutes and finished with 2 and 18 touches, mostly roaming from half forward. Shuey's skills were evident in his follow up gaining a classy 15 touches and 2 goals, but he looked gassed early, he didn't have the legs to get to many contests. The team lost to Port by 3 points that day, as Shuey drilled a brilliant shot from outside 50 on the buzzer, coming awfully close to winning the game for us. Shuey managed one more appearance before he was struck down with Glandular fever and was out for months. Kid was cursed. Boots returned to play Port again, and again he kicked a late goal to draw us level, a brilliant snap from a stoppage, only for the team to fall short. That was the 2nd time he'd kicked a late goal in a close game against Port in only his 4th game, he was making a habit of it. He played the final 2 games of the season and looked promising, only limited runs through the midfield, but the pace and skill Cox had talked about was evident.

Boots became a bit of a star pretty quickly in 2011. He opened round 1 in the midfield as a main rotation and gathered 16 touches in the first half. He ended on 20, showing his lack of preseasons and fitness were still causing him issues, although it did include the last goal of the game, 5 points up 2 minutes to go, he kicked a clutch set shot from outside 50 to win us the game. The following week was the first showcase of what was to come from a full Shuey game. Playing Port for the third time in his first 8 games, it was again a close game in the final quarter, and again Boots lifted a gear, this time kicking 2 final quarter goals as part of the win. He finished with 27 touches (16 contested), 6 clearances, 10 inside 50's and 3.2. Of all our young mids, he was by far the most damaging and looked like the star in our rise up the ladder. He seemed to spend less time in the midfield in the next month or so, having quieter games, although he wasn't being noticed by the opposition yet, and it seemed like every time he got the ball it was absolute silk and led to a goal. He spent more time in the midfield against the Dogs in round 9, to uh, pretty good effect as he kicked 5.3 from 27 touches. It wasn't just impressive numbers, he was untouchable, too quick and agile for the Dogs, he had the poise and skill to repeatedly hit up JK on the lead with his 8 inside 50's, his goals were on the run bursting away from players, sometimes from outside 50, and/or on his non preferred foot. It was super impressive, albeit a little bit of a flat track. Due to his fitness not quite being there, he was inconsistent, although his quiet games were still 15-20 classy disposals. His ball use was proving to be an absolute weapon, best shown by 4 goal assists against Carlton (that brief time they were good) and he was the favourite for the rising star. His form was getting better as the season went on, 26 touches and 8 clearances in the derby was enough for 3 votes but not the Glendinning, before polling Brownlow votes in 3 of the final 5 games of the season. He finished with 12 votes in his first full season and seemed like he could contend for one as soon as 2012. The Victorians got their way in the rising star though, with flanker Dyson Heppell narrowly winning the award. Boots kicked 24 goals, had 21 assists 114 clearances and 117 inside 50's as he managed to balance winning hard ball with being a damaging weapon going forward. He was probably thrust into the finals spotlight too soon, however, as the immense pressure of the pies weighed on him. Shuey was known for breaking tackles and running with the ball, however he didn't have time to do that in the PF, being run down HTB multiple times. Classic case of inexperience. He kept at it though, running through the corridor to set up Darling for our final goal. His next 2 finals were better but didn't really show what he could do, as he adjusted to the tempo.

Shuey was expected to move into the elite bracket in 2012, and it looked like he would as he polled Brownlow votes in his first 3 games, including 5 goals against GWS. Another preseason was enough for him to become more or less a full time midfielder. His inside 50's were down but clearances were up. He started attracting attention from taggers however, which held him back from the next level as he had a few shockers. He was just so damaging with the ball though, 20-25 touches from him were dominant. He continued to hit the scoreboard, but accuracy was down, kicking 19.22. A lowlight was getting suspended midseason for the Lions game, which we lost by 2 points and can absolutely say he would have been the difference. It ended up costing us top 4. He was naive with the suspension, and also with his tactic to gain free kicks, this was a period when Shuey, Hams and Selwood x2 became famous for getting a plethora of frees for high contact, which made him a target for the media. Although he didn't redeem himself with dominant finals series, he was ok and the season was a step forward, although there were teething problems. West Coast were flag favs to open 2013 and Shuey was this time expected to become one of the best mids in the comp. Round 1 set the tone for a disappointing year though, as Crowley clamped him down to 12 touches, indicating he wasn't there yet. His form was pretty good for the next month or so, moved to more of an outside role to protect him, he won plenty of it (less contested) and was still effective. He was tagged out of it again vs Brisbane, before an 18 touch 2 goal game was ok, but he choked on a set shot with a minute to go, leaving NN to finish the job. It showed his mentality wasn't there to be elite, a far cry from the kid dobbing late goals against Port. He moved back inside and his form immediately picked up, culminating in a 33 touch, 2 goal effort against eventual premiers Hawthorn to get a Brownlow vote. However, he copped an injury and missed a month, only returning for 2 more appearances, both of which he was subbed off injured.

With Simmo arriving in 2014, we hoped this time he would go to the next level. He was only 60 games in. Again tagged out of it, he was subbed off in round 1, although not because he was WOG. A flat track 30 and 2 followed, as his season was marred by inconsistentcy, as he struggled to win contested ball. He played a few poor games in this period, where he gathered under 20 touches multiple times, which isn't good enough for a midfielder. Boots was still young, but we were wondering.... is this it? Did he just not have what it takes to become elite, rather than just needing more time? It clicked in the second half of the season though, as the team made a late burst for finals, Shuey was a key driver of it, averaging 27 touches and 7 clearances over the last two months, providing his trademarks class and skill. It ended up being an underwhelming season, in the sense he hadn't developed as we'd hoped, but his run of form at the end of the year gave cause for optimism.

2015 showed real maturity in his game. It was Shuey with consistency. This did include 2 of his only poor performances of the season early, with his other 4 games in the first 6 weeks tallying 24 touches and 2 goals 3 times, the other 23 and 2. The away win against Port was a breakthrough game for the club, digging deep and grinding it out, and for the fourth time in his career, Boots lifted late and kicked 2 in the final quarter, again kicking the sealer on the buzzer. Shuey had become a reliable clearance winner, upping it to 6 per game, and was showing no sign of being affected by taggers. His standout performance came against the Crows, accumulating 31 touches, 9 clearances and 2 goals. Shuey wasn't quite in the upper echelon, but 23 touches, 6 clearance and 1 goal and 1 assist showed he was an effective, damaging player. With Priddis ruled out, Shuey was thrust into the role of lead midfielder against the Hawks, he was our only reliable clearance winner. It brought out the best in him, we didn't get as much silk as usual, but he went into contested ball mode and was a warrior, winning multiple contests to set up scores and was one of the best on ground. His PF was not the same though, being effected by a tagger for the first time in a while, Ben Jacobs gave him no space, keeping him to 11 touches, although he broke away for 2 goals. He was far from the worst in the GF. He kicked an early goal and won enough of the ball, it was slightly marred by a selfish decision to shoot from the boundary instead of handing it to Cripps in a better position early, and a mix up with Darling entering 50 in the third.

2016 was Boots becoming the main man. He was reaching his physical and mental prime, where taggers were now ineffective to him and he was able to deliver all round performances every week. His goal tally was down, but his disposals, tackles and clearances spiked, as well as maintaining his high goal assist tally. He was often our shining light in poor games, consistently winning hard ball, laying tackles, bursting away from stoppages and routinely hitting his targets. He was being speculated as an AA chance, although he just missed, as well as a sneaky chance at a placing in the Brownlow, with a few predictors having him top 3, although most of his expected votes went to a higher accumulator in Gaff. Boots standout game was undoubtedly the best game of his career, coming late in the season against GWS. Against their much lauded midfield full of early picks, Shuey had 38 touches (23 contested), 13 clearances and 2 goals in a ridiculous performance. He had 14 touches (6 clearances) and 2 goals in the final quarter alone, as he almost single handedly drove us over the line. He nailed his 2 set shots in the final quarter, highlighting how far he'd come. The team had an embarrassing loss in the EF, but Shuey delivered, winning 19 contested possessions. He deservedly was named Best and Fairest at the end of the year.

2017 was another elite season, although the decline of the midfield around him limited his effectiveness. His start to the season was elite, across the first 5 games he gathered 30+ touches each time, as well as averaging a goal a game and 7.2 clearances, he was doing pretty much everything. He had 2 BOG's in this period and we started to look at him as a potential Brownlow chance. He was moved to an outside role in the derby to accomodate the Priddis/Mitchell dream team (it wasn't the only time), which he handled well by getting 4 goal assists. His form continued to be strong, although he started having his flat patches again, he was by far our best midfielder. Shuey was at the point he'd built enough strength that he couldn't be tackled effectively, he always liked to take his time and make the right decision, this was enhanced as he could win it in stoppages and look around, because if he was tackled he would always break free. He was our main man and entered finals off a BOG performance against the Crows in what was essentially a knockout final. Interestingly, our opponents for the EF was Port Adelaide, who Shuey had a history of kicking late goals against. Boots saved his best Port performance for this final, accumulating 32 touches, 11 tackles, 2 assists and 2 goals, including for the fifth time in his career, a crucial late goal against them, this time remarkably winning the game after the siren in extra time. Shuey put in another high quality performance in the SF, but it was futile as the team was clearly outmatched.

2018 will certainly be remembered fondly for his efforts, but it was actually a below par year for him overall. With the team making a surprise run to the GF, you would have assumed it was Shuey driving it all, but he missed multiple games with injury and didn't really get too much consistency. He began with 25 and 18 touches, gathering under 10 contested possessions in ok performances. He was one of the best afield against the Cats, before fairly middling (for Shuey's standards) performances against GC and Carlton. He was one of the best afield in the derby, before doing his hammy in the opening minutes the following week, keeping him out until round 13, as it felt like his season hadn't got started. His return yielded 14 and 18 touches in 2 poor losses. His form picked up after this though, collecting 22 clearances in the Pies/Giants games and getting back to his best. He again saved his best for Port in a 3 vote performance and entered finals near top form. His QF was ok but underwhelming, he never really got off the chain, he fought hard for 19 touches. He was electric in the PF early, he only gathered 21 touches in the end as he picked up a niggly injury, but it felt like he was everywhere early as he was so effective. In the GF, with the tag going to Yeo and the form of Redden catching attention, Boots had one of those days that he pulls out occasionally, where he is unstoppable and by far the best player on the park. His first half was so good they actually shifted the tag from Yeo to him, not that it helped at all. He played statistically one of the best finals ever, 34 touches (19 contested) 8 clearances, a goal and 2 assists, although it should have been 4 or 5 if the team could take it's chances. He had the first disposal of the game, driving it inside 50 to JK and was everywhere all day, taking the last mark of the game. It was just about a perfect performance and showcased everything that is good about Boots as he deservedly won the Norm Smith by a mile (not sure what was up with Wanganeen picking Taylor Adams though).

The champ entered 2019 full of confidence and lived up to the GF hype. His BOG game against GWS with 28 and 2 was all class. He's continued to build and deliver what he does more frequently and with more consistency. While he could be bullied off the contested ball in his early years, he was a warrior now. He no longer has his 27 and 5 goal kind of games, but he is dominating at the heart of the midfield. 2019 ended up being his best season overall. Games like the one away to Adelaide where 33 touches and 10 clearances, as well as against the Hawks in the wet with 39 touches, 11 clearances and 11 inside 50's were becoming more common, as he just found a way to will the team over the line. Shuey still doesn't really get the external credit he deserves, he won the B+F, but underpolled in the Brownlow with 15 and again missed out on AA. His finals were again strong, eating the Bombers alive with 3 goal assists from 35 touches, before being one of our best in the SF. 200 games in now, he's been the golden boy for this era really, always the one that was a little bit special. Right from his first few games you could tell he had that something extra, where he was going to be a match winner. Although he hasn't delivered brownlows or AA selections, he's consistently provided what is most effective for the team and it's no wonder he was a near unanimous choice to be the new captain.
 

ronpingwins

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#1 Josh Kennedy

It's hard to believe now given how his career has panned out, but JK wasn't always considered a home run, star prospect. Sentiment towards his involvement in a trade for Judd was mixed.
My 2 cents on Josh Kennedy.

He's a workhorse not a star. Eagles fans will love him and opposition supporters will underrate him. He'll chase, tackle, crash packs and do all the dirty work in the forward line. An improved version of Earl Spalding for those old enough.
**** he's a spud.

Shitter and more unko version of the worst of Hansen and McDougall combined.

Rather just pick 3.
I don't see that Kennedy is any improvement on Hansen (injury prone) or Mitch Brown (young, but showed promise in his few games last season) or even Chad Jones. Unless West Coast have plans to ontrade him for someone else (or another pick) I don't think he'll get to play much.
We might not have a LLoyd or a Carey in the way of KPP but we do have Lynch, Hansen, Staker, Hunter, Seaby (when not rucking which is 80% of the game) already in the team in the forward line and who would allplay in front of Kennedy at this stage and Mitch Brown, Schofield, Mckenzie all doing well in the WAFL and pushing for selection. We can't play them all. You only really need 2 in the forward line at any one time, kempie.

So, yes, we do have too many KPP players in front of Kennedy at the moment. And if we do give game time to Kennedy it will be at the expense of one of the other younger forwards who will probably up and leave a year later due to lack of opportunity.

Kennedy would not add much to our list that is not there already. he will be a good player, but as i said it will be better for him to go to a club where he will get the investment, gametime and development he needs and better for the eagles to get a gun midfielder or another draft pick instaed of him.

Good player potentially but wrong fit for our club at this time.
Consensus was a workmanlike KPP in the mould of Ash Hansen. Whilst he looked promising in his first few years, he didn't really do that much. His first year he averaged 6 marks and 1 goal in 7 games, before kicking 31 in 16 games in 09, with 3 bags of 4 his high. Obviously KPPs take longer to hit their best, but JK was 4 years in and delivering solid, but unexceptional output. He had a lot of the requisite attributes for the role and looked promising, but there was no guarantee an elite player would emerge. A comparison for JK at the beginning of the decade is probably Eric Hipwood right now, looks to have the skills and can deliver a pretty good performance every now and then, but overall output is middling.

2010 looked like a bit of a breakout for him, though. He was hitting the scoreboard consistently in a team that was struggling. He wasn't doing it the way a KPP traditionally would though, as didn't show the aerial dominance he should, including kicking 4 goals against Port but only 3 marks for the game. He kicked 23 goals in his first 7 games, which was elite and included a take down of the Hawks where he kicked 6. He was getting the goals through work rate but it was unsustainable, he wasn't taking enough marks inside 50 and was getting beaten really, he wasn't getting the easy goals he needed. He kept playing reasonably well and had 32 goals by the halfway mark of the year, looking like he could be on the fringes of the AA side. His effort against the tigers in the Riewoldt 10 game was a standout, while his peer was getting silver service, JK worked himself into the ground for 17 touches, 9 marks, 2 goals and 4 goal assists in a heartening effort. From there though, his form sunk like a stone as he was unable to continue manufacturing goals without breaking free. He kicked only 7 goals in his final 10 games, losing the incredible accuracy that had him on 39.11 at one point, although he was working up the ground a bit more to allow LeCras space, aside from 12 marks against Essendon, his form was pretty dismal. 5 years in, we needed to be able to rely on him as the main target, as having LeCras at FF was not a long term option and the fact he was still holding JK out was a sign he needed to improve.

2011 was where he began to enter his physical prime and his all round game improved markedly. He kicked 3.3 in round 2, as his ability to chase down players was evident, particularly with Darling setting the standard. He became the focal point, a FF as his contested marks and marks inside 50 increased dramatically. He nearly dragged us over the line in Tassie, as we made a late comeback, he kept raking in big marks and earnt a Brownlow vote. After a solid 16 goals in 7 games, he finally had his day out. 21 touches, 15 marks and 10.3. Although the game ended as a flat track, JK did his work when the game was needed to be won, he kicked his 7th to make the scores 73-45, as the team went on a 102-7 run, JK only kicked 3 of those. He'd announced himself, he wasn't just a pretty good forward in the Petrie mould, he was going to be a match winning star with Colemans in his future. He kicked 7 in his next 2 games and was sitting on 33 goals in his first 10 games, tracking for 70+ in a massive breakout year. His form was inconsistent though, a strong target, but not delivering weekly dominance, with multiple sub 10 touches, 1-2 goal games. Standouts for the year included taking 10 marks for 3.4 on prime Luke McPharlin, 19 touches, 9 marks and 4.3 against the Bombers and a short film chronicling his career shifting furniture. JK had a solid finals series, 1.2 against the Pies but took 5 contested marks, kicking 3.3 in the SF, showing up Judd in their face off, before doing what he could in the PF and kicking 3 with very limited service. It was a breakout year as he moved into the upper echelon of key forwards, looming as one of the best from his age bracket. He lifted his marks to 65 inside 50 and 51 contested for the year, as well as kicking 59 goals. It was a fantastic season as our focal point, although the outlier of the 10 made it look slightly better than it was, 49 goals in 22 games is good, but not elite.

2012 he was expected to take his game to the next level, and it looked like he would in round 1. Assigned the tough matchup of Lukas Markovic, JK had 3 in 15 minutes and 4 by quarter time. He finished with 7 as the Dogs had no answer. He was a bit off for the next month though. He kicked 4 goals in his next 3 games (2 of them very easy wins) and averaged 8 touches, not really having an impact. He suffered an injury early against the Tigers, frustratingly keeping him out for most of the season. People say his season was wrecked by the injury, which it was, but it wasn't to blame for his mediocre form when he returned late in the season. Bar the anomaly of kicking 4 in the 100 point EF win, it followed his early season pattern and 7 of his 9 games were below par.

JK was a bit of a forgotten man entering 2013. There was excitement around the return of LeCras, and Darling was the new golden boy, coming off a 53 goal second season. Almost immediately, he proved to be one of the highlights of the season. This was where it really turned for him and he became a star. In a disappointing derby loss to open the year, he stood out like a beacon with his ability to get to contests and clunk the mark seemingly every time. He roamed the field for 19 touches (14 contested), 9 marks (5 contested) and 2 goals. He played closer to goal the following week against the Hawks and in an even more disappointing loss, he delivered 5 quality goals. He had another 5 goal game the following week in a promising start to the season, he was clearly fitter and at the point he'd grown stronger than pretty much all defenders, who could no longer handle him. Despite a very poor team performance that really struggled for quantity of inside 50's, Kennedy maintained a very consistent output and was reliable for multiple goals per game, despite not really tearing a game apart, he was finally a Coleman contender. His best performance came away to the eventual premiers in the Hawks, despite being double teamed with Gibson and Hodge at times, he took 10 marks, had 8 tackles and kicked 5 goals in a 3 vote performance, despite the loss. His game against the Crows away was very memorable, he kicked 4 but it was in the wet, scores level with a minute left, JK came bursting through to scoop up a loose ball and drill a left footed goal from a difficult angle to win the game. I'd like to see Tex do that ep2018. JK kicked 59 goals in his first 17 games and looked like taking AA, B+F and Coleman awards with him, but a very poor last month where he only kicked 1 cost him, the team seemed to stop playing for the coach and he was a big part of that, with a very strong individual season amounting to nothing.

In 2014, seemingly overnight Kennedy became perceived as a 'flat track bully'. The change in coach led to a change in his role, and a change in his output. Barring a nice 4 goals in a Demons flat track, JK was back to his early 2012 form, with his accuracy inexplicably deserting him, with 2.3 against the Saints and 1.5 against Port. 13.12 from his first 7 games wasn't good enough for our focal point. This is where the flat track reputation arrived, as his form turned with 11 goals straight in an easy win against lowly GWS. He kicked 1.4 over the next fortnight when we needed him, before dobbing 7 straight against GC. He'd kicked 14 from 9 games, and 18 in 2 against the expansion sides. He only managed 6 goals over the next month in what was becoming a really poor season, remarkably sitting on 20 goals from 13 games against non expansion sides, a stark drop off. All of a sudden it turned though, as the team had a breakthrough win against the Crows, JK was a big part of dragging us over the line, taking 11 marks for 5.4. As the team went on a winning streak, his form spiked and he finished with 23 goals in his final 5 games. His schizophrenic season gave him this flat track reputation, he was capable of being the best KPF in the league, but could only do it in certain circumstances. He was completely reliant on the team performance for his performance. But why now? His form the previous season was a complete contrast. 2013 he finished with 60 from 21, 2014 61 from 20, however in 2013 despite numerous flat track wins, JK never kicked more than 5 in a game, as his best performances came equally in tough losses as easy wins. He was the opposite of a flat track, however 2014 showed no consistency and had hauls of 11, 8 and 7. Without those 3 games, he averaged less than 2 per game. Clearly the change of coach was the biggest factor, it's hard to define specifically what changed, but clearly there was a change in system or his role that made him more reliant on the rest of the team.

Fortunately, the change ended up bringing the best out of him as the team improved. Initially it seemed he was still a flat tracker, beginning with 2, 10 and 1 goal hauls. There were even some unfortunate bronx jeers in the derby, the result had nothing to do with him, but it established the view that he hadn't turned the corner and was still a bully that couldn't deliver when needed. It didn't last though, kicking 3.5 in Brisbane before dominating GWS with 6. He was sitting on a healthy 22 goals from 5 games to open the season, which meant he'd kicked 45 from his last 10 under Simpson, tracking for 100+ in a full season. He was the best forward in the comp, just not everyone knew it yet. Despite picking up an elbow injury that had a prognosis of season over, he carried on and kept hauling in marks on the lead. He was now more of a mark on the lead key forward, rather than big gorilla, in 2011 he took 51 contested and 65 inside 50, which turned into 39 contested and 101 inside 50 in 2015. He was kicking bags every week, not having down games really, 20 touches, 11 marks and 6.4 on Harry Taylor and 21 touches, 14 marks and 7.3 against the Dogs his standouts. Arguments remained that he didn't perform against the best teams, but was it true? Despite the reputation, he kicked 4 in his only Hawks appearance, only 2 against Freo gave the illusion he was down, but it included 18 touches, 7 inside 50's and a Brownlow vote. Really, JK was delivering and there weren't many top sides anyway, with North eventually making a prelim evidence of that. We entered finals with Kennedy winning the Coleman by a massive margin, gaining AA with 75 goals and him as our most important player. He wasn't dominant all night in the QF or PF, but he lifted in periods that were key to us winning. In an arm wrestle against the Hawks, he kicked 3 goals in the second quarter that allowed us to break free and establish a lead. After a shocking start in the PF where we were goalless well into the second, he went back with the flight to take a big mark during a big collision, before immediately recovering to run in and kick our first goal. He kicked the second shortly after, showing great leadership to kick us into gear when needed, as he finished with 20 touches and 9 marks, flat tracker indeed. The GF couldn't really have gone worse however, he wasn't aggressively poor in the way Darling was, he was just held comprehensively, we had moments where we looked like getting back into it, but he never put his stamp on the game, and looked scared to. It was his first scoreless game of the year, a really disappointing way to end a dominant season that should have enhanced his reputation more.

We needed more of the same to repeat in 2016 and that's what we got, as he got even better. It was probably the best season of his career. He opened with a decent effort against the Lions, 25 touches, 16 marks, 8 goals and 4 goal assists. Solid start. The goals weren't flowing over the next month or so, but he was playing well. Only 1 against the Hawks at the G was disappointing for his redemption, but he racked dup 18 touches and played well roaming up the ground due to lack of service, which he was forced to do again at the SCG, taking 10 marks in the loss. Accuracy also deserted him, as he kicked 9.14 over this period. The goals all came in a rush against the Saints though, in a quarter of practically perfect footy, he had 5 goals after 24 minutes, looking like he might break a few records. His job was done now and he stopped on 5, although he still got the 3 votes as the game breaker. He followed that up by arriving late to Adelaide, looking like he wasn't going to play, but bagging 7 and dragging us over the line. He kicked 5 the following week and he was really piecing together another dominant season, he was one of the best players in the league, let alone KPFs. Despite a stinker away to the Dogs, his form was consistently strong for the rest of the season. He won a Glendinning for 7 goals in the derby and closed the season with back to back 5 goal efforts. He finished with 80 goals, another AA+Coleman and impressively 17 Brownlow votes, one of the best for a non-buddy KPF in a very long time. 8 times he kicked 5 or more, a remarkable effort. His EF didn't really enhance what was an unfair reputation for being poor in big games, but with 16 touches, 8 marks and 2 goals in a shattering loss, he didn't do a hell of a lot wrong either.

JK again opened the season with a dominant performance, 7 goals and 3 assists against North made him the difference, he was just too good. He followed it up with 4 more and a consistent start, winning another Glendinning for 6 in a derby. His performances decided whether we won or lost at this point, with 3.6 against the Dogs, a rare off night, almost costing us. In round 10 against GWS, we saw the worst possible thing, JK going down with a serious injury. It was a disappointing loss all round, but I remember going home absolutely shattered, it looked like a season ender, which basically ended the teams season. But it wasn't and he hit the ground running when he came back. The team was showing all the hallmarks of one that was finished and about to fall off a cliff, but JK wasn't having any of that, inspirational performances either winning it for us or keeping us in games kicking and screaming. He kicked 30 goals in his first 6 games back, so despite missing 6 games, he was in front for the Coleman again. Buddy getting a cheap 10 against a side that had given up and JK kicking 1.4 ended up costing him, but it was amazing that he was actually in the race. He polled 13 Brownlow votes in his 17 home and away games, averaging 4 goals a game, despite being plagued by inaccuracy to start the season. He was a sensation and got a deserved third AA. His EF was quiet, kicking only 1 in regular time, before lifting when needed and kicking 2 clutch goals in extra time. His SF was quiet but there wasn't much he could do. It makes you think what would have happened if JK didn't return from injury early and have an inspiring run of form against the tide, the side was looking old and struggling, we would have missed finals and that Port game, who knows how the following year would have unfolded.

There's a lot of misinformation regarding injuries at the club in the media. None moreso than early 2018 and how serious JK's leg injuries were. 1 or 2 weeks out initially, it kept increasing each week, while there were rumours floating around he would miss half the season. Round 4 was the answer and he popped up for 5.3, although only off 2 marks. With Darling taking centre stage, Kennedy was more of a role player, still very good, but not the main attraction he had been (34 goals in 11 H+A games wasn't too shabby though). His only dominant game was against the Saints, where everything went right and he nailed 6. His injury recurred again the following week, which kept him out for another month. He returned to play an important role in the Collingwood win, but only managed one more game before dropping out. He was wrapped in cotton wool for finals, but there were serious questions about his fitness and whether he would be returning when needed. He got his chance in the QF opposed to Tyson Goldsack, also coming off a long term injury. It was clear JK wasn't quite right, but he needed the match fitness. Unsighted early, he got his chances in the third but his famed efficiency was off, he kicked 3 simple behinds in a row at a crucial time of the game, putting the Pies in the box seat. He kicked goals either side of three quarter time though, critical to the win and signalling that he was back. The PF was a big game, we needed to put our foot on the throat early to not give the Dees hope. It went exactly to plan, Kennedy was all business, he kicked the first of the game and two quickly to open the second. He had 4 halfway through the second, he could have kicked 10, but with the game finished, JK went into hibernation for the rest of the day, job done he conserved himself for the big one. The plan worked as he had a significant day in the GF, one that could easily have been Norm Smith worthy but for a few things. JK had a mark on the lead within the first minute, where he missed a sitter, before bumping into Venners to spoil a simple mark. But he was a workhorse all day, providing an option, getting down and tackling at crucial moments and kicked important goals when needed. He finished with 18 touches, 11 marks and 3 goals, easily winning his duel, however he was just 1 or 2 spilt marks away from having a dominant game.

2019 is the year we thought, this might be it. He's still had a nice season for the most part, kicking goals early, but not offering much else. He doesn't look right physically, mostly getting goals through his smarts. Most exemplified by his game against the Bombers, taking 8 inside 50 marks against Michael Hurley isn't easy, but those 8 marks were the only times he touched the ball. He dobbed 7 against North in a standout, but struggled to get to 10 touches in a game and only averaged 4 marks per game for the year. What a decade he's had though, he was always an exciting prospect, but the focus was always on how hard he works for a KPF, rather than his actual talent. There were periods between 2015-17 where he was genuinely the most valuable player in the comp. He has been a gun the whole decade, consistently the main driver when we were up, as well as a beacon of light during the brief down times.
 

dodgie

Team Captain
Dec 1, 2017
445
647
AFL Club
West Coast
"but we do have Lynch, Hansen, Staker, Hunter, Seaby (when not rucking which is 80% of the game) already in the team in the forward line and who would allplay in front of Kennedy at this stage and Mitch Brown, Schofield, Mckenzie all doing well in the WAFL and pushing for selection. We can't play them all. You only really need 2 in the forward line at any one time, kempie"

Doesn't this sound awfully familiar
 

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