Preview Round 16, 2015 - Melbourne vs Brisbane Lions

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ZoBlitz

The Ghost Who Walks
Sep 20, 2004
7,972
11,543
Brisbane/Melbourne
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Brisbane Lions
Date – Sunday, July 19th
Time – 1:10pm
Venue – MCG
Weather- 14° Mostly Sunny

Preview by ZoBlitz


The Opposition – Melbourne

As anyone who read my well-regarded and equally short preview from last season that I may plagiarise from, Melbourne is definitely one of my favourite teams to watch. I mean, I must have watched them play at least twice since 2009 when they weren’t playing the Lions. I’m pretty sure they were kicking the occasional goal too so they were probably games from before Roos was coach. I was also lucky enough to get some free tickets to the Fremantle-Melbourne game earlier this year and I have to say that it was an amazing spectacle and it was very unfortunate that I had a prior engagement watching a particularly interesting section of freshly painted wall dry.

So how have Melbourne been going this season? You’d have to say better. They look like winning more than four games in a season for the first time since 2011 having beaten Geelong, Western Bulldogs, Richmond and Gold Coast. They have also had some big losses but that’s probably to be expected with their list where it is. Some of their high draft picks actually look like they might become decent players this time around and Nathan Jones continues on being the least ambitious player in the AFL. Jesse Hogan, unfortunately, looks like he’ll develop into an absolute beast, especially since he’s coming third in the AFL in contested marks which is pretty amazing for such a young player.

Melbourne, with the weight of the competition on their shoulders last week, were unable to beat the “courageous” Bombers in a fairly uninspiring contest. The Demons haven’t had the best luck with being favourites in recent years and it looks as if they’ll be the book-makers’ choice again this week.


Our Lot

Well if you only saw the first three quarters of our games in the last three weeks you’d be assuming we were making our usual mid-season charge into a more respectable section of the ladder but sadly not. Our ability to run out games as well as our inability to make the opposition pay in key moments in games in recent weeks has ultimately cost us. Things are definitely starting to fall into place, though. Last week we arguably had our full strength midfield for the first time this season and Merrett returning to defence helped strengthen our defensive structure. Hanley and Rocky will be better for the run, Zorks is getting back into some form, Christensen showed his line breaking ability and Beamso was just his usual superstar self.

Do we have anyone who can kick a goal though? Well, not really. The combined problems of not having a top quality key forward as well as our general inability to kick to the advantage of our forwards has meant that we’ve struggled to kick winning scores. Oh, and all the injuries to everyone.

Martin comes back from suspension but we lose Gardiner for the rest of the season after the sticky tape that was holding him together fell off. You’d assume one of the key forwards will be dropped or moved back to cover Gardiner. Do we re-structure by bringing a smaller defender like Harwood or Cutler for Gardiner? I wouldn’t expect too many changes and I hope Staker holds his spot just for the possibility that he might do that step again (and ignoring the horrendous shot at goal afterwards).


The Game

Well, I’m expecting this to be exactly like our 2014 game in that we’ll win but I’ll barely remember anything of the game a year later apart from two or three quality contested marks. Probably Hogan’s, but whatever. To reinforce the defensive nature of this contest, Melbourne and Brisbane have the lowest inside 50 tally of all the sides in the AFL. Similarly we have the second and third worst marks inside 50 tally too. Also we rank last and third last in goals scored. If that doesn’t scream out a high scoring thrill-ride of a game, then I don’t know what will!

If we can close down on Garlett and Hogan, we should be able to somehow cobble together a winning score from our midfield getting on top but we really need to focus on a four quarter effort this week as well as taking our chances. Staker, if he survives the cut, could be a big factor if he can just find his touch again but that might just be wishful thinking.

We’ll finally play four quarters, actually kick goals in the last and win by 10.
 

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jjami15

Premiership Player
Jul 16, 2011
4,122
4,484
AFL Club
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This one is more difficult to pick. A few factors might conspire against us; play away at the G which is a rarity, temps lucky to reach 10, surprisingly there is a perception that it's time for the D's to step up and win a game and this will be one that would be a game they will be expected to win. Melbourne are a better team this years and have been playing better and I believe that the tone will be set early. Heart says Lions just but because of the factors stated early head says D's just.
 

Skoob

Brownlow Medallist
Jul 6, 2010
13,702
20,570
Brisbane
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Wearing a commemorative jumper this week. Rocky to collect 40 possies and kick 4 goals. Won't need to play out the last quarter.
 

blynd_freddie

Roughed Scuffed & Tuft
Feb 1, 2007
6,647
5,291
in the August fog of '71
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Wearing a commemorative jumper this week. Rocky to collect 40 possies and kick 4 goals. Won't need to play out the last quarter.
Are you expecting Rocky to have a quiet game? Last time he/we played at the 'G' he had 43 possies?

You negative nancy! :p
 

jackess

Hall of Famer
Aug 10, 2005
35,594
29,039
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Definitely a danger game for us losing our pick 1. With Gibbs and Swallow out for the season Gold Coast and Carlton are gonna find it even tougher.
 

carnthemlions

Brownlow Medallist
Apr 19, 2012
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We've had a good warm up for this one, playing the two sides Melbourne aspire to be. We put in a good effort against one and almost beat the other.
Hopefully that's a good sign. Fatigue could be an issue though.

Vince is another danger player, has been racking up big numbers running off opposition midfielders recently. Max Gawn has been in some pretty good form, but Martin/Leuenberger will be a challenge for him. Tom McDonald gets big numbers for a key defender, but seems to have recently forgotten that he's actually supposed to stop his opponent kicking goals after a great start to the season. Seems to get a bag kicked on him every week at the moment.
 

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lukiuslion

Cancelled
Feb 9, 2010
1,567
1,430
Melbourne
AFL Club
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I feel that after the last 3 weeks and tough opposition, the slightest slip in our frame of mind could lead to a massive 'let down' againts a hungry Dee's side.

But If we can negate the task of getting overwhelmed on a freezing cold MCG, and avoid letting our minds go - I honestly feel we can win this game in a football sense.

Our midfield will have been looking ahead at this game licking their lips.

We can't be up enough at 3/4 time.

I have a feeling we can win this and I always approach with caution.
 

Cooties

All Australian
Feb 18, 2015
782
1,629
Brisbane
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Depends which Melbourne turns up - 18.7.115 sounds a lot more threatening than 7.18.60... Should be a close game though I reckon, looking forward to seeing if Leuey and Stef can work well together like they did with the Crows
 

harvester

Team Captain
Jun 6, 2010
356
331
gold coast
AFL Club
Brisbane Lions
Looking forward to see if steff is playing more forward with leunberger rucking.
Hopefully stakes can kick a few.. he needs to if he wants another contract.
Hopefully Cutler comes in. I would like to see more games for him to finish the season
......lions by27 pts,,, the boys deserve a win!!!!!!!!!!
 

Rubix WingMan

Brownlow Medallist
Aug 17, 2012
10,429
13,988
AFL Club
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I don't think we've ever had the chance to field a best 22 since the Miracle on Grass game a couple of years ago.
 
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