The 2018 Superdraft revisited

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EBERT THE KING

All Australian
Aug 30, 2006
711
422
Melbourne
AFL Club
Fremantle
Its well known that most clubs schedule in the fourth year of a players career as the one for them to really settle in to their careers. A lot of ex AFL players have stated that the fourth Pre season is the one where you start to feel comfortable and mature in your AFL body and with your ability to meet the demands of the league.

This draft class is heading into their fourth season, and it has proven to be a ridiculously good class. Walsh in my opinion will be in the top 5 players in the league in the next few years. The King boys, Bailey Smith and others all look like stars. By the end of this season, we will have a real indication of where these players will be ranked in this draft. My thoughts on a top 10 rankings from this draft come end of season 2022 are:

1. Sam Walsh
2. Ben King
3. Bailey Smith
4. Max King
5. Tarryn Thomas
6. Jack Lukosius
7. Zak Butters
8. Connor Rozee
9. Isaac Quaynor
10. Nick Blakey

There is talent all the way through this draft, with a couple of premiership players already in there. Some serious pressure on others too such as Rankine, Chayce Jones and to a lesser extent Rozee, who plateaued throughout 2021.

Any other players that could break into this top 10?
 

Toump Ass

The Big Deal
Jun 14, 2015
10,994
23,748
In a house with a sausage dog Trevor
AFL Club
Melbourne
Other Teams
Port Adelaide Power
Tom Sparrow's a weapon. Had a massive finals series for Melbourne- how was his epic goal at the end other the third quarter in the grand final? Huge.

Dunno if it's development or what but I expected a fair bit more from those Port players already. Big year coming up for Rozee, Butters and Duursma. All more-or-less invisible in the prelim final.
 

Malifice

Moderator
Oct 2, 2007
38,905
36,443
Perth
AFL Club
Carlton
Its well known that most clubs schedule in the fourth year of a players career as the one for them to really settle in to their careers. A lot of ex AFL players have stated that the fourth Pre season is the one where you start to feel comfortable and mature in your AFL body and with your ability to meet the demands of the league.

This draft class is heading into their fourth season, and it has proven to be a ridiculously good class. Walsh in my opinion will be in the top 5 players in the league in the next few years. The King boys, Bailey Smith and others all look like stars. By the end of this season, we will have a real indication of where these players will be ranked in this draft. My thoughts on a top 10 rankings from this draft come end of season 2022 are:

1. Sam Walsh
2. Ben King
3. Bailey Smith
4. Max King
5. Tarryn Thomas
6. Jack Lukosius
7. Zak Butters
8. Connor Rozee
9. Isaac Quaynor
10. Nick Blakey

There is talent all the way through this draft, with a couple of premiership players already in there. Some serious pressure on others too such as Rankine, Chayce Jones and to a lesser extent Rozee, who plateaued throughout 2021.

Any other players that could break into this top 10?

Rankine (who I would have taken at 1) is the real stinker. It was always a risk with him, and GC is the worst possible place for him.

Speaking of the Suns, Lukosius deserves to be higher on that list. Above Thomas at least for mine.

Chronically underrated from that draft because he's neither a mid, nor a flashy goal kicker. His disposal by foot is the best I've ever seen.
 

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EBERT THE KING

All Australian
Aug 30, 2006
711
422
Melbourne
AFL Club
Fremantle
Rankine (who I would have taken at 1) is the real stinker. It was always a risk with him, and GC is the worst possible place for him.

Speaking of the Suns, Lukosius deserves to be higher on that list. Above Thomas at least for mine.

Chronically underrated from that draft because he's neither a mid, nor a flashy goal kicker. His disposal by foot is the best I've ever seen.

Yeah i tossed up between Thomas and Lukosius. I went with Thomas because the games that north actually won last year he had real impact.

Could go either way but I've got them behind the top 4 here.
 

Malifice

Moderator
Oct 2, 2007
38,905
36,443
Perth
AFL Club
Carlton
Yeah i tossed up between Thomas and Lukosius. I went with Thomas because the games that north actually won last year he had real impact.

Could go either way but I've got them behind the top 4 here.

Id probably have him on par with Smith I reckon. If I had to choose 1 of the two of them for Carlton, I'd struggle to pick one. That's no insult to Smith, I just really rate Luko.

The Kings have him pipped seeing as they're KPF (we haven't seen anywhere near the best of either of them, and when they fill out, God help defenders).

So much development left in the King twins. It's scary.
 

Macca75

Debutant
Aug 30, 2021
75
118
AFL Club
Collingwood
Rankine (who I would have taken at 1) is the real stinker. It was always a risk with him, and GC is the worst possible place for him.

Speaking of the Suns, Lukosius deserves to be higher on that list. Above Thomas at least for mine.

Chronically underrated from that draft because he's neither a mid, nor a flashy goal kicker. His disposal by foot is the best I've ever seen.
Yeah he hasn't come on like they hoped rankine although he shows flashes of brilliance and the odd injury or two, I'd be surprised if he stays at the suns and I think they'll get their talent picked off by other clubs when they don't improve.
 

Malifice

Moderator
Oct 2, 2007
38,905
36,443
Perth
AFL Club
Carlton
Yeah he hasn't come on like they hoped rankine although he shows flashes of brilliance and the odd injury or two, I'd be surprised if he stays at the suns and I think they'll get their talent picked off by other clubs when they don't improve.

Bags already packed back to SA you would think.

I rated him at 1 in that draft, but there was always the risk with him that he'd bomb. He really needed the right environment around him, and (no offence to the Suns) I just dont think GC is that environment.
 

Macca75

Debutant
Aug 30, 2021
75
118
AFL Club
Collingwood
Bags already packed back to SA you would think.

I rated him at 1 in that draft, but there was always the risk with him that he'd bomb. He really needed the right environment around him, and (no offence to the Suns) I just dont think GC is that environment.
Yeah pretty spot on and for some reason players don't develop on the coast, whilst I think their culture has gotten better their development hasn't, rankine is definitely going back to Adelaide and a few more will go out the door, I also think Stuart dew is a dead man walking he'll be sacked by mid year I believe.
 

powerrrrrrrrrrrr

Premiership Player
Feb 17, 2010
3,745
6,860
adelaide
AFL Club
Port Adelaide
Big year coming up for Rozee to see what type of player he will become. Basically hasn’t been fully fit or had a solid run at it since his debut year after regular interruptions the last 2 years.
 

Arr0w

Hall of Famer
Nov 13, 2015
32,587
88,669
In Transit
AFL Club
Carlton
Always going to be a strong draft as that year (and the year before) played out, but like always there was always going to be some surprises 4 years down the track.

Caldwell being injured, yet to see why he was so highly rated

 

La Dispute

La Dispute
Jul 14, 2005
16,180
24,371
AFL Club
Carlton
Other Teams
Manchester City, Boston Bruins
I was keen to trade down (with Gold Coast) and grab Smith with whoever else was available.

Cannot believe how well Walsh has come into the AFL system and is daylight between him and the next best of 2018 in what is already being considered a very strong draft pool.

Freak.
 
Apr 19, 2006
76,933
161,075
The local Satanist Cabal
AFL Club
Hawthorn
Other Teams
Storm, Spurs, Socceroos
We traded out of this draft and yet somehow still managed to grab arguably the third best Key forward from the draft, behind the King twins with a pick in the 50's - Jacob Koschitzke.

Blakey might turn out better, but to date has played further up the ground when I've watched.
 

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Stan_Darsh72

100% Hemp
Jun 18, 2011
37,590
61,431
AFL Club
St Kilda
Max King looks to goods and will be a joy to watch for the next decade and Calum Wilkie in the rookie draft was one hell of pick too, he has yet to miss a game.
 

Ambrosia

Brownlow Medallist
Mar 11, 2010
14,271
9,096
AFL Club
Essendon
Think people are sleeping on Max King. Was playing some freakish football towards the end of the year. Every chance he ends up the best player of this draft imo
 

Ambrosia

Brownlow Medallist
Mar 11, 2010
14,271
9,096
AFL Club
Essendon
Always going to be a strong draft as that year (and the year before) played out, but like always there was always going to be some surprises 4 years down the track.

Caldwell being injured, yet to see why he was so highly rated


Essendon are clearly very high on him given they played him in the final with very little preparation.
 

aussierulesrules

Hall of Famer
Jan 7, 2011
31,135
60,260
Heaven. I mean Victoria.
AFL Club
St Kilda
My thoughts on a top 10 rankings from this draft come end of season 2022 are:

1. Sam Walsh
2. Ben King
3. Bailey Smith
4. Max King
Ben King was always going to get off to a much faster start than Max, given the fact he hasn’t had an injury that I’m aware of for years (for instance he hasn’t missed a game since his debut in 2019), while Max missed the bulk of the 2018 and 2019 seasons with a knee reco and then an ankle syndesmosis, but by the end of last season, Max had well and truly caught him, and showed everyone why he was taken first in their draft, despite having done an ACL (which significantly increases the risk of doing at least one more).

He was so dominant then that if Max just continues on in that form and doesn’t even improve with another preseason under his belt it would take a fair effort for anyone in this draft class to be better than him this year.

From Gold Coast’s bye onwards Ben played 11 games and kicked just 15 goals 11 (including going goalless in 6 of those 11 and scoreless in 4 of them), while from the same point on, Max played 9 games, and kicked 24 goals 8.

Despite going off injured in the 3rd quarter in his 2nd last game, and late in the first quarter in his last game, when he was absolutely dominating. Which combined quite likely cost him another 4-5 goals, the way he was going. So 28 goals from his last 9 games is about what he was tracking towards, had he stayed un-injured.

Prior to going off injured against Geelong it was like Max King v Geelong, and looked like a man playing against kids, and I’d hate to think how many he would have kicked the following week, had he played against Freo (in that sort of form), in our dominant win.

As good as Walsh is, I’m not sure he’d be able to single-handedly dominate teams like Max was beginning to do late, while Ben King’s significantly inferior contested marking (half as many as Max, from 2 more games, and no injury-affected games that I’m aware of), is what is likely to see Max continue to push ahead.
 

EBERT THE KING

All Australian
Aug 30, 2006
711
422
Melbourne
AFL Club
Fremantle
We traded out of this draft and yet somehow still managed to grab arguably the third best Key forward from the draft, behind the King twins with a pick in the 50's - Jacob Koschitzke.

Blakey might turn out better, but to date has played further up the ground when I've watched.

Koschitzke could very well be the value pick of this draft
 

Arr0w

Hall of Famer
Nov 13, 2015
32,587
88,669
In Transit
AFL Club
Carlton
Think people are sleeping on Max King. Was playing some freakish football towards the end of the year. Every chance he ends up the best player of this draft imo

His brother has always been the better footballer, more versatile and aggressive

Would be interesting when both are playing for similar, better output sides

Essendon are clearly very high on him given they played him in the final with very little preparation.

I rate him highly, has game changing ability, unfortunately he has suffered from a lack of continuity throughout most of his junior/senior careers

I hope that changes soon
 

RedmanWasHere

Rarely in kitchens at parties.
Aug 23, 2010
20,681
17,827
Information Superhighway
AFL Club
Essendon
Other Teams
Exers, Gryffindor, Rich & Ess AFLW,
Seeing fragments of him last season, I'd like Liam Stocker to be in the leadership group in 2-3 years time.

He strikes me as a flying the flag for the team player.
 

RedmanWasHere

Rarely in kitchens at parties.
Aug 23, 2010
20,681
17,827
Information Superhighway
AFL Club
Essendon
Other Teams
Exers, Gryffindor, Rich & Ess AFLW,
All that Essendon has left to show from this draft is Brayden Ham and and I don't feel he's much chop.

Not a dud but not a game winner.

In a "superdraft," Essendon completely cock it up just like they did in 2017.
 

Ambrosia

Brownlow Medallist
Mar 11, 2010
14,271
9,096
AFL Club
Essendon
All that Essendon has left to show from this draft is Brayden Ham and and I don't feel he's much chop.

Not a dud but not a game winner.

In a "superdraft," Essendon completely cock it up just like they did in 2017.

We didn’t have any picks? I guess trading out of it wasn’t smart but we got Caldwell who still could quite easily pan out.
 

Kreuuuzeurns

Norm Smith Medallist
Sep 25, 2013
7,709
13,181
AFL Club
Carlton
I reckon Max is the one. Ben is better performed at the moment but he seems to know how to use his size and reach already. Max is still learning and in fairness is 12 months behind Ben with that ACL.

Both are rippers. Walsh and/or Smith may end up with the more decorated careers but the Kings are value.
 

La Dispute

La Dispute
Jul 14, 2005
16,180
24,371
AFL Club
Carlton
Other Teams
Manchester City, Boston Bruins
I reckon Max has more upside.

Seems like at some point he will be in the Top 5 or so players in the league and kick 80+ once or twice over the course of his career. Best point of comparison is Tom Lynch, with his mix of athleticism and smarts around the forward. His ground level ability is also pretty insane for a big guy.

Ben is more a straight line player. Leads up well, makes smart decisions with how he stations himself around the ground but doesn’t have the same ability to bring his teammates into the game. Could capably play key defence and transition into one of the leagues best defenders, but he is too much of a threat up forward and doesn’t need many opportunities to make things happen.
 

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