The curse of our first round draft picks

Remove this Banner Ad

chinggis77

Club Legend
May 14, 2008
2,727
976
Germany
AFL Club
Fremantle
Okay, so this is an old post I made several years ago, but now updated in light of the curse striking recent first round draft picks.

Warning - the following content is not for the faint of heart (or mind)

Like the Curse of the Great Bambino, or the Curse of Norm Smith, I believe we have our own curse here at Fremantle. It belongs to our No 1 pick in the draft.

Someone stepped on a cat, whilst walking under a ladder on Friday the 13th somewhere in our history.

Just have a look at the sorry history of the first pick:

1994: Pick 1 Jeff White - ran away as soon as he could
1995: Pick 1 Clive Waterhouse - showed promise before ACL/knee imploded ending his career early shortly after breaking out in 1999.
1996: Pick 12 Heath Black - showed promise before being traded. Contracted immobilious fattus syndrome and got depression
1997: Pick 6 James Walker - 151 games but I am sure he has suffered some terrible personal tragedy that we are not aware of.
1998: Pick 2 Justin Longmuir - showed promise before career died due to a chronic knee injury
1999: Pick 2 Paul Haselby - an anomaly. Did we sacrifice someone to the gods this year?
2000: Pick 6 (plus 37 and Sinclair) traded to North for Peter Bell who was cut by Fremantle in 1995. I.e. we paid our first pick for someone who should of been on our list anyway.
2001: Pick 1, 20, 36 for Croad and McPharlin (Luke Hodge/Mitchell taken by Hawks). Mchparlin makes this okay. However this trade makes Freo a laughing stock after Hodge/Mitchell lead the Hawks to premierships. Croad does little at Fremantle. The curse gets to him. Gets homesick. Asks for a trade back. Freo trades him for Pick 10 (Ryley Dunn). With the curse lifted Croad wins All-Australian selection for Hawthorn and wins a premiership.
2002: Pick 3 and 19 for Des Headland. Two first round picks paid for someone who never lived up to being a first round pick.
2003: Pick 10 Ryley Dunn - injury after injury. Played 8 games. 8.
2004: Pick 11, 27, 45 for Josh Carr who left us after a few years for a bag of chips.
2005: Pick 10 Marcus Drum - injuries including a detached retina ended his career. Drum´s career was possibly a side effect of the Haselby anomaly in 1999. Also suffered numerous hamstring, ankle injuries plus an irregular heartbeat (risk of death through playing!) and a smashed nose.
2006: Pick 13, 73 and Polak traded to Richmond for Pick 8 and 42. Pick 8 and Medhurst to Collingwood for Tarrant. Pick 13 ended up being Jack Riewoldt. Pick 8 ended up being Ben Reid (Nathan Brown and James Frawley went between 8 and 13). Polak gets hit by a tram in Melbourne and almost dies. Medhurst becomes AA. Freo saves Tarrant´s career before Tarrant stabs us in the back and demands a trade back to Collingwood, and only Collingwood, in exchange for peanuts. Fremantle end up giving up pick 13, 73, Polak, Medhurst for 4 years of Tarrant.
2007: Pick 7 Rhys Palmer - early hope before he injures his knee. Palmer comes back and runs into a leg on the field. It is Barlow´s leg. It is broken as badly as if Barlow was in a car accident. Palmer loses all form before being traded out. Barlow is never the same player.
2008: Pick 3 Stephen Hill – 202 games. Curse well and truly catches up with him in later years and he becomes a walking health hazard at a time when the guy everyone wanted at Pick 3 (Dan Rich) is still roaring along at Brisbane

2009: Pick 4 Anthony Morabito - knee reconstruction after knee reconstruction, retires prematurely.
2010: Pick 20 Jayden Pitt - retires early due to risk of death if he keeps playing on a dodgy heart. Second No 1 pick from Freo to suffer this (Drum also had an irregular heartbeat).
2011: Pick 16 Tom Sheridan – lived to tell the tale. Consider this a win
2012: Pick 17 Josh Simpson - couldn´t handle being dropped. Refused to travel with the team to Melbourne. Went bush. House burned down. Still making up for the Haselby and Hill anomaly. Gone off the rails.
2013: Pick 17 Michael Apeness - routine not so serious knee injury turns into a season ending injury in early years. Constantly injured. Got the sack after playing a few games.
2014: Pick 13 Lachlan Weller - traded for Pick 2. Gets sent to Gold Coast. Gold Coast become even more of a basket case. See below.
2015: Pick 16 Traded for Harley Bennell - beset by injuries/off field incidents, has to resort to Ballet training to try to get on the field consistently. Reportedly a part of the reason or Lachie Neale leaving. Delisted.
2016: Pick 8 Griffin Logue - foot injuries/now an ankle injury in early years. More injuries in following years. Not looking like the player he promised to be.

2017: Pick 2: Brayshaw - a first round pick that is the result of trading a first round pick (Weller). In year 1 Brayshaw is looking good for his first ROY nomination before the softest guy in the AFL smashes in his jaw, ruling him out for the year in one of the worst hits seen in the AFL in years. Draft gods feel sorry for the guy and spare him the curse (for now).
2018: Pick 17 – Sam Sturt, however Pick 6 was our original first pick. Traded to Port for pick 11, 23, 30, 49 (we also threw in a 2019 3rd rounder). Lachie Neale plus 30 was then traded for pick 6, 19, 55. Pick 6 and 23 then traded to Melbourne for Jesse Hogan and Pick 65. Pick 11 and 19 traded to GWS for Lobb, Pick 14, 43, 47. So roughly Pick 6, Lachie Neale, Pick 11 traded for Jesse Hogan, Rory Lobb, Pick 14 (became pick 17).

Lots of ways to look at this:

  • Sam Sturt perpetually injured now out for the season again, the pick after Sturt was Duursma
  • Hogan bombed and later traded for pick 54 to GWS.
  • Lachie Neale won a brownlow after being traded
  • Pick 6 became Ben King – looks like a possible key forward star in an ordinary Gold Coast Suns side
  • Lobb came cheap but the drop in spots cost a shot at Clark (if he was on our radar)
Whatever way you look at it the 2018 first round pick is just another victim of the first round pick curse for Fremantle. We tried to break the curse by adding so many permutations and combinations to befuddle the draft gods so they wouldn’t know how to make the curse apply to us. But in the end the draft gods still got us by cursing our first player chosen (Sturt), then also applying the curse to our first pick (6) which was used in the Lachie Neale trade (brownlow) and Jesse Hogan trade (bomb). So we got hit three times in 2018 by the curse!!!

2019: Pick 9 – Hayden Young – welcome to Freo Hayden Young. Mild hamstring strains are not for Freo first round picks, Hayden gets 3 months for a hammy due to the curse!

2020: Pick 14 – Heath Chapman – welcome to Freo Heath – that’s a season ending injury for you. Curse strikes again.

This curse also begs the question: what will be the impact of a former first round draft pick (Justin Longmuir) coming back to coach the club? What were they thinking!!!

It should also be noted that a former Fremantle first round pick was instrumental in the 2018 trades that netted us a three way kick up the butt by the draft gods intent on making sure the curse still stuck despite Belly trying all he could to befuddle the bejesus out of them.

I count 2 possible A-graders (Haselby, Brayshaw) that have escaped the curse (Brayshaw’s jaw would probably disagree) in 27 years of first round draft picks. And people wonder why we haven’t won a premiership!

How the hell can we build a premiership list with this curse on us!!!
 

Log in to remove this ad.

showemhowtorock

Club Legend
Jun 18, 2019
1,170
3,259
AFL Club
Fremantle
ahh yes, let's rehash the past yet again. So glad that we can't stop bringing it up as though it actually is possible for us to go back in time and change it :thumbsu:
 

Moonrat

Team Captain
Sep 9, 2018
499
1,222
AFL Club
Fremantle
Yeah who cares. Close this thread. Our recent drafting had been good. We're trying to improve and succeeding.
Just need to somehow stop them all from getting injured!!!
 

Dockeroo

Premiership Player
Nov 1, 2019
3,101
6,497
AFL Club
Fremantle
It does look like Sam Sturt is tracking nicely to be the next Ryley Dunn alright.
Will he ever even make it to 8 games?
 

dockertor

Club Legend
Nov 12, 2002
1,538
232
Down the pub
AFL Club
Fremantle
Other Teams
Fremantle
The curse is real and has killed our chances at a premiership. On the brighter side we have managed some pretty good late/rookie draft selections along the way. Hasn't made up for the first pick curse though. Oh to have had a firing Morabito, Pitt and Simpson in the 2013 GF
 

Joao

Brownlow Medallist
May 2, 2017
13,070
22,372
QLD
AFL Club
Fremantle
The curse is real and has killed our chances at a premiership. On the brighter side we have managed some pretty good late/rookie draft selections along the way. Hasn't made up for the first pick curse though. Oh to have had a firing Morabito, Pitt and Simpson in the 2013 GF
Conversely, curses don't exist.

The issue is a combination of good old fashioned bad luck and incompetence.
 

(Log in to remove this ad.)

Freomaniac

Brownlow Medallist
May 3, 2007
23,949
12,747
Parts Unknown
AFL Club
Fremantle
Other Teams
Man City, Valencia, Lazio, Panthers
Sums it Up really....

As I said, I have been a freo fan since late 2001-early 2002.

As stated many times before. Freo underachieved Under the chris Connolly years from 2002-07. Only got finals in 2003 and 2006 to look back on that period while west coast made finals each year from 2002-07. Funny thing was West coast drafted well with their 1st rounders during their period.

Then you look back at our 1st round choices from 2007-14. Makes our finals period from 2012-15 look even better looking back at it.


As I said, had freo drafted and recruited better with our 1st round picks, I am not saying we were certain of winning a flag. But intead of making finals in 7 years from 1995-2020, we should of make finals 10-12 times in our period.
 

Swan4Life

Club Legend
Jan 29, 2008
1,168
2,089
Sydney
AFL Club
Sydney
Other Teams
Buffalo Bills
Wow, have you guys had some crap karma with your first round picks. Morabito looked unbelievable in the games I saw him play.

We have also had some rotten luck with many of our first rounders but at least that has been offset by some good second and third round picks (Goodes, LRT, Hannebery, Parker, Reid).

I sincerely hope it turns around for you as a club soon, starting this Sunday ;)
 

Freomaniac

Brownlow Medallist
May 3, 2007
23,949
12,747
Parts Unknown
AFL Club
Fremantle
Other Teams
Man City, Valencia, Lazio, Panthers
I also made this prediction a couple of years ago...

When freo had picks 7 , 8 and 9 to get Hayden Young, Caleb Serong and Liam Henry, I sadly made a predction one is going to have injuries and I predicted Hayden young. Sadly I was right
 

Dockeroo

Premiership Player
Nov 1, 2019
3,101
6,497
AFL Club
Fremantle
I also made this prediction a couple of years ago...

When freo had picks 7 , 8 and 9 to get Hayden Young, Caleb Serong and Liam Henry, I sadly made a predction one is going to have injuries and I predicted Hayden young. Sadly I was right
I hope he doesn’t read these boards or he might just retire and the end of the year due to injury and head back to uni or something.
He’s going to be back in 3 weeks time. Give him a chance will you he’s still only 19! Should be able to play 5 or 6 games this season and progress a bit more. Quality player with a big future.
 

wild side

Premiership Player
Mar 29, 2010
4,575
4,367
perth
AFL Club
Fremantle
He's quality Young, but he needs to kick quicker imo.
The run up to his kicking action lasts an eternity.
Probs not an easy thing to fix, maybe make him the loose player so he gets more room in the back half
 

FreoMonocle

Premium Gold
Apr 25, 2011
2,145
4,387
AFL Club
Fremantle
Conversely, curses don't exist.

The issue is a combination of good old fashioned bad luck and incompetence.
Curses don't exist but luck does? Is that like a halfway house for those escaping superstition o_O

Maybe we have the hind rabbits foot at the clubhouse and not a front paw...
 

Remove this Banner Ad