Analysis The Richmond dynasty

Remove this Banner Ad

Gavin Excell

Hall of Famer
Apr 22, 2007
32,740
36,844
Bentleigh
AFL Club
Geelong
Bullshiit mate

2020 will be remembered as the compromised season of limited training sessions, shortened 16 minute quarters, just 17 H&A rounds and many unlucky teams (but not Richmond) having to play games with 4 day breaks vs teams with over a week's rest.

The reigning premiers were actually favoured by the various challenges when you think they had all the pieces & a premiership gameplan already in place. Especially compared to many of their struggling rivals who weren't able to bridge the gap due to the restrictions on what they could do.

Richmond was extremely blessed they were able to spend the last 4 months in their Queensland hub with their families while other clubs had to endure the upheaval of 3-4 week hubs in Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth.



The Tigers received the easiest draw of all Victorian teams.



Home/Away
  • 5 games in Melb before the travel restrictions (4 at MCG, 1 at Marvel.) Fortunate not to have any interstate games in that block.
  • Disadvantaged by only 3 away games after that (vs Giants, Crows, Port)
  • 2 travel games on neutral turf (vs Swans at Gabba, vs Ess in Darwin)
  • The rest of your games were played at your "home away from home" on the Gold Coast (inc. matches vs WCE and Freo)
The home advantage which the non-Victorian teams enjoyed actually elevated Port Adelaide and Brisbane into 1st and 2nd place. Both of these teams could be considered flag pretenders in 2020, particularly the Lions with many inexperienced players and maybe a season away from mounting a serious challenge to Richmond or Geelong in September

Apologies to any Port and Lions fans reading this, I don't mean to be disrespectful, but this was the weakest top 2 in AFL history.



Days Break

32 games this season where one team had 2 or more days' extra rest than its opponent on a short week (i.e. backing up off a 4 or 5 day break)
In a whopping 26 of these 32 matches, the more rested team won.


This was a seriously compromised aspect of the condensed revised fixture. Some games were quite farcical.

Richmond enjoyed 5 games with this advantage (the most) and had ZERO games with this disadvantage (the fewest)

Games advantaged:
5 Rich
4 St K
3 Coll, WB
2 Bris, Port, Melb, Carl, Ess, Adel, GC
1 Geel, WCE
0 Haw, GWS

Games disadvantaged:
4 Haw, GWS, Adel
3 Coll, NM, Freo, GC
2 Geel, Bris, Ess
1 St K, WCE
0 Rich, WB, Port, Syd, Melb, Carl


I'm not saying there was an AFL/Channel 7 conspiracy to make things easier for Richmond. But if you analyse the fixtures each club was given, the AFL could not have made things any easier for your side compared to other Vic teams.


Congratulations Richmond fans on your club winning the premiership. (Seriously, well done.) Some would say it was an asterisk flag in a compromised season. I don't care about all that rubbish. People on here will put an asterisk against virtually any flag. Who cares? It doesn't matter. They all count.

But please cut the crap about Richmond "doing it tough" this season. Some clubs actually did it tough, but Richmond wasn't one of those.
This is a rather churlish post.

All clubs did it the hard way this year. Kudos should as always go to the premier rather than find ways to discredit.
 

Billyc

Premiership Player
Oct 17, 2009
4,037
10,225
AFL Club
Hawthorn
They have gone past Geelong 07-11.

If they win next year, they become more successful than Hawks 08-15 and Lions 01-04.

Not the most talented (Save for one guy) and certainly not the most watchable but that is all subjective. Objectively if they win next year they are the most successful. They currently sit in third in AFL era.
 

WCE Wizard

Premiership Player
Jun 14, 2015
3,494
3,743
AFL Club
West Coast
Sydney and West Coast are not quite in the same category since the Sydney premierships happened 7 years apart and the West Coast premiership happened even more than that, so they were very different sides in each premiership but you do make a very valid point. I think the NRL has a better equalisation method as they have had more winners in the last 20 years than we have had.

Though in saying that the Storm are always either winning premierships or getting very close to it as well.
I agree the Rich, Geelong and Hawks sides are clearly a class above but its more the spread of premierships which I agree with you its only among a few clubs which means that the equalisation measures are not working
 

Log in to remove this ad.

Back One Out

Brownlow Medallist
Mar 2, 2015
14,836
25,439
AFL Club
Hawthorn
This is a rather churlish post.

All clubs did it the hard way this year. Kudos should as always go to the premier rather than find ways to discredit.
I gave my congratulations... and I meant it.

Richmond was clearly the best team and they deserved their spoils

But for Tigers fans to try to argue this was the toughest ever flag to win simply isn't true. They had COVID19-enforced obstacles, but all clubs were affected by that and Richmond actually enjoyed the "path of least resistance" compared to the other Victorian teams.
 

Power Raid

TheBrownDog
Oct 15, 2004
68,271
57,893
West Perth
AFL Club
Port Adelaide
How did the expansion teams affect Geelong though? GCS entered in 2011 and GWS in 2012. Geelongs last flag was 2011.
The compromised draft started in 2008 with GC being able to select youth talent.

could easily argue that applies to the tigers too. When were dusty and Riewoldt drafted? Lions had a lot of advantages too
Firsly, I would like to point out all four clubs (lions, cats, hawks and tigers) achievements were amazing. Discussing all:

1) Tigers I felt was the best as their flags were won more by system and coaching more than anything else. Free agency has definitely helped the tigers as the one anomaly that will be adjusted in the near future. The tigers may have recruited well to get Riewolt and dusty, but there is nothing stopping clubs from rebuilding in the last 5 years or so other than timing in their clubs cycle.
2) Lions I ranked second as although they benefited from the Lions merger and salary cap adjustment the players Brisbane gained were Scott Bamford, John Barker, Brad Boyd, Nick Carter, Shane Clayton, Simon Hawking, Chris Johnson and Jarrod Molloy. Meaning the Lions 3-peat was due to the squad they already had, the coach and system rather than the merger itself.
3) The hawks had brilliant coaching and system. Arguably a better skilled side than the cats great side before it and certainly a better balanced side across the park (cats superior midfield and defence but weaker forward line). The hawks received the greatest benefit from the compromised drafts, with clubs unable to rebuild and gained further advantage of mature players wanting to join one of the few clubs vying for a flag.
3b) The cats again great coaching and system but benefited from building a team in the mid 2000s ahead of the compromised drafts. Meaning other clubs couldn't rebuild and challenge. The father son really benefited the cats and like free agency will be, the father son was changed after the cats brilliant run. The dank issue also holds dark clouds over the premierships.
 

PiesUserName

Senior List
Apr 11, 2015
213
468
AFL Club
Collingwood
Hard to say, people dismiss Geelong but I actually think Geelong's era was played against the best competition when you look at Brisbane, Hawthorn and Richmond.
In that time period, you saw a young great Hawthorn side (who peaked years early) and began climbing that mountain again in 2011, people forget what a great side St Kilda was in around 09 and 10, Collingwood were a really good side in 10 and 11.
Then Western Bulldogs were a solid side as well, who were just a rung below all those other sides who could not get past prelims.

2009
1 - St Kilda 20-2 155.7%
2 - Geelong 18-4 127.4%

2010
1 - Collingwood 17-1-4 141.7%
2 - Geelong 17-5 147.9%
3 - St Kilda 15-1-6 121.6%

2011
1 - Collingwood 20-2 167.7%
2 - Geelong 19-3 157.4%
3 - Hawthorn 18-4 144.1%

Geelong get overlook because of them not doing back to back, but from 07-11, the comp was far superior to the eras the other dynasty's played against. Bar 2007, they did it against strong Vic sides where they do not get the advantage of doing it over interstates sides in Victoria.

Brisbane played against a great underachieving side in Port Adelaide, but 2 of the premierships in 02 and 03 were against a Collingwood side who I believe overachieved massively to be where they were anyways. They were not a great side by any means. But they did win in 2001 against Essendon, who were coming off possibly the greatest 1 season side premiership we have seen. They also get extra points as an interstate side.

Hawthorn against Freo, Sydney and West Coast were sort of all maybe one season wonders (bar Sydney), but I don't think Sydney were as good as the other sides between 07-11

Richmond's against Adelaide, GWS and Geelong, where I don't personally think any of those sides were really good sides.

That's just my opinion anyways. I think all 4 teams are great in their own ways, but I don't agree with knocking Geelong down pegs, I think they did it against the best competition from all the 4 modern dynasty sides. But I'd probably have something below:

1 - Brisbane
2 - Hawthorn/Geelong
3 - Richmond
 

Pessimistic

Make me an Admin!
Sep 13, 2000
77,414
34,831
Melbourne cricket ground. Australia
AFL Club
Hawthorn
Other Teams
Horks
Essential players for the hawks three premierships were recruited during the so called compromised expansion drafts

Hale Smith Puopolo Gunston Hill Lake

richmond took 5 premiership players in those drafts eagles 5 dogs 8

hawks beat in prelim finals: geelong (Guthrie Bews Blitzavs caddy recruited) Adelaide (jacobs smith Lyons brown Jenkins lynch crouch laird Atkins Hartigan) port Adelaide (jacobs young Jonas Ebert wingard bombshell monfires wines)
All good players but many of them not really impacting until later (in the dogs eagles tigers period)

hawthorn did threepeat just after the compromised drafts. That a fact. To say it’s significant......not so much

I mentioned it before , but the progression from a team loaded with talent - Brisbane - through Geelong - Hawthorn - to the Tigers where the system is supreme is clear. Each one a little less of the first and more of the second than the previous.

of course there’s always match winners in system teams. Ablett Chapman hodge Rioli dusty
 

Bungeye

All Australian
Aug 19, 2017
821
725
AFL Club
Collingwood
Richmond will continue to dominate for the next few years because they're the only team that is not scared of failure and they're a proactive team in a risk adverse world of AFL mediocrity.

Teams one day will get the memo that attacking footy with a reliable defence wins premierships.
 

PenfoldsFan

Team Captain
Mar 4, 2015
453
795
AFL Club
Port Adelaide
Other Teams
Hawthorn, Central Districts
Tigers need a 3 peat to be the best, and i believe they very well could do it next year, having said that, they have elevated themselves to 3rd overall in the modern era with last nights win.
The bigger story for mine on this subject is that despite being arguably the best football side ive ever seen throughout their dynasty, the cats 07-11 are now the 4th best which highlights how they did indeed underachieve.
Cats fans shouldnt be upset by that though, theres 14 other clubs who'd love to be in that position, mine included.
 

(Log in to remove this ad.)

hk89

Norm Smith Medallist
Jul 12, 2009
7,741
9,331
Melbourne
AFL Club
Hawthorn
A lot of nuances in ranking dynasties. How much weight you put on flags versus h&a dominance is a big factor. How much do you weigh up backing up again the next year? Do you look at the strength of the opposition? Do you look at the players on the team versus how the team played as a unit? Does AFL support discount flag wins?

Geelong are pretty clearly the most dominant in terms of raw wins over their 2007-2011 period. Coin toss between them and Brisbane on most talented. Geelong are probably the biggest under achievers though in terms of how many flags they extracted compared to their H&A dominance. Should have won in 08 and that would have them clear leaders out of the Brisbane, Geelong, Hawthorn , Richmond group. But they didn't, so never went back to back. Doesn't get to play the GF at their home ground, and won one against an MCG tenant.

Brisbane also had an amazing team. Had some cap concessions their competition were no benefiting from - Fitting in 3 brownlow medalists in the one team was handy. Not as dominant as Geelong H&A - never finished top in any of their flag years. 3 peat to compensate for their lower H&A performance though. Question on how strong an opponent Collingwood were at that time. Had to play all their GF wins away from home.

Hawthorn generally seen as less talented than both Geelong and Brisbane. Seen more as a great team than a great set of players. Amazing forward line, but lacked Geelong's defense, and probably edged out in the midfield by both Geelong and Brisbane who had amazing midfield units. 3 peat, but only finished top once during it. 5 prelims and 4 flag appearances in a row was impressive. Some scares in close finals though undermines their overall finals dominance during that period. Question marks on how strong their opposition was. Freo seen as a weaker opponent, but unlike Adelaide and GWS in Richmond's wins, was still up and about for a few years, and finished minor premier two years later in 2015. Went in underdogs against what was seen at the time as a very strong Sydney, and smashed them. Borderline underdogs against Eagles in some people's minds, and smashed them too. Freo, Sydney and WC all made finals the year after we played them, all but Freo had won flags themselves shortly before or shortly after we played them. 3 flags all at their home ground against interstate sides. Only Freo should have been at the MCG. Sydney should have been at the SCG and Shouldn't have been playing at the MCG against WC either, and had lost to WC in Perth earlier in the finals series (although had beaten Eagles over there not long before that, and beat Freo in the prelim in Perth). Never had to play a GF against a team playing at home. Had 1 other flag outisde the 3-peat but 4 years with flags between 2008 and 2013, and missing finals completely in 2009.

Richmond probably seen as the least talented of the 4 overall, but with an insanely hard to break down game plan, and an amazing drive to win. Most cohesive team unit of the 4. Very well coached, and sporting one of the best finals players of all time in Martin. Cotchin also overcame his poor finals performances from his earlier years to be a very effective contributor. Rance left, and Jack took a back seat with Lynch's introduction, and they still win, showing they were not just being carried by their 4 guns, and that the rest of the list had probably been underrated. 3 wins in 4 years is better than Geelong's 3 in 5, but don't have the pure win dominance Geelong had over their period. Question marks on the quality of their opposition. Adelaide had a dominant year, but fell away massively, and haven't even played in another GF this century. GWS the same. Could argue Richmond 'broke' them such was the magnitude of the losses. Played 2 of the 3 flags at their home ground. Should have played Adelaide in SA. Massively difficult season in 2020 due to covid draw. 0 outright home ground games for the year, and GF played away from home, although on neutral territory against another Vic side, but would likely have finished top 2 with a non-covid draw, and had to go the hard way after losing to Brisbane at the GABBA. Showed it isn't all about the MCG for them (or playing everything in Vic), with a gutsy prelim win over Port to make the GF. Unlike Brisbane and Geelong (and like Hawthorn) have never had to play a GF against an opponent playing at home.

In the end, ranking these 4 is about personal preference, and how you weight the various factors. Obviously hard to do impartially when your clubs is one of the 4. Currently I'd go:
1. Brisbane (3-peat, awesome team, won every flag at someone else's home ground)
2. Hawthorn (3-peat, made 4 GF in a row, and had the extra flag in 2008).
3. Richmond (back-to-back giving them the edge over Geelong, but it is still close with Geelong having a great team and great h&A records)
4. Geelong (only one not able to back up year to year, unlucky to be last but the reality is they underperformed with the list they had, would be #1 if they beat Hawks in 2008).

Richmond is still going, they win next year, and they are #1, no matter what you think of their raw list talent. Teams win flags and 4 flags in 5 years is a record that can't be argued with.

Envious of both Richmond and Geelong fans right now. I miss my team being relevant in finals.
 

juss

Brownlow Medallist
Feb 23, 2009
22,045
28,513
Melbourne
AFL Club
Richmond
Other Teams
New York Jets
I gave my congratulations... and I meant it.

Richmond was clearly the best team and they deserved their spoils

But for Tigers fans to try to argue this was the toughest ever flag to win simply isn't true. They had COVID19-enforced obstacles, but all clubs were affected by that and Richmond actually enjoyed the "path of least resistance" compared to the other Victorian teams.
What about compared to teams 1 and 2 on the ladder that ultimately Richmond won over this season?

If you were to ask Hardwick and co tomorrow, they'd tell you 2020 was their greatest accomplishment of the 3, no question. I'll take the word of those who lived it.
 

Back One Out

Brownlow Medallist
Mar 2, 2015
14,836
25,439
AFL Club
Hawthorn
What about compared to teams 1 and 2 on the ladder that ultimately Richmond won over this season?
It was ultimately to Richmond's advantage that the weakest Top 2 in AFL history got elevated into that position courtesy of massively favourable draw

Imagine if instead of the inexperienced Port and Brisbane teams, the top 2 teams were seasoned perennial finalists like the Sydney and Fremantle teams from 2012-2015. Or even the West Coast or GWS teams from more recent years. That would've been a much tougher proposition to overcome in this compromised season.

If you were to ask Hardwick and co tomorrow, they'd tell you 2020 was their greatest accomplishment of the 3, no question. I'll take the word of those who lived it.
Sure, the winners get to write their history however they see fit, but that doesn't mean everyone else has to go along with it

Shortened quarters (20% less) and 5 fewer matches (20% less) automatically reduces the degree of difficulty compared to Richmond's past premiership seasons
 
Last edited:

Gavin Excell

Hall of Famer
Apr 22, 2007
32,740
36,844
Bentleigh
AFL Club
Geelong
Did you read the thread, or just this last page?

Sure, the winners get to write their history however they see fit, but that doesn't mean everyone else has to go along with it

Shortened quarters (20% less) and 5 fewer matches (20% less) automatically reduces the degree of difficulty compared to Richmond's past premiership seasons
But that's all relative though. Every team in the competition has those factors to deal with. Not sure your point
 

Joey longshadow

Hostis Humani Generis
Oct 23, 2015
2,235
5,554
Melbourne
AFL Club
Richmond
Other Teams
Baltimore ravens
I think their coaching has been absolutely elite and deserves the accolades. AFL needs to introduce a minimum amount of players in each teams forwards lines otherwise Richmond's gameplan and players will continue to win flooding opposition defenses and rushing the ball forward
It's not up to the AFL to intervene to stop Richmond's game style it's up to other teams coaching staff and players to do that... Let me ask you this would you be happy if the AFL intervened to stop a winning style of play the Eagles developed? Let me answer that for you... No you wouldn't... You can't really complain though if another team works out how to combat it
 

Back One Out

Brownlow Medallist
Mar 2, 2015
14,836
25,439
AFL Club
Hawthorn
But that's all relative though. Every team in the competition has those factors to deal with. Not sure your point
The point is fairly self-evident

This season was 20% less gruelling than previous seasons.

Games were 20% shorter and the season was 20% shorter

Fact.

Take it to it's logical extreme. If we held a lightning premiership between 18 clubs over 2 weekends with 5 minute halves, it would technically be just as probable or improbable to win the flag against 17 other teams, but you wouldn't say it was "tougher to win" than a marathon season played over six months.
 
Last edited:

Joey longshadow

Hostis Humani Generis
Oct 23, 2015
2,235
5,554
Melbourne
AFL Club
Richmond
Other Teams
Baltimore ravens
Serious question where would Richmond be without Dusty? Will you still have three premierships? he is such a big game player I highly doubt Richmond would be three flags to boot without him! just my view don't bite my head off!
Suppose you could ask the same about North and Carey... But the fact is the question is purely academic as neither is the case
 

Back One Out

Brownlow Medallist
Mar 2, 2015
14,836
25,439
AFL Club
Hawthorn
You seem to be going out of your way to diminish the Tigers flag
No, mate. In case you hadn't noticed, this thread is about the Richmond Dynasty where people are comparing their achievements to premiership teams & dynasties of the past. People have used the "difficulty" of this season as some sort of tiebreaker to elevate Richmond's achievement above past premiership teams. So that gives me every right to respond.

I don't see you pulling up other people in this thread for "diminishing" Hawthorn's achievements in 2013, 2014 and 2015
Why is that, I wonder? What's the difference? Why are you focused on me posting about the Tigers?

Do you actually have anything on topic to add to this discussion?
 

Gavin Excell

Hall of Famer
Apr 22, 2007
32,740
36,844
Bentleigh
AFL Club
Geelong
No, mate. In case you hadn't noticed, this thread is about the Richmond Dynasty where people are comparing their achievements to premiership teams & dynasties of the past. People have used the "difficulty" of this season as some sort of tiebreaker to elevate Richmond's achievement above past premiership teams. So that gives me every right to respond.

I don't see you pulling up other people in this thread for "diminishing" Hawthorn's achievements in 2013, 2014 and 2015
Why is that, I wonder? What's the difference? Why are you focused on me posting about the Tigers?

Do you actually have anything on topic to add to this discussion?
Fair enough each to their own

I think all the eras mentioned are great achievements, including hawthorns.
 

Remove this Banner Ad