What They're Saying - The Bulldogs Media Thread - Part 3

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footscray1973

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Hunter's charges probably irrelevant now, players will be confined to a hub at WO, and all Vic teams will be reduced to playing intraclubs amongst themselves, until infection rates come down again. At least if they're all locked up together , Lachie can't get out on the p1ss or drive!
 

Dancing Dougy

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Not sure if this has been brought up anywhere, but the media have finally cottoned on to what we here all knew... Bontempelli is the best player in the league. I never knew Ross Lyon was so switched on :p

 

Pugz89

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Its just an opinion piece comparing him to Walsh and Rozee etc.

THERE should be no argument for who is the best second-year player in the competition.

It's the Western Bulldogs' mullet-wearing cult hero midfielder Bailey Smith.

Legendary commentator Bruce McAvaney, who has a fair right to make these sorts of calls based on his 44-year sports media career, believes the mantle belongs to Smith and so should the rest of the football world.

"I'm not sure there is a better second-year player in the competition right now," McAvaney told Channel Seven during Thursday night's Bulldogs-Sydney match.

Smith, a former pick seven, was part of the 2018 draft class which included Carlton's Rising Star winner Sam Walsh, Port Adelaide's Connor Rozee and Richmond's Sydney Stack.

Walsh was a clear standout in a impressively consistent first year since being taken at number one while Rozee (pick five) and Stack (pre-season supplemental signing) were more impactful than Smith was in their first year at AFL level.

But now with a full season and one final under his belt the player, affectionately known as 'Bazlenka' across the competition, has taken his game to the next level.

In a unusual 2020 AFL season what the 19-year-old midfielder is doing now alongside the likes of captain Marcus Bontempelli, Jack Macrae and Josh Dunkley won't be unusual in years to come.

The former Sandringham Dragon is averaging 22 disposals a game at 75 per cent efficiency in shortened game time compared to his 17 and 76 per cent efficiency in 2019.

Most of his possessions are on the outside and he is showing just how much he can burn opponents once in open space.

He is good by both hand and foot, rarely misses a target and if he does he is sprints over to make an impact to try and win the ball back.

The Xavier College graduate also possesses power and poise in and around the contest.

He showed an example of this last Thursday night when he shrugged of a tackle from Sydney Swans captain Dane Rampe and fired a handball away to a teammate, starting a Bulldogs' scoring chain.

Essendon champion Jobe Watson summed up perfectly on Channel Seven on Thursday what Smith is showing in just his second season.

"He just offers such great breakaway speed and we knew he was a real power athlete and his ability to repeat efforts and cover the ground," he said.

"He's just another player that offers great depth to this Bulldogs' midfield and it's hard to believe he is only in his second year, the influence he has having on games.

"We all knew how diligent he was and how great a preparator he was before games ... even as an 18-year-old.

"As a young player he is really setting the tone."

The emerging Bulldogs midfield bull, who was named the Chris Grant Best First Year Player in 2019, is setting the tone for the three players who finished ahead of him in last year's Rising Star.

Walsh is averaging 18.5 disposals at 58 per cent efficiency compared to a staggering 25 in his debut year.

Rozee has been serviceable with his score involvements up on last year's average but he only has two goals to his name as he spends more time up the ground.

Stack's input is also down on his impressive first season but is finding himself more in defence than up forward.

If the opening four rounds of the 2020 season and all of his games in 2019 are anything to go by then Smith's career is developing into a delightful show to watch.
 

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Pugz89

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Wasn’t sure where to post this - hearing we have been told to expect to be off to the Perth hub from as early as next week
I'd guess all Vic clubs are on the move. I wonder how many hubs they'll do. A Perth one could have four Vic clubs while a Sydney hub could have the two Qld clubs and two more Vic clubs. Leaves four Vic clubs and SA clubs which could go to Darwin.
 

bobs head soup

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Wasn’t sure where to post this - hearing we have been told to expect to be off to the Perth hub from as early as next week
Hopefully the players embrace this as an opportunity rather than a great difficulty.

It's pretty clear that Port have embraced the hub and sit top of the ladder (with the 2 Qld hub home teams sitting 2 & 3) whereas the other 3 interstate club's have not and sit 16, 17 & 18.

On that evidence the hub really polarises where a club is at in terms of ability and attitude.
 

Optimistic Dog

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Hopefully the players embrace this as an opportunity rather than a great difficulty.

It's pretty clear that Port have embraced the hub and sit top of the ladder (with the 2 Qld hub home teams sitting 2 & 3) whereas the other 3 interstate club's have not and sit 16, 17 & 18.

On that evidence the hub really polarises where a club is at in terms of ability and attitude.

Yes, the porthub may have got stimulus from near similar site por?hub where the is a lot of embracing going on.
 

dogwatch

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Perth hub when we already played the pies is interesting.
We will be there primarily for the games against interstate clubs. Any games against Vic clubs are useful to fill up the odd vacant weekend but we can always play those games when we return to Vic.

See my post in the Non-Bulldog footy talk thread.
The AFL is constantly being forced to revise its plans so anything could pop up. No fault of theirs really. It's just the way events are unfolding. Their worst possible scenario (apart from total abandonment of the season) was probably that Victoria has to isolate ... and all of a sudden, here we are.

I presume we'd have to take about 30 players and quarantine for two weeks after arriving in Perth. In fact I'm surprised they're letting anyone in at all but maybe by mid-July they'll have eased restrictions a little. Currently unless you are a WA resident you can only get there without quarantine for a funeral, an "end-of-life event" (dying relative) or as an essential primary carer. And even that is probably heavily regulated and from limited states/territories (not Victoria).

A two week quarantine might actually mean three weeks between games unless they schedule our last Vic game for a Wed-Thurs-Friday and our next game (two weekends later) on a Sunday. We'd be pretty underdone for that first game but every club will have a tale of woe at some stage this year.

We just have to roll with it.
 

dogwatch

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Just saw that Collingwood play Geelong first-up in the WA hub in Rd 7. That's a good idea as both teams will be on an equal footing after relocating. Better than having to play a more settled WA team first up.

So that's certainly one advantage in having two Vic teams play each other over there instead of in Melbourne.
 

Virgin Dog

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Just saw that Collingwood play Geelong first-up in the WA hub in Rd 7. That's a good idea as both teams will be on an equal footing after relocating. Better than having to play a more settled WA team first up.

So that's certainly one advantage in having two Vic teams play each other over there instead of in Melbourne.
I think they have to anyway, as there's quarantine requirements set by WA government. 14 days before they can play against a WA side
 

dogwatch

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I think they have to anyway, as there's quarantine requirements set by WA government. 14 days before they can play against a WA side
They're allowed to play each other while in quarantine?

Hmmm. That's interesting. I would have expected that to increase the risk. That slight increase in risk would have been part of the thinking behind SA and Qld governments telling clubs they have to quarantine for 14 days after playing a Vic team, or after playing a (non-Vic) side that has just played a Vic team.

Anyway it's good news if so. It means less time is wasted during the quarantine period.
 

Hard Ball Get

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Reports that we have a few players living in hot spot areas, meaning if we are sent to Sydney for a hub, they need to move house before midnight. NSW have closed borders to all Vics in the hot spots.
 

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