Who is the best young key forward in the league (25 or younger at the end of this year)?

Who is the best young key forward in the league (born 1995 or later)?

  • Eric Hipwood

  • Ben King

  • Max King

  • Aaron Naughton

  • Charlie Curnow

  • Oscar Allen

  • Jesse Hogan

  • Harry McKay

  • Nick Larkey

  • Other


Results are only viewable after voting.

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btdg

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I think Charlie Curnow is being forgotten a bit here. Kicked 7 goals the last game he played and looked unstoppable and his knee injuries reflect a run of bad luck rather than a likely ongoing weakness.

Of the rest, Max King looks like he could be near unstoppable in the future. Ben King also good; Naughton could be the best second banana in the league alongside the right big bodied guy.

But you could make a case for guys like Marshall and Allen, in that they are rock solid. The sorts of guys who get to the end of a career and have been underrated the whole time because they don’t necessarily break games open but they anchor good teams every year.
 

st_trav_ofWA

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When they fill out, I don't see many defenders in the comp whip will be able to go with them.

On the lead, when they can reach and jump higher, when already in front, they should be getting a stack of arm chopping frees.

Going to be a joy to watch as they play against 17 teams that I don't follow. Really hope they fulfill their potential, too many kpf have fallen short the last ten years.
the thing that i hold onto is the fact that both boys to this date are tracking better than the other bigs who never lived up to the expectation so that to me is a bit tick that they will not do that ... also i think there is a bit of a better understanding now about the big guys and how teams go about putting weight on them to get them up to playing size i think its done smarter and with a better understanding on what are the risks ....
 

ThePhreshOne

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I think Charlie Curnow is being forgotten a bit here. Kicked 7 goals the last game he played and looked unstoppable and his knee injuries reflect a run of bad luck rather than a likely ongoing weakness.

Of the rest, Max King looks like he could be near unstoppable in the future. Ben King also good; Naughton could be the best second banana in the league alongside the right big bodied guy.

But you could make a case for guys like Marshall and Allen, in that they are rock solid. The sorts of guys who get to the end of a career and have been underrated the whole time because they don’t necessarily break games open but they anchor good teams every year.
Injury will do that unfortunately. Out of sight out of mind.

Charlie Curnow, the king twins, Oscar Allen and Aaron Naughton stand out to me. Don’t worry though lads. There’ll be no conversation in three years time. Naughton will be the Roughead to Jamarra’s Franklin 😍
 

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WalshistheGOAT

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Injury will do that unfortunately. Out of sight out of mind.

Charlie Curnow, the king twins, Oscar Allen and Aaron Naughton stand out to me. Don’t worry though lads. There’ll be no conversation in three years time. Naughton will be the Roughead to Jamarra’s Franklin 😍
Buddy is a fair different player to JUH. Buddy could kick the pill about 70m, was one of the best field kicks in the game and had a shocking set of mitts when marking the ball. JUH is agile has a huge leap and great hands, but has an ordinary kick from all reports. Amazing prospect regardless but from whats been said about him completely different to the big Budwa
 

owen87

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If I have to pick a player to have on the list moving forward it'd be one of the King twins, either looks capable of being a dominant KPF leading a forward-line for the next decade.

The only KPF height player with as many, or more goals this season than either King is Hipwood, who is 2 years older, in a better side.

Finlayson & Himmelberg have the luxury of Cameron, and history shows almost every forward that's played at GWS with Cameron has gotten worse when they leave.

So for me, I think the Kings are just about the best u25 KPF's already, let alone for the future.
 

Tom14

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If I have to pick a player to have on the list moving forward it'd be one of the King twins, either looks capable of being a dominant KPF leading a forward-line for the next decade.

The only KPF height player with as many, or more goals this season than either King is Hipwood, who is 2 years older, in a better side.

Finlayson & Himmelberg have the luxury of Cameron, and history shows almost every forward that's played at GWS with Cameron has gotten worse when they leave.

So for me, I think the Kings are just about the best u25 KPF's already, let alone for the future.
Agree completely. Would go with Ben ahead of Max purely because I've seen more of Ben.

Naughton is in the conversation but I feel like he's an even better defender than forward and only just came back from injury so its hard to place him.

Hipwood shouldn't be in the conversation. I like eric, but he's very much the sort of player who has 2-3 big games a year and then is pretty quiet the rest of the time, and his contested marking is pretty poor.
 

mpal6

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Also, is this where we ask if Eric Hipwood is actually a key forward, or a 6'8" flanker who struggles to take a contested mark?
Hipwood is still 10kgs off a Key Forward weight and physique. But he's also been mainstay for our forward line since getting drafted - with 120+ goals in the books already. Waiting to see what he'll do when the last 5-7 Kgs go on that 22 year old frame.

Ben King would be leading the field by end of this year, but the pack - Max King, Naughton, Harry McKay - is closing.
 

Yojimbo

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Harry McKay, Jesse Hogan, Esava Ratugolea, Max King, Ben King, Mitch Lewis, Sam Weideman, Nick Larkey, Oscar Allen, prefer
Aaron Naughton back to be honest, Charlie Curnow i would play higher up the ground as well. There are others who at the
moment are very raw and light like Eric Hipwood who scream could be better used elsewhere on the ground.
 

owen87

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Agree completely. Would go with Ben ahead of Max purely because I've seen more of Ben.

Naughton is in the conversation but I feel like he's an even better defender than forward and only just came back from injury so its hard to place him.

Hipwood shouldn't be in the conversation. I like eric, but he's very much the sort of player who has 2-3 big games a year and then is pretty quiet the rest of the time, and his contested marking is pretty poor.
Naughton is quality, hopefully gets a better run with injury to stay on the park.
 

Damon_3388

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Hipwood is still 10kgs off a Key Forward weight and physique. But he's also been mainstay for our forward line since getting drafted - with 120+ goals in the books already. Waiting to see what he'll do when the last 5-7 Kgs go on that 22 year old frame.

Ben King would be leading the field by end of this year, but the pack - Max King, Naughton, Harry McKay - is closing.
This is Hipwood's 5th season in the AFL (he's a month away from turning 23), and he spent 5 years in the Lion's Academy before that. He's had a decade in elite pathways and coaching. He still only plays one really good game in every 3-4 outings, still hasn't improved beyond the 10 disposal/4 mark/1.5 goals per game on average, and is still very much under-developed physically (in both strength and endurance).

You've got to ask, does he work hard enough? Is he being coached and used correctly? What's holding him back? What's the point of being a 6'8" forward, if you don't use your extra height, or can't take a contested mark?
 

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Virgin Dog

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Lewis is incredibly unfit at the moment. Got injured at the end of last season and had shoulder surgery, had a small set back during pre season. Played a JLT game and did his ankle missing another month or so and after the COVID break did a hammy/hip?. I would be okay with the club just nursing him through scratch matches the rest of the year and just preparing him for next year at this point in time.
That's rough for Lewis, he was looking really promising for a stretch of last year. His contested mark average was about the same as Naughton's, just played less games.

Seems to have had similar troubles to Naughton too. Naughton injured his knee in the finals last year, which destroyed his pre-season. We rushed him back for Round 1 waayyy underdone, and he struggled given how unfit he was. Took a couple more games to get his fitness back up and get back into the swing of AFL-level footy. Round 4, he kicked an early goal, set up another, and took 2 contested marks all in the 1st quarter, so looked to be back to his best. Failed to return after quarter time, as he injured his ankle and had to sit out the next month. Getting the impression we've now rushed him back again in Round 10 as he's not looking as mobile as he usually is.

Hoping Naughton, Lewis and McKay can all stay fit because I love watching a good, contested marking beast up forward.
 

Sherrinator

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This is Hipwood's 5th season in the AFL (he's a month away from turning 23), and he spent 5 years in the Lion's Academy before that. He's had a decade in elite pathways and coaching. He still only plays one really good game in every 3-4 outings, still hasn't improved beyond the 10 disposal/4 mark/1.5 goals per game on average, and is still very much under-developed physically (in both strength and endurance).

You've got to ask, does he work hard enough? Is he being coached and used correctly? What's holding him back? What's the point of being a 6'8" forward, if you don't use your extra height, or can't take a contested mark?
He has a lot of shots a game. Just (usually) no set method of taking set shots. Like most on our team, kicks a lot of behinds.
 

Virgin Dog

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He has a lot of shots a game. Just (usually) no set method of taking set shots. Like most on our team, kicks a lot of behinds.
Imagine the difference Roughead could have made as a goal kicking coach. Seems to have done miracle work for the Saints
 

BJK#5

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That's rough for Lewis, he was looking really promising for a stretch of last year. His contested mark average was about the same as Naughton's, just played less games.

Seems to have had similar troubles to Naughton too. Naughton injured his knee in the finals last year, which destroyed his pre-season. We rushed him back for Round 1 waayyy underdone, and he struggled given how unfit he was. Took a couple more games to get his fitness back up and get back into the swing of AFL-level footy. Round 4, he kicked an early goal, set up another, and took 2 contested marks all in the 1st quarter, so looked to be back to his best. Failed to return after quarter time, as he injured his ankle and had to sit out the next month. Getting the impression we've now rushed him back again in Round 10 as he's not looking as mobile as he usually is.

Hoping Naughton, Lewis and McKay can all stay fit because I love watching a good, contested marking beast up forward.
Absolutely agree with needing some good young key forwards in the game. Some of the most exciting footy i have seen this year is just watching Dixon clunking anything coming his way and tearing games open, we need more of them. People say key forwards are dead but i think it is just a lack of talent over the past little while, the elite ones have shown they can still dominate games.

Also think both Lewis and Naughton show how important pre seasons and continuity is for players. Naughton looked like tearing games apart regularly last year, marked most things that came his way and brought everything else to ground. In his limited games this year he looks a shadow of himself. Fitness is huge for these guys because they are expected to get high up the ground and bring the ball to ground.
 

Schulzenfest

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Are we talking now or are we talking expectations for the future?

If we're talking exposed form, Curnow. If we're talking for the future, Max King. Develop that kid right and he'll be unstoppable.
 

Sherrinator

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Its obviously going to be big Sav. As soon as he starts marking the ball, and puts some time into kicking straight, he is going to dominate. At 6'6 he is likely to have another 10 years to learn how to do these things.
He doesn’t strike me as a natural footballer.
 

Damon_3388

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He has a lot of shots a game. Just (usually) no set method of taking set shots. Like most on our team, kicks a lot of behinds.
Even if Hipwood (16 goals from 27 shots, in 11 games) was going at 70% goalkicking accuracy (which is on the high end), he'd only have 3 extra goals this season, roughly an extra goal every 3-4 games.

He really doesn't take enough shots for accuracy/inaccuracy to be that much of a factor in his overall output.
 

mpal6

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This is Hipwood's 5th season in the AFL (he's a month away from turning 23), and he spent 5 years in the Lion's Academy before that. He's had a decade in elite pathways and coaching. He still only plays one really good game in every 3-4 outings, still hasn't improved beyond the 10 disposal/4 mark/1.5 goals per game on average, and is still very much under-developed physically (in both strength and endurance).

You've got to ask, does he work hard enough? Is he being coached and used correctly? What's holding him back? What's the point of being a 6'8" forward, if you don't use your extra height, or can't take a contested mark?
Woah easy there, just because he is from academy doesn't mean he's going to walk in with 100kg frame and smash a few doors down. Sure, he hasn't managed to put on the weight so far - blame it on genetics or whatever reason. We didn't make it any easy for him either, playing him as our key forward since debut and taking on the top defenders from opposition.

Us Lions fans hope his carrier trajectory mirrors that of Tom Hawkins, who really turned it on from season 6 as a 50+ goal forward. We can surely dream, but we'll still take the 4 years/100+ goals Hipwood has produced so far during our cellar dwelling years. We haven't had someone do it since Brown retired.
 

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