Who's the best Indigenous player ever?

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ferball

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Compare the average goals kicked in the 80s/90s early 2000s to this decade.

Also consider this:

From 1991-2000 a single player kicked 80+ goals in a season 30 times. In that time the likes of Cummings, Loewe, Rocca, Sumich and Longmire achieved this feat. Now they were great players, but they’re not on the level of Dunstall, Carey, Lockett etc. yet they still managed it. Comparatively, from 2012-2021 it happened 3 times. Buddy and Kennedy the only two that have managed it.

What stats have you got that are suggesting it’s easier for key forwards to kick bags now?
You said the number of goals kicked has declined significantly across the League but more goals were kicked in 2016 and 2017 than any year in the 90s.

You claim Cummings, Loewe, Rocca, Sumich and Longmire were not that great but they were better than most KPFs of this century. Maybe not Buddy but that's about it. How old are you? Did you watch any of those guys play? They were shitloads better than the likes of Brown, Cameron, Roughhead, Riewoldts etc etc. Dunstall, Carey and Lockett were some of the greatest forwards of all time. The reason they kicked so many goals was because their sides structured their game around supplying them.

In 1996 Dunstall and Lockett both kicked over 100 goals. For both clubs the next highest goal scorer was kicking a third or a quarter that many goals. Whereas in 2013 Buddy and Roughhead kicked 130 odd goals between them but their side had other options as well. Without Roughhead Buddy could have kicked 100 goals that year but it obviously didn't happen.

You say he would be better one on one but I disagree.

In 2012 he kicked 13 goals against us and we then made sure he never did that again cos we played him like old school backs did. Hard one on one, sometimes two on one defense. (Compare with Carey who used to triple teamed and still took marks and kicked goals.) After that game in the next five years he had multiple goalless games against us and scored in only three games. One a prelim where we were cooked at the end of the season and lucky to get that far.

To me that indicates he would have struggled with the sort of personal attention 90s forwards got, as opposed to the structured defense that was becoming standard at the time. It wasn't just one on one defense back then either as I mentioned. Plenty of footage on youtube of Carey marking with multiple blokes hanging off him.
 

ferball

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Sorry 5 games, including 1 goal in one. We were the only side to keep him goalless more than once as well iirc.
 

Soggy2112

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You said the number of goals kicked has declined significantly across the League but more goals were kicked in 2016 and 2017 than any year in the 90s.

Look at the average not the total.

You claim Cummings, Loewe, Rocca, Sumich and Longmire were not that great but they were better than most KPFs of this century. Maybe not Buddy but that's about it. How old are you? Did you watch any of those guys play? They were shitloads better than the likes of Brown, Cameron, Roughhead, Riewoldts etc etc. Dunstall, Carey and Lockett were some of the greatest forwards of all time. The reason they kicked so many goals was because their sides structured their game around supplying them.

I didn’t say they weren’t that great, just that they weren’t in the league of Dunstall and Lockett.

What’s more likely, that there was approximately 10 key forwards coincidentally better than this era and that’s why they kicked more goals? Or that the huge changes in the way the game is played as a result of full professionalism has meant that it’s harder to kick big bags?
 

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ferball

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Look at the average not the total.

Why. During the 90s total goals per year were in the range 4600-5200. Since then until COVID/2020 the range was 4700 - 5700 per year. During the 90s total goals per year over 5000 - it happened six times and there were never more than 5200 goals scored. In the 10 years following (2000-09) the only years less than 5000 goals were scored were years when 4900+ goals were scored. The following 10 years (2010-19) there were three seasons with less than 5000 goals scored but every other season saw more goals scored than any year in the 90s.

Can't be bothered working out the averages when quickly looking at the figures showed that the number of goals per year has been increasing every decade since the 90s. But you said this on the previous page:

The number of goals kicked has declined significantly across the league since the 90s. Do you really believe that this is all down to forwards just being better in that era and not at all to do with professionalism leading to an improvement in defensive tactics making it more difficult to score?

That is wrong. Its at odds with the actual facts. How did an improvement in defensive tactics make it more difficult to score across a period where more goals were scored?
I didn’t say they weren’t that great, just that they weren’t in the league of Dunstall and Lockett.

So what. They were better forwards than we usually see today.

What’s more likely, that there was approximately 10 key forwards coincidentally better than this era and that’s why they kicked more goals? Or that the huge changes in the way the game is played as a result of full professionalism has meant that it’s harder to kick big bags?
Dunno. But it seems that way, tho "coincidently" is probably the wrong term.

Many of today's mids are taller than 90s forwards, tho less heavy. So certainly the game has changed with a focus on athleticism being preferred to pure footballing ability, as well as all the profesionalism stuff. Its a foolish assumption that players from the earlier era's wouldn't have improved on their real life performances if they were playing in this era of professionalism. Odds are they would have been better. Players like Ben Cunnington are the exception these days but were the norm back then.

Altho it could be a coincidence. Things change over time and everyone knows no distribution of anything in reality (from talented forwards to CBR) is uniform.

Anyway this is all getting off topic...

My argument is that Buddy isn't as good a forward as you think he is cos he isn't as good one on one.

I base this on watching him against us after we made a determined effort to curb his influence the same way the best players in the 90s were constantly targeted. It doesn't mean he isn't a great player, but it does mean your assumptions about the past and how he'd go if he played there aren't necessarily correct. Especially cos you don't seem to understand how the game has actually changed.
 

Usayed Givashe

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Just imagine the damage Buddy would have done in his prime or even now if he spent a lot of time 1 on 1 with an opponent inside the forward 50. Buddy is very good on the lead and if he didn't mark it and the ball hit the ground I am backing Buddy 9 times out of 10 against an opposition KPD.
The damage Buddy has done is to your salary cap.

He joined a premiership side and you’ve not looked like one since.

Odd assessment, even for you.
 

Soggy2112

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Why. During the 90s total goals per year were in the range 4600-5200. Since then until COVID/2020 the range was 4700 - 5700 per year. During the 90s total goals per year over 5000 - it happened six times and there were never more than 5200 goals scored. In the 10 years following (2000-09) the only years less than 5000 goals were scored were years when 4900+ goals were scored. The following 10 years (2010-19) there were three seasons with less than 5000 goals scored but every other season saw more goals scored than any year in the 90s.

Can't be bothered working out the averages when quickly looking at the figures showed that the number of goals per year has been increasing every decade since the 90s. But you said this on the previous page:

The number of goals kicked has declined significantly across the league since the 90s. Do you really believe that this is all down to forwards just being better in that era and not at all to do with professionalism leading to an improvement in defensive tactics making it more difficult to score?

That is wrong. Its at odds with the actual facts. How did an improvement in defensive tactics make it more difficult to score across a period where more goals were scored?

The averages are on the second table. The total goals is higher now because there are more teams meaning more games played. That’s why the average is the important stat. This is a pretty basic concept.

Dunno. But it seems that way, tho "coincidently" is probably the wrong term.

Many of today's mids are taller than 90s forwards, tho less heavy. So certainly the game has changed with a focus on athleticism being preferred to pure footballing ability, as well as all the profesionalism stuff. Its a foolish assumption that players from the earlier era's wouldn't have improved on their real life performances if they were playing in this era of professionalism. Odds are they would have been better. Players like Ben Cunnington are the exception these days but were the norm back then.

Altho it could be a coincidence. Things change over time and everyone knows no distribution of anything in reality (from talented forwards to CBR) is uniform.

I agree that all the great players of previous eras would likely be great players today. My point is that they wouldn’t be kicking big bags like they did in their era. Wayne Carey would still stand head and shoulders above the rest of the competition, but in terms of goals kicked he would’ve kicked less. Just like Buddy stands out as a level above any other key forward in his era.

You’re the one suggesting that someone like Buddy wouldn’t have adapted to the 90s era. IMO the great players play to their era, put them in a different era they would have learned to play differently and be just as successful. But how you measure a player’s influence would change.

The damage Buddy has done is to your salary cap.

He joined a premiership side and you’ve not looked like one since.

Odd assessment, even for you.

They made two grand finals. How have they not looked like one???

In 2014 he kicked 4.2, can’t blame Buddy for losing that when they had 144 less disposals and 20 less inside 50s.

In 2016 he got injured early and was clearly struggling, but still managed 16 disposals, 8 marks, 7 tackles, 1.1 and 6 score involvements.

The salary cap thing is the biggest myth about Buddy ever. Even now at the back end of his contract where he’s supposedly dead weight the Swans are a top four contender and he’s still performing at a high level.
 

ferball

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LOL yeah good point d'oh.

Anyway it still doesn't change my opinion that Buddy struggles with the sort of attention the best players in the past dealt with more effectively. Like I said that's been my opinion for years, after watching how we responded after he kicked 13 goals against us one game.
 

Private Hudson

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Peter Matera watching him beat three players with bounces and dummy's and kicking 55 metre goals was a joy to watch.
His best games of footy are at a level few others could get too.

One of my favourite players of all time. Absolute jet.
 

Soggy2112

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LOL yeah good point d'oh.

Anyway it still doesn't change my opinion that Buddy struggles with the sort of attention the best players in the past dealt with more effectively. Like I said that's been my opinion for years, after watching how we responded after he kicked 13 goals against us one game.
But why does it only work one way?

Why would Lockett and Dunstall have adapted to this era (which I agree they would have), but Buddy wouldn’t have adapted his?
 

RUNVS

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The damage Buddy has done is to your salary cap.

He joined a premiership side and you’ve not looked like one since.

Odd assessment, even for you.

Um, we were in 2 Grand Finals. Sure we didn't win either but you can't say we never looked like winning one since.
 

ferball

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But why does it only work one way?

Why would Lockett and Dunstall have adapted to this era (which I agree they would have), but Buddy wouldn’t have adapted his?
Because he couldn't adapt when he had to play against players focused on stopping him. North did it consistently over a five year period. He still had good games against us and kicked four or five goals a few times but we also shut him down alot. More than anyone else and it was because Scott Thompson and Robbie Tarrant made his life very difficult.

How is modern defence different? Pressure on the ball carrier is something good teams did in the 90s. Its more about structure and players in the opposition 50 yeah? Buddy's assets are his wheels (he is fast, agile and has endurance) and his ability to kick from beyond that structure. To me that's what stands out about him. (Take away x factor stuff with freaky dribbled goals etc and look at what works, and that's the difference, plenty of x factor forwards over the last 20 years on its own that isn't unique.) Post flood footy is almost made for him in a way that pre flood footy isn't. There is less space on the forward line now but that means there is more space in the high half forward area and just forward of the middle where he does his best work.

If he could cope with that close attention (and kick on his right foot) then perhaps he'd be a genuine shot at the GOAT as well as being the best blackfella ever to play the game.


(BTW I looked at the stats for average goals. I don't think its that big a difference still. For most of the AFL era just over 13 goals (ie 12.5 - 14.5) per side per game seems average. The significant differences seem to happen in years that look like outliers.)
 

Choc Milk

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Interestingly enough, Matera would go close not only as the best indigenous player, but also the best italian player.....
 

Running Dog

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I'm going to use this to pump up Stephen Michael again because people who didn't see him play dismiss him.

As great as Maurice was, when he played for Souths there was no question that Michael was the best player in the team.

Wrong. He wasn't the best player in the team. He was the best player in the State.
 

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Fadge

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Farmer by popular consensus, Buddy is probably the best I’ve seen just ahead of McLeod who I think gets overlooked a lot on these sorts of things.

My favourite to watch easily is The Wizard
Too young for Farmer, but couldn't agree more with the other two.

McLeod used to always carve Collingwood up.
 

Soggy2112

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How is modern defence different? Pressure on the ball carrier is something good teams did in the 90s. Its more about structure and players in the opposition 50 yeah? Buddy's assets are his wheels (he is fast, agile and has endurance) and his ability to kick from beyond that structure. To me that's what stands out about him. (Take away x factor stuff with freaky dribbled goals etc and look at what works, and that's the difference, plenty of x factor forwards over the last 20 years on its own that isn't unique.) Post flood footy is almost made for him in a way that pre flood footy isn't. There is less space on the forward line now but that means there is more space in the high half forward area and just forward of the middle where he does his best work.
Whenever I watch 90s games of footy the biggest contrast that stands out from a key forward perspective is how much space they have to use their forward smarts, strength and acceleration/speed to get out on the lead. Buddy has all of that, and is able to find away to use it even in the congestion that is modern defensive structures. I think give him the space that those 80s/90s guys had he would have kicked far more.

His weakness (relatively speaking) is pack marking, one on one he is able to use his strength to outbody defenders usually and mark the ball. Less flood, more opportunities to work one on one also would suit him IMO.
 

ferball

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Whenever I watch 90s games of footy the biggest contrast that stands out from a key forward perspective is how much space they have to use their forward smarts, strength and acceleration/speed to get out on the lead. Buddy has all of that, and is able to find away to use it even in the congestion that is modern defensive structures. I think give him the space that those 80s/90s guys had he would have kicked far more.

His weakness (relatively speaking) is pack marking, one on one he is able to use his strength to outbody defenders usually and mark the ball. Less flood, more opportunities to work one on one also would suit him IMO.
Pack marking hardly seems to happen these days tho.

It was a much bigger thing in the 90s oddly enough.

Naughton really stands out to me for that reason.
 

PhatBoy

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Too young for Farmer, but couldn't agree more with the other two.

McLeod used to always carve Collingwood up.


I’m too young for Polly as well but the accounts of what he did paint a good picture.

McLeod was one of the first players outside of the key forwards who as a kid I could look at an identify visibly that they were a superstar. He was just beautiful to watch
 

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