DESPITE frequent change and unpredictability this year, one thing has remained constant.
That's the gap between players who have adapted well to 'corona ball' and the fallen premiums who are offering nothing.
In fact, it's not even close.
You only have to compare Lachie Neale's performance on the weekend with that of Stephen Coniglio – the gap between them makes Eddie Betts 50m penalty look small.
Another week, another podium finish for the ball-magnet Lion, Lachie Neale, who is not out there sulking for 16 minutes a quarter. Instead he is busy racking up career-best numbers while playing 98 per cent game time. He absolutely dominated the lowly Crows for 31 touches, eight marks and three tackles for 123 to clearly remain the most dominant player in the game and he did all this with six behinds! Imagine if he had his kicking boots on. He boasts the label of Corona Pig and is genuinely in the conversation for an official snouting.
According to my twitter feed, a fair few had me for a goal in their multi. Apologies, I owe you all a beer ??— Lachie Neale (@lachieneale) June 28, 2020
Honourable mention: Brodie Grundy The ever-reliable Ruck Pig got the job done for his coaches who were no doubt excited about his match up with Shane Mumford, a clash that historically hasn't ended well for big Mummy in recent meetings. The big Pig did his thing with a massive 47 hitouts to go with 19 possessions and five marks for 117. He is another star who hasn't missed a beat. Business as usual.
NINE THINGS WE LEARNED The toughest Pie to replace
Now I love Stephen Coniglio, don't get me wrong but when you put so much time and effort into your team, it's very disappointing when your expensive franchise players are getting comfortably outscored by rookies sitting on the pine. He was almost unrecognisable against the Pies, mixing his time up between the forward line and midfield while collecting 11 possessions and scoring just 35 points. His saving grace is that his time forward may leave him eligible for DPP qualification because without that, his price plummet is going to be hard to swallow.
Honourable mention: Andrew Brayshaw was highly touted for a breakout in the pre-season but unfortunately, we haven't seen anything to suggest that being the case in the season proper. It is hard to get a gauge on his inconsistent role and time on ground for the Dockers, but one thing that has been consistent is his low scores. He managed to scrape together a score of 53 from 13 possessions on the weekend, but he has to go given he is scoring the same as rookies who are generating cash. There is a slight chance the injury to Nat Fyfe increases his midfield time but I am not sure that is even enough to justify a hold.
We all know Matt Rowell is the piglet, but as far as earning his spot, Tom Green should be around for a while in the Giants line-up. His score of 51 wasn't a reflection of his value to the side and the main thing we need from our cash cows is that they are hitting the park.
The top 5
- Lachie Neale: 123
- Toby Nankervis: 118
- Brodie Grundy: 117
- Jarrod Berry: 116
- Sam Docherty: 110
- Brandan Parfitt
- Lachie Neale
- Sam Docherty
- Hugh McCluggage
- Jy Simpkin
Unfortunately my hand will be forced again this week with the injury to star Pie Jeremy Howe. At this stage I will use DPP to trade him to a value midfielder like Brandan Parfitt.
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