ROBBIE Gray's feted matchwinner on Sunday broke Carlton hearts but also continued top side Port Adelaide's 'red-time' heroics in 2020.

The Power are a game clear on top of the AFL ladder and proving doubly as deadly in red-time scoring differential than any of their rivals through the first seven rounds.

00:33 Mins
Published on

Robbie's ridiculous match-winner after siren

Robbie Gray has ice in veins, slotting the match-winning goal from a tight angle to send Port into a frenzy

Published on

However, the bigger surprise is Leon Cameron's Giants.

The one-time flag fancies are the competition's worst in this area and are routinely being clobbered as time ticks towards the end of quarters.

THE LADDER Where is your team sitting?

The League's official number-cruncher, Champion Data, still classifies red time as anything beyond the 20-minute mark of each term.

That's despite quarters this year lasting 16 minutes – down from 20 – plus time on, because of the unique circumstances created by the COVID-19 outbreak, including an interrupted season and a compressed fixture.

18:58 Mins
Published on

The moment Blues blew it, how selection calls have saved a season

Matthew Lloyd and Damian Barrett discuss all of the fallout from an exciting round seven

Published on

Average red time per term was between 10 and 11 minutes every season from 2010 onwards but is down to 5.4 minutes in 2020 and extrapolates to about 20 minutes less each match.

Some coaches and commentators blamed this on the at-times ugly spectacles this year, suggesting that games weren't opening up as they usually do towards the latter end of terms.

THE FULL INJURY LIST Who is racing the clock?

In reality, the numbers tell us the only real difference is, as pointed out above, there is just less red time and hence opportunity to score – and it's in proportion with the reduction.

The average number of points in red time per team is 13.5 points this season, compared to 27.7 a year ago and 28.5 in 2018.

03:22 Mins
Published on

Watch the last two minutes: Frem v StK

Enjoy the thrilling final moments between the Dockers and Saints at Metricon Stadium

Published on

Richmond is the constant among the AFL's best four sides in red-time scoring differential in this and the past two seasons, while Collingwood and Geelong both featured twice in that period.

The bolter is Brett Ratten's St Kilda, which ranked 16th last year but has rocketed to fourth this season as it eyes an unlikely finals berth. 

THE BEST AND WORST IN RED TIME

CLUB

2020 AVERAGES

RANK

Port Adelaide

+12.6

1st

Richmond

+6.1

2nd

Collingwood

+4.7

3rd

St Kilda

+4.4

4th

Hawthorn

-3.4

15th

Sydney

-3.4

16th

Adelaide

-5.7

17th

GWS Giants

-6.1

18th

Another improver is Gold Coast, with Stuart Dew's men going from being in the bottom two with a double-digit deficit in each of the last two seasons up to 13th this year.

The Suns are still in the negative but are no longer easy prey.

They've certainly been more competitive in all facets since Port Adelaide crushed them by 25 points in red time in their season opener. 

00:00 Mins
Published on

Look out, here comes beast Rowell for 50m lefty

Matt Rowell continues to excite the football world after another stunning goal on the run

Published on

Ken Hinkley's Power also had a 23-point buffer over Adelaide in round two.

Interestingly, the Magpies hammered GWS by five goals in red time in their round four clash but the Giants still won, yet GWS beat Brisbane in this area by 16 points and lost the game.

Either way, it's another problem Cameron and co. must sort out if the Giants are to return to the Grand Final.