Who fired and who flopped in this weekend's state leagues?
• Fantasy form watch: Round 18's Pig, Presti and Junior Swine

1. Adam Goodes would be very proud of Lewis Jetta
Turn the clock back seven days; if the West Australian hadn't taken a stand in his home state, would the footy world have stepped up in support of one of the game's greatest servants? Doubtful. Jetta is media shy, quietly spoken and shuns the limelight whenever he can, so his actions at Domain Stadium showed just how strongly he felt about the treatment his mentor was copping. Against the Crows the speedster put a tough week behind him to kick the game's opening goal and racked up 17 first half possessions to be best on ground at the main break. Coach John Longmire revealed post match that Jetta had told his teammates the best way to honour the absent Goodes was to play well on Saturday night, and he led the charge. It could be a turning point in Jetta's career. - Adam Curley

2. It's time to add Tom to the list
While the future of Charlie Dixon might lie north along the Pacific Motorway, Gold Coast fans needn't fret. They already have at their disposal one of the AFL's most exciting young key forwards in Tom Lynch. Lynch's round 18 effort was deserving of the captaincy honour the Suns bestowed on him for Saturday night's match against West Coast. Even ignoring his clutch goal to draw the game after a strong-as-you-like pack mark with seconds to go, the 22-year-old's game was something to behold. He worked tirelessly, flew with courage and was a constant headache for the West Coast defence, finishing the night with four goals. Lynch has taken the second most contested marks in the competition, a season after finishing fourth in that stat. It's time he was mentioned alongside Jeremy Cameron, Joe Daniher, Jesse Hogan, Josh Bruce, Cam McCarthy and the like. - Andrew Lowther

3. A Dangerfield showdown is on the radar, but Cats need to lift
On the surface, a 56-point win over the Brisbane Lions seems like the ideal tune-up for a tough run home for Geelong. But the reality was the Cats struggled to put the foot down in a performance unlikely to silence any doubters about their top-eight credentials. To secure a ninth straight finals campaign, Chris Scott’s men need to click into somewhere near top gear and probably win at least three of the last five games. Rounds 21 and 22 against St Kilda and Collingwood shape as must-win matches unless Geelong can upset the Sydney Swans at home this Saturday night or Hawthorn a week later. Could it be that a round 23 showdown with Patrick Dangerfield's Adelaide at Simonds Stadium becomes an early elimination final for both sides? If so, prepare for the hype in G-town to be out of control. - Travis King

4. Shaun Higgins is the recruit of the year
Higgins underlined the fact he's been the pick of last year's trade and free agency acquisitions this season in North Melbourne's comfortable victory over Carlton. Although players such as Dayne Beams, Ryan Griffen, Patrick Ryder and Tom Boyd might go on to have better careers at their second clubs, no player has made a better start at his new home than Higgins. The 27-year-old had his share of injuries in his nine seasons at the Western Bulldogs, but he has not missed a game in 2015. After being trialled in defence for much of last year, Higgins has thrived in his more familiar forward/midfield role this season. After 18 rounds, he is ranked equal first at North for goal assists (14), second for goals (29) and inside 50s (60), and fifth for tackles (68) and stoppage clearances (29). Against the Blues, Higgins was outstanding with a game-high 31 possessions, two goals and one goal assist. Jack Ziebell shaded him for best on ground but it seems unlikely anyone can shade him for recruit of the year. - Nick Bowen 

5. Hawthorn won't want to meet Richmond in a final
The Hawks were off their game on Friday night, and they were probably due for a down night after eight wins on the trot. But Richmond's win over the reigning premiers was the Tigers' third victory over the Hawks in the clubs' past four meetings, and there was no luck about it. Damien Hardwick said after the game that the Hawks were one of those teams the Tigers just match up well against, but there is more to it than that.

 After the siren: Mighty versatile Tigers are mighty dangerous

The Tigers were clever in shutting down the Hawks' spread, quick in their ball movement, and afforded as little easy possession as they could to their opponents. It has been a long time since the Tigers were considered legitimate contenders for the premiership, but with wins against the Hawks, Fremantle (at Domain Stadium) and the Sydney Swans (SCG) under the belt, they deserve to be in the conversation. - Callum Twomey

6. Collingwood is struggling to find the right forward line mix
In an attempt to rectify recent wrongs, the Magpies entered Saturday's clash with the Demons the shortest they've been this season forward of the ball. Jesse White (omitted) joined the injured Travis Cloke on the sidelines as the Pies tried building a forward set up around fourth-gamer Darcy Moore. While Travis Varcoe was good and Alex Fasolo looked dangerous early, their midfield dominance that provided 14 extra inside 50s didn't translate to scoreboard pressure, and didn't result in any goals in the deciding final term. Cloke isn't coming back next week and the jury's out on where White's at, but the Pies still have to find a way to shake things up in attack if they're to climb out of their mid-season slump. - Jennifer Phelan

7. Chad Wingard should be an All Australian lock
Although he was quiet in the second half, the forward line juggernaut that is Port Adelaide's Chad Wingard continued to roll on against St Kilda, with the 22-year-old adding another four sausage rolls to his tally. He's now booted 42 goals this year, marking the third straight season in which he's booted at least 40 majors. He's also kicked at least three goals in each of his past eight games, all while averaging 20 possessions. His 42 goals ranks him 10th in the AFL this season and he's ranked 13th for goals assists. He's a star and surely a soon-to-be dual All Australian. - Harry Thring


8. Fremantle might have found another tall forward
The young defender had impressed in his first eight games this season playing as a key defender in the absence of Michael Johnson, Zac Dawson and Alex Silvagni. But with Dawson returning, coach Ross Lyon dropped key forward Matt Taberner and sent Pearce forward against the Giants. He performed well gathering 12 touches, taking five marks and kicking a goal. He had four shots at goal but unfortunately only registered a score with one of them. He was subbed out at the start of the last quarter. But on a weekend when Hawthorn and West Coast wobbled, the Dockers have may have uncovered an elusive piece to their premiership puzzle. - Alex Malcolm 

9. Size doesn't matter for the rampaging Dogs
The Western Bulldogs' finals weapon might not be an imposing key forward but a trio of medium-sized goalkickers who are a giant force when combined. In Jake Stringer (192cm), Tory Dickson (184cm) and Stewart Crameri (189cm), the Bulldogs have one of the toughest forward lines in the AFL to match up on. They combined for 15 of the team's 19 goals on Sunday and Essendon coach James Hird admitted it was a nightmare finding the right defenders to do the job. Tom Boyd should eventually be the key forward who wins the Bulldogs finals, but this September it is a shorter trio who will be threatening the AFL's top teams. - Nathan Schmook