In this week's Six things we learned, we discover that the reigning premiers are getting their mojo back, a star Bulldog can't be stopped two weeks running and Carlton continues to disappoint, plus more round 12 lessons. 

1. Ton-up Tigers still have a taste for the turnover  

Richmond still has a way to go before mixing it with this season's trend-setters, but the back-to-back premiers showed on Saturday night they're fast heading in the right direction. At their best, the Tigers force opposition turnovers before feasting on them, and that was the backbone of their impressive Dreamtime win in Perth. Richmond scored more than 100 points off Essendon turnovers, with Bombers coach Ben Rutten summing it up perfectly when he lamented that "any time we made a mistake, or they forced a mistake, they were able to punish us on the scoreboard". The Tigers, who have made a habit of launching their run to a flag in earnest once winter hits, are starting to look more like their old selves as key players return, and that is a scary proposition for opposition clubs. - Nathan Schmook  

00:39 Mins
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Graham kicks Tigers clear with running beauty

Jack Graham has produced another brilliant running goal to extend his side's advantage

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2. You can't keep Libba down for long 

Targeted by Melbourne's James Harmes last week, premiership Bulldog Tom Liberatore had to contend with tenacious Fremantle youngster Caleb Serong early on Sunday night. He was held to two disposals to quarter-time and looked set for a long night before adjusting and having a big say in the game. Serong set his sights onto Marcus Bontempelli and Liberatore decided to get dangerous, pushing forward and kicking back-to-back goals in the third quarter at a time when Fremantle had momentum. The first was a magnificent 40m set shot from the boundary, and the second was a snap off the back of a stoppage. It wasn't his usual contribution, entering the game with five goals for the season, but it was a crucial one, keeping the Dockers at arm's length when they were threatening to make a run. - Nathan Schmook

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Libba lets loose with a pair of gems

Tom Liberatore steps up in the third-quarter with two superb goals

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3. Kozzy doesn't need much of it to kill you

Melbourne livewire Kysaiah Pickett has received plenty of plaudits during his fledgling 26-game career, and on Friday night again proved he didn't need much of the ball to kill his opposition. Pickett had just nine disposals against the Lions – his equal lowest of 2021 – but in the slivers of daylight he received from either Callum Ah Chee or Brandon Starcevich, managed to kick 3.3 and play a huge role in shifting momentum. Pickett's mere presence – with or without the ball – sparks excitement in his teammates and fear into the opposition. - Michael Whiting

00:56 Mins
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Kysaiah turns messiah in three scintillating goals

Kysaiah Pickett is causing the Lions all sorts of problems with his electrifying class

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4. The Blues are no closer to finals

Carlton started the season with hopes of ending an eight-year finals drought. Halfway through the campaign, those hopes are in tatters. If the Blues wanted to test their lofty ambitions, they've had plenty of opportunities so far this year – seven of their first 12 games have been against teams occupying a top-eight spot. But those seven games have yielded seven defeats, with the side no closer to making the jump into the competition's elite. Sunday's bitterly disappointing loss against an undermanned West Coast continued a pattern of frustration for David Teague's men. Every single defeat this year has been between 16 and 28 points, with Sunday no different. Once again, season 2021 appears destined as being another case of so-close-but-so-far for the Blues. - Riley Beveridge

5. Elliott's the spark that Pies desperately needed

Collingwood's inability to score has been a talking point all season, with the Pies ranked second-last in the League for points scored heading into the round. But after managing only one goal in the first three quarters against Geelong last week, the Pies stormed out of the blocks against the Crows on Saturday, kicking five goals straight in the first term. Four of those goals belonged to Jamie Elliott, who was playing in his first game back from a fractured leg suffered in round two. Elliott ended up with a career-high six goals, including the matchwinner in the final term, to deliver Collingwood a thrilling five-point victory. His explosive pace on the lead and smarts around goal was exactly what the Pies needed to regain their scoring mojo. Collingwood fans will be hoping Elliott can stay fit, because he seems key to turning around the Pies' misfiring forward line. - Luke Michael

02:17 Mins
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Electrifying Elliott hits six, including winner

The return of Jamie Elliott to the Magpies side could not have been more impressive with a staggering six-goal haul

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6. Saints' big-man depth faces a serious test

For most of the match against Sydney, St Kilda was running with a makeshift forward set up – Mason Wood was subbed off at quarter-time with a hamstring complaint, while Max King was restricted to the square due to a back injury. With Rowan Marshall also sidelined, it meant an awful lot fell on the shoulders of Tim Membrey (20 disposals, eight marks, five intercepts, two goals), who was required to play as virtually the sole marking target further afield. Membrey's influence didn't end there, also stationing himself on the defensive goal line at crucial moments in the second and third terms - Sarah Black

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Membrey snaps a beauty to put the Saints in front

At a pivotal moment in the third quarter, Tim Membrey kicks a ripper to put the Saints in front

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