1.The Fremantle freight train has hit the skids
After having its nine-game winning streak snapped by Richmond last week, most thought Fremantle would bounce back emphatically against the injury-ravaged Suns. The Dockers did anything but. In fact, they dodged a bullet. Despite having a truckload more disposals (388-316) and inside 50s (51-27) it took them until the final minute to seal victory with a Nick Suban goal. Gold Coast matched Fremantle's intensity, slowed the game down, and frustrated the juggernaut that has led the competition all season. After destroying everything in their path during the early rounds, the bye now seems to have come at the right time for Ross Lyon's men.
2. Rocket's message hits home
They didn't snare a win in the past three weeks, but the Suns have exceeded all expectations with their showings against powerhouses Hawthorn, the Sydney Swans and Fremantle. Missing most of their first-choice team including Gary Ablett, Jaeger O'Meara, David Swallow, Dion Prestia and Rory Thompson among a host of others, their desperation and discipline was outstanding. While never threatening to beat the Hawks or Swans, they never dropped their heads, and gave Fremantle one hell of a fright. Rodney Eade's message to his young group has hit home.
3. Two minutes of Fyfe genius proves the difference
Despite being closely checked and lined up every time he got the ball, Nat Fyfe still found a way to be the game-breaker. The Suns got within two points early in the third term before Fyfe slipped forward and out-marked Clay Cameron twice in a minute for two goals and some much-needed breathing space. As the match wore on, the big-bodied Docker became the dominant midfielder and just got his team over the line with 31 disposals and 11 clearances to go with his brace of goals. You can bank another three Brownlow Medal votes for Fyfe.
4. Can you believe it? Another injury for the Suns
Rodney Eade's worst fears were realised midway through the first quarter when utility Danny Stanley hobbled off with a leg injury following a marking contest. It forced Eade to insert substitute Nick Malceski far earlier than he hoped, with the former Sydney Swan playing just two disjointed matches at NEAFL level since aggravating a knee injury earlier this season. Despite being underdone, Malceski was a solid contributor in an under-siege backline, finishing with 14 disposals.
5. You just can't keep Adam Saad down
The energetic Suns half-back had a day to remember for so many reasons. Seemingly every time you looked up he was either being carried off with an injury or bursting clear from defence taking a bounce. In separate incidents Saad had his wrist kicked – and then strapped – when trying to tap a ball on, and was then crunched by Matthew Pavlich in the third quarter in a marking contest. He was doubled over for a minute or two, but just like the Energizer Bunny, he wouldn't stay down. The promoted rookie finished with 25 disposals to be one of the Suns' best.