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AFL Power Rankings: Round 13

The Cats are in form - again - and deserve to be. (AAP Image/Julian Smith)
Expert
19th June, 2016
51
2020 Reads

Should Brad Scott be fined for his post-match comments about the umpiring in North Melbourne’s loss to Hawthorn? Yes, that’s obvious at this point.

It was the heat of the moment, sure. The emotion of losing an important game was there.

Somewhere along the line, something someone said, about what an umpire had said, was misconstrued. That misconstrued message was passed on to the coach of the losing side. That coach said something in the press conference that turned out not to be the case.

The chain of events is regrettable, we can clearly see that.

Still, questioning the integrity of an umpire. That’s a serious thing to be doing.

So serious that, even if you 100 per cent believed what was passed on during that chain of events, it would be a matter for official channels — not the post-game press conference.

The AFL rightly want to set an example of showing respect for umpires. AFL coaches should absolutely follow suit by being role models for the lower levels about how to fairly treat umpires.

Mouthing off at the first opportunity goes against that.

Even taking out that what was said in the post-game didn’t actually happen, it has to be addressed.

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1.Geelong

+2 // Ladder: 1st (10W, 3L)
Whatever was changed after those losses to Collingwood and Carlton, it worked. The Cats have registered impressive wins over GWS, North Melbourne and now the Western Bulldogs — by 57 points — in consecutive weeks and the hype over Patrick Dangerfield has somehow managed to climb higher. Then we hear Mitch Clark has kicked five in the VFL, which says there could be scope for further improvement.

2.Adelaide

-1 // Ladder: 8th (8W, 4L)
With the bye behind them, the Crows host North Melbourne on Thursday night in this week’s episode of Top Eight Sides Playing Each Other. Must-watch television, that.

3.GWS Giants

-1 // Ladder: 5th (9W, 4L)
Bit worrying when Essendon can engineer an 81-point turnaround against you. Still, it’s hard to read too much into sides not being fully switched on against the Bombers and grinding out the win.

4.Hawthorn

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+2 // Ladder: 4th (10W, 3L)
Alastair Clarkson likened it to a finals game and the Hawks tend to do those things kinda well. Younger guys stood up in the win over North Melbourne, with James Sicily continuing to make an impact. Luke Hodge could be back in the mix this week and their fixture from here out sets the scene for momentum to build.

5.West Coast

No change // Ladder: 7th (8W, 5L)
Bounced back and got the win over the lowly Lions. Five goals to Josh Kennedy and four each to Mark LeCras and Jack Darling.

6.Sydney Swans

+1 // Ladder: 2nd (10W, 3L)
If you play against Sydney in the wet, you’re going to feel it. That was again made clear with a record 155 tackles being laid against Melbourne. Lance Franklin just carries on his superb season, rain or shine.

7.Western Bulldogs

-3 // Ladder: 6th (9W, 4L)
With blockbuster games now seemingly a twice-weekly affair, losses by more than 50 points tend to stand out. As should not one but two quarters that were five-goals-to-zip. Perhaps the injury toll is finally being felt. Certainly, the Dogs’ back line of early in the season wouldn’t have allowed two such quarters. But we’ll see how they shape up after an awaited bye.

8.North Melbourne

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+1 // Ladder: 3rd (10W, 3L)
Had the better of the first half, but kicked 4.11. Kicked better in the second half, but the threepeat premiers did what they tend to do when a game is there to be won. In the end, North were +70 in disposals, +4 in clearances, +7 in inside 50s and +27 in contested possessions, so no, it wasn’t a bad performance. Oh, and for those wondering, they were +9 in free kicks.

9.Fremantle

+3 // Ladder: 15th (3W, 10L)
Now we should probably take some notice. Good win over Port Adelaide, with Michael Barlow well and truly back in form after a 43-disposal, two-goal effort. Matthew Pavlich also front and centre with four goals.

10.Port Adelaide

-2 // Ladder: 9th (6W, 7L)
That’s got to be a season-killer. Fremantle, the side that opened the year with ten straight losses, should have been accounted for regardless of venue if Port Adelaide were real finals possibilities. Instead, they continue their role as “just a 50-50 type side”, as Ken Hinkley put it. Just three players hit 20 disposals against the Dockers. Justin Westhoff and Charlie Dixon continue to frustrate and play below their potential.

11.St Kilda

No change // Ladder: 12th (5W, 7L)
The Saints are back on deck this week, clashing with Geelong at Etihad Stadium. Their record against better teams isn’t flash, so we’ll see how they fare this time.

12.Melbourne

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-2 // Ladder: 10th (6W, 7L)
Where Sydney laid 155 tackles, Melbourne laid 89. They also didn’t capitalise on Max Gawn’s ruck dominance, with Sydney winning the clearances 46-37. That said, the task of beating the Swans in the wet ain’t easy.

13.Carlton

No change // Ladder: 11th (6W, 6L)
Back in action with a trip to Spotless Stadium to face the GWS Giants.

14.Richmond

No change // Ladder: 13th (5W, 7L)
The Tigers return with an MCG fixture against the Brisbane Lions this week.

15.Collingwood

No change // Ladder: 14th (4W, 8L)
A suddenly very interesting Friday night fixture this week, with the Pies hosting the in-form Fremantle.

16.Gold Coast

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No change // Ladder: 16th (3W, 9L)
Much-needed week off, but it’s back to work with one of the toughest road trips in footy: Hawthorn in Launceston.

17.Essendon

+1 // Ladder: 18th (1W, 12L)
Bomber fans clearly found other things to do yesterday. Just 14,463 rocked up to Etihad, the lowest Essendon home crowd in 25 years. It’s a shame because they missed out on a commendable performance against the Giants. Four goals to Orazio Fantasia gave a glimpse into the future.

18.Brisbane Lions

-1 // Ladder: 17th (1W, 12L)
You suspect West Coast weren’t going to drop this one the week after a loss, so in that light winning the disposal count (by 110), the clearances (by 12) and contested possessions (by 13) was good from the Lions. But the game was practically ended by a seven-goals-to-one second quarter, and the final margin was 49 points, and the Lions still have a bit to work on.