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AFL Power Rankings 2017: Round 8

Adrian Polykandrites Columnist

By Adrian Polykandrites, Adrian Polykandrites is a Roar Expert


41 Have your say

    I know it’s cliche to say it these days, but the competition has never felt more even. Apart from the Lions at the bottom of the table, there are 17 teams capable of mixing it with anyone.

    That all makes for a fun season, but who the hell knows what’s real at this stage.

    1.GWS Giants
    Ladder: 2
    Last week: 2

    For the first time this season the Giants take top spot, which is a bit weird, because they barely scraped past the team currently placed 17th.

    Ladder: 1
    Last week: 1

    The Crows give up the No.1 ranking after back-to-back losses. It was easy to write off the North loss as an aberration, but they way they were belted by Melbourne – at Adelaide Oval, no less – suggests some very real and exploitable flaws. As good as Rory Sloane is, no midfielder should be that important.

    3.West Coast
    Ladder: 3
    Last week: 4

    It wasn’t pretty, in fact it was rather ugly, but the Eagles knocked over another highly rated opponent. Six wins from eight games has them very nicely positioned.

    4.Port Adelaide
    Ladder: 4
    Last week: 6

    Port’s average winning margin this season is better than 12 goals and their three losses are to the top three teams on the ladder (and in these rankings). I think they’re legit.

    5.Western Bulldogs
    Ladder: 8
    Last week: 3

    An eight-point loss to the Eagles at Subiaco is more than respectable, and they’re still missing a good chunk of their best team, but at some point they need to put in a four-quarter effort. The Dogs’ goal kicking has been abominable – they’ve put up 67.96 since Round 3.

    6.St Kilda
    Ladder: 6
    Last week: 7

    The Saints have had nervous moments at home against a couple of lesser opponents this season – Carlton and Brisbane. Wins are wins though for a team whose primary goal is to qualify for finals.

    Ladder: 10
    Last week: 9

    That’s the best win anyone has had this season. Totally shut down the Crows’ frightening transition game with a combination of relentless pressure and disciplined defenders. The mental strength required to stick to their plan and maintain the rage after the Crows got rolling in the second quarter might have been the most impressive part. And they did it all without gun forward Jesse Hogan.

    Ladder: 5
    Last week: 5

    Alarm bells would be ringing for the Cats now. That’s three straight games conceding 100 or more points – they did so only twice in 2016.

    Ladder: 9
    Last week: 11

    Won it, then lost it, then won it again. The Dockers have now won five of their past six games – though interestingly their percentage in that stretch is a touch over 104.

    Ladder: 7
    Last week: 8

    Hard to find a single thing they did right in that final 30 seconds. If someone takes a huge pack mark, or kicks a miracle goal to beat you in the dying seconds, you can live with it. To have a player run out of a centre clearance into space and then hit a leading forward in space is unforgivable. Horrendous.

    Ladder: 11
    Last week: 14

    Hard to know at this point of the season whether their win against the Cats says more about them or their opponents. Only a game out of the eight though. Why is it so weird to see Joe Daniher having fun? Good on him.

    12.Sydney Swans
    Ladder: 15
    Last week: 16

    Looked a lot like the Sydney we’ve known for the past decade or so. Beat the stuffing out of North when the ball was there to be won and then dominated possession. Midfield stars everywhere: Kennedy, Parker, Hannebery, Heeney… Newman?

    13.North Melbourne
    Ladder: 16
    Last week: 10

    For the first time this season the Roos were uncompetitive.

    Ladder: 13
    Last week: 13

    Took it up to St Kilda into the last quarter. Doing everything that could be asked of them at this stage of their development.

    Ladder: 17
    Last week: 15

    Their first quarter against the Giants was brilliant. They dominated stoppages and moved the ball smartly and confidently in transition. What a frustrating team.

    16.Gold Coast
    Ladder: 12
    Last week: 12

    I hope they enjoyed the trip.

    Ladder: 14
    Last week: 17

    Beat the worst team in the comp by six goals – meh.

    18.Brisbane Lions
    Ladder: 18
    Last week: 18

    It’s going to be tough for the Lions to get off the bottom of this list as well as the ladder. That’s OK as long as they can improve – someone has to finish last after all, it makes sense for it to be the youngest team in the competition.

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    The Crowd Says (41)

    • May 15th 2017 @ 9:17am
      rossco said | May 15th 2017 @ 9:17am | ! Report

      So, by your reckoning, whoever plays Brisbane will be second last? Great!

      If Hawthorn is not above Gold Coast (who were pathetic) then your judgment is poor. And then there is Carlton and North Melbourne, both very poor.

      • May 15th 2017 @ 9:24am
        me too said | May 15th 2017 @ 9:24am | ! Report

        It isn’t purely based on their last game, but even if it was Carlton would be above Hawthorn.

        • May 15th 2017 @ 11:56am
          Birdman said | May 15th 2017 @ 11:56am | ! Report

          based on what? the vibe?

      • Roar Guru

        May 15th 2017 @ 9:46am
        JamesH said | May 15th 2017 @ 9:46am | ! Report

        You can’t dump a side based on one poor game, rossco. GC belted the Hawks several weeks ago and had been in pretty good touch until yesterday. At the same time, Hawthorn needs to play more than a couple of decent games to erase three ~80 point thumpings.

        • May 15th 2017 @ 11:51am
          Birdman said | May 15th 2017 @ 11:51am | ! Report

          Hawks have won 3 of the last 4 (including Melb who just beat the flag favs) but are still second last?

          This system is busted.

      • May 15th 2017 @ 11:08am
        tibor nagy (big four sticks) said | May 15th 2017 @ 11:08am | ! Report

        Queensland football is in crisis. The GCS are nothing but pretenders who rely on Ablett, while the Springfield Isotopes are a hapless rabble, whose players can’t wait to get out of the joint. Schache will be at Richmond next year. Brisbane are a lock for the spoon.

    • May 15th 2017 @ 9:36am
      Nigel Fauntleroy-St John III said | May 15th 2017 @ 9:36am | ! Report

      As predicted the sherry was flowing post game, while our caring business class party hosts (including Nigel Smart, the failed candidate for Norwood ) were crying in their cognacs. Nuclear Nick’s head almost exploded in the last quarter. It was a most enjoyable contest, as we discussed property portfolios, fossil fuel options for South Australia, and day trading, while watching the mighty Fuchsias dismantle the Crows, from behind glass. We celebrated by purchasing some Adelaide properties to add to our portfolios. The carbon emissions private jet squadron touched down on Sunday morning. We were picked up by our chauffeurs and whisked away to Royal South Yarra for post game pleasantries. The Grand Old Club is back in town, and the June ski trips are cancelled, as we will be going to Aspen post premiership. We put more mud on our Range Rovers down at Toorak, to make a statement that the Dees are the real deal. Melbourne should be number one in the standings this week old chum.

      • May 15th 2017 @ 10:13am
        Baron Von Toorak said | May 15th 2017 @ 10:13am | ! Report

        The fuchsia has risen out of the dirt like a phoenix rising from the ashes. These rankings don’t reflect Melbourne’s march toward September, or our barnstorming triumph on Saturday. It was a fantastic weekend all round, as we came home with the points, and also bought up a lot of Adelaide properties, which we will leave empty, as it is cheaper to do so, as we claim it on tax, thanks to negative gearing. My dry cleaner, down in Toorak Village, said to me this morning that he thinks the Dees can go all the way, and that Sir Rupert is smiling down at us from his parliamentary seat in heaven. I then ran into Brian Dixon, and he said we are on the brink of a Fuchsia dynasty. It was all smiles and back slapping in Toorak this morning. Melbourne is not gawn, and the Range Rover band wagon is neither rickety nor old. The Melbourne alarm is ringing loud and clear, and it is far from false.

      • May 15th 2017 @ 10:28am
        Lord Dunsborough of Malvern said | May 15th 2017 @ 10:28am | ! Report

        First time in a while I’ve had a brandy before midday on a Monday and I’m actually celebrating, rather than trying to overlook a performance by the mighty Fuchsias

        Much like my idiot 2nd son Bertie, they do have their moments of brilliance, and yesterday was one of them – the overconfidence of those cashed up working class dregs from Adelaide was palpable yesterday, but they had no answer for the rolled up sleeves and stiff upper lips of the MCC New Model Army. We must not get complacent though – a win over the poverty stricken croweaters is nice but the main game remains being the best team in Melbourne, the only city that matters for anything in Australia.

        • May 16th 2017 @ 10:17pm
          Fairsuckofthesav said | May 16th 2017 @ 10:17pm | ! Report

          Just remember a week is a long time in football not to mention a season.

      • May 15th 2017 @ 5:44pm
        Mark said | May 15th 2017 @ 5:44pm | ! Report

        These aren’t funny. Please stop.

        • May 15th 2017 @ 5:53pm
          Matto said | May 15th 2017 @ 5:53pm | ! Report


        • May 16th 2017 @ 8:34am
          Darren said | May 16th 2017 @ 8:34am | ! Report

          Agreed. The one joke over and over is now very tired.

        • May 16th 2017 @ 12:26pm
          Slane said | May 16th 2017 @ 12:26pm | ! Report


    • Roar Guru

      May 15th 2017 @ 9:51am
      JamesH said | May 15th 2017 @ 9:51am | ! Report

      Fair rankings this week, Adrian. Nice work.

      Maybe the Cats are a bit high (I think Richmond and Freo look far better sides right now) but I understand not wanting to drop them more than 3 spots in one week.

      This is such a ridiculously even comp that I think the flag will land with the team which hits form at the right time.

    • May 15th 2017 @ 10:28am
      hal said | May 15th 2017 @ 10:28am | ! Report

      Not taking anything away from Essendon’s win, as they deserved it, yet I have one thing to say about Geelong’s performance: pathetic! You can not win a game playing bruise free football. We came back in the final quarter because we decided to tackle. Our best players in our VFL side are non AFL listed players, so wevbetter start playing with intent, and not leave it up to too few, or we will free fall out of the eight. Dangerfield is definitely carrying a rib injury, so it is time for others to step up. Too many passengers at the moment. As for Essendon, Hurley and Daniher must be about equal in the best and fairest count at the moment.

      • May 15th 2017 @ 10:47am
        tibor nagy (big four sticks) said | May 15th 2017 @ 10:47am | ! Report

        It is good to hear an honest assessment of Geelong. Geelong were pathetic whereas Richmond were not. Big Jack’s goal at the end of the third quarter was disallowed which cost us the game. Going into this game, we had won the two previous outings against Fremantle over there, while they had won the two previous outings against us, over here. I was expecting this. While I am a huge rap of Rioli, what was he doing in the centre, on his own in the final seconds of the match? Hardwick’s coaching is to blame. We need a Richmond man at the helm. That being said keep the faith Tiger fans, as we will be there on the last day in September. We are the Bulldogs of 2017.

        • May 15th 2017 @ 11:37am
          Haydos said | May 15th 2017 @ 11:37am | ! Report

          By my calculations Richmond were in front with just 21 seconds to go, couldn’t finish off the game and deserved to lose! Stop blaming umpiring decisions from previous quarters. Freo had Richmond’s measure for the majority of the game including the final 21 seconds. After the commentary team were talking up how strong the Tigers lineup was pre match too, not strong enough to prevent Freo leading by 5 goals in the third, then steeling themselves to steal the win when it mattered.

          • Roar Guru

            May 15th 2017 @ 11:48am
            Dalgety Carrington said | May 15th 2017 @ 11:48am | ! Report

            Haydos, big four sticks is one of those novelty posters on here, no need to take them too seriously. In fact, I’m surprised by their comparatively low-key response.

          • May 15th 2017 @ 5:23pm
            tibor nagy (big four sticks) said | May 15th 2017 @ 5:23pm | ! Report

            Umpire number 11 was the same guy from the Bulldogs game. He has it in for us.He disallowed Big Jack’s goal. Check the vision, you can even see me in the background yelling. There should have also been a free kick to Dusty in the final seconds.

          • May 15th 2017 @ 5:24pm
            tibor nagy (big four sticks) said | May 15th 2017 @ 5:24pm | ! Report

            Umpire number 11 was the same guy from the Bulldogs game. He has it in for us.He disallowed Big Jack’s goal. Check the vision, you can even see me in the background yelling. There should have also been a free kick to Dusty in the final seconds.

        • May 15th 2017 @ 6:48pm
          Keggas said | May 15th 2017 @ 6:48pm | ! Report

          Big Jack didn’t kick the goal at the end of the third quarter – he gave away the free kick which meant the goal by Caddy was disallowed- it was a clear and stupid free kick.

          Dustin Martin ‘mark’ in the goal square at half time wasn’t a mark and with a minute to go a free kick against Crozier for being punched in the head by Martin.

          But no, you’re right you were robbed

    • May 15th 2017 @ 11:12am
      tibor nagy (big four sticks) said | May 15th 2017 @ 11:12am | ! Report

      Geelong: gone.
      Adelaide: pretenders.
      Port: front runners
      West Coast: One state wonders.
      Bulldogs: Hung over.
      There are only two teams in it. Richmond and GWS. This weekend is the grand final preview.

      • Roar Guru

        May 15th 2017 @ 4:49pm
        Wayne said | May 15th 2017 @ 4:49pm | ! Report

        Port lost to West Coast… Last Week… In Adelaide

        Beating Brisbane and Gold Coast doesn’t make them front runners.

        • May 15th 2017 @ 5:19pm
          Powerboy said | May 15th 2017 @ 5:19pm | ! Report

          …..maybe not frontrunners, but when you get lost in the slop throughout June and July, just remember that the Power’s 150% means that anyone with the same win count will have to find a round 23 match to get past them. You sould be more concerned with their defence right now…. They are the Power’s true stars. Best of all, other clubs have now shown them how to shut down those ‘invincible” teams above them.

        • May 16th 2017 @ 12:06am
          Pelican said | May 16th 2017 @ 12:06am | ! Report

          Front runners is a derogatory term not a compliment. It implies that Port will trail off after leading. we’ll see.

    • May 15th 2017 @ 11:20am
      hal said | May 15th 2017 @ 11:20am | ! Report

      Geelong are ranked 13th in defense in the AFL at the moment.