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christy olsen

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Joined October 2017

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They have created the ultimate sport, the perfect mix of skill, athleticism, fitness, action, and beauty. It is called footy.

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That’s actually an interesting point.

I think every single person interested in writing or talking about footy probably has a club or two they like better than the rest.
On Fox, they all have a club they love.
Commentators and journos who can’t be mostly objective usually don’t last very long anyway.

It’s actually pretty cool that footy writers/broadcasters don’t have to pretend to love every club the same.
In the US, commentators never mention which side they support; it’s kind of lame and insincere.
In footy, it’s just out there, and I think it makes people seem more real and honest.

The battle for eighth continues: AFL Round 20 power rankings

It’s been the most frustrating year in a long time.
Not sure if Ratten is the problem, but it’s also hard to defend a coach when the list seems more talented than their on-field performance would indicate.

If Harvey really has designs on becoming a head coach, maybe they should bring him in as an assistant under Ratts for a few years.

Six talking points for AFL Round 20: Queensland disasters and Magpies to play spoilers

There are split-second decisions everywhere in the game. Players are the ones who need to figure it out.
Sometimes they mess up, as Mackay did.

Mackay never actually touched the ball in this case.
He didn’t tap it on, or do anything productive.
He just put his shoulder into Clark’s jaw.
He lifts his shoulder into the jaw.
That’s why it was so uncalled for.

Your questions below…
Yes, I want players to go about it as hard as they can, without being reckless.
No, I don’t want to remove the contest from contested possession.
It is very difficult to determine when contact becomes dangerous. I fully admit this is not an easy thing to sort.

Reckless play is not OK

I just watched the vision again… you are completely wrong.
The ball is in Clarks hands before Mackay hits him.

Reckless play is not OK

I knew I’d get some pretty vitriolic push back on this; that’s fine.
But don’t accuse me of thinking footy could or should be injury free.
It’s dangerous, and always will be.
That’s undeniable, and I have no problem with that.

Going full speed and giving full effort are not synonymous in every situation.
One of you brought up motorcycle racing – that is a great comparison.
In racing, you have to slow down for some situations, like curves.
You are still giving it your all.
Some situations require less than full throttle in footy, too.
The best players know when that is and how to do it.

Reckless play is not OK

Macca, it’s interesting that your last article was basically the opposite of mine, using the Plowman/O’Meara hit. You side with the it’s-just-part-of-the-game crowd. Thanks for reading. I think the open debate is important.
My question for you: Why would the game really be worse off if players slowed up a little to avoid dangerous hits?

Reckless play is not OK

Well, of course saying a list has (or does not have) talent is an opinion.
So we won’t argue over that.
Probably should have said, “I disagree” instead of, “That’s not true.”

But I did actually say they have not performed this year.
That is true whether they have talent or not.

Ultimately, the flag goes to the side that wins it, not the consensus most-talented team.

Is St Kilda’s season already over?

Nice first article, Harry!

As Big Four Sticks noted, you won’t get many comments b/c the article is about StK.
Don’t feel bad, that’s just how it is.

The Saints will not make finals. They’ll probably finish where they sit now.
They’ll have a few more horrid losses, and a couple surprise wins.
Real bummer.

Just enjoy the mess at the Pies.

Is St Kilda’s season already over?

That’s not true. They just have not performed.

Is St Kilda’s season already over?

Fully agree that neither McCartin nor anyone should be banned for life because of one bad incident.
The point is that Swans legal team opened Paddy up to doubt by insinuating that any time his blood sugar is low he’s at risk of reacting like that.
I think that was the really unfair thing.
They should never have mentioned it at all. The kid had a clean record and was already getting off easy with six matches.
I can understand that diabetes was a factor, but that has more to do with keeping people’s respect than getting out of punishment.

Lyon vs Robinson: This round goes to Robbo

Can you imagine Robinson, Lyon, Cornes, and Barrett all in a room with a camera?
Would have to be a big room.

Lyon vs Robinson: This round goes to Robbo

No, I’m not claiming Robbo is a great role model of professionalism. I’m only saying that in this particular discussion, he’s right to question McCartin.
Robbo has a tendency to pick at scabs, which is not admirable. He’s ruined his relationships with so many people, it makes me wonder what the atmosphere is like around Fox. Must be pretty icy at times.

Lyon vs Robinson: This round goes to Robbo

In this case I am saying that Robinson is right.
I’m not trying to be objective on this particular issue.

I’m not sure how Lyon knows about diabetes, but he’s the one who claims Robbo is not educated. Of course education is a good thing, in general, but knowing about diabetes is not important to this debate. That’s where I think Lyon is out of line this time.

Lyon vs Robinson: This round goes to Robbo

Yes, I agree Toby seems to have matured.

Lyon vs Robinson: This round goes to Robbo

There are a number of problems here.
1. When you’re under contract, you should not be publicly asking for a trade.
This is a terrible practice that needs to stop. If you are unhappy where you are, get something done behind closed doors. You’re under contract. That means the club owes something to you, and you owe something to the club. Be professional about it.
2. Let’s make a contract mean what it is supposed to.
If a player is contracted, he can’t leave without the club’s approval. End of story. Why is this a question? If a contracted player wants out, the team he wants to get to needs to figure out a trade that’s acceptable to the player’s current club. There should never be a limbo state in which a player can be both under contract and free to go to another club.
3. If a player is not under contract, no one owes anything to his current club when he leaves.
If a club doesn’t want to offer a contract to a player, they risk losing the player. There shouldn’t be any sort of compensation. Did the club buy list-preservation insurance? No? Guess what… it’s called a contract. If you want to keep players, give them contracts. And stop crying when non-contract players leave.
4. Give clubs longer initial rights to drafted players.
I’m not sure what the term for this is, but it means draftees can’t just leave after two years. The fact is rebuilding through the draft doesn’t work if good players simply sign short contracts, then jump ship. So give the first club 6 years of first-right-of-refusal. Nobody else can get the kid without an acceptable trade for the first 6 years. After that, see #2 and #3 above, except for #5 below.
5. If a club doesn’t want a player in the first 6 years, he can enter the rookie draft.
I actually think this is already the case, but obviously if a club won’t offer a kid a contract, they should not also be able to block his freedom to play somewhere else. So if there’s no contract by the end of the trade period, he walks.
Yes, I know, what if a club gives a young player a super small contract just to keep other clubs from getting him? First, is that a recipe for success? It’s not going to end well. Also, I’m sure the AFL could also come up with a formula for draft position and commensurate compensation for young players. Say, if a player is a No. 1 pick, he has to be paid at a certain level by his first club. Then there’s no easy way to abuse the 6-year restriction on movement by simply offering pathetically low contracts.
6. Get rid of father-son rules.
Yes, I realize this cuts deep for some of you. And it is a nod to nostalgia, for which I am usually a huge sucker. But the way it works, it’s ruining the system. If a player wants to play where his father played (which was probably in the days before the draft), then his beloved club needs to be willing to trade for him. First get drafted, then get traded. Otherwise, play your best where you are, and you’ll get to your dad’s club soon enough.
Bottom line, compensation picks have to go.

AFL trades: The Brad Crouch compensation controversy and how to fix it

I just want to say how much I love the headline on this article!

It's black and white for Collingwood: Add Brown

Nah, probably just because he’s a Freo fan.

The good, bad and ugly of AFL 2020

Nice first article, Jimmy.
You have to start somewhere, and making strong statements is the way to go.

Of course, I completely disagree with you about short quarters and unlimited interchanges. Endurance is a part of the game.
Some players, like Bradly Hill, shine at the end of the game when everyone else is gasping for breath. Let’s not take that away from them.

The AFL actually made a lot of other leagues look silly this year. They handled COVID better than anyone else, with the possible exception of MLB. But baseball didn’t start until the end of July, which was pretty unnecessary, IMHO. After the madness this springs, I was really worried AFL would cancel, but they kept their heads and made it work. Good on them!

The good, bad and ugly of AFL 2020

Nick Riewoldt actually mentioned the move out of Moorabin as a big reason the team slid down so horribly after 2010. The history and culture were lost.

AFL Trades: Jeremy Cameron to Geelong will be a history-maker

There are some cultural and rules differences in pro sports in the US and Australia, and these differences change how free agency plays out in both sports.
– Player salaries are not considered private in the US, so every player tries to get the biggest, most obnoxious deal possible. They always want to out-do the last record-breaking deal. Baseball is one of the worst, but all of them are pretty bad. (So, please, never switch to public salaries in AFL!) This reality alone really hurts the clubs that can’t pay the huge money.
– Players in the US tend to simply go and stay where the money is. It doesn’t seem to make any difference which team a player loved as a kid or where they have to live to make the big money (being “homesick” is not a thing in the US). It’s rare for a really good player to knock back a bigger offer in order to stay at his favorite club (which I think is sad; I wish love of the team were a bigger deal in US sports).
– US players have almost no say in where they get traded. When a team wants to get rid of a guy, he’s gone. Not much he can do, even if it means moving across the country in the middle of the season (another reason I really hate mid-season trading).
– Generally, a player in the US doesn’t talk publicly about which club he wants to get traded to. It might happen in private, but not often in the open.
– In the US, there is no such thing as compensation from the league for losing a free agent (this is one of the most idiotic aspects of free agency in the AFL, but that’s a different discussion).
So all these things together, among others, make free agency in the US work differently from in the AFL. I really think the AFL have a chance to right the ship and find a balance between players’ rights and competitive parity. I’d start by fostering the “one-club” mindset (something long gone in America) and keeping player salaries private.
I don’t know what else, but there’s hope.

AFL Trades: Jeremy Cameron to Geelong will be a history-maker

You have no idea what StK’s “business model” is nor what a good one would be.
Calling for the end of StK is a bunch of rot.

AFL Trades: Jeremy Cameron to Geelong will be a history-maker

That’s a good point – long odds allow for a small bet to pay off big.
Hadn’t thought of it that way.

Forget Port Adelaide and the Brisbane Lions, St Kilda is this year's premiership dark horse

Kinda long winded, but you’re right – the AFL don’t seem to care if some stuff continues, so long as they are getting paid to keep allowing it.

To the players and coaches: the classless extracurricular crap needs to stop.
Have some dignity, show some accountability, and be admirable men!

I wrote an article about this last year, that it’s the responsibility of the clubs to change this.
The aim shouldn’t be to get away with as much as possible, and blindly back misbehaving players no matter what.
There should be pressure from teammates and coaches on everyone to play fair and exhibit sportsmanship.
Who cares if the AFL hand down a fine or suspension for striking, the players should be punished by their own clubs.
Until that starts becoming the norm, this sort of thing won’t really go away.

The AFL is running a long con Danny Ocean would be proud of

I’m a Sainter, so I would obviously be over the moon if they won.
And, as stated in the article, no one should be amazed at this point if they go on to win it.
However, since they are young and I’ve learned to hedge my hopes, I wouldn’t put money on them yet.
Truth is, you’d be a bit foolish to put money on any club right now.
The field is pretty wide open.

Forget Port Adelaide and the Brisbane Lions, St Kilda is this year's premiership dark horse

That may be, but Clarkson had the opportunity to backpedal a little and say what you just said.
The point is your are saying the mistake was the umpire’s; that’s very different from taking a cheap shot at an opposition player.

Just say it: Clarko was out of line

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