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The Roar

Will Lutwyche

Roar Rookie

Joined June 2014

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Tasmanian turned mainlander, mainly an NBA and AFL writer - will also get around NBL, Cricket and Cycling.

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Really happy for Big Ben Brown! Great Tassie boy and the interview he did on Fox Footy after the game was a ripper. He’s a great bloke, big, great hair, wears number 50 and is from Tassie – some good marketing material there for the Roos.

I really hope he backs it up this week against the Cats! Overall though things are looking good for the highly talented player.

2014 AFL Finals: Young guns shine under the September sun

It is an interesting case and what ever club he goes too needs to prioritise his mental health before football.

Obviously, he is still on Melbourne’s playing list and I really do hope he goes back to the Demons – I feel as though Melbourne’s year would have been quite different had they had a forward line with Dawes, Mitch Clark and Jesse Hogan. If they can secure this line-up for next year, I think they could see a bit of a turnaround next year.

I think as well Clark is still given training plans from the Melbourne footy club, I am sure they are providing him with a plethora of wellbeing services too. I really hope they can just find the best deal that works for everyone.

Mitch Clark must return to Melbourne

The link below is a very interesting article in comparison, which looks at what Spain did during the 2012 Olympics against Brazil. In contrast to the Australian example – they had both Gasol brothers play less minutes than normal and when they were on the court they shot 16 – 21 from the field, only to sit the whole last quarter after being up by over 10 at three quarter time. They ended up losing the game and ironically ended up on a different side of the draw to the USA.

2012 Olympic Basketball: Was it wrong for Spain to tank vs. Brazil?

Boomers tanking investigation a waste of time: Gaze

Interesting that the Turks forced the US to slow their game right down. If Australia want to win they will have to keep the tempo high. A slow half-court game is where the Boomers have really looked a bit lost on offence against other teams.

It's Boom or bust for Australia against Turkey

Well said Johnno – Dave Anderson’s mid range game has been pretty reliable throughout the tournament. He will need to be on song tonight to draw the big Turkish men out of the paint. I think that is why Anderson has been starting over Jawai and Bairstow, because he offers that option.

I think as well both benches will be vital – Brad Newley will have to have an impact on the scoreboard off the bench for the Boomers to win.

It's Boom or bust for Australia against Turkey

I suppose the way to help negate this whole situation is by following FIFA and playing the games in last round at the same time. Whilst Australia still could have deliberately lost – it could have put a bit of doubt into it all.

I think there is no doubting that Australia tanked against Angola, time will tell if it was a good decision. Losing to Turkey will bring about some criticism for Australia and I think I will be one of the ones to say they probably deserve it.

However, if they go on to play the US in the semis – the controversial loss will probably be forgotten.

Boomers' loss to Angola: ‘Tournament strategy’ or ‘un-Australian’?

Lets agree to disagree – I think you are right they did kick bags against lesser teams however they also performed against the top 8. I just think Schulz, Franklin, and Roughie were a lot better than Kennedy throughout the year and were also members of higher winning teams which has to factor in. Perhaps he should have been considered over Riewoldt?

All Australian squad announced: who was unlucky?

Yeah I agree with you somewhat Don – but he also would have got a lot more supply than Gunston. When you have Roughhead and Bruest in your team – they are going to be getting a lot more ball coming in.

I think as well if you look at Kennedy’s stats he kicked 26 goals against the undersized GWS and Gold Coast – he did struggle a lot more against the top 8 sides. Whilst I think he is a great player and has had a good year – he just needs more consistency to be considered AA.

All Australian squad announced: who was unlucky?

I think North Melbourne were pretty hard done by to be honest. I understand that it is not all about wins, but to finish 6th and to only have one player even considered is pretty rough – I would think as well that Harvey will struggle to make the final cut for the team. Where as Adelaide finished with 4 players in the squad after finishing 10th , with even Rory Sloane getting a mention up the top. I am by no mean a Roos supporter – but Nick Dal Santo and someone like Scott Thompson were pretty unlucky.

All Australian squad announced: who was unlucky?

I don’t think that they will be relying too heavily on Marc and Serge offensively during the tournament. I think a lot of scoring will come from Spain’s guards and Pau. Marc and Serge will primarily be there to be defensive stoppers, to rebound but people also forget sometimes that the Gasol brothers are some of the best big men passers in the world.

But, I think defensively is where there will be a bit of a difference – with the defensive 3 seconds not in play during the FIBA tournament – the way in which players block-up and clog the lane is pretty different to the NBA. They will force other teams to make outside shots.

FIBA World Cup Preview: Can anyone beat the USA?

Great article – I was at the game too. It was one of the worst I have seen, up there with when Melbourne were beaten by the Gold Coast last year by 60 points at the MCG as well. I think the supposed 17,000 crowd was also pretty generous, I would have left half way through the third quarter and I think a lot of others would have too, if I did not have the opportunity to go on the ‘G’ after the game for a kick-to-kick.

I still strongly believe, there is so much talent in that Melbourne side, I think Dyson, Jetta and Viney are three very exciting up and players – but I think the leadership and most important consistency from senior players is really lacking. However, I think the Melbourne boys are in for the pre-season from hell. Roos surely would have been thinking about it all year.

What do you do with the Demons?

Thanks for the article Nick – some really good insights.

There there are some great players that Hawthorn missed out on during those draft years, but I do not really think it is a case of what the Hawks missed out on. I think it is more of a ‘what could have been’ for other clubs.

Hawthorn have also drafted, traded and acquired mature aged players brilliantly over the years, picking up Stewart Dew, David Hale, Josh Gibson, Brian Lake and Shaun Burgoyne among others. After winning in 2008 – Hawthorn has become a sought after destination for many older players and this is partly what separates them from other clubs and makes up for their draft mishaps.

Interestingly, through the Josh Kennedy and Ben McGlynn deal to Sydney, they offloaded Mark Williams who unfortunately did not fit into a forward line anymore and Hawthorn picked up Ben Stratton and promoted Matt Suckling from the rookie list who are both good players now and play their role in the side.

I think Kennedy and McGlynn simply just did not fit into an already packed midfield with, Lewis, Mitchell, Hodge, Sewell, Bateman, Crawford and Ellis. Whilst Hawthorn probably knew they had tremendous upside, they were searching for players in other positions.

Whilst Hawthorn have had superstars, like Franklin, Roughead, Mitchell and Hodge, I think Hawthorn above all have been able to acquire role players in the Draft who were picked to fit well into their overall game plan.

The biggest draft blue of recent times would have to be Richmond acquiring Richard Tambling over Buddy. But, I think inevitably in any draft, there will be those players who have been picked highly who will get injured, cannot cope with the physical but also mental demands of the AFL, do not fit into a team’s game plan right away and some who just cannot adjust to the culture at certain clubs. That’s just the nature of the game.

I have always been amazed at how young players picked up later in the draft thrive in successful clubs who have a winning culture and play their role. Whilst, those who are more talented in the draft pool really battle at those clubs which are not so strong and have to bear extra responsibility in a team. I think a good example of this maybe someone like Tom Scully. Since arriving in the AFL, he would have played nearly every game being tagged by the opposition.

Hawthorn could have become the greatest

Good news is I think Brisbane are set to have a team by 2015/16.

Today, NBL CEO Fraser Neill stated “It’s one of my three KPIs (key performance indicators) in my job to get a team set up in Brisbane.”

It was announced as well that Brisbane will hold the upcoming NBL preseason tournament called the ‘Blitz’. It will be held at Brisbane’s Auchenflower Stadium from September 19-21, when all eight teams will play for the Loggins-Bruton Cup.

“Given the desire and drive to have a Brisbane team back in the NBL, it is only right that we hold the tournament here. We are asking Brisbane to support a team so we should show some support the other way.” Neill he said.

Hopefully, this marks the beginning of the new and successful Brisbane franchise.

CEO ready to tell the new Australian basketball story

I think that is one of Moore’s greatest challenges as New CEO and I think he understands that.

We have Australian several players now playing in the NBA. He needs to be able build on their success to increase the popularity of the game domestically.

He understands the need to develop the NBL and WNBL product and commercialise the game. His extensive experience I believe sets him in good stead to do this.

CEO ready to tell the new Australian basketball story

Good article Jason – I think you have broken down well the basketball reasons behind Carmelo staying in New York really well.

Whilst Joe is paining quite a pessimistic picture of how money influences a decision I think he is right in some respects. When there is such a large difference in the salary amounts – it has to factor in.

Interestingly though, Phil Jackson came out and said that Melo took a pay-cut of $6 million too so that it would help the Knicks in the next off-season. This is obviously still a big difference from the 4-year $73 million contract that the Bulls offered him – but it does show his intent to want to make the team better.

I think as well that family would have been factored into Melo’s decision. He was born in Brooklyn, New York. He stated after re-signing with NY, “A few years ago I dreamed of coming back to New York City, the place of my birth, and on February 23, 2011 that became a reality.” He obviously is also not ready to give that up.

In response to Anthony’s legacy, there is no doubting that Carmelo will be a Hall of Famer – but he has lost respect from many because of the lack of quality defence he plays. Just like the Knicks as you said Jason – his defence over the course of his career has been plagued with inconsistency.

Anthony will forever be remembered for his offensive game. Perhaps before KD burst onto the scene a couple of years ago – there was a good stretch where by Melo was the hardest player to guard in the NBA.

Unless he can win a championship – I think that’s what he will be remembered for. I want NY to be successful again– but I just wonder how long it will take Jackson to build a team around Carmelo and if he will be the same player in 3 or 4 years.

Why did Carmelo stay in New York?

I think some people have missed the point of the article that I tried to write. By no means am I suggesting that the AFL will ever rival the international standard of competition, or multiculturalism of any of the other major codes in Australia. Thus, why compare the statistics between them?

Other major codes are well established internationally and have extremely strong multicultural ties, it adds so much value to RL, soccer and union and is an extremely strong part of what makes those games so great. I cannot wait for the Bledisloe tonight!

Comparatively, having AFL originate in Australia is a legitimate reason why it is so successful and it will never shy away from this. What I tried to suggest in the article is that if the AFL can continue to harness some of the international backing and support they are already receiving and embrace the multiculturalism which exists, it will continually improve the game.

I hope in the future the AFL will have small fragment of the international and multicultural traits that that other codes have already established. Whilst I think more could be done in the way of money (if the AFL deems it worthy of investment), I believe they are taking effective steps towards achieving this, which I outlined above.

I apologise if the statistics wrong and outdated and I did not provide a breakdown –I located these on the AFL and internationally affiliated websites and should have looked deeper.

I understand the AFL is not becoming an international phenomenon and it never will be, but its international ties and affiliations have undoubtedly slowly grown over time and I hope will continue to do so as I think it is having a positive and exciting effect on our game.

AFL's international links continue to grow

I think you are right to question the membership numbers, at nearly every professional sporting club in Australia. I think internally, the GWS membership success rate would be measured against demographics, especially in relation to how many paying members they have increased in their target regions, for example Blacktown and even Canberra.

I tried to locate a breakdown of their membership numbers into categories and demographics etc., but could not find it. However, I understand in March 2012 38% of their 6027 members at the time were from the Western Sydney area and 29% from Canberra, with the rest from Sydney and other regions in Australia. This is old data and I unfortunately could not find any record of the trends experienced since then, but they would be interesting to get hold of.

However, just to give you an example, with GWS at the moment you can sign your pet up for $25 a year as a ‘Giants Pet Member’ and you receive a Giants fence sign and official member card. If this is in the figures – it is hard to know which club’s (especially the expansion clubs) numbers are really a true reflection of progress and growth.

Franklin’s giant effect on western Sydney

I totally agree – I think I think if I was to write the last part of it again – I would be saying that if I was growing up and playing AFL in Western Sydney I would rather be like Buddy than rather a Cameron or a Patton. However, I think as well mwm that you are right, if kids do know any player in the AFL, Franklin would be pretty high up on that list.

Franklin’s giant effect on western Sydney

Sorry about that, to clear this up – the average attendance at home games for the GWS is currently around 9,000. In comparison, the second lowest average attendance for home games in the AFL is the Gold Coast Suns at around 17,300. Apologies for not being clearer.

Franklin’s giant effect on western Sydney

Yeah all Boomers games will be televised on ABC2 starting on the 31st of August. In addition, we will get all the Team USA games as well. Pretty large coup if you ask me and good for the game here in Australia. I think basketball Australia and the NBL would be praying that they get large amounts of viewers and we perform well.

Opals games will also be televised later in the year starting on September 27 🙂

Boomers to take one of the most talented Australian squads ever to FIBA World Cup

Yeah I agree to a certain extent with you there Astro if you were to do a direct comparison between the Olympics and the FIBA World Cup, NBA players will always chase that Gold Medal after I think it was somewhat glorified by the 1992 Dream Team and beyond. The World Cup does stand to be a bit pointless in the grand scheme of it all.

However, given the players keep returning, the US NBA players must still feel they have a bit to play for in terms of proving themselves and winning on the world stage or maybe it is a sense of US patriotism and pride? How could one forget the ‘Redeem Team’ of 2008, after the US lost to Puerto Rico, Lithuania and Argentina at the 2004 Olympics. Whilst Team USA has incredible depth to choose from, arguably a second string team would not win easily against a full-strength Argentina or Spain who I believe are well adjusted to the international style of competition. The NBA I think wants to be seen now as the strongest basketball competition in the world and the US team in a way represents that brand.

NBA stars should play for Team USA, despite risk of injury