Gigs’ stats: Easton, Western and all points in between

MAKING UP THE NUMBERS

Making up the numbers is something I’m often accused of doing but it’s looking increasingly likely that one of Port Adelaide, Sydney, Essendon or Hawthorn will be doing just that come the first week of September.

And the battle to avoid the top eight is really hotting up between those four sides. Port made a fine job of it by finishing ten goals behind Freo, and Hawthorn kept their hopes of just avoiding the eight alive with a comfortable four-goal loss to the Super-Saints. The Bombers almost blew it, but managed to snatch a draw from the jaws of victory by giving the ball to Brisbane’s Daniel Bradshaw in the goalsquare with seconds remaining. At the MCG on Sunday the Swans made a complete hash of it by walloping the Tigers by 10 goals. They are now in real danger of making the eight.

DOG DAY AFTERNOON

Meanwhile, on Saturday at Idiot Stadium, the Bulldogs staked their claim at a place outside the top four in fine style. They kicked 11 behinds before scoring a goal, while West Coast piled on nine and raced to a 47-point lead. Despite then scoring an avalanche of goals and actually getting out to an eight-point lead, the Dogs managed to lose by five points and keep alive their chances of dropping out of the top four.

EAST MEETS WEST AND THE RESULT IS A MESS

One bright point for the Dogs was a 14-possession performance from first-gamer Easton Wood. He did, however kick two behinds without registering a major. This sort of thing can happen when you have an Easton playing for a team named Western. Incidentally, an interesting fact that not all of you might know is that while Oriental is a word that means Eastern, there is also an equivalent word for Western, which is Occidental.

But I digress. What I’m trying to say here is that when you have a guy named Easton playing for a team called Western against a side from Western Australia, the whole thing is just an Occident waiting to happen.

WHAT A DIFFERENCE A GOAL MAKES

“What a difference a day makes …”

So sang the Queen of the Blues, Dinah Washington, before her untimely death in 1963. Well for the Cats and Dogs a more apt expression might be “What a difference a goal makes”. Currently Geelong are second on the ladder with a win-loss record of 16-3 and the Dogs are fourth on 12-7, with Collingwood between them on 13-6. Both teams have had three games where the final margin was less than a goal. The Cats have won all three of theirs while the Dogs have suffered heartbreak on all three occasions. Had those results been reversed, the Dogs would currently be second (15-4) and assured of a top four finish, and Geelong and Collingwood would be equal with a 13-6 record.

NO TRIPLE TRIPLE-TREAT

After two consecutive rounds in which we had three games of margins under a goal, things were looking good for a three-peat after Saturday night. The Eagles’ five-point win and the draw between Brisbane and Essendon had given us two for Round 19, with three Sunday games to come. Alas, the three games were walkovers and the triple triple treat was not to be.

A REASON TO BE DRAWN TO BRISBANE

One game that did have a margin of less than a goal was Brisbane’s draw against Essendon. Depending on how you look at it, this puts either of those two teams at the head of the all time Draw ladder. Just as The Bombers and Carlton are locked together at the head of the premiership table, with 16 flags each, so too were they level at the top of the Number of Draws table until Saturday night, with 32 each. Saturday’s draw takes the Bombers to the magical 33 mark and the all-time lead.

For Brisbane, though, it was the sixth time they’ve drawn since forming in 1997 as a result of the Bears-Lions merger. That means they average a draw in 46% of their seasons. This is way ahead of Port Adelaide (31% over 13 seasons) and Essendon (29% over 113 years). Even if the two Brisbane teams (Bears and Lions) were combined, they would still head the table with an average of 35% over 23 years.

THE MARGINAL MEDAL

The five-point game between the Dogs and the Eagles has given 5 a share of the lead with 15. Both margins have been registered six times this year, with 20 and 22 one behind. It seems that margins ending in 9 are out vogue this year, with 29, 39, 49 and 59 all failing to be recorded thus far.

BAD NEWS/GOOD NEWS

For Tiger fans the bad news is that Richmond can no longer make the top eight. However, fear not Tigers and Tigresses because the good news is that your team can still finish …  ninth.

POSTCODES OF THE WEEK

The coveted ninth place might not be a one-horse race. Hawthorn appears to have announced their intention to steal the crown from the Tigers on the weekend, with a quarter-by-quarter goal sequence of 3121, which is the postcode of Richmond.

Meanwhile, Geelong’s sequence (2430) may have been a hidden message to their sponsors about how their Friday night quest for victory would end. 2430 is the postcode of Failford.

St Kilda were kind enough to provide Hawthorn with a bit of advice about whom they should play in order to get back on the winning list. The Saints’  sequence of 5221 is the postcode of Muston.

Melbourne’s performance against North was more befitting of a team from the Essendon District League and this was reflected in their sequence: 3041 is the postcode of Strathmore.

WHAT HAVE WE LEARNT FROM THIS SEASON?

It’s been a long season and although we’ve learnt a lot this year, there are still so many permutations remaining no one really knows how the season will finish. However, there is one obvious conclusion that can be drawn from this season that is hard to argue with. And that is that Melbourne is a good twelve-goal better team than Geelong is. And I have the stats to back that up.

A. In Round 15, Melbourne defeated Port by 11 points.
B. Port defeated Hawthorn three weeks later by 22.
C. The Hawks were 4 point winners in round six over Carlton, who on Friday night knocked off the Cats by 35 points.
D. 11 + 22 + 4 + 35 = 72.
E. 72 points equal 12 goals.
F. Therefore Melbourne are better than Geelong by 12 goals.

Q.E.D.

THIS WEEK’S RIDICULOUS FOOTY ANAGRAM:

At Geelong’s 150th anniversary dinner on Saturday night, it was truly wonderful to note the attendance of GARY ABLETT SENIOR because usually when he’s asked to attend a public event, the answer REGRETTABLY IS A “NO”.

About Andrew Gigacz

Well, here we are. The Bulldogs have won a flag. What do I do now?

Comments

  1. David Lewis says:

    So it is impossible for a team to be ‘Back in town’, postcode 3000. This postcode would probably lead to a 10 to 15 goal defeat.

  2. I dunno, David. Given the Saints strangulation abilities, they could make 3000 a winning postcode (i.e. hold a side to less than three goals). But then again, they’re already in town, so they can’t get back in town, can they?

  3. Steve Healy says:

    Nice stats Gigs,

    But I’m going to have to correct you. Melbourne are 68 points better than Geelong, Port beat Hawthorn by 18, not 22.

    Some people could say that Carlton V Geelong on Friday night was a blockbuster, and North Melbourne V Melbourne on Sunday was the complete opposite. They were right. Carlton V Geelong’s total score was 22.27 and north Melbourne V Melbourne’s was 27.22.

    The 3 Sunday games were all very close in total points, so they weren’t a complete disaster for the stats page.Rich V Syd 28.23 (191), FRE V PORT 28.22 (190)and NM V MELB 27.22(184)
    Essendon scored 27.22 against St.Kilda at Windy Hill in Round 21, 1985. That’s the bad omen for this week for the Saints, since the two teams play each other this Sunday. Neither the Roos or Melbourne have scored 27.22 184 before.

  4. Too good for me Steve. The Port v Hawthorn score was 121-103. I must have seen it as 123-101.

    Very nice stat about the blockbuster.

    I’m pretty sure Essendon won’t get anywhere near 27.22 this Sunday!

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