From the Almanac Archives – Is Brian Lake an Alien?


Brian Lake is arguably one of the best defenders of the modern era. After 197 games with the Western Bulldogs and 54 with Hawthorn Lake retires as a triple-Premiership player, a Norm Smith Medallist, dual All-Australian gongs and a Western Bulldogs Best and Fairest Award. 


As Brian Lake pulls the pin on his career, we looked back through our archives and found this beauty from Westcoast Dave (David Bruce).  It might be a bit painful for Doggies fans to enjoy reading, but if you’ve ever watched the way Brian Lake played his footy, then you’ll agree David nails the way he got to contests you didn’t think he could, or take the marks that you didn’t think he would and why there’ll be a few key forwards relieved that he won’t be standing them in 2016. 




“I’ve seen the Bulldogs play an oddly high number of times this year. Conspiracy theorists might wonder just why the Bullies and my lifestyle are so compatible, but personally I’m prepared to give coincidence the benefit of the doubt for now. They’re a fun team to watch, so I haven’t minded at all really. It could be a lot worse.


But watching the Bulldogs play, it becomes obvious after a while that Brian Lake lives in a parallel universe. He rarely jogs, never seems to run – but he’s always at the fall of the ball. Other players bounce off him, but there is no apparent equal and opposite effect. For reasons that are not immediately obvious, he often arrives at contests from a totally different direction to everyone else. Balls stick to his hands that have no right to. He makes decisions that look ludicrously ill-conceived, but they routinely work out OK. It gives the impression that the laws of physics and causality give him periodic leave passes.


Here’s a challenge for you. Try to watch him to see how it happens. You can’t do it on telly, so you have to actually go to a game, but it’s an odd enough experience to make it worthwhile because here’s what happens. You get distracted. You get bored. Something happens – and then you find you’ve forgotten to watch him. Suddenly the ball heads inside defensive 50 and Lake gets it. So you say to yourself that this time you’re not going to take your eyes off him, and you can do it for a bit. But then you get distracted or bored, and the cycle repeats. And then again. The clever bit is, you NEVER get to see how he does it.


I think it is some sort of alien sensory disruptive cloaking device, or an ability to temporarily distort space and time. If a TV camera was trying to follow him off the ball I’m sure it would suffer inexplicable technical failures, or just show that he’s simply not there until the ball arrives. The question in my mind is: is he an alien himself, or has he just somehow got hold of the technology?


He has that perpetually surprised look on his face. I used to think maybe he was wondering himself how he managed to get away with all these things. Now I wonder if it is just a clever ruse to make us think it’s all just as odd to him as to us and to lure us off the scent. Or maybe he’s just amused and surprised that no-one’s challenged him to prove he’s human yet. That’s one DNA test I would personally love to see the result of.


Don’t get me wrong, I don’t have anything against his involvement in footy irregardless of whether he’s human or alien. He makes the game better to watch, albeit it’s like watching a totally different sport being played on the same oval at the same time. I’ve heard it said that he’s like an old fashioned footballer, so maybe they were ALL aliens back then? As a West Coast fan, all I ask is that now we’ve had to get rid of most of our other aliens over the last few years, that we try to get a few Brian Lake clones sometime. Or at least whatever technology it is he’s got his hands on.”










  1. Maybe he is an alien, he tried to take Petrie to another planet in 2014 when he tried to choke him, so, who knows?

  2. You have to respect those accolades. A well-earned retirement.

  3. HawthornTragic says

    I love Brian Lake like my son. But he looks like my father. It is very sad to see him go.

  4. I remember after Lake had hip or back surgery and was in all sorts at the Western Bulldogs.
    Didn’t look like he remembered how to play the game.
    When he got to Hawthorn, he remembered…
    Amazing turnaround.
    Lake could’ve drifted into obscurity at the Bulldogs, and though he had a great career there, he’ll be remembered for what he did at Hawthorn.

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