It’s Grand Final week! Hopefully you are in the big dance, on the verge of the ultimate glory. To celebrate, this week’s article is a bumper Grand Final special edition! I’ve picked one player from each game this round that could potentially give you the boost you need to snag the flag. As usual, the player needs to be in less than 70% of teams but something different for this week is the addition of the 3 game average. Good luck, and thanks for a great 2021!Embed from Getty Images
Western Bulldogs vs Port Adelaide
Miles Bergman – Port Adelaide – Def/Fwd
% owned – 66%
2021 average – 64.5
3 game average – 83.3
It has been an excellent debut season for Bergman, playing in all but 3 games for a top 4 contending side, and receiving a Rising Star nomination for his efforts in the Showdown a fortnight ago.
He has scored over 80 four times for the year with two of them coming in the last two games.
He has a tough opponent in the Bulldogs, but similar players such as Blake Hardwick and Daniel Howe had field days against them last week scoring 110 and 139 respectively.
Richmond vs Hawthorn
Tim O’Brien – Hawthorn – Fwd
% owned – 14%
2021 average – 57.2
3 game average – 82
One of the biggest things we look for in the fantasy world is a clear role change, and that’s what O’Brien has seen the last couple of weeks. Not worth a fantasy look in his usual role as a key forward, O’Brien has spent the last two games down back and has enjoyed a solid scoring spike as a result. He has taken 20 marks in the last two weeks and should continue that against the Tigers this week.
Sydney vs Gold Coast
Darcy MacPherson – Gold Coast – Fwd
% owned – 63%
2021 average – 66
3 game average – 72
MacPherson hasn’t set the world on fire since returning to the senior side a few weeks ago but he is someone who is capable of scoring well, particularly if the Suns can make a game of it.
The Swans can be quite restrictive but similar players in Jaidyn Stephenson and Tarryn Thomas both scored 78 last week for North Melbourne.
It’d be a speculative pick (aren’t they all though?), but MacPherson is due for a good one, and could possibly be playing to keep his spot on the Gold Coast list.
Brisbane vs West Coast
Daniel McStay – Brisbane – Fwd
% owned – 57%
2021 average – 64.2
3 game average – 97
Since Eric Hipwood went down with an awful knee injury, McStay has had to step up for the Lions and he has done just that. In the five games since, McStay has kicked 12 goals and averaged a touch under 85 fantasy points including 3 games above 90.
The West Coast defenders can be miserly at times but with the way Brisbane have been playing, expect another solid score for McStay to finish the year.
Geelong vs Melbourne
Zach Guthrie – Geelong – Mid/Def
% owned – 58%
2021 average – 60.6
3 game average – 88.3
Guthrie appears to have found his spot at the Cats after years of being in and out of the side. A few weeks ago, he scored a career best 128 fantasy points and was looking good on the weekend sitting on 42 at half time before slowing in the second half as Geelong hit their straps. Melbourne should challenge Geelong this week which will allow for Guthrie to get plenty of looks.Embed from Getty Images
Carlton vs GWS
Zac Fisher – Carlton – Fwd
% owned – 32%
2021 average – 57.8
3 game average – 60.7
Fisher has looked a chance to break out a few times in recent years, but it just hasn’t happened for him. His score of 80 on the weekend was his best score since round 14 last year (a 65 in shortened quarters) and it came on the back of more midfield time. Fisher attended 14 centre bounce attendances on the weekend which was up from just 2 the week before.
Patrick Cripps was missing last week and is expected to return which could see Fisher removed from the inside which is a concern. However, a similarly flighty player in Liam Baker scored a nice ton against the Giants last week and that was with zero centre bounce attendances.
Carlton have a fair bit of pride to play for this week and I’d expect Fisher to play a big role.
St.Kilda vs Fremantle
Hayden Young – Fremantle – Def
% owned – 70%
2021 average – 65.7
3 game average – 83.7
Young has been back in the senior side for 4 weeks now after missing several months through injury and has looked very comfortable in the Dockers back six, winning a Rising Star nomination along the way. The former number 7 draft pick looks a real player of the future with his fantasy output already looking good. He has scored over 70 in 5 of his 11 career games (excluding one game when he was injured early).
Young has taken 21 marks over the last two weeks and will be good again this week.
Essendon vs Collingwood
Mason Redman – Essendon – Def
% owned – 61%
2021 average – 65.9
3 game average – 55.7
Redman has been hot and cold this year, hitting 90+ on 4 occasions but also scoring under 50 5 times. At his best, he is a points machine off half back taking kick ins and racking up marks. But at his worst, he simply doesn’t get near the footy.
It’s very hard to predict what he will score from week to week but after a career high 30 touches last week and a favourable match up this week against Collingwood, I’m backing him in for a big finish.
North Melbourne vs Adelaide
Cameron Zurhaar – North Melbourne – Fwd
% owned – 66%
2021 average – 63.3
3 game average – 60
A couple of game ending injuries have impacted Zurhaar’s average this season not telling the full story of what has been a breakout season. He is averaging 83 in his last 6 non injured games kicking 16 goals in those games. Last week a player who plays a similar role, Bayley Fritsch, had a field day against the inexperienced Adelaide defence, kicking a bag of 7 goals with relative ease and I suspect this week will be a similar story in the battle of the cellar dwellers.