PORT ADELAIDE vs WESTERN BULLDOGS

Adelaide Oval, 7.10pm AEST

MAIN SLATES:
$60,000 AUD on Draftstars ($15 entry, 125 max)
$8,000 USD on Draftkings ($12 entry, 23 max)
WEATHER: 11 degrees and partly cloudy, negligible chance of rain.
BOOKIES: Port Adelaide $1.45 favourites, 120.5 over/under.

CBA’s & ROLES

Rockliff returned to the squad and top-scored with 102 AF, but his 10 tackles in 88% game-time were both huge statistical outliers for him this year. Robbie Gray saw the biggest bump on the returnees, with his score slightly down on what you’d expect given the CBA Rate of 0.91. Boak and Wines joined him on the inside, while Houston went back to defence as predicted. Ladhams understandably struggled against the best tap ruckman in the league, recording 10 hitouts to Gawn’s 40. The ball kept falling into Mayes’ lap in his half-back role, and he was close to Port’s best with 92 AF. Georgiades took a couple of huge clunks up forward and he was joined in attack by Westhoff who was switched back from his defensive post in Round 8. Lienert replaced him in the backline but was quiet. 

Trengove came in as a late replacement and messed with English’s solo ruck role, limiting him to 6 of 15 CBA’s in the first half. The midfield mix was consistent, with Macrae joined by Bontempelli, Smith and Libba. McLean looked to sneak some midfield time, with Richards the only pure wingman for the Bulldogs – Lipinski was stranded on a HFF once again. Their most dangerous goal threat was Wallis, who kicked 3 snags as a permanent forward and looks to be growing into the role. Trengove played just 68%, resting forward whenever he wasn’t ruining English’s mojo. 

TEAMSHEETS

Port Adelaide: Woodcock, McKenzie INEbert, Lienert OUT

  • Woodcock will make his debut tonight and is worth a look, having averaged 78 in the SANFL last year as a small forward. He’ll slot right into Port’s attack for Ebert.
  • McKenzie has finally been passed fit, so displaces Lienert (who was only warming the Cannon’s spot for him).
  • No structural change means Houston stays in defence and Rockliff should see time in the midfield mix again.

Notable outs: Ebert, Lycett, Burton.

Western Bulldogs: Weightman, Dunkley, R Smith IN Gowers, Trengove, Suckling OUT

  • Weightman regains his spot at the expense of Trengove, who replaced him late last week.
  • Roarke Smith replaces Suckling across half forward.
  • This leaves Dunkley for Gowers, which requires a structure change. Libba didn’t record a single CBA with Dunkley in the side earlier this year, so he’ll probably have his numbers clipped. But I actually think Macrae cops the biggest hit in a move to a wing (no Hunter don’t forget, and Bulldogs didn’t have a 2nd genuine wingman last week) with McLean becoming a permanent forward and Dunkley slotting into the CBA’s where he belongs. 
  • Does Bont potentially spend some more time forward this week? He’s looked sore lately.

Notable outs: Trengove, Suckling, Naughton, Hunter.

TRENDS

Port Adelaide has conceded the least fantasy points overall this year.
Port Adelaide has conceded the least 80’s at 2.1 per game this year.
Port Adelaide has conceded the 3rd-least points to DEF’s this year.
Port Adelaide has conceded the 2nd-least points to RUC’s this year.

Bulldogs have conceded the 3rd-least points to MID’s over the last 5 rounds.
Bulldogs have conceded the most points to FWD’s over the last 5 rounds.
Bulldogs have conceded the most HITOUTS at 40 per game this year.

HISTORY

Lycett 140 (42 hitouts to English’s 10)
Boak – 107, 94, 85
Rockliff – DNP, 99, 128
Wines – 58, 101, 137

Macrae – 135, 112, INJ
Dunkley – 121, 116, DNP
B Smith – 108
R Smith – 91
Crozier – 60, 82, 95

PLAYS

BEST VALUE: Boyd Woodcock – F – $5,000 DS – $3,100 DK

I don’t usually like to profile basement-priced small forwards on debut here, but you’ll need him here I think. The FWD’s are a price-clumped, variance-heavy mess, so I recommend going cheap up front and focusing on unlocking the right combination of the high-priced MID’s on this slate.

The fact that Woodcock plays for a favoured Port, at home, has me more optimistic than usual on these types of picks. If he kicks 1 or 2 sausage rolls and limps to 40 on debut, you’re absolutely laughing here.

BEST RUCK: Peter Ladhams – R – $9,590 DS – $5,300 DK

34 AF last week doesn’t look good, but Ladhams is going from the best tap ruckman in the comp as an opponent to the worst, with ruckmen averaging 40 hitouts against the Bulldogs this year. He’s only averaged 13 hitouts in his 3 games this year, so the extra taps will help his floor, while a strong ground-level game will keep his ceiling healthy. 

You could say the same thing on the flip side for English as they profile very similarly, except the Pup Ruck is $4.5k more expensive on Draftstars. English is certainly the favourite to outscore Ladhams, but will it be by enough to overcome the salary gap?

BEST STAT: Charlie Dixon – F – $11,280 DS – $5,400 DK

Who’s going to stop a rampaging Dixon on the lead from the Bulldogs? Who’s going to out-muscle him in a 1v1 for a high ball from that stick-thin backline? The Doggies conceded the most points to FWD’s over the past 5 rounds, and Charlie is the man who stretches that defence to breaking point. 

He’s been the ultimate feast-or-famine GPP pick this year, scoring 105 (6 goals) and 83 (3 goals) when taking 7+ marks this season. Make sure you’re exposed to his upside.

BEST RETHINK: Josh Dunkley – M – $16,320 DS – $7,900 DK

I usually go easy on players returning from injury, as does the field in general. Usually. Coronaball is rewriting a lot of the rules, and one of them seems to be that players returning from injury are actually fresher than the blokes running around every week. 

We’ve seen Duncan return from a hamstring issue with 102 and 107. Cotchin was dominant with his 70 AF before taking the foot off the accelerator last week. Treloar, Zorko, Greene have all returned with a bang – the list goes on. And these guys were all soft-tissue – surely Dunkley is better placed to return coming off a joint issue with his ankle issue?

Going over the field here could be very beneficial, with Dunkley scoring 121, 116 against the Power is his last 2.

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