Balls of Steel’s AFL Beat – 2017 Round 14

So, this season has been pretty crazy, right?  No way we get humongous upsets and last minute finishes, right?

Yup, strap yourselves in.  We’re in for a bumpy ride.

Welcome to Balls of Steel’s AFL Beat!

We start in Adelaide, where the league-leading Crows were hosting the Hawthorn Hawks on Australian Thursday Night Footy in what was, as I mentioned in last week’s preview, Hawthorn’s last chance to keep the season alive.  Much like Sydney, we can consider the Hawks well and truly alive after they shocked the Crows with a brilliant fourth quarter and a 14-point win.  Yes, the #17 team in the competition beat the #1 team.  By 14.  At the leaders’ home ground.

Here are the highlights:

Speaking of the Swans, they have not only revived their season, they are now looking like one of the toughest teams to play.  They hosted the young Essendon Bombers on Australian Friday Night Footy.  The Bombers played extremely well and held a 19 point lead with 8 minutes to play.  And then, well, why don’t I just show you the video:

The Swans win with an After The Siren goal from the goal square.  Unbelievable.  After starting the year 0-6, they are now right in the middle of it.

On proper Friday Night, the Collingwood Magpies hosted the Port Adelaide Power at the MCG.  In my preview, I said that the Power were no West Coast, so I expected the game to be close and tough.  It was indeed tough, but not as close as expected as Port Adelaide rolled to a 31-point victory. Here are the highlights:

The second game on North American Friday night was GWS at Brisbane.  I only watched the first quarter and that was enough.  Although the Lions were close, it was just a matter of time.  Indeed, the Giants blew out the Lions by 60.  Here are the highlights:

The two Late Late games were Western Bulldogs v North Melbourne Kangaroos at the Etihad and West Coast Eagles v Melbourne in Perth.  The Doggies-Roos game figured to be a toss-up and I literally tossed a coin to make my Footy Tip.  It was definitely close as the game came down to the last minute:

The Doggies hang on for the 107-106 win.  The other game ALSO came down to the wire.  Here are the last two minutes:

Yup, the fucking Demons actually pulled off the upset in Perth!

North American Saturday night brought three more games, starting with the Geelong Cats hosting the Fremantle Dockers at the perfect time of 8:10 PM Pacific.  I was able to watch the whole thing, which was nice.

What was not so nice was captain Joel Selwood getting

in the first minute of play and being out the rest of the game.  What was also not nice was watching the Dockers destroy the Cats in an absolutely dominating second quarter to lead by 34 at one point.

Oh,  and did I mention that the Cats lost another two players to injury and were essentially down to only one man as substitute for the entire fourth quarter and a lot of the third?

And yet.  Despite all this,  the Cats managed to claw their way back into the game and actually take the lead in the fourth.  And then, for the third game in a row,  it came down to the final minute.

Yup.  The Cats escaped with a two-point win. A special hat-tip to Litre_cola who reminded me during the CFL Calgary-Ottawa game that when you think it’s over,  its really not.

I was too exhausted to watch the rest of the games although I did catch a bit of Richmond-Carlton.  The Blues tried hard,  but were overmatched as the Tigers went on to win comfortably 84-58.

Here are the highlights:

In the last game of the Round,  the St. Kilda Saints hosted the Gold Coast Suns.  Let’s see: the Saints played a team lower in the ladder and had been playing poorly.  That means they won,  right?

Yup! To the tune of 103-72! I really think I’m figuring out what the Saints are all about. Here are the highlights:

Let’s take a look at the ladder, shall we?

1 GWS Giants 13 10 0 3 40 120.5
2 Adelaide Crows 13 9 0 4 36 136.8
3 Geelong Cats 13 9 0 4 36 114.0
4 Port Adelaide Power 13 8 0 5 32 135.4
5 Melbourne Demons 13 8 0 5 32 114.7
6 Richmond Tigers 13 8 0 5 32 111.7
7 West Coast Eagles 13 7 0 6 28 102.1
8 St. Kilda Saints 13 7 0 6 28 97.9
9 Western Bulldogs 13 7 0 6 28 97.0
10 Sydney Swans 13 6 0 7 24 105.2
11 Essendon Bombers 13 6 0 7 24 102.6
12 Fremantle Dockers 13 6 0 7 24 79.6
13 Collingwood Magpies 13 5 0 8 20 98.9
14 Gold Coast Suns 13 5 0 8 20 86.7
15 Carlton Blues 13 5 0 8 20 81.7
16 Hawthorn Hawks 13 5 0 8 20 79.4
17 North Melbourne Kangaroos 13 4 0 9 16 93.4
18 Brisbane Lions 13 2 0 11 8 68.9

Here is the updated Balls GraphTM:


Footy Tipping Contest

Here are the updated standings:

PLACE TIPPER Round Tips Round Margin TOTAL Tips TOTAL Margin
1 JolietJakeDelhomme 7 89 74 552
2 Litre_cola 7 39 73 361
3 SonOfSpam 7 48 70 432
4 BFC 5 14 65 374
5 Spanky 5 27 65 378
6 BALLS 6 38 64 324
7 Sunrisesunrise 3 59 61 452
8 Blax 4 14 57 357
9 WhyEaglesWhy 7 58 57 420
10 Dolph Ucker 6 27 46 399

SOMEBODY is doing quite well in their first two weeks of tipping in the contest!

I, on the other hand, am doing much better than the last two weeks. Don’t anyone forget that the byes suck!  Speaking of,


Sorry, had to do it. It’s Blax’ fault.


Round 15

Here is this week’s schedule (all times Pacific):

Friday, June 30, 2017

2:50 AM – Melbourne Demons v Sydney Swans at the MCG

This is the Sophie’s Choice of games. No matter who wins, we all lose.  I say we root for a tie. Shut up, Donovan!

8:45 PM – Western Bulldogs v West Coast Eagles at the Etihad

The “West” Derby is being played in Melbourne.  So, Doggies, right?  I mean, that would make sense, but few things in this season have made sense.

9:10 PM – Carlton Blues v Adelaide Crows at the MCG

Ooof.  Playing the Crows was always going to be tough for the young Blues, but getting them after a home loss?

11:35 PM – Gold Coast Suns v North Melbourne Kangaroos at Metricon Stadium

I’m thinking this will be another one of those games that comes down to the final two minutes.  That seems about right for these two.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

2:25 AM – GWS Giants v Geelong Cats at Spotless Stadium

This is the Match of the Round.  The new league leaders against the #3 team in the competition.  Why the fuck does it have to be in the middle of the night?!?!

2:40 AM – Port Adelaide Power v Richmond Tigers at Adelaide Oval

This game will go a long way towards deciding who gets a Top Four spot and the Double Chance it brings and who gets eliminated in the first finals game.

8:10 PM – Essendon Bombers v Brisbane Lions at the Etihad

Luckily for the Bombers, they get the Lions after a tough loss to the Swans.  This should make them feel better about themselves.

10:20 PM – Hawthorn Hawks v Collingwood Magpies at the MCG

The Pies are reeling and the Hawks are surging.  So, of course that means that the Pies win, right?

11:40 PM  – Fremantle Dockers v St. Kilda Saints at Domain Stadium

Let’s see: the Dockers lost a game they should have won while the Saints are coming off a win and look to build on that in a game that is important for them to win.  So,  Fremantle wins,  right?


That’s about it for this week. For the second time this season, a #17 beat a #1. Also, four games were decided by three points or less.  If you’re not watching,  I don’t know what to tell you.

If he actually believed in parity,  Roger Goodell would kill to have this kind of even competition in the NFL. Reason #574 why the AFL is run better than the NFL.

See you next week!



International Member of the Geelong Cats and recovering Steelers fan. Likes Butts. And Balls. And Boobs. Pretty much anything that starts with the letter B. Preferably together.

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Dolph Ucker
Dolph Ucker

Developing a tipping system that involves a dartboard, random word association and alcohol.

/Kinda like my first marriage/

Spanky Datass
Spanky Datass

If there is one thing I’ve learned from putting in the tips it’s that there is no such thing as ‘momentum’ in the AFL.
(Brisbane goes on a scorchng streak and wins the whole damn thing — All is chalked up to “Momentum”.)


The dockers will win. Book it.


Clearly the strategy is to bet against Balls….


What? I put in tips!

I clearly don’t know what the hell I’m doing but I put them in.


Still got more correct than I did. I’m terrible at this. Doesn’t help that every time I pick the Roos, the lose. And if I pick against them, they win. Or so it seems.