We are back with hot footy action albeit a little abbreviated as we are now in finals and there were only four games this week. And, I hate to say it, but it gets worse: There are only five games left in the season! Fear not, however, as at least one of this week’s games more than made up for it. The others, well… let’s just say that if you are a fan of the teams that won, this was a good weekend for you. Without further ado, let’s begin.
Welcome to Balls of Steel’s AFL Beat!
First Qualifying Final – Adelaide Crows v GWS Giants at Adelaide Oval
I thought this would be a close game, but when I woke up for work on Thursday morning and saw that the Crows were comfortably ahead late in the third quarter, I knew I had made a bad decision to switch my Footy Tip from Adelaide to GWS. My reasoning was that the Crows would be without Rory Sloane and the Giants left out Stevie J in order to get more youth and effort on the team. The Crows did just fine without Rory and the Giants seemed overwhelmed by the finals atmosphere.
Luckily for the Giants, they still have life left as they will now host the winner of the Port Adelaide Power-West Coast Eagles game. But more on that later.. Here are the highlights:
Second Qualifying Final – Geelong Cats v Richmond Tigers at the MCG
So, remember how I was bitching about the Cats not really having home-field advantage due to being forced to play at the MCG, Richmond’s home ground? It was literally a Tigers home final. The crowd was 90% Tiger fans and it showed. The Cats managed to keep it close at the end of the third quarter but then the bottom fell out and the Tigers ran away with the game. The final margin was an embarrasing 51 points. Like the Giants, the Cats are lucky that they are still alive in the finals although they will have to play a LOT better than they played against Richmond to win next week against the winner of Sydney-Essendon. Here are the “highlights”:
Second Elimination Final – Sydney Swans v Essendon Bombers at the SCG
The Bombers were only able to get two out of their three stars back from injury. To tell you the truth, I don’t think it mattered. The Swans absolutely destroyed the Bombers to the tune of 121-56. Here are the devastating highlights:
First Elimination Final – Port Adelaide Power v West Coast Eagles at Adelaide Oval
This was the final that we all deserved after a crazy amazing season. This was a thing of beauty. I saw the score recap upon waking up on Saturday morning and decided I had to see the entire game replay. It was awesome. If you can, I highly suggest you do it. The Eagles took off like crazy at the beginning and looked to run away with it. However, the Power methodically got back into the game and finally took the lead early in the fourth. A crazy and furious last five minutes resulted in the game being tied.
To Donovan McNabb’s relief, the game did not end there. The teams played two 5- minute overtime periods. If the game was tied after that, it would have gone to sudden death with the next score winning. In the first OT, West Coast took a 13 point lead only for the Power to take back the lead in the second. And then this happened:
Yup. West Coast wins it after the siren. Amazing.
Here is how the finals draw stands after this weekend’s games:
Finals Week Two
Here are this week’s games (All times Pacific):
Friday, September 15, 2017
Second Semi Final – 2:50 AM – Geelong Cats v Sydney Swans at the MCG
Again, the Cats get fucked by not being able to play at Simonds Stadium in Geelong. It may not matter as the Swans are red-hot and the Cats are reeling. It’s probably a good thing this is on in the middle of the night for me. I am dreading waking up on Friday morning and seeing what the score is at Three Quarter Time.
Saturday, September 16, 2017
First Semi Final – 2:25 AM – GWS Giants v West Coast Eagles at Spotless Stadium
So, apparently, GWS gets to play in their home ground but the Cats don’t?!? Fucking bullshit! Anyway, the Giants have a real good shot to get back into the championship contention. The Eagles are playing with house money so they are Jay Cutler-ing their way through these finals for as long as they can. This one, like this week’s Eagles game, may be the close/exciting match of the week.
Footy Tipping Contest
|PLACE||TIPPER||Round Tips||Round Margin||TOTAL Tips||TOTAL Margin|
Props to Blax, Dolph, and BFC for kicking ass this week! Anti-props to Sunrisesunrise who forgot to put the footy tips in this week. You know what that means!
That’s all for this week. We are down to only five games left. Enjoy them while we have them!
I leave you with Adelaide’s Tex Walker on the Gold Coast beach with his teammates:
See you next week!