TedPost

THE HIBERNATION OF GILLON McLACHLAN

Gillon McLachlan - the CEO of the AFL - is an impressive fellow. Tall timber, attractive and commanding, quick to respond to media and community issues, he began as a ruckman and captain of the Melbourne University Blues. Now his auto motto reads AFL CEO. On The ROAR website in April 2014, he boasted:

I have a clear vision of where the game needs to go and how we’re going to get there. For me that vision is about having an unassailable hold on the Australian community.

First as the deputy CEO and then as the boss he has tanked the Demons and terrorised the Bombers. Meanwhile, his Suns and the Giants were given the diamonds. The Lions continue to starve. Dangerfield tackled and was incarcerated for a round and denied a Brownlow medal.

Gillon manages the continuous media and community issues facing the AFL head through his skills at marketing sales. He has combined his brilliant business nous with a calculated strategy: the hibernation effect. Inducing this dormant state at home allows him to avoid challenges from all quarters.

Previous VFL/AFL heads such as Jack Hamilton, Alan Schwab, Ross Oakley, and Wayne Jackson balanced the competing demands of marketers and officials. Andrew Demetriou, backed up by his deputy, Gillon, were the first to skew footy towards marketing sales and other business, growing officialdom to become a top-heavy body of managers and consultants.

AFL cash is now rising mountainous in tandem with the hibernation effects, for example, the AFL Laws of the Game. They complied with the creation of an unwieldy bulk of new Dangerfield tackle rules. The problem of hibernation in this case is umpires and players needed clear simplification but received an extension of more refined rules that will continue the inanition among football managers, media, community, clubs and the Tribunal.

The new tackling rules lead to further damaging hibernation effects. The growing amount of field congestion, player rotations, collisions and disposals-treading-water appears to be a direct result of Gillon’s time as the AFL head. From seasons 2014 to 2017 the scoring had bottomed to 172.8 points per game. Prior to 2014 - 2010 the scoring rate was 182.6 points per game.

How the scoring can rise again is hard to know … or does the scoring rate continue to lie dormant at the bottom of the scale? Another hibernation effect has impacted on the executives and media who relished the Suns’ and Giants’ endeavours before they crashed and looked tarnished. Success on the field will soon require millions of cash and catching more top draftees.

Gillon’s current finals bye is the last hibernation effect to think about. At the end of the 2014 home and away season the Dockers’ and Kangaroos’ finalists had respectively tanked key players to have a vacation opportunity before bouncing the ball. Lots of media and other communities did not like this, especially given the horror of the Demons’ tanking.

Gillon explains his new finals bye. It’s a wonderful experience given the Bulldogs had a chance to become the premiership team of 2016. Yes, TedSport agrees that romance and marketing are essential components of footy. But our business is to explain the facts that won the Bulldogs’ the flag and those that might win the next one.

As the latest DOS Analysis post argues:

Contrary to the uninformed media heads, the top four gives at least three times the chances of places five to eight when it comes to September. The new bye is a very minor equaliser. As an example of market madness, William Hill quotes the Adelaide vs Sydney Grand Final as a $5.50 equal favourite prospect.

So far the media and communities are saying ‘stop the bye’ and even Gillon has mentioned he’ll think about it. TedSport thinks it’s market madness. It goes either way. The top elite teams of the season are likely to make the grand final percentages - Adelaide 47.1, Geelong 30.6, Richmond 21.9, and GWS Giants 16.7.

While we agree Sydney is the current form team it’s also crazy how it has lost six completed games at the beginning of the season, which means their chance to make the grand final is a short 10.8; a tad less than Port Adelaide’s 13.2. Adelaide defeating GWS on Thursday evening will give the Crows the best premiership percentage chance, currently 23.6.

Geelong and Richmond have respective less gaps flags of 15.3 and 10.9. The next level is GWS Giants 8.3, Port Adelaide 6.6 and Sydney 5.4. The rest of the finalists’ flags, WC Eagles and Essendon, forget about. The likely outlier of this season is the Swans. Last season an outlier was the Bulldogs.

An outlier can happen anytime, but generally it’s a one in ten flag seasons to occur based on a percentage rating minus 120. Prior to 2015 the Bulldogs were at the bottom of the ladder. In 2015, their percentage 115.6 home & away #6 and 2016 percentage 115.4 and #7, before launching four exceptional final games.

Since that triumph, they have levelled closer to an average team. The other outlier of this century is Sydney 2015 flag percentage 116.39 and ranked #3. The two outlier percentage premiership teams indicate minor score games - 112 points Sydney v WC Eagles and 130 points Bulldogs v Sydney.    

The hibernation of Gillon McLachlan appears to like the romance of an outlier, score bottoms, or Giants to win the flag. TedSport’s like is rating team chances and getting ahead of the market odds. Currently the personal bank is a 35% ROI. Thanks to Gillon’s marketing madness with the bye, we expect to bank 40%+ during the finals.

R24 PREMIERSHIP FUTURES

DOS says:

TedSport recommends our enthusiasm fair oddsversus what the bookies are offering the current finalists winning the flag. Have a look and read of the details below, and the next step is go to the ABOUT section to subscribe and HOW IT WORKS information.

The subscription options will give you the best profit opportunities available for finalists and flag- BOX SEAT, STAKE CALCULATOR, LADDER FUTURES, and KPIS.

ClubFair OddsBest Bookies
Adelaide$2.55$3.40
Geelong$4.61$6.00
Richmond$5.99$7.00
Sydney$10.40$5.00
Port Adel$16$17.00
GWS$19$5.50
West Coast$116$51
Essendon$175$61

Adelaide is the first premiership favourite since Carlton in 1995 that is worth backing to win the flag before the finals start. This is an example of the paradox that is sometimes called the "Winner's Curse". For example, in a hotly contested auction, the bidder who wins the item has almost certainly overpaid, because he though it was worth more than everyone else in the room. Similarly, looking at all the teams' premiership chances, the one that the bookies and public favour the most is hardly likely to be undervalued.

Adelaide at $3.40 is good value because it is top three in every category we look at here at TedSport, and it is number one for disrupting opposition ball movement across the length of the ground. It has no weaknesses other than a tendency to look terrible against average teams in a few games (North Melbourne, Melbourne, Hawthorn, Collingwood) when it didn't have the right motivation. The only finalist that genuinely edged the Crows was Geelong at Kardinia Park in Round 11.

Sydney is second favourite at most agencies, around the $4 to $5 mark. That is simply awful value, even though we think the Swans are a superb team almost at Adelaide's level. Sydney is clearly the best team at killing off opponents' attacks by saturating the valuable territory in front of goal with smart interceptors. It also has brilliant users of the ball through midfield and forward, players who can pinpoint teammates in congestion. But to win the flag from here, the Swans have to win four straight games, three of them away from home. The Bulldogs doing it in 2016 does not make it any easier the next year!

Contrary to the uninformed media heads, the top four gives at least three times the chances of places five to eight when it comes to September. The new bye is a very minor equaliser. As an example of market madness, William Hill quotes the Adelaide vs Sydney Grand Final as a $5.50 equal favourite prospect! Here's what needs to happen for that match-up to occur:

  1. GWS beats Adelaide
  2. Sydney beats Essendon
  3. Adelaide beats Port Adelaide or West Coast
  4. Sydney beats Geelong or Richmond at MCG
  5. Adelaide beats Geelong or Richmond at MCG
  6. Sydney beats GWS

The first of those would be an upset, and the others are far from assured. The maths don't lie: back the Crows, lay the Swans. The Giants on the other hand are just not top four quality as we've been saying for months. The rest are well priced, and if you're keen on value the surprise quinella of Geelong vs Richmond is worth a flutter at $13.

RD 24 DOS AND MCLEOD HAVE SOMETHING TO SAY

Glenn says:

Another good weekend on the betting front, with profit of $737 jumping into the kitty, despite us putting plenty on the Crow on Monday before they withdrew a few big names. Results dictated the Crows had nothing to play for while their opponents, the Eagles, had everything to play for.

Season profit is now up to $3500, growth in starting bank of 35%, well on track with the projected 40% growth heading into the finals. ear.

DOS had added:

Four bookmakers have released their odds that are now available. We are waiting for the rest to come. For Essendon, the advice is to wait until the situation improves. In fact only the Adelaide match is compelling for punting, and that's one of our biggest for the year.

So are, Sydney is as short as $4 at the moment, which is insane when they have to win four straight matches, only one of them in Sydney (two if GWS beat Adelaide).

McLeod reviews:

HAWTHORN VS W BULLDOGS

TedSport favoured the W Bulldogs to take a close result in the Friday farewell game, but not enough for any betting activity.

The game was an entertaining high scoring affair early, with the Hawks having their noses in front for most of the game. As a result of better efficiency by foot, the Hawks finished with an 18 kick advantage.

The Dogs were actually better in the transition game, +15, enabling them to give their forwards more opportunities, +8, but unfortunately for their slim final’s hopes, they couldn’t apply enough scoreboard pressure with the greater chances that they were able to make.

COLLINGWOOD VS MELBOURNE

A fascinating encounter between the two MCG tenants. The TedSport system rated both of these teams about the same, and was taking advantage of the generous odds on offer in backing Collingwood to go out on a high.

The Pies again burst out of the blocks with a six goal Q1. They were able to keep up the aggressive kicking, and keep scoring.

The Dees made a charge in 3Q, beginning to strangle the Pies and halt their transition opportunity the Dees finished with an 18 point edge in the transition game.

Despite having less inside 50s, it was Collingwood who put the ball to the advantage of their forwards more, thanks to their better ball use, winning the kick rating by 45.

Dees’ fans were reduced to a hope that the Eagles fail to beat the Crows, and Pies fans back to debating whether Buckley will resign before he is pushed!

BRISBANE LIONS VS NTH MELBOURNE

Brisbane has put in some spirited efforts this year, but continues to leak like a sieve. They were backed as a false favourite at the GABBA, while TedSport was backing North Melbourne's direct play to carve up the Lions.

North completely controlled the contest from the get-go, it was only wasteful kicking in 1Q that gave Brisbane a sniff.

North controlled the ball by foot all game, +36, and were able to stifle the Lions’ prime mover, Beams, resulting in a negative transition rating.

A nice way to finish the season for the Roos. Fagan ends his first year in charge with a spoon but plenty of optimism and the TedSport kitty received a nice little boost!

SYD SWANS VS CARLTON

Carlton didn't have much hope of knocking over Sydney at the SCG, but the Swans' need for percentage could have played into the Blues' hands. TedSport had a little flutter on Carlton to keep the margin under eight goals.

The Blues were holding up their end of the bargain at half time, keeping the gap at just two goals. But the floodgates opened in the second half, and the Swans fans enjoyed a Buddy special as he finished with 10 bags.h

The Blues fell right away, in what was a poor way for them to end the season, finishing in the red for transition, -5, and F50 entries, -2 and trailing the Swans by 90 in the kick rating.

GEELONG VS GWS GIANTS

There was a hell of a lot to play for down at Kardinia Park. The winner gets two home finals and bragging rights in case they meet again in a qualifying final. TedSport backed the Cats to get the cream.

Danger found a running mate in Menegola to help in Joel’s absence, and the Giants midfield, apart from Ward, was MIA.

Geelong completely dominated the TedSport rankings, kick rating +60, transition +17 and the midfield +37 as they rolled to another top2 finish. A great result for the Cats and again boosting the TedSport kitty.

PORT ADELAIDE VS GOLD COAST

A potential massacre was on the cards at the Adelaide Oval as Port Adelaide endeavoured to shoot past Sydney's percentage aiming for a home showdown qualifying final if Richmond slips up on Sunday. We envisioned the Power blowing away the posted eight-goal handicap and the total line of 172.5 .

The Suns imploded in the final game, unbelievably ending in the red for their kick rating; they chipped the ball in circles before coughing it up with a direct turn-over. Going nowhere, they finished the game with a transition rating of -40.

Against such woeful opposition, Port did as they needed chalking up a 115 point win that did get them above Sydney’s percentage again.

ESSENDON VS FREMANTLE

The least interesting game of the week. TedSport had a flutter on Fremantle being not quite as bad as the past fortnight with the Bombers a bit off their game with one eye on finals.

This game went according to the forecast, with the Bombers in full control, but then easing off the gas in 4Q and just cruising to the line once finals were guaranteed. This allowed Freo to slide in under the line as predicted.

There wasn’t much of a contest in this one. Essendon was clearly the superior team. The Dons finished +52 in the kick rating, +26 in the transition and +8 in F50 entries. They should have run out 5 or 6 goal victors in this one.

Finals beckon for the Dons, while Lyon’s Dockers are off to enjoy the surf.

RICHMOND VS ST KILDA

No bet on this one. Richmond faced the proverbial banana peel here in a match it expected to win well, locking in the double-chance.

No slips in this one. The Tigers once more showed they have the right mind set as they dominated the Saints at the G.

The Tigers, lead once more by an amazing first half from Dusty, were more than 40 points up at the main break. Richmond was too slick in transition and the Saints had no answer to the Tigers’ multiple forward options.

Richmond finished the game with a kick advantage of 52 and transition advantage of 15, reflecting  their dominance.

The Tigers the big winners on the final day of H&A, as the win put them in 3rd place. As a reward they will get a game at the G plus the double chance … all aboard the Tigers train!

WC EAGLES VS ADELAIDE

The TedSport algorithm liked a lot of what it saw in Adelaide's unlucky loss to Sydney and in Brilliant Buddy. We were backing the Crows to stomp on the Eagles at Subiaco for the last time.

However, with the Pies knocking off the Dees, the last game of the home & away season was alive with West Coast going to make it with a 4 goal win.  The Crows were off in this one, perhaps having the minor premiership sewn up prior to the bounce made them lose their edge.

The Eagles outplayed them all game, especially in the TedSport kick rating, usually one of the Crows’ strengths, as they finished +64.

Both teams struggled to transition the ball fluently, with plenty of safe nowhere and backwards ball movements compared to aggressively accurate ball use.

By 3Qtime it was clear the edge was with the Eagles, the only question left was - would they make it to the finals? Unfortunately if you are a Dees fan, they did enough to squeak in.

RD 23 DOS AND MCLEOD HAVE SOMETHING TO SAY

McLeod says:

It was a good weekend. Thanks to Carlton finally putting the Hawks away the end up of round 22 was a profit of $491. TED'S personal bank of $10k, since round 14 to profit is now $2,742. For this amount its how we can progress nicely until the grand final.

DOS has added:

Our top two picks, Blues and Eagles got up this week. Adelaide vs Sydney was an amazing result that the computer is treating like a 40-point win by the Crows, instead of a narrow Swans victory.

Adelaide was +52 for continuity, +37 in Midfield against the clear second-best team. It's incredibly rare for us to think a premiership favourite is underrated, but we'd be backing Adelaide for the flag at $3.50 right now.

McLeod reviews:

Adelaide vs Sydney

The two form teams of the competition faced off at Adelaide Oval on Friday night, with TedSport backing the Crows who have been cementing their impressive percentage all season.

The Swans got the jump early, importantly quieting the parochial Crows home fans. After a quick couple to start Q2, the Swans found themselves five goals ahead on the back of a dominant midfield with some sharp shooting from their forwards.

Then the Crows started to gain control of the game, Sloane and the Crouch bros. gained the upper hand in the middle, while the Adelaide HB line became like a trampoline easily rebounding Sydney forward forays and setting up repeat attacks for the Crows.

Adelaide finished the game with a 37 advantage in the midfield, and a staggering 50 advantage in the transition metric as the Swans were starved of scoring opportunities.

The Swans’ forwards made the most of their limited opportunities with some individual brilliance to somehow eke out 13 goals. It ended up being just enough to pip the wasteful Crows who finished with 11 goals 14 behinds in a wasteful effort. Bring on a rematch in a few weeks!

W Bulldogs vs Port Adel

TedSport was keen on the Power maintaining their surge to a double chance finish, and at the same time finishing off the Dog’s season at their alternate kennel in Ballarat.

The Power completely dominated the TedSport KPIs, despite being unable to really kick away from the Dogs until the very end.

Port finished up an impressive 66 ahead in the all-important kick rating, recording many more blowtorch disposals and forcing the Dogs to cough up the ball under pressure.

The Dogs finished in the red, -21, for transition and were shabby when trying to create scoring chances, finishing up just +4 for the forward entries. Contrastingly the Power, who able to put the ball to the advantage of their forwards inside 50 - big Charlie Dixon in particular - as the Power finished up +16 for F50 entries.

The Power now face a game at home against the fading Suns, knowing a big win may be enough to claim 4th and the double chance.

Collingwood vs Geelong

From a betting perspective TedSport had no interest in this game. Collingwood is a potential stumbling block, but the Cats should do enough to continue their quest for two home finals. No bet at the available odds.

The Pies were again seemingly on track to cause the Cats some problems at quarter time; they had their fluid ball movement and hit the scoreboard with relative ease.

But after quarter time, the Cats put a sweeper out the back and the Pies simply couldn’t find any clear route to goal. Instead, caught up in a death spiral of nowhere and backwards cock-up kicks, they finished in the red for transition.

Danger, Duncan and Menegola took control, the Cats finishing +80 in the midfield rating, as they launched attacking foray after attacking foray ending up with 17 marks inside 50.

GWS Giants vs WC Eagles

TedSport felt that the punters must be taking a whole bunch of irrelevant facts into account when evaluating the Giants at home to the Eagles. The Eagles would keep this close, with decent bets on the line and a dip on West Coast causing an upset to stay in the eight for one more week.

It was the close contest that TedSport had predicted, with the margin remaining under three goals for the duration, and a solitary point splitting the teams at the final break.

Ultimately it was the Giants who kicked away to a three goal win, on the back of a dominant performance from a couple of their midfield maestros – Kelly and Whitfield were sublime.

When those two get their hands on the pill 70+ times, good things will happen, and the Giants had the edge in both kick (+18) and midfield (+22) ratings.

Gold Coast vs Essendon

No interest in this game from a betting perspective, and apart from fans of teams like the Doggies and Saints hoping for a Suns upset, few would have tuned into this.

Don’t be fooled by the 30 point margin, the underlying KPIs detail that this was a one-sided affair that could easily have ballooned out to a 12 goal margin.

Essendon monstered the Suns in all of the key KPIs, winning the kick rating by 70, transition by 53 and having a 20+ advantage when putting the ball inside 50.

The Dons now have a home game to come against the hapless Dockers to lock in finals football.

Carlton vs Hawthorn

TedSport was keen on Carlton keeping this close, and potentially causing an upset that would snuff out the Hawks’ mathematical finals chances, as Bolton is setting the Blues up with similar strengths and game style.

It was an intriguing but low scoring battle of chess between the two teams. The Blues targeted the Hawks’ flighty talisman Sicily across half back to great effect, yet the Blues got plenty of run and drive from their usual suspects in Docherty and Simpson.

Carlton had their noses in front for the majority of this contest, and it was their ability to put the ball to the advantage of their forwards that proved the difference.

The kick rating and transition stats were basically even, and Hawthorn, lead by Mitchell, managed to slightly get on top in the midfield.

But in the end Carlton finished with a TedSport F50 rating of +14, compared to just +3 to the Hawks. The Blues managed to take 10 marks inside their F50 to just 6 for the Hawks, despite Hawthorn pumping it inside more often.

Melbourne vs Brisbane

TedSport was backing Melbourne to seal itself into September with a percentage-building win over Brisbane.

The Dees were able to get the win that they needed, but were unable to shake off the very competitive Lions who kept charging back into the game despite the Dees getting out to 4 or 5 goal leads.

The Lions were led in the middle by Beams and Zorko, who were both also able to hit the scoreboard once more. The Lions actually finished the game ahead in the TedSport kick rating and F50 entrance rating, as they were incredibly efficient and dangerous at times.

But the Dees were able to hold them at bay for the Lion’s share of the match, causing plenty of backwards movement as the Lions ended with a negative transition rating, while the Dees finished up +37 for transition.

It was more run, carry and handball that the Dees used to their advantage to overcome the Lion cubs at the G. Knock off old foe Collingwood next week, and the Dees play finals footy, but a loss could see them just miss out.

St Kilda vs North Melbourne

Both sides are limping into their last two matches with very little to play for, except for one last cheer for Saint Nick.

The Saints dominated this contest, easily winning all four TedSport metrics. The most impressive area was the transitioning, finishing +34 as they were easily able to push back North attacking forays.

Saint Nick kicked a couple, and the Saints fans now pray that former coach R.Lyon can work a football miracle in R23 to keep the finals dream alive.

Fremantle vs Richmond

Who would back Fremantle after the stinking pile of manure they served up in Sydney? Not us, that's for sure. At the odds available, we'll have a small bet on Richmond to keep itself in the top four with a comfortable win - and with an eye on building percentage.

Even TedSport didn’t foresee a second 100 point belting coming for the Shockers. But so it proved, with the Shockers’ finals game at Subiaco being a 104 hiding at the hands of a slick Tigers outfit … and Freo actually went to QTime with their noses in front.

Great as the Tigers were, Fremantle were abysmal. They finished with a kick rating of just 30.

With Dusty running riot through the middle, the Tigers ended up winning the kick rating by 90, transition by 43 and the F50 entries by 20.

THE DUEL OF FELINE CLAWS

Let's begin with two teams of the competition that have feline claws to scratch each other - Cats and Tigers. Their coaches, Scotty and Dimma seem rather the same. They too have scratched each other.

It was undoubtedly a dual claw game. Geelong defeated Richmond by 14pts at Simmons Stadium.

During the press conference after the game, Scotty was delighted how his kitten, Harry, could run and jump and how the crowd adored him. Dimma was sour and scratched the umpires and said the Cats’ kittens should never be allowed at Kardinia Park.

In startling contrast to TedSport’s odds, which gave the teams a 50/50 chance, the agencies had the Cats @ $2.40 h2h and +8.5 line. Thank you.

Tedsport’s data algorithms, analysis and favourable kitty bank credits make for our success. When the bookies and other opinion experts offer juicy odds it’s worth a bet. The best gamble is when experts and bookies lose their thinking marbles. In this instance favouring the Tigers.

Were the experts and bookies dud-heads? Yes, on two accounts.

Firstly, they overrate the importance of outs. In the previous round, Richmond (93pts) defeating Hawthorn (64pts) was then overrated. Given the out of their champion forward, J. Riewolt, pre-game the Tigers were underrated.

Secondly, they underrated Geelong due to their previous loss - 61pts against Sydney’s 107pts at Simmonds Stadium, and also for the upcoming outs of elite players such as J.Selwood, Duncan, and Hawkins.

The experts should have known the outs and win/losses would adjust and balance heading to round 21. And in this case both teams have outstanding defensive talents to promise a bad loss either way.

Rance is now acknowledged as one of the great defenders of all time and his ability to give defensive support is recognized. But on the other side is also one of the great defenders in Taylor who has extraordinary defensive support and can defend and bag goals.

At the beginning of the season Geelong edged themselves continually to the top four. For a long time now the Cats have either been in the top four or close by. Meanwhile, Richmond has now moved from earlier low ladder positions year upon year to the current top four.

Before round 21 both teams had hurdles, which can happen to any team each season. Because both teams have been determined to be in the top four for the finals, they are likely to go head-to-head, wouldn't we think? Yes thanks.

The team that had the home ground advantage to claw, Geelong prides itself on its home ground advantage, launched in1859 and on its recognition as the second oldest club in the world. Despite two or three Cats being injured or suspended, Geelong will not give up their bastion advantage.

Dimma, opinion experts and bookies should be scratching their heads: How does TedSport win the kitty?

Rd 21 DOS AND MCLEOD HAVE SOMETHING TO SAY

McLeod says:

Unfortunately, TedSport was always chasing our tail after the Dog failed to bark on Friday night. The issue was we coughed up $600 in R21 for the 2017 bank profits now sitting at $2,252. Okay, but we want at least 40% ROI before the end of the season...

DOS is more inclined, saying:

That Friday night match was the worst eight-goal win against a reigning premier you will ever see.

GWS had more opportunities from clearances, and yet the game was played in the Bulldogs' forward half. GWS was unnaturally good at generating shots from its mere 34 inside-50s, and then converting those to goals.

The Bulldogs had 65 inside-50s and were hampered by low quality positions & finishing. The algorithm's assessment is more like a five point win, which would have got us on the right side of the line...

McLeod replied:

Yeah! the Doggies also coughed up three goals from -3 rated disposals in their back half when they just gave the ball to the Giants. They were three absolute howlers under no pressure, and kept the Giants in the game when they didn't look like scoring.

Some woeful forward play from the Dogs, combined with some Collingwood-esque accuracy from set shots, meant they applied no scoreboard pressure and the Giants look threatening the few times they did get it inside 50.

He's now said more about the Doggies v Giants game and the rest of the eight games...

W. Bulldogs v GWS

TedSport was in the Bulldog's corner on their home turf to make it five wins in a row. It was the Giants who got the quick jump, controlling the middle in Q1 and with Patton having his own gravitational field in the F50. It seemed all long kicks ended up in his grasp.

Dogs came out with a bit more bite in Q2, wrestling back control in the middle and easily intercepting the Giant’s rebound attempts. Unfortunately the Dogs were wasteful with forward entries; a couple of coach killer TOs of their own coming out of defence gifted the Giants a couple of guilt edged goals.

The second half saw the efficient Giants come to the fore, finishing up with a kick advantage of 40. Despite still struggling to transition the ball past the Dog’s defence, when they did find a way through, they had cool heads up forward who were able to hit their targets inside 50 and calmly nailed some difficult set shots.

By contrast the Dogs were horribly ineffective and wasteful up forward. By stifling the Giant’s transition game, they were able to create 30 more inside 50s, yet couldn’t win the TedSport F50 advantage metric. A horrible night for the Doggies which may see them fail to even make the finals in their premiership defence.

Sydney v Fremantle

TedSport forecasted this to be a walk in the park to seal Sydney's resurgence into the eight. The Swans have not lost a match to a 2017 finalist since Round 5, and Fremantle is more focused on blooding their list-cloggers than winning games.

The Swans made a mess of a listless Docker’s side, who were barely above WAFL standard.

The Swans unsurprisingly dominated all of the key TedSport indicators, winning the kick rating by 82 and transition by 23. However those two stats were overshadowed by the dominance the Swans had when moving into scoring positions.

Sydney finished up +23 for their movement into F50, enabling the team to record 19 marks inside 50. The Dockers ended in the red, a feeble -8, as they coughed the ball up to Sydney defenders instead of putting it to their forwards’ advantage.

Geelong v Richmond

We don't often make large adjustments to forecasts based on players - their structure and attitude are such large factors in success on the AFL field. With a couple of key Geelong outs, normally mild, rational punters over-reacted, so much so that the Tigers were starting warm favourites, a laughable prospect at Kardinia Park.

Both teams seemed to struggle to handle the focus that comes with a top4 clash in August. Both teams were unable to transition the ball cleanly and both finishing in the red.

It was a Geelong burst late in the second quarter with five consecutive goals that blew the game wide open. From there the Tigers tried to make a charge, but the Cats were able to hold them at bay and record a win that keeps their top4 hopes alive.

Neither club supporters would be quick to re-watch this one, as both teams battled poor ball skills, two teams finishing with below par kick ratings in the around 60. Geelong was able to create more positive kicks and apply the blowtorch for long enough in the second quarter to get the win.

Brisbane v GazCoast

At long last, TedSport found a reason to bet on Gold Coast. As the Lions’ metrics haven’t improved all season. Perversely they seemed to improve away from the Gabba.

The Q Clash did live up to expectations in the first half, with both sides having some nice surges in what was a very open, high scoring first half.

The second half saw the Lions’ midfield, led by Beams, Rockliff and Martin get on top of the Gaz-less Suns and power away. True to form, the Suns were unwilling to show any fight for interim coach Soloman ... they continue to disappoint.

The Lions were clear winners in all of the TedSport metrics - +56 for kicks, +15 for transition and +9 for creating favourable scoring opportunities.

Essendon v Adelaide

TedSport expected an Adelaide letdown was on the cards after sealing two home finals and putting Port’s power out last week.

This Crows side didn’t let up, showing up the Dons as 8-10 type side unable to go with the best team in the game right now. There was no let up from the Crows in the second half either, they rammed home the point that they are the team to beat.

Adelaide’s execution was much more clinical, finishing up the game +50 in the kick rating. Combining elite ball use with a manic pressure at the contest and a very strong half back line that continually cut off attacking forays reduced Essendon to a horrible -11 transition figure. It is clear why Adelaide are performing so well.

WCE v Carlton

The common wisdom is that the Western Australian teams get an advantage over the season because of their strong home support. In fact, the alternation of horrendous travel and facing fierce coliseum conditions biases West Coast towards the middle of the ladder, which is where they find themselves in 2017. Expect a win against Carlton. We cannot find a side of this market to favour.

Things seemed to go according to plan, with the Eagles holding a comfortable 5 goal lead at half time. But the Eagles again flicked the coast mode.

The Blues roared back into the game kicking 6 goals to just 1 in Q3 to see both teams off their respective huddles with the scores locked away at 64. Carlton should have had the lead, but they were extremely wasteful in front of goal and when entering their F50.

Murhpy and Gibbs lead the way for the Blues who controlled the midfield, +44, and the transition game as the Eagles continually found themselves retreating and coughing the ball up to their Blue opponents finishing the game with a dismal -44 for transition.

Despite the Blues’ control of the centre, they didn’t have a dominant key forward and were unable to put the ball to the advantage of their young makeshift forward line. The Eagles do have a gun key forward, Kennedy. It was a huge battle to get the ball to him but when they were able to give him a 50/50 chance or better he took full advantage, and kicked six himself.

The Eagles won to lift themselves up into 8th, but they don’t look like flying high this year.

Melbourne v StKilda

Tenth plays eleventh at the MCG and curiously the bookmakers have sent Melbourne out the clear favourite. Not sure why that is, after last week's dismal effort in Canberra. TedSport found it almost impossible to pick a winner. There is some value in a small bet on St Kilda +7.5.

Melbourne absolutely blitzed Q1, with the Saints unable to gain a footing in the game. The Dees were slick footed and forced the Saints into some horrendous turn-overs to hit the scoreboard.

Not sure what was said at the quarter time break by Richo, but it had the desired affect and the Saints slowly worked their way back into the game. Improving their ball use, they finally found ways to break through the Melbourne defence.

When the Saints kicked the first goal of the last quarter there was only 4 points in it. The Saints had come marching right back into the game. The Dees were able to steady and kick the next three on the trot and keep their own finals destiny in their own hands.

Which was thoroughly deserved, as the Dees had a significant edge in the TedSport kick rating, +34, and the transition rating +26.

Hawthorn v North Melbourne

Hawthorn kissed its finals hopes goodbye on Sunday. North Melbourne has been on the rebuild for longer. TedSport figures this wouldn’t be a blowout so take a medium bet on the Roos keeping this within the five-goal market.

The Hawks controlled this one. Comfortable victors in all four of the TedSport metrics in what was a very professional display down in Tassie.

But the Roos refused to lay down and let the Hawks blow this one out, and managed to keep the game within the 5 goal line.

Port v Collingwood

The last match of Round 21 is worth watching for the response from Port Adelaide, still holding the second-highest percentage in 2017 despite being towelled up on Sunday in every indicator we have. Collingwood will make this competitive, but not quite enough for us to punt on unless the line drifts to about four goals.

Collingwood tried some rope-a-dope style tactics against Port, preferring to go backwards and sideways for most of the first half instead of actually transitioning the ball into dangerous positions.

Port happily allowed the Pies to do this before pouncing on an errant kick and sailing the ball past the Pies defenders for a score. Collingwood finished the game 42 points behind Port on the transition rating.

Port had a slight edge in the midfield and in converting their forward entries. That was enough for them to run out 4 goal victors against a Collingwood side that actually gave Port a bit of a scare in Q3 when they moved the ball forward.

# DOS is the analysis and Backgammon specialist and McLeod is the statistician manager and biased Collingwood-esque


Robbo The Tackler is the best sniffer

At TedSport we love Robbo The Tackler, the chief football writer for the Herald Sun. He can sniff a line in the sand. It doesn't matter if he likes or dislikes a team or a player, one moment’s play or the next, anything goes.

We think of him as the bugger of The Jam band lyrics, That's Entertainment:

Paint splattered walls and the cry of a tomcat

Lights going out and a kick in the balls

That's entertainment, that's entertainment

Throughout his writing career, Robbo The Tackler has said the players and team must have intense aggressive balls to succeed. Apparently, That's entertainment. Footy has always had a fair degree of brutal thuggery, regularly referred to as 'amusing biffo'.

Until recent years a decent and skilful player, despite the thuggery, had the opportunity of space and support. Generally, the thugs beat up their opposition thugs keeping the talented and young players reasonably safe. Tackling was in the range of 60 to 70 per game.

Now the tackling is in the range of 130 to 150 per game. While we know about the biffo hard nuts who cherish aggression, the problem is that the young, talented, decent, and skilled players are colliding into each other.

Until round 19, Robbo The Tackler and his biffo mates were keen on unsociable, un-sportable footy. The niggling, elbowing, and punching of experienced and young players were accepted or ignored by media, coaches, and officialdom.

Patrick Dangerfield tackled Matthew Kreuzer. Both were highly skilful decent players and both were banged, Matthew was dizzy and Danger was suspended. How can this possibly be permissible? The answer of Robbo The Tackler, on behalf of the media, coaches, and officialdom is a line in the sand of the new rules:

1. The tackle consists than more than one action.

2. The tackle used as a spear or as a lifting tackle is inherently dangerous.

3. The player being tackled is in a vulnerable position (i.e. arms pinned)."

4. The opponent is "slung, driven or rotated into the ground with excessive force."

Our footy involves brutal tackling but unlike the brutal tackling of Rugby, Rugby League, and American Football, lacks the civility of an offside rule or sin bin.

The other football codes involve the structure and training of a player's tackling skills. Ours is nowhere near their level of structure and training. Above all football codes our footy is the most difficult. Umpires urgently need outstanding skills and special support to make fair judgements.

Which demands that adjudication should be simplified rather than being left in the morass of the ineffective and the absurd.

Hence the ineptness of Robbo The Tackler who sniffs a line in the sand and hasn't got a clue matters to the innovators of TedSport's probability game. But he does give us the opportunity for odds value in our profit game.

TedSport Comes Up With Diamonds

TedSport draws on the passion of footy and the profit game to calculate the probability odds of teams and players who score the highest, lose, or draw.

To achieve this first, I built Champion Data. The key partners for the building program were my late wife, Angelika Oehme, for the logistics, and Darren O’Shaughnessy, recognised as the DOS data statistician.

When I finally exited Champion Data, the business became the property of the AFL. My next build has grown into TedSport. Again, Darren O’Shaughnessy is the guiding DOS data mind. Our innovative enterprise is taking on the big agencies, based on our unique metrical analysis of the game-force pressure, backgammon probability theory, and the Kelly seminal favouritism odds.

In short, the TedSport statisticians instantly register the KPIS as the player troubles the opposition, and how the opposition exits trouble. The four main indicators of the pressure forces are the relationship of kick and transit advantages, entry into the F50m zone, and the middle zone belly.

The official AFL statistics can be interesting, but they are not fine enough to predict a game’s chances of winning, losing, or drawing. TedSoprt can and does come up with gems. Hence we have just rebuilt the website and introduced smartphone apps.

The strength of the TedSport data and algorithm is the proof of profit, We started at 2013 with a bank of $10,000 and came up a 132.5% ROI. It seemed too remarkable a return so we started again with a consistent $10,000 bank.

And again, we came up with the diamonds at 61.5% ROI in 2014, 53.5% ROI in 2015, followed by 67.5% ROI in 2016. The continuous TedSport bank of $10,000 started at round 14 and is now up to 30% ROI. The expectation of this season is diamonds at 40%+ ROI.

Enjoy the TedSport experience and profit.

www.tedsport.com

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TUMBLEBALL REVISITED PRE-ROUND 12

Tumble Ball is the TED POST story of how the Bulldogs won the flag defeating the Sydney Swans.

While the Bulldogs had valiantly ploughed their way to finish 7th for the home and away season, during the finals we consistently saw an outfit that transformed itself into a two to three goal better performing team.

Are they now able to go back-to-back flags for this season?

It looks like they have improved a goal or so compared to last season’s home and away. The TEDSPORT LADDER smartphone predicts they are likely to finish this season with 60 premiership points resulting in a top four ladder berth.

So far, the other likely top four teams are Adelaide, GWS, and Geelong. As always, there are uncertain predictions. If one of these four drop down the ladder, the most likely teams to take the spot will come from Port Adelaide or Richmond. The difficulty the Bulldogs have is they are no longer an underdog. All six teams have a similar score hunger.

There is a gang of eight teams who also have a desperate hunger, trying to get seventh or eighth position on the ladder. A sixth position finish or above is even likely. The gang includes West Coast, Melbourne, St Kilda, Collingwood, North Melbourne, Fremantle, Essendon, and Sydney. Among the likely upgrade are the Eagles and the lamenting Swans. Sydney has had a miserable start for the season. Maybe they will correct themselves, soon.

Generally, the Swans are a consistent high rating team. The chance to regain their mojo will be indicated when the Swans meet the Bulldogs at the SCG. The Swans have the home ground advantage and the market has them as a favourite.

More throw up the coin. As mentioned, the Bulldogs are longer an underdog and both teams are magnificent low score scrap-a-thons. The agents have the Total/ Overs marks acknowledging a miserly +158.5.

A low score level can easily sway either way. While the Swans have the home ground advantage the Bulldogs still have the Tumble Ball advantage. Tumbling is an infectious strategy that the Doggies innovated.

It seems, other teams have adopted it, which is why this season has an unusual competition winning of 3.5 underdog games. How tumbling works was noted by TEDSPORT following last year’s ground final.

Tumbling is forwarding the ball to team advantage, and if not, derail an opponent’s fluent use of the ball. It’s a balancing act that is measured as the KPI transit advantage. Collision and worm wriggling games have intensified.

Transit advantage and intensity are crucial conditions, but still will not necessarily win a game. The success requires three other KPIS for team rating prediction. These are Kick Advantage (attack, circular, and cock-up), entry F50 entry (potential, useless, and opposite way), and Midfield Advantage (control, neutral, and limping).

Of the four main KPIS, my exception of the Swans v Bulldogs game is the Midfield Advantage. Both teams have a crop of elite on-ball performers capable of the kitchen heat. So far, the Swans elite performers have unusually spluttered.

Perhaps they can ignite for this game and for the rest of the backend of the season. Otherwise, the Bulldogs have again will tumble the ball and heat up the kitchen.

TUMBLE BALL - HOW THE BULLDOGS WON THE FLAG

Now the euphoria of the Bulldogs premiership has begun to subside it is time to reflect on how the victory was achieved.

While the Bulldogs valiantly ploughed their way to finish 7th for the home and away season, during the finals we consistently saw an outfit that transformed itself into a two to three goal better performing team.

Tumble Ball is the story of how the Bulldogs won the flag.

To date much of the commentary has dwelled on a united bunch of players, inspired by their coach  to end the club's 62 yearVFL/AFL premiership drought. While we cannot overlook the romance factor, the reality is they were up against four quality teams and two daunting interstate trips.

We can also assume that the Bulldogs opponents also fronted with strong romantic aspirations to win the flag. And while the Bulldogs spread of talent came to the fore during the finals, the other finalists were also stocked with calibre talent.

Three had begun their campaigns with stellar ladder percentages of 140+: Sydney 151.19, Geelong 143.82, and GWS 143.11. Two finalists tracked in the 130+ range: Adelaide 138.33 and West Coast 129.98. Pre-finals the Bulldogs ladder percentage of 115.41 was #7 of the eight finalist and #3 lowest of any team that has won a VFL/AFL flag since 1954.

On balance, the steep climb they faced requires more than a reliance on romance, luck, and talent to explain how the Bulldogs won the premiership.

When it mattered most the TedSport metrics and analysis reveal the X-factor of how it was done.

In sum, the Bulldogs balanced the load better than any other finalist. Orchestrated by a quality coaching panel and player commitments, the team's superior organisation and tactical ploys outpointed their opponents.

Pre-Grand Final, their form against the Eagles and Giants (both interstate) and the Hawks at the MCG  warranted them a 40% chance of toppling the Sydney Swans  on the TedSport metrics. On grand final day they took every ounce of that chance and more. Pre-game we agreed with the agency markets that gave the Swans about a 10 point start.

No bet was recommended head-to-head or on the handicap, but a nibble on the Unders -165.5 was, which saluted comfortably. My early round bets for the entire premiership season yielded a 67.5% profit, which highlights the TedSport winning model that says follow the golden rules.

Firstly, recognise that in a footy game, nothing is certain in prediction and betting. Always be on the alert for the expert and coach who declares a total confident certainty.

Secondly, seek use of the best data and algorithmic processing available, and trust what it says above anything else. Which also means avoid the truckloads of media and official entertainment stats and commentary potatoes constantly dumped at our doorstep.

And thirdly, on the footy field, respect the opposition and take note of what it does best and what it is not so good at. For prediction and betting purposes the best strategy is to respect what the market is saying, while always be on the lookout for the more valuable offers.

Now let's get down to the specifics of how the Bulldogs balanced the load to win the flag.

  1. An original use of interchange rotations

During the home and away season and for their critical preliminary and grand final games, aside from two or three exceptions no Bulldogs player spent more than 80% of game time on the ground.

This was an entirely different way of managing rotations compared to all other teams who generally ran a higher percentage of players above 80%.

In effect, during the finals the Bulldogs greater rotation spread meant fresher legs and minds to complete two critical missions; continually attack the ball, keep constantly tumbling the ball forward to advantage, and even more critical, was attending to any opponent wanting to move the ball upfield fluently to their advantage.

  1. A wide spread of on-ball/midfield player types applied to all zones

To compliment the 80% rotation method, during their finals campaign all Bulldogs adopted specific roles that also assumed possible on-ball duties. Matthew Boyd, Dale Morris, and Easton Woods were assigned key defence roles, but could manage winger and defence midfield positions if required.

Tall's Jordan Roughead and Tom Boyd performed ruck duties while at times playing as extra tall midfielders in the tradition of the late Brownlow Medalist, Jim Stynes. The much shorter Liam Picken hauled in a pack screamer inside the F50m zone, nailed match winning goals, but if required, could have easily converted into a terrier-like defensive role.

Both leading goal kickers, Jake Springer and Tory Dickson are more than capable of running through the midfield.

Much of the Bulldogs spread of multiple on-ball and midfielder capacity pertains to how Marcus Bontempelli presents and plays. Throughout the season and in the grand final he was the pinnacle upon which the Bulldogs campaign hinged.

Utility players of his calibre are rare. Adam Goodes and James Hird are prime example of the species. The Bont has similar height and talent attributes to Goodesy and Jimmy, but also includes two monstrous advantages. The ability to find the best target at long range with his left boot, and on the ground in the heat of the kitchen, continually fossicking to nudge the ball forward to team advantage.

  1. Forever tumbling the ball forward to team advantage, and if not, derail an opponent's fluent use of the ball

To get a good handle on how the tumble effect helped the Bulldogs win the flag the best metric to look at is the TedSport transit rating. It measures a team's ability to advance the ball from defensive positions forward into favourable scoring positions.

But there is more to the equation. It's no use belting the ball forward if it keeps sailing back over your head . It's a balancing act. The ball heads both ways, and what we need to know is which team on balance has that advantage. And even if a team has the transit advantage, are they wasting it by presenting favourable or poor scoring chances for their forwards?

For the home and away season TedSport rated the Bulldogs +4 transit rating, which the chart below shows as slightly above the competition average and trailing the competition leaders by a significant amount. During their finals campaign the Bulldogs succeeded in reversing the transit rating to their advantage.

Their determination to advance the ball forward to advantage while applying any means to stop the opposition from going forward was the hallmark of their finals successes.

Transit adv 16

In the Eliminatory Final against West Coast the Doggies blitzkrieg accounted for a staid and unsuspecting Eagles perched in Domain Stadium. The Bulldogs won the transition statistic by +18.

In their Semi-Final against Hawthorn, they took on the veteran champion Hawks outfit, who were the most highly rated transition side all season. They too were overcome by the Dogs tumble ball knocking it on to advantage at all costs. The Bulldogs won the transition metric by 26 against the veteran champions who still pride themselves as slick movers of the ball and great stoppers.

In the Preliminary Final the Bulldogs  headed north to face a rested Giants side who had dominated the Swans a couple of weeks earlier. Again it was the Doggies who smashed the transition statistic. They placed tremendous pressure on the Giants, constantly derailing any Giant advances. In reverse, when they had the ball they kept driving it forward. The end result was a staggering +34 transition metric in favour of the Bulldogs.

Now, lets look at their final achievement against the stodgy Swans. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, and the reality is that Sydney had been well beaten in the transition statistic in all three of their previous finals. The Swans two finals wins hinged primarily on the result of blistering opening quarters and superhuman efforts from their defensive unit to repel sloppy intrusions.

In each of these two games for the following three quarters they went to sleep.

Again, in the Grand Final the Swans opened with a barrage, but in this case they were matched. The Bulldogs stood their ground and in the end it was their ferocity at the ball and uncompromising desire to move the ball forward to advantage that proved too much for Sydney. The Dogs again winning the transition metric this time by +25.

In sum, the Bulldogs accounted for four of the best five transition teams in consecutive finals and they averaged an advantage of +25 across all finals. Tumble balling, fresher legs, better balancing of the load, coupled with an intense desire to derail fluent opposition ball movement is what won the flag.