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.