A huge 5-contest round comes to an end with the largest prize pool for a regular season game in Australian DFS history. In a move that surprised members of the community, Draftstars have posted a massive $100K GPP for the traditional Anzac Day clash between Collingwood and Essendon. In another surprising move, DS have increased the entry point to $20. To be honest, I don’t like this at all, especially as the Australian DFS market is still in a growth phase. The contest itself is going to be really tough. Single game slates are unique beasts and today’s clash is one of the more difficult contests we’ve seen this year.
The ruck situation is part of what makes this contest so challenging. We have three ruck options tonight and the option you chose will have a significant influence over the composition of your team.
- Brodie Grundy ($16,500): Has taken his career to the next level this season. People often talk about mobile ruckman being an extra midfielder and Grundy is exactly that. A midfielder who can just happen to regularly pull in 35+ hitouts per game! Grundy’s running goal at Adelaide Oval last week was one of the most amazing goals from a ruckman I’ve ever seen. However, choosing Grundy will make it difficult to fit multiple midfield guns. Another complicating factor is that Essendon has conceded the 3rd least points to opposition rucks. This scares me a little but this stat includes games against Dougal Howard and Tim English.
- Tom Bellchambers ($11,950): Bellchambers is reasonably mobile himself but he’s not even close to being in the same category as Grundy.
- Mason Cox ($7,950): Cox has played 23 games in his career and only surpassed 80 points (what he’d need to provide 10 x value) twice. In the first instance, he kicked four goals and in the second instance, Grundy wasn’t playing. I think 40 – 55 is a more likely output for Cox today.
My take: Grundy or Cox. I change my mind every time I construct a team but Grundy’s form is just so good.
This is going to sound like a cop out but the defensive options will be seriously impacted by your ruck choice. If you play Grundy, you’re going to have to save cash somewhere and that somewhere shouldn’t be your midfield! Of the cheap defenders, Travis Varcoe is my preferred play. Adam Saad has never been a massive scorer and neither have Mitch Brown and Michael Hartley. While Varcoe hasn’t had a big game in a while, he does have the best scoring potential of these three players.
If you’ve faded Grundy, you can afford to spend a little more in your backline. There are a bunch of $10K players to consider today but I wouldn’t spend more than that. Of these players, Sam Murray has been consistent and James Aish’s flexibility makes him an appealing option.
My takes: Murray, Aish.
Thankfully, today’s contest doesn’t throw any expensive forwards at us. Devon Smith has a reasonable upside on a bigger slate, but not today. Jordan de Goey had a good run last week and will be primed for today’s contest. With his midfield rotations and ability to hit the scoreboard, de Goey is definitely worth considering today. The same goes for Josh Thomas who backed up his impressive 5 goal 107 with a 2 goal 84.
Jaidyn Stephenson is likely to be a popular choice after last week but it took 5 goals for him to reach value, so I’m not sure that he’s the best cheap priced option. For $50 less, you can take Callum Brown whose fantasy output has been more steady this year. I also really like Matt Guelfi’s long term prospects but I’m not sure whether he can get close to value.
My takes: Brown, Thomas, de Goey.
There are a bunch of DPP players today, so I won’t waste time repeating myself. Of the non-DPP options, I like the value of David Myers and Will Hoskin-Elliott. After making my Grundy decision, I’m now targeting well priced players who I think are solid 80 – 100 prospects. Myers and the Hyphen fit that bill perfectly. Tom Phillips and Zach Merrett are also well priced, particularly Merrett who bounced back to form last week.
My takes: Myers, Phillips, Merrett, aforementioned DPP options.
This contest will be fascinating for a number of reasons: the new entry fee, the difficult team builds and oh yeah, the $15,000 top prize. If you can afford to throw a couple of teams in today, then it would be worthwhile taking completely different approaches to those lineups.
*Update: The top prize was originally posted as $10,000, but later corrected to $15,000.