Richmond… There abouts in season 2022 but my word did they steal defeat from the jaws of victory on multiple occasions! From a fantasy perspective, not a heap to crow about with the exception of Jayden Short’s start to the season and a couple rookies coming through late in the piece.
In these reviews, we will take a closer look at each club’s Fantasy snapshot for season 2022, whilst I nominate players for MVP, best rookie and biggest flop. I will also provide my two cents on what to look out for in 2023!
*For the purposes of these articles, Fantasy numbers are from the H&A season only.
Most Valuable Player (MVP)
As you can see from the table above, not a great fantasy season from the Tiges culminating in only two players eclipsing a 90 average. One of those being Jayden Short. Shorty started the season like a house on fire, taking the piss off a halfback averaging an absurd 109 over the first seven games. He saw increased midfield minutes in the round 7 clash vs the Traffic Cones and unfortunately (as it turned out) was a sign of things to come. Shorty had found a new home in the forward-mid rotation which did reflect in his scoring. Shorty was consistent but didn’t ton in the last eight games of the home and away season! Regardless, he had done more than enough to take home MVP honours for the Tiges. Pre-season will be an interesting watch as to what Dimma wants to do with his role.
Dimma wasn’t afraid to blood his youth in season 2022, with the likes of Josh Gibcus, Hugo Ralphsmith, Judson Clarke, Maurice ‘Rioli-Coaster 2.0’ Rioli, Ben Miller, Thomson Dow, Noah Cumberland and Tyler Sonsie all getting a crack at AFL level. Based purely on the fantasy numbers, it has to be Hugo Ralphsmith. I’m a big fan of what Cumberland and Sonsie bought in the last six to seven games, but unfortunately, it was a case of too little, too late! When it was all said and done, Hugo doubled their games tally and averaged a modest 53 from 13 games including two injury affected scores of 25 (R1) and 40 (R5). The long-haired yahoo found a home off a wing / half-back and enjoyed his share of cheap +6’s in Richmond possession chains. A shame he was cut down with injury throughout the season and found himself out of favour in the final month pre-finals!
Plenty of Fantasy irrelevant Tiges had flop-like seasons, however, mostly to be expected. One guy who did have some relevance (by virtue of who he is as much as anything else!) was Slim Dusty. I think we all knew his best fantasy beasting days were behind him, but I think little predicted Slim would only manage eight games at 72 apiece. Given the off-season recruiting of both Taranto and Hopper, I can’t imagine it getting any easier for Dusty… He looks destined to play primarily as a forward with stints in the midfield in 2023 and beyond.
Many pundits will have the Tiges right in contention in 2023 with the off-season recruits of Tim Taranto and Jacob Hopper. You imagine at least one, if not both roll straight into the centre bounce… Tim Taranto has always known ‘how to Fantasy’ and if he can find a home as a predominant onballer, there’s no reason why he can’t push a 105 average in my view! Coaches will need to be mindful of the likes of Dion ‘Meatballs’ Prestia, Short, Bolton, Cotchin, and even Graham who will likely get a crack on-ball at various stages. Perhaps the additions of Taranto and Hopper will free Shorty to return to his elite half-back role which has been so fruitful in recent seasons? One can only hope! On the rookie front, given their busy trade period, the Tiges are left with only picks 53 and 63 so you’d imagine not a heap to crow about straight off the bat – but you never know!
So there you have it folks, the thirteenth of the Fantasy Fanatic’s 2022 Reviews! Stay tuned for more new content, the Ross the Boss led mighty Sainters are up next.
Let me know your thoughts in the comments below! Feedback, comments and banter welcome.
Fantasy Fanatic #70