Boys On The Bubble: Round 5

Boys On The Bubble is a weekly feature looking at players who played their second game on the weekend and thus are eligible to change in price this week if they’re picked again. The B/E number below stands for Break Even, referring to the Dream Team score that the player must make to have his price rise after his third game.

Yet More Young Kids

Shane Edwards, RIC CTR: $82300, 4 B/E, 31 avg
Joe Anderson, CAR BAC: $82300, 23 B/E, 21.5 avg
Blake Grima, KAN CTR: $113900, 23 B/E, 34.5 avg
Marcus Allan, BRL CTR: $117800, 32 B/E, 31.5 avg

None of these four players, while cheap, were in many fantasy teams and their points production has justified their lack of popularity. Edwards is the only one with any value at all, but you’re probably not looking in the centres for your trades this week given the situations in the backs and forwards (more on that later).

The Damp Squibs

Mathew Stokes, GEE CTR: $260500, 74 B/E, 67.5 avg
Kepler Bradley, ESS BAC, FWD: $211100, 63 B/E, 53.5 avg

Stokes’ round 4 score of 93 had a lot of fantasy coaches watching him this week, but a score of 42 in a losing side would have cooled off a lot of interest. As for Bradley, he has been the target of a lot of scorn this year from Bomber fans, and if the fans are bagging one of their own at Windy Hill then you know there’s something wrong with him. Plenty of coaches got burned last year by Bradley’s patchy form, so few would be willing to touch him again.

The Demon Sacrifices

Lynden Dunn, MEL FWD: $194600, 55 B/E, 50.5 avg
Jared Rivers, MEL BAC: $247600, 92 B/E, 53.5 avg
Colin Sylvia, MEL CTR: $235100, 97 B/E, 46 avg
Byron Pickett, MEL CTR: $261600, 134 B/E, 38 avg

Demons? More like lambs to the slaughter, given Melbourne’s injury list. Sylvia is still battling injury from all reports, he’s another who made coaches suffer last year and so he has a lot to prove. Rivers will be too busy doing defensive jobs to worry about getting the footy much, while Dunn still needs to mature to be able to contribute enough to justify a spot in a fantasy 22. Pickett’s there for presence more than anything else.

The Hot and Cold Pockets

Courtney Johns, ESS FWD: $181000, 54 B/E, 46 avg
Nick Davis, SYD FWD: $277100, 92 B/E, 65.5 avg

Some might have thought that this would be the year that Johns took over from Matthew Lloyd and/or Scott Lucas as one of the go-to talls in the Bombers’ forward line, but as yet he has been starved of supply in the Dons’ wins. It would be a brave coach that would take a punt on him at this point. Davis is getting competition in the small forward position from not only Amon Buchanan but also Tim Schmidt, so I think the days are now gone for him being a viable option in fantasy teams.

The Poor Old Buggers

Steven King, GEE RUC: $244900, 97 B/E, 50 avg
Jamie Charman, BRL RUC: $303900, 103 B/E, 70.5 avg
Jared Crouch, SYD CTR: $215000, 65 B/E, 54 avg
Heath Black, FRE CTR: $310000, 105 B/E, 72 avg

None of these decrepit old-timers should go anywhere near your team. Charman and Black are worth keeping an eye on though, especially Charman who might be a sneaky upgrade target if injuries strike some of the premium rucks later in the season.

The Mid-Tier Centres

Troy Cook, FRE CTR: $238900, 31 B/E, 80.5 avg
Brad Symes, PTA BAC: $332800, 136 B/E, 65.5 avg

Cook is in and out of the Freo side more often than Ben Cousins is… actually, I won’t finish that sentence. Suffice it to say that you can’t rely on him getting a game every week, so that juicy breakeven score should not sway you. Symes is a big disappointment so far – premium playing like a mid-tier – but that could be a good thing as his price dips. He’s one to be mindful of in two to four weeks when looking for upgrades in the backs for Tim Boyle, Xavier Ellis, Justin Koschitzke and other such cash cows.

Bubble Boy Of The Week
Jake King, RIC CTR: $69600, -44 B/E, 50 avg

There were not many options this week so that breakeven score is hard to ignore, but even though I have anointed King this week I would advise against picking him up. With the questionable form of 2007 fantasy favourites Koschitzke and Nathan Bock, plus the looming presence of Warren Tredrea and Nick Riewoldt on the horizon, your attention should be on the backs and/or forwards, depending on which position you put those two in. There will always be another rookie centre to come along in future weeks like King. At a pinch you could downgrade a cash cow centre for him in order to free up cash for a Kosi->Tredders trade or something similar, but the problem with that is that King’s scores are really not good enough for him to be included in your 22 so you’re effectively wasting a second trade on your bench purely for money’s sake. King should be prominent among your options this week, but try not to use him if possible.

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