WHAT a massive week in footy and punting it has been.
Hawthorn absolutely steam rolled Adelaide in the first semi final and North Melbourne flew to Sydney to upset the Swans in a huge boil over that would become controversial AFL great Adam Goodes’ last game.
Goodes has endured a year of near constant booing from opposition supporters, which has been blamed on racism, or the fact that Goodes is simply not well liked among fans, depending on what side of the fence you sit on.
Swans’ coach John Longmire said the veteran announced his retirement to the playing group following the lost to North.
“Adam said that’s enough,” Longmire said.
“He’s retired after an absolutely magnificent career.
“I was a bit emotional, he was fine.
“He handled it really well, in everything he does he handles himself so well.
“He’ll take a deep breath now and he needs it.
“He said he’s been able to enjoy 18 years at a great football club and spoke about the relationships he’s been able to develop over a long time and how everyone means so much to him.
“It’ll probably be hard to imagine life without the footy club but he’ll be successful in whatever he does, I’m sure.”
The bookie’s Christian Jantzen says the market on what he will do next reveals he will be busier than ever.
The 372 game superstar is a very short $2.75 to get a gig with the AFL in some shape or form, but a political career beckons.
He has been a huge advocate for the Indigenous community and he is $6 to replace Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore.
He is $11 to become a Federal Minister and although he’d make a great Prime Minister, he’s $501 to take over from Malcolm Turnbull.
“A move into politics would seem like an obvious progression for Adam Goodes, but we expect the AFL to come to the party with a job offer in the near future,” Jantzen said.
“John Longmire’s job appears safe for the time being, with Goodes at $101 to become an AFL head coach.”
While he has retired, Goodes is still the talk of the AFL world and it appears he may not take part in the traditional half time parade for out going players at this year’s grand final.
Former Bomber and media commentator Tim Watson reckons fans would boo Goodes, due to the ill will that has been cultivated this season.
“I really think people would still boo him,” Watson said on radio.
“Because after all this, after he stood down for a week because of the mental anguish associated with the booing, he came back and there was still booing.
“You hope the bitterness towards him dissipates with time.”
Collingwood president Eddie McGuire – who famously was accused of racism because of a comment he made in regard to Goodes – urged the dual premiership player to take part in the parade.
“I hope the AFL make a real attempt to go back to him – let him have a couple of days, let him have his Mad Monday, settle down and have a week – and later in the week go to him and say ‘come on, we really want you to be there’,” McGuire said on radio.
“I think all fans would love to send him off.
“I know there’s been all this booing at times and at times it’s been gratuitous and other times it’s just been part of the play, but I wouldn’t think anyone would boo Adam Goodes on a farewell lap at the MCG.
“I’d love him to get a big round of applause.”
The man himself was keeping his cards close to his chest when asked if he would take part.
“Rumours are rumours,” Goodes said.
“It’s my last Mad Monday and I want to enjoy it with my team-mates.
“I haven’t even thought about it to be honest.
“I didn’t think we’d lose this weekend.”
Goodes was an absolute steal at pick 43 for the Swans in 1997 and will be remembered for his prodigious talent and versatility, playing on the wing, in the midfield, in the ruck and in the forward line.
He was Australian of the Year in 2014, won the Rising Star in his rookie season, was a four time all Australian and three time club best and fairest.
Whatever happens, Goodes and the Swans’ defeat at the hands of North Melbourne on the weekend has put the West Coast in the box seat for the flag, according to punters.
The Eagles will meet North in next Saturday night’s preliminary final as the $2.55 flag favourite, ahead of Hawthorn ($2.65), Fremantle ($4) and the Kangaroos ($10).
West Coast is a hot $1.23 favourite to beat North Melbourne next Saturday night, with the Kangaroos priced at $4.10.
“North Melbourne’s win, which knocked Sydney out of the finals in straight sets, has enhanced West Coast’s premiership chances, with Fremantle facing the unenviable task of having to defeat a rampaging Hawthorn if it is to earn a spot in the grand final, a challenge punters think is beyond Ross Lyon’s men,” sportsbet.com.au’s Ben Bulmer said.
The Hawks hammered Adelaide and looked every bit the challenger for a third straight premiership, rewarding one punter who had the balls to slap $100,000 on them at $1.31.
“We already paid out on the Hawks winning the flag in July so we’re not at all surprised to see one of our customers plonking $100,000 on the premiers to beat the Crows,” Jantzen said.
The Hawks are now the $1.57 favourite against Fremantle next Friday night, with the Dockers at $2.40.
“If Hawthorn can get over Fremantle they will be a tough proposition for either West Coast, Sydney or North Melbourne in the grand final on their home deck in a fortnight’s time,” Bulmer said.
“Hawthorn have bounced back in style and are likely to cause Fremantle all kinds of trouble in Perth.”
If you love your footy, but AFL’s not your thing, then all eyes should be on South Australia this weekend with Woodville West Torrens installed as favourites to win the SANFL grand final against West Adelaide.
The Eagles are priced at $1.40, while West Adelaide are a $2.85 chance of causing the upset in their first grand final appearance since 2012.
The Eagles are paying $2.20 for a little win and $3.40 for a big win and the line has been set at -17.5 points for the favourites.
“The Eagles have been the team to beat all season long and 50 per cent of all money invested on the SANFL premiership winner throughout the season is on them,” Jantzen said.
What job will Adam Goodes do after football?
Employed by the AFL in some capacity ($2.75)
Lord Mayor ($6)
International ambassador ($7)
ATSIC chairman ($8)
State minister ($9)
Federal minister ($11)
Minister for Indigenous Affairs ($12)
AFL assistant coach ($21)
AFL chief executive officer ($34)
AFL head coach ($101)
State premier ($101)
Prime Minister ($501)
2015 AFL premiership market
West Coast ($2.55)
North Melbourne ($10)
Odds provided by Sportsbet.com.au
2015 AFL preliminary finals market
Fremantle ($2.40, out from $1.92) vs. Hawthorn ($1.60, in from $1.92)
West Coast ($1.21, in from $1.28) vs. North Melbourne ($4.50, out from $3.70)