Monday, June 2016, 3.20pm AEST, Melbourne Cricket Ground, watch on Fox Sports, Seven Network
Melbourne Demons: 11th
Collingwood Magpies: 12th
Melbourne Demons: 5-6
Collingwood Magpies: 4-7
Last five match results:
Melbourne Demons: WLWLL
Collingwood Magpies: LWWLL
Melbourne Demons: $1.70 with CrownBet.com.au
Collingwood Magpies: $2.15 with CrownBet.com.au
Melbourne Demons: -6.5 ($1.92 with WilliamHill.com.au)
Collingwood Magpies: +6.5 ($1.92 with WilliamHill.com.au)
THE team that loses the match between Melbourne and Collingwood could kiss their AFL Finals hopes goodbye.
But there is something more at stake here, something that transcends sport.
Former Demons mentor Neale Daniher’s well publicised battle with motor neurone disease will take centre stage at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Monday afternoon as part of the Big Freeze, where celebrities will slide down a ramp into icy water, encouraging people donate money to freeze MND.
There will be plenty of emotion in this one and the players, while focussed on a win, would certainly be proud to take home the Neale Daniher Medal for best player on the ground.
White hot Collingwood captain Scott Pendlebury is the $8 favourite, with powerful Melbourne midfielders Nathan Jones and Jack Viney joined by Pies Steele Sidebottom and Adam Treloar.
All four are stars of the game, but we simply can’t look past Pendlebury as a cut above.
He started the season slowly as he worked back from injury, prompting many to question him.
But his last five weeks of football have been as good as anyone else’s in the competition.
He has snared 30 or more disposals in four of five and is coming off a 30 disposal five mark one goal lone hand against Port Adelaide.
And the Collingwood Rolls Royce will have some added motivation after Magpie great Mick McGuane potted him during the week.
McGuane reckons Taylor Adams should replace Pendlebury as captain of the club as soon as next year, claiming he “looks for easy ball when things aren’t going well” and questioned his leadership.
We reckon Pendles will be plenty fired up for this one after those comments.
If the Magpies aren’t your cup of tea, then it is hard to go past Max Gawn – with one caveat.
Rated a $10 chance to win the medal with sportsbet.com.au, the towering giant has been a revelation for the Demons this season.
But most of his damage has been done away from the club’s Melbourne Cricket Ground home.
But we think he can do some serious damage to the Magpies here.
The big fella has had about a million hit outs this season and chalked up another 50 on the weekend, albeit to go with only eight disposals and no scoreboard impact.
He was far better against Port Adelaide the week before, where he amassed 18 disposals and booted two goals.
If he can hit the scoreboard and take some strong grabs around the grounds to complement his exemplary ruck work, then he must be considered in this market.
If you are looking for a little more value for your bet, how about the very green, but silky skilled Demons rookie Christian Petracca.
The former number two draft pick has slowly but surely solidified a spot in the Demons best 22, with performances like a 24 disposal two goal effort against the Gold Coast earlier in the season and 17 possessions and a goal against the Hawks on the weekend.
Does most of his damage up forward, but if he can get more run through the middle against Collingwood, he will be a solid smokey at the odds of $34.
If you are hunting up a Collingwood smokey and feel a little lucky, how about the big American Mason Cox.
The towering ruckman is a massive $51 to win the medal and for good reason – he has never had more than 10 disposals in an AFL game.
But it’s not all about possessions for this kid.
He just has a spark and plays like a free spirit still learning his craft – which he is, having not taken up the game until recently.
His major impact is on the scoreboard and, with spearhead Travis Cloke dropped once again, it will be up to Cox to carry the bulk of the scoring load.
Match result: Melbourne Demons win ($1.70 with CrownBet.com.au)
Line betting: Melbourne Demons -6.5 ($1.92 with WilliamHill.com.au)
The Demons have already done it once this season, whacking the Magpies by six goals and we don’t see any reason why they can’t repeat the dose. Melbourne pushed Hawthorn all the way last week and goes into this clash as favourite for the first time in over a decade. The Pies season is all but shot after an abysmal effort against Port Adelaide last week and, once they get whacked by the Dees, things will only get worse.
Neale Daniher medal market
Scott Pendlebury 8.00
Nathan Jones 9.00
Steele Sidebottom 9.00
Jack Viney 9.00
Adam Treloar 9.00
Max Gawn 10.00
Bernie Vince 11.00
Jesse Hogan 15.00
Dom Tyson 21.00
Jack Crisp 26.00
Jack Watts 34.00
Christian Petracca 34.00
Jeremy Howe 34.00
Travis Varcoe 41.00
Jack Trengove 41.00
Ben Reid 41.00
Levi Greenwood 41.00
Tom McDonald 51.00
Tomas Bugg 51.00
Brodie Grundy 51.00
Ben Kennedy 51.00
Billy Stretch 51.00
Clayton Oliver 51.00
Chris Dawes 51.00
Jordan De Goey 51.00
Mason Cox 51.00
Oscar McDonald 67.00
James Harmes 67.00
Josh Smith 67.00
Jarryd Blair 67.00
Jesse White 67.00
Dean Kent 67.00
Aaron Vandenberg 67.00
Marley Williams 67.00
Ben Sinclair 67.00
Alan Toovey 81.00
Matthew Goodyear 81.00
Viv Michie 101.00
Ben Crocker 101.00
Neville Jetta 101.00
Josh Wagner 101.00
Tom Phillips 151.00
Jack Grimes 151.00
Jayden Hunt 151.00
Brayden Maynard 151.00
Sam Frost 201.00
Jonathon Marsh 251.00
Nathan J. Brown 251.00
Jack Frost 251.00
Jarrod Witts 251.00
Odds provided by Crownbet.com.au
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