The byes are done and dusted for 2022, and we now have a little more clarity around which teams have been the best road teams in the game over the first 14 rounds.
We’ve heard it for years – the teams based outside Victoria have it tougher.
Forced to travel interstate almost every second week, they clock up enormous miles as they traverse the country to be part of this sport we love.
Meanwhile, we get some Victorian-based clubs cracking the sads when they have to play at Marvel Stadium instead of the MCG, and vice versa. Or those who get a little nasty when a move away from Kardinia Park is floated.
So, how do the teams fare away from home, and who is travelling best at the moment?
The Mongrel has devised a little ladder to assess who is the best road team in the league. Oh, the Vic teams will still get a look in if they’re good enough, and whilst I fully expect a number of fans to say this system is rigged to favour non-Victorian teams… I really don’t care. Stop your whining.
So, how does it work?
The Road Warrior Ladder is named after one of the best Tag Teams of all-time. Don’t come at me with your Demolition garbage, or your Powers of Pain crap… they were Road Warrior rip-offs… who were, in turn, rip-offs of the 1980s movie, Mad Max.
It was called The Road Warrior in the United States because… geez, I’m not a film buff. Do your own homework.
Anyway, you get four points for an interstate win and two points for a win at an away venue that IS NOT played at the venue you consider your home ground. I don’t care if it’s not your home game – you’re still at the ground you play your home games at. The Road Warrior Ladder Nazi isn’t concerned with your feelings.
Tasmania is considered a home game for Hawthorn. You choose to play your home games there – you cop it. Same with GWS and Canberra – if it’s your choice, you wear it.
Now that my belligerence is out of the way, let’s get to business.
THE ROAD WARRIOR LADDER AFTER ROUND 14
1 – FREMANTLE – 16 POINTS (90 point differential in wins)
2 – MELBOURNE – 14 POINTS (166)
3 – GEELONG – 14 POINTS (145)
4 – SYDNEY – 14 PTS (137)
5 – BRISBANE – 14 POINTS (134)
6 – ST KILDA – 14 POINTS (117)
7 – WESTERN BULLDOGS – 8 POINTS (121)
8 – GWS – 8 POINTS (108)
9 – PORT ADELAIDE – 8 POINTS (70)
10 – GOLD COAST – 8 POINTS (41)
11 – COLLINGWOOD – 6 POINTS (53)
12 – CARLTON – 6 POINTS (42)
13 – RICHMOND 4 POINTS (109)
14 – HAWTHORN – 4 POINTS (64)
15 – WEST COAST – 4 POINTS (13)
16 – ADELAIDE – 4 POINTS (1)
17-18 – ESSENDON, NORTH MELBOURNE – 0 POINTS
The Dockers maintain the narrow lead despite not adding to their score over the last fortnight, whilst the Cats are the biggest movers this week, leaping into the top four. Their win against the Eagles (not a bad game of footy when you consider respective ladder positions) gives them a shot of taking top spot in the not-too-distant future.
And both GWS and the Digs made decent moves up the ladder, each picking up their second interstate win of the year over the last two weeks.
Essendon and North Melbourne… well, they have flat out sucked, but at least the Bombers have managed to win a few at home.
UPCOMING FOUR-POINT GAMES
BRISBANE head to the MCG on Thursday in possibly the biggest clash of the year against the Dees
ESSENDON have the opportunity to open their account with a trip to Optus Stadium to play West Coast… could be very interesting
FREMANTLE head to Marvel to take on the Blues in a massive game
ST KILDA head to the SCG in a cut-throat game against the Swans
ADELAIDE head down to Tassie to take on North Melbourne – I reckon this is a danger game, too
GWS hit the MCG and face the red hot Pies
GOLD COAST hit the road to face Port Adelaide
UPCOMING TWO-POINT GAMES
HAWTHORN head across town to play the Dogs
So, the only game of the week without the capacity to impact this ladder is the Cats hosting the Tigers… at Richmond’s home ground. Gotta love that, right? I am sure Geelong fans are just thrilled. Ripping round of footy coming up.
Wrestling note of the week – Ken Patera – former Intercontinental Champion, returned to the WWF after a stint in jail stemming from an altercation at McDonalds that spiralled out of control and saw several police officers assaulted (never put pickles on a man’s burger when he doesn’t want them!) he immediately targeted former manager, Bobby Heenan. The two engaged in a televised debate where Heenan read the court transcript of Patera’s offences. Vince McMahon quickly deemed that these official statements made it virtually impossible for Patera to be seen as a babyface and the statement by Heenan was bleeped out on WWF TV – not removed, bust bleeped out due to it’s “heinous” nature.
Forget that Patera brutalised a female officer as part of his rampage… it was the statement that was heinous.
Anyway, as far as I know, to this day there is no unedited version of that debate – I would love to hear the exact statement as all reports I’ve read are pretty graphic.
As with any wrestling debate, it ended in violence as Heenan became upset and tried to whip Patera with his belt. Patera – basically twice Heenan’s size, took the belt, wrapped it around Heenan’s neck and injured his neck as he whipped him across the ring. Fun times.