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What the journos think about Melbourne ...

Matt Burgan  March 17, 2017 11:52 AM

Matt Burgan catches up with a range of journalists covering the game to get their views on Melbourne’s fortunes for 2017 …

NICK BOWEN (AFL Media)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? I reckon sixth to eighth

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? Christian Salem

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? Melbourne by four points.

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? 13

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? Jack Viney

 

ASHLEY BROWNE (AFL Media)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? You’ll be pleased to know that I’ve got Melbourne finishing sixth.

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? I’m a massive fan of Jayden Hunt. I love watching him run down the half-back flank. He reminds me a lot of Andrew Obst, back in the day. Am I showing my age? He’s got the same number and hair!

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? I think the Dees are due. I think people are underestimating Melbourne. I love their pre-season and I think there is a bit of resilience there that they might show against St Kilda and at Etihad Stadium. I suspect they’ve (Melbourne) set themselves for this one too.

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? I’ve got you finishing sixth, so I reckon 13 or 14 wins.

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? For the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy – a great Melbourne High [School] man – I will go for C.Petracca.

 

TOM BROWNE (Channel 7)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? I think Melbourne will finish seventh

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? Christian Petracca

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? I think St Kilda at Etihad Stadium

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? 13

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? Jack Viney

 

DANIEL CHERNY (The Age)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? Fifth

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? Angus Brayshaw

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? St Kilda

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? 13 ½

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? Max Gawn

 

ROHAN CONNOLLY (The Age/1116 SEN)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? I’ve got the Demons seventh on my ladder. I’ve just done it in the last couple of days. I they’re definitely going to be an improver this year. I watched them against Carlton [in the JLT Community Series] and they were particularly impressive. They looked really slick and the skill level had really improved. They’ve got a nice balance between hardness and outside run. I’ve been really impressed with them – they’ll definitely be one of the improvers.

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? I think Jayden Hunt. The obvious answer is Christian Petracca and I absolutely think he’s going to have a breakout year. But I liked Hunt from the first time I saw him. His run off half-back – he’s got real flair and a sense of adventure, the way he plays footy. I love watching him play, so I think he can go to another level this year.

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? Sorry, but I think I’m going to have to tip St Kilda. They’ve had the wood on Melbourne for a long time and while I think Melbourne is going to improve, I think St Kilda is also going to improve. I think I’ve got St Kilda fifth on the ladder, so by virtue of that alone, I’m obliged to tip St Kilda.

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? I reckon 13 isn’t out of the question, particularly if you’re going to finish seventh.

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? Nathan Jones is a perennial isn’t he and I’m sure he’ll finish high again, but I might go Jack Viney again. He’s a ripper and that extra mantle of captaincy might push his game up another cog – not that it needs to be pushed. I think he’s at the forefront of a generational change at Melbourne, so I think he can win this year’s best and fairest.

 

JULIAN de STOOP (FOX SPORTS)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? Fifth

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? That’s a tough question. I’m going to say – and I know he’s played a few games, but he missed a few through injury last year – Angus Brayshaw.

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? Melbourne will finish higher than St Kilda, but St Kilda will win round one, because it’s at Etihad Stadium.

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? 14

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? Clayton Oliver

 

SAM EDMUND (HERALD SUN)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? Eighth

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? My one to watch is going to be Jordan Lewis. I’m really interested to see how he fits in. I’m looking forward to seeing how Jordan goes about it. It’s always fascinating to see an elder statesman go to another club.

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? I like the Saints at Etihad Stadium, but I was picking between Melbourne and St Kilda for that eighth spot, and I’ve gone for Melbourne. But I think the Saints will win round one.

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? We’ll go for 12. I think this season will be even stevens. It’ll be a quagmire for the eighth spot, so I’ll say 12 wins for the Dees.

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? Max Gawn

 

NAT EDWARDS (AFL Media)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? I think Melbourne is going to finish eighth on the ladder this year.

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? Christian Petracca – he’s always exciting to watch and I really think he’s going to make his mark this year.

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? This is a tough one and I know a lot of people are tipping St Kilda, but I am going to tip the mighty Dees.

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? This is a hard one. I’ll say 12.

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? Jack Viney – his first year as co-captain and it’s hard to go past him.

 

MATT GRANLAND (1116 SEN)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? I think they’ll finish just outside the eight.

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? Probably the obvious one is Christian Petracca – I think he’s going to have a breakout year. I think he’s going to catapult – not quite to the elite, but very close.

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? I’m saying St Kilda, only because it’s at Etihad Stadium and they don’t lose there often and they haven’t lost to Melbourne since 2006. So, St Kilda based on that.

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? I think 11 or 12.

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? Jack Viney

 

GLENN McFARLANE (Herald Sun)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? Eighth

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? Everyone is going to say Christian Petracca, but that’s OK because he’s outstanding.

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? This is a hard one. I’ve tipped Melbourne to finish in the eight and St Kilda not to, so I’ll tip Melbourne.

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? I’ll say 13.

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? Jack Viney

 

TOM MORRIS (Fox Sports)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? Sixth

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? Angus Brayshaw – he’s an absolute jet.

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? Melbourne will win that. I think we’re due and I actually think we’re better than St Kilda, especially with Leigh Montagna out.

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? 14 – but I think we’ve got the potential to win even more.

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? I think Max Gawn and I think the no third man up rule will actually help him out. He’ll dominate even more.

 

JASON PHELAN (Australian Associated Press)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? Seventh

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? Christian Petracca

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? Melbourne

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? 13

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? Jack Viney will go back-to-back

 

PETER RYAN (AFL Media)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? Seventh

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? We’ll all excited about Christian Petracca, but I think Clayton Oliver is the one to watch.

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? I think Melbourne will win and break their St Kilda hoodoo.

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? I’ve penciled in 13 or 14 wins at this stage.

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? That’s a good question. Tom McDonald is going to defend vigorously and finish fourth in the best and fairest, but I think Jack Viney will win it.

 

NATHAN SCHMOOK (AFL Media)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? I’ve got Melbourne in the top eight this year – I think they’re going to jump up this year. I reckon six to eight is a big step for them and a good step forward.

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? Christian Petracca. I covered a couple of Melbourne pre-season games and he was electric. I know it wasn’t the most consistent three-game patch for him, but the best of his footy was enormous.

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? I think Melbourne is just ahead. I think Melbourne’s got a bigger mass of talent available for their 22, and I think they’ll just edge St Kilda. I think there is a big rivalry looming between those two clubs.

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? I think 14 will get them into that bottom half of the top eight. Anything more would be a bonus.

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? Jack Viney. He’s just in his prime now and he plays a wonderful style of game that would be really popular with the coaches.

 

SCOTT SPITS (The Age)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? They’re going to have a better year, but I’m afraid they’re just going to miss the finals and finish ninth.

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? I’ve actually just written about this player and I think he will be one to watch this year: Joel Smith. He’s a rookie and one to watch.

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? Saints by 15 points in a very good game.

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? 11. They’ll just miss the eight.

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? I don’t think I’m going out on a limb by saying Christian Petracca.

 

MARK STEVENS (Channel 7)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? Ninth

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? Shaun Smith’s son, Joel.

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? St Kilda, sorry!

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? 12

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? Jack Viney

 

ROGER VAUGHAN (Australian Associated Press)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? Eighth

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? Christian Petracca

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? Geez, that’s a good one. It’s a 50/50. I’m going to go Saints. I reckon they’re slightly ahead of the Dees at this point.

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? I’ve got them in eight, so that generally means 13 wins

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? Jack Viney

 

COURTNEY WALSH (The Australian)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? I think top eight. Seventh or eighth.

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? I want to see how Jack Viney goes as captain and whether that takes him further and how he embraces the responsibility. I think he will.

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? That’s a tough one. I’m going to buck the trend and go for Melbourne. It’s obviously hard for Melbourne at Etihad Stadium, but streaks are made to be broken and I heard Josh Mahoney recently say ‘you have a poor record, when you’re a poor club and as you’re improving, you become a better club and have a better record’.

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? 12

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? If I’m right, with seeing Jack Viney to go another level, I’ll say Jack Viney.

 

ROB WATERS (Channel 10)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? I have Melbourne just inside the eight, so it’s the big breakthrough year for the Dees.

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? Clayton Oliver is a really exciting young midfielder and he might go past a lot of players in 2017.

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? I don’t like Melbourne’s record at Etihad Stadium and I agree with a few others that I have the Saints winning that, just because of the Etihad factor.

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? 13 or 14

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? I’ll go with the new co-captain Jack Viney.

 

REBECCA WILLIAMS (Herald Sun)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? Ninth

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? Christian Petracca

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? St Kilda

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? 12

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? Jack Viney

 

LAUREN WOOD (Herald Sun)

Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? I think it’s an interesting one. I had it in the Herald Sun magazine that I think a whole heaps of teams are going to be on the same amount of points. I think Melbourne will just sneak in and finish seventh or eighth.

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? Christian Petracca. I’ve been down to a few training sessions lately and he’s as fit as a bull and absolutely ready to go like a bull at a gate. He’s going to be firing.

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? This is a tough one. I spoke to [St Kilda captain] Jarryn Geary about this and they are two teams that tend to be the barometre for one another aren’t they? I think the Saints, but it’ll be close. Sorry!

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? If I’ve said seventh or eighth, I think the magic number is 12.

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? Jack Viney – he’s an absolute star.