Friday, June 23, 2017

NRL 2017 Round 16: Q. What do inside balls and books have in common?

A.  Queenslanders can't read either of them.

It has been a roller coaster of emotions for rugby league in the lead-up to, during, and the horrific crash following State of Origin.  New South Wales were jizzing in their pants about possibly winning a series, Queensland were jacking each other off about having some good players in their team for Game 2, commentators were fellating themselves about the prospect of Andrew Fifita running at Coen Hess, the fans were all chafed and sore at the thought of seeing Slater vs Tedesco, and everyone who was anyone was confused and naked about what Tim Glasby was doing there at all.

And in the end, NSW snatched defeat from the jaws of victory while QLD stood in a tightly-bound circle of maroon-coloured flesh, giving full credit to the fact that they are “from” Queensland, which gives them a weird sense of importance and achievement.  It has since been revealed that Darius Boyd broke his thumb, Jarryd Hayne is a fucking dickwit, Cooper Cronk is overrated, Mitchell Pearce still can’t play football, Valentine Holmes is a pussy , we’re still not sure why Glasby was picked, OH AND JOHNATHON THURSTON HAS BROKEN HIMSELF AND WILL BE OUT FOR THE REST OF THE SEASON. 
Yes, Australia’s champion of champions has well and truly fucked himself, his club, and his state.  Sure, playing footy with what looked like a dislocated shoulder is tough as fuck and his ability and strength to play on have giving him the honour of being named as a true hero with a heart twice the size of Pharlap’s who was cut from granite and kicked Thor in the dick for looking at him wrong, but… was it all worth it?  Have Queensland won the battle only to put themselves in jeopardy of losing the war?  Who will step up?  Milford?  Not likely.  Cronk?  I wouldn’t pick him to play himself in a midday movie about his own life.  I’ve seen octopuses with more grace on a footy field than him this year.  Munster is too raw to throw into an important game, and I don’t think that the world is ready for Corey Norman to be unleashed just yet.

To be honest, I don’t think it will matter who Queensland pick; without JT at the helm, they have no structure, no plan and (as we saw in Game 1), a complete lack of urgency.

Ah well.  Congrats to NSW on a series win. 

Round 16

Warriors 1.60 vs Canterbury 2.45  

Tigers 2.35 vs Gold Coast 1.62

What a fucking terrible double-header for a Friday night.  Why would they put four teams who are all in a race not to be the wooden spoon contenders on the same night?  We’re all still massively erect from Wednesday night’s State of Origin, and this is what they’ve given us as a follow-up?  BULLSHIT.  Go fuck yourselves.
I’ll still watch it, but.

North QLD 2.00 vs Penrith 1.85

Yeah I’m gonna go with the Pennies on this one.  I figure it’s about their time to shine.  And because they had less people involved in Origin.  And because of Josh Mansour.

Canberra Raiders WOO 1.56 vs Brisbane 2.50

You fucking useless Raiders had better win this one.  If not, stick a fucking fork in them, because they are DONE.  Imagine losing to the Bulldogs, Knights and an Origin-affected Brisbane Under 15 side all in the one fucking season.  It’s enough to make you say, “Well, I’m not going for them again next year” (but then you do).

Roosters 1.33 vs Melbourne 3.45

Another great move from the NRL to put another potential blockbuster on during Origin so that none of the drawcard players are there.  Even better, put the game on in Adelaide.  On paper, you’d expect a team without Slater, Cronk, Smith and Chambers to struggle, but I think an upset is very much on the cards here. 

St George 1.24 vs Newcastle 4.25

It will be interesting to see if St George can pull out of their mid-season nosedive, but that’s pretty much the only interesting thing that could come out of this game.

Cronulla 1.60 vs Manly 2.40

Cronulla might crack the shits and really fire up for this game, seeing as they were all shithouse on Wednesday night.  Dirty cheating Manly also have a fucking brilliant record against the dirty cheating Sharks, so this one could be mildly interesting, like watching a documentary about frogs.  

Friday, June 16, 2017

NRL 2017 - Round 15: State of Origin 2

Queensland shocked absofuckinglutely no one by naming their Origin 2 side that was chock-a-block filled with people who they should have picked for Game 1, and bereft of the dead fucking weight that lost them a game a few weeks ago.  Personally I still don’t think it’s the best team of Queenslanders that they could have cobbled together, but that’s probably because Shannon Noll is busy next Wednesday night (strip club appointment, followed by a lot of drinking).   
NSW did what New South Wales do, which is to pick the same bunch of players again.  The difference this time is that they won a game, so this time it actually makes a bit of sense.  

Round 15

Souths vs Titans

The Origin-unaffected Rabbitohs vs the Budget Broncos who have 7 regular players out on a Friday night…  It’s almost enough to make you turn over to watch AFL.  But I won't, because this game might get a bit funny.  

Storms vs Cowboys

I have no idea who the fuck would have scheduled this game between two of the competition favourites to take place during a period in the season where both teams are missing about thirty-eight players each.  My prediction:  the Origin-star-less Melbourne Storm will narrowly defeat the Kane Linnett-led North Queensland Cowboy superstars. 

Cronulla vs Tigers

If all things go as they should, by the end of the round, Newcastle will no longer be on the bottom of the ladder.  Go Knights.

Eels vs St George

Fuck, I have no idea.   


If the history of NRL has taught us nothing, it's that State of Origin always goes to the third game, except for when it doesn't.  So, through basic maths, you can see that Queensland are specials for this game.  Put your house on it, but only if you have another house as back-up.  I don't want to see you homeless.

The likeness is amazing

Thursday, June 08, 2017

NRL 2017 Round 14: The Mighty Canberra Raiders

As a Raiders fan, I have been through many years of rubbish, witnessed season after season of lost games, missed kicks, dropped balls, bad passes, devastating injuries, poor tackles, horrible decisions and shithouse performances. 
We’ve dropped players for poor form, for fucking dogs, for being pissheads, for being dickheads, for being too old and to make way for a new generation.  We’ve brought in coaches with good track records at other clubs, and dropped them for not getting the same results at our club.  We hired new coaches for rebuilding, a different coach to rebuild that one again and another one because those ones didn’t work out.  We’ve used experienced coaches, rookie coaches and ex-players.  And we’ve fired them for bringing in too many dickheads, for not getting rid of all of the dickheads, and just because other teams are getting new coaches and sometimes it’s nice to have new things. 
Somewhere along the way, there was some football played, and not all of it was great.  The Raiders were more often than not seemingly content with being “part of the finals series” then “just outside the top eight” and “not quite on the bottom”, until we were happy just to “be a part of the competition.”
Through some rare good planning, good recruitment or just plain good luck, last year’s Raiders team clicked together like fresh Lego.  I don’t know what they were like off the footy field; I don’t know if they’re all good mates who have barbecues during summer and invite the whole team and their mums, or if they have each other’s mobile numbers and send emoji eggplants to each other at 3am; I don’t know if they even know each other’s real names, but I do know that in 2016, the team was fucking great at rugby league on the field, and played like they were in a coming-of-age movie where they learnt that playing as a star team was better than playing as a team of stars.
They didn’t win the whole comp – maybe they were overawed by the situation of playing finals football, maybe they were just getting tired, maybe they were sick of running through injuries that were already 20 weeks old, maybe they had an off day, maybe it was Shannon Boyd’s potato salad that made everybody sick.  No, they didn’t win, but they went close; they played exciting football and made a shit-tin of new fans in the process.  And everyone said, “Next year.”
Well this is next year.  This is supposed to be our year.  And at the halfway point of the season, we’re sitting around 9th place on the ladder, and yet to beat a top-eight side.  Sure, we’ve been in the contest for 90% of our games, with three golden-point losses and a couple of games that were decided by 4 points.  If we’d won those games, the Raiders would be sitting in 2nd place on the ladder right now.  But we didn’t win those games, and just managed to crawl choking and spluttering past a depleted Roosters and Parramatta team.  And with each more disappointing performance, the fans comfort themselves by repeating “at least we’re not Newcastle,” except we lost to them as well.  And then we watch an out-of-form Panthers team put in a 38-0 performance over the Bulldogs and we think “well at least we’re not Canterbury lol look at Des Hasler’s hair,” until we remember that they beat us as well, without their best prop and their key playmaker.  And even though the Green Machine fell to a team without substitutes, a kicking game or anyone able to tackle, the media release has been the same:  “we’re only losing by a couple of points, and a win is not far away.” 
It’d better fucking not be too far away.  Our last premiership was in 1994, which is getting into dangerous meme territory.  Now the only team we can make fun of is the Warriors, and even they made a grand final more recently than us.
Also, with that 1994 team, only winning one year was a bit disappointing.  When all 13 of your starting line-up and a couple of your reserves are international and Origin representatives, you really should be dominant for a fucking decade.  But that’s just me.
For the Green Machine tragics, here’s some Ricky Stuart magic that might make everyone feel a bit better about life.  How come Sezer can't throw these kinds of passes?  

Round 14

Cronulla (1.61) vs Melbourne (2.38)

With Cooper Cronk being “rested” by Melbourne, I can’t see anything but a Cronulla victory tonight, and that makes me sad.  It would be great if everyone was really injured by the end of the game and had to retire from playing forever.

Manly (1.21) vs Newcastle (4.60)

Daly Cherry-Evans is playing his little heart out at the moment, and is in danger of being picked for Origin 2 if he keeps this kind of malarkey going.  Newcastle… well, you just have to love them, don’t you? 

Brisbane (1.24) vs Souths (4.15)

Things that happened when Souths were good:  Flappy Bird, Chris Martin and Gwenny P broke up, Courtney Love found the missing Malaysian Airlines plane on Google Earth, How I Met Your Mother finished and Sharknado 2 was released. 

Gold Coast (1.73) vs Warriors (2.15)

No one cares.

Penrith (1.82) vs Canberra (2.04)

Ok, so I’ve had a fair spray at Canberra already, but I think this is going to be the game that turns their season around.  Just saying that gives me goosebumps.  No, it’s just a rash.  Never mind.  WOO.  GO RAIDERS WOO.

Parramatta (2.00) vs North Queensland (1.85)

I do like the enthusiasm of Parra at the moment.  I wouldn’t hate for them to win this one, but they probably won’t.  It’s nice to see the Cowboys winning without Thursty Thurston for a change too.  I don't mind who wins this one, and I hope everyone has a great game, has fun and enjoys the spirit of good-hearted competition.  

Wests Tigers (4.35) vs Roosters (1.23)

Normally you’d just say “whoever is playing the Tigers will knock up a cricket score” but the Roosters will probably make it look a bit harder than it should. 

Canterbury (2.67) vs St George (1.50)

At the start of the year, I had picked Canterbury to be fucking shithouse, and St George to be just as bad.  Just goes to show that I’m right about half the time, and the other half I’m not far off.

Anthony Watts was an occasional player for the Cowboys and Sharks, and despite never actually playing a game for the Roosters, was dropped by them twice.  His greatest achievement on the field was biting another player on the dick. 

Following the end of his rugby league career, he joined two bikie gangs, the Finks and the Mongols, and was surprisingly arrested for “gang-related crimes.”  He was arrested a second time for selling steroids, and a third time for beating up an old man on the street.  We can rest assured that this pillar of society is a free man again today.

"I was wearing a mouthguard and there’s no way I bit him on the dick. It’s pretty shithouse to be at the centre of something like this, even though I've been through a lot in my career."-      Anthony Watts

Funny, he doesn't look like a criminal

Friday, June 02, 2017

NRL 2017 Round 13: Remember when QLD was good at football?

It had to happen to Queensland eventually; the same thing that has happened to pretty much every great sporting side that has been together for a long time - the players get a little bit older and a little bit shitter every year, until they're just being picked based on what they have done or what they could do, or just being selected out of loyalty because they deserve a good send off.

Then one day, they aren’t selected, maybe due to injury or lack of fitness, personal reasons, off-field indiscretions, the birth of their child, a religious holiday, whatever it is, they’re just not there.  So then you have that group of players who have always been on the cusp of representative glory, those guys who have always been just outside the best team in the comp, but everyone has agreed that they are the "next generation" to lead the team to glory.  
The problem is that they are not the players that they replaced, despite having been touted as superstars of tomorrow or future captains of their country for however long.  And all of a sudden, they get put into a whole new level of sporting performance in front of a crowd who have grown accustomed to winning, and pit against another team who are already a decade into their “rebuilding” phase.

Cooper Cronk joined Thurston in the halves to fill the gap left by Lockyer, which should have been illegal to start with.  They're called "once in a generation" players for a reason, and to have three players of this calibre is just plain nonsense. However, with JT out and Cronk looking to retire, QLD will have to bring in their “next best” players – players whose paychecks match their potential but do not reflect their performance: Milford and Daly Cherry-Evans will be mixed with Ash Taylor and Corey Norman over the next few years in a classic case of “remember when NSW changed their halves pairings every fucking year?  Let’s try that, maybe it’ll work for us.” 

Over the next year, Smith will be winding down, Slater is already on the out, a decade of service from Thaiday is coming to an end, O'Neill and Chambers combined aren't as good as Inglis (who may never play again), Guerra has played his last, Nate Myles has outstayed his welcome by about three years, and Matt Scott’s future is undecided.   

Some hard decisions are on the cards. Kevvie Walters has come into QLD Origin at the worst fucking time possible. 

Round 13

Melbourne Storm ($1.14) vs Newcastle Knights ($6.05)

No one is really giving Newcastle a chance in this one – and probably for good reason.  Hopefully the Storm’s attack can finally click and they’ll put on about 90 points.  They should all be well-rested after doing fuck-all on Wednesday night anyway.

Parramatta Eels ($1.67) vs NZ Warriors ($2.30)

This could either be the highest scoring game of the year or the lowest.  Either way, it will probably be one of the worst.

St George Dragons ($1.32) vs Wests Tigers ($3.55)

Jimmy Tedesco will go back to his regular club form and not try at all during this game.  He has proven so far this year that not playing well during the year has any influence on representative selection, so he will continue to rest on his reputation.  Dragons are specials for this game, and should notch up at least 30 points. 

Sydney Roosters ($1.69) vs Brisbane Broncos ($2.17)

It’s a classic game of “who the fuck is that guy?” as both teams will be heavily affected by players backing up from Origin, resting from Origin, still being drunk from Origin, couldn’t give a fuck because Origin, did I ever tell you about the time I won Origin.  The Chooks have been playing some pretty ugly footy this year, so it wouldn’t surprise me if Brissy get up, actually.  But they probably won’t. 

North QLD Cowboys ($1.52) vs Gold Coast Titans ($2.60)

I wonder if the Good Cowboys or Bad Cowboys will turn up?  I wonder if the Good Titans or Bad Titans will turn up?  Two teams completely incapable of playing in Townsville to battle it out in what is bound to be one of the most inconsequential games of the season. 

Manly Sea Eagles ($1.91) vs Canberra Fucking Raiders ($1.91)

The Raiders are yet to beat a quality team this year. This game could determine if either of these sides are, in fact, quality sides in 2017.  A year-defining game that no one should miss.   

Canterbury Bulldogs ($2.05) vs Penrith Panthers ($1.80)

With Moylan moving into the half-line and Josh “Mansauce” Mansour back on the paddock, things are finally looking up for the Pennies.  Here’s hoping that the Doggies can get up by about 22 points before losing this week.  It’s always a nice little side-game to play.

Why I don't play football:  I don't want to be murdered by this guy

Friday, May 26, 2017

NRL 2017 Round 12: State of Origin

Welcome to NRL Valhalla, where it’s non-stop State of Origin shenanigans from your morning line of coke to your last rooftop Cruiser.  This is what all NRL fans look forward to all year, which is weird that it’s kind of in the middle of the season.  It’s state against state, mate against mate, plate against plate, figure-of-eight against figure-of-eight, basal metabolic rate against basal metabolic rate. 

As always, the main discussion from the punters has revolved around the player selections for Australian rugby league’s Night of Nights.  This year, there has been an unexpected twist on proceedings though, as instead of just NSW picking 17 rubbish players, QLD have joined in on the fun too.  After years of selecting the greatest athletes that Australia can muster, those crazy, backwards, inbred bastards have finally done it:  they didn’t pick a fully fit and in-form Billy Slater.  
I wonder how that phone call went:
“Hey Billy, we aren’t picking you.  We’ve decided that we owe it to Dane Gagai and Corey Oates to keep them in the side.  And we can’t break up the Chambers and O’Neill centre pairing.  I guess this explains just how much we think of you.”

This is the first real look at the future of what the Queensland State of Origin team will be like – Cronk and Thurston will be retiring, Inglis is as busted as my left toenail, and Slater has apparently slept with the coach’s wife. 

For those playing at home, here’s the team and my thoughts on the selection:
1 Darius Boyd
Would be a great player if he wasn’t afraid to take a tackle. 

2 Corey Oates
Looks like he should be a really good player.  He isn’t, but he looks like he should be.

3 Will Chambers
“Well, if we picked Corey Oates, I guess we’ve set a precedence for mediocrity.”

4 Justin O’Neill
“Why stop our mediocrity with Chambers?”

5 Dane Gagai
It’s beyond a joke now.  Are you sure there’s not four shitter players you can put into your backline?

6 Anthony Milford
Remember how NSW kept picking players who were really, really terrible – like Reynolds and Soward and Hodkinson, and essentially ruined their representative careers?  It’s nice that QLD have adopted a similar approach.  I can’t wait for this little fat fuck to just fucking fuck off. 

7 Cooper Cronk
Well, it’s nice that someone gets their swansong game, and it might as well be the guy that deserves it the least.

8 Dylan Napa
If giving away a lot of penalties and being ugly is your thing, who am I to judge?

9 Cameron Smith
Nice of Cam to take a break from drowning puppies in his spare time to play a little footy.

10 Nate Myles
Nate Fucking Myles?  Jesus, why not just give Artie Beetson a call-up?  Yes, I know he’s dead.  It’s sad. 

11 Josh Papalii
Worst haircut in the NRL, and that’s saying something.  Also called the cops on himself twice because he was drink-driving.  I would have just called a cab instead.

12 Matt Gillett
Best second rower in the world, according to Matt Gillett and Matt Gillett’s mum.

13 Josh McGuire
So bland that you sometimes think that Corey Parker is still out there.

14 Michael Morgan
Everyone’s favourite “go to” man when you need someone to not do a job as well as another bloke, but also need someone to blame when it goes balls-up.

15 Sam Thaiday
Only gets picked so that he can retire earlier and get a job on Fox Sports.  Hopefully it happens pretty soon; those jerseys don’t go past XXXXL.

16 Aidan Guerra
When I was younger, it used to be considered an honour to be selected to play for Queensland.  They had this weird passion and aggression that bordered on psychotic.  Now they just hand out positions to anyone who looks (and plays) a bit retarded.

17 Jacob Lillyman
Fuck me, this really is the “Make a Wish” Foundation, isn’t it?

And in the Blue corner... 

1 James Tedesco
Is absolutely incapable of passing, has terrible teeth and is nowhere near as good as people have told him.
2 Blake Ferguson
Despite him being a decent performer – especially in big games – I really wouldn’t want him in my team.  He’d diddle my beers Cruisers and then try and hit up every woman I’ve ever known. 

3 Josh Dugan
A broken old man who once went over 500 days without a try assist and then asked for more money.  Noice. 

4 Jarryd Hayne
Failed at American Football and Rugby 7s, and will most likely keep up his current form.  

5 Brett Morris
I think BMoz seems like a decent bloke and all, but surely to fuck there are better players out there who aren’t 90 years old with mechanical hips?  I’m just happy that they didn’t pick both of the Morris twins, because I can never remember which one the good one is.

6 James Maloney
Looks like the kind of guy who actually would try and do the “put your dick through the hole in a popcorn box trick” but also be the guy who eats the popcorn and then whacks off in the cinema. 

7 Mitchell Pearce
Is there only so the media can continue to run headlines about how he has “redeemed himself” and “turned a corner” and doesn’t "sexually assault women" or “fuck dogs” or “piss on people’s couches” anymore.  Fuck Mitchell, watch out that someone doesn't steal your halo.  

8 Aaron Woods
So soft that NASA want to research him so astronauts going to Mars have something nice to lie on.

9 Nathan Peats
Was only picked because people thought he should have been picked last year.  Fuck it, at least it’s not Robbie Farah again.  At this this time someone might even get a pass out of dummy half. 

10 Andrew Fifita
The biggest dickhead in the entire NRL, which is quite an achievement.  Unfortunately he is also playing really quite well.  But then, anyone in the same team as Aaron Woods will have to work pretty hard.  We are all anticipating which convicted killer he’ll be supporting this year.

11 Josh Jackson
The only person in the entire world that rates him would be some delusional Rabbitohs fan.  Looks like he enjoys watching commercials because they don’t go for too long.

12 Boyd Cordner
Yeah he’s pretty good.  Is captain by default.  Has a superhero chin, which is always useful. 

13 Tyson Frizell
Wears black boots instead of fluoro ones like some nerd.  Is probably too good to play for NSW, to be honest.  He is torn between being awesome on a losing team, or being moderate in a winning side.

14 David Klemmer
He was that kid who pulled the wings off flies and tried to blow up frogs by sticking a cracker in its butt.  Is now the kind of man who punches smaller blokes in the back of the head.  Will steal all of your cigarettes and go through the photos on your phone. 

15 Wade Graham
What a fucking waste of a bench spot.  Either pick him in the team or leave him out.  What’s the point of picking an 80-minute 80% impact player to produce 110% for 20 minutes?  None, that's who.  Exactly.

16 Jake Trbojevic
Gets the sympathy vote because his more talented brother was injured in the lead-up to Origin.  I predict that he will drop the ball on his first touch.

17 Jack Bird
Will do anything for a quick buck, including sit on the bench for 70 minutes of Origin.  Hope he has a finger spinner, cause that’s all he’s going to be doing.  Seems like the kind of bloke who is happy to have peaked in high school.

Round 12:

Souths ($1.82) vs Parramatta ($2.08)

I have a feeling that this one is going to go yuge.  I think there will be a focus on scoring tries, and less so on tackling anyone.  I think Souths will come out winners in a 36-28 shemozzle of a game.

NZ Warriors ($1.38) vs Brisbane ($3.15)

Benji is playing for Brissy.  Aw yeah.  That’s all you need to know.  Despite the Broncs having the majority of their team out, I wouldn’t put it past them to sneak this one in.  I also wouldn’t put it past the Warriors to do their usual Warrior thing and move on upwards during the Origin period.  

Cronulla ($1.57) vs Canterbury ($2.48)

I honestly don’t care.  Go sports!

Canberra Fucken Raiders ($1.40) vs Sydney Roosters ($3.05)

The Raiders had better fucken win against an under-strength Roosters team.  Sure, they couldn’t beat Newcastle, but that was different (not really).  Raiders to clap their way to victory.  Woo Raiders woo. 

QLD ($1.94) vs NSW ($1.90)

To put a smidge of perspective on things for this game, the last time QLD didn’t have a bloke called Johnathan Thurston in their team, the Blues halves were Brad Fittler and Trent Barrett.  To say that the Maroons have built a team around him is probably a bit of an understatement.  This is the time for NSW to get the upper hand – QLD will be with a new halves pairing; one of which is a fucking spud and the other has one eye on his retirement pension, a pussy of a fullback, the worst centres in the world, two deadshit wingers and the worst bench players that have ever graced the game.

Still, they’ll probably fucking win. 

Image result for nrl state of origin
Poor Darius will be missing having someone good to help him out

Thursday, May 18, 2017

NRL Round 11: When you'd rather have the Regular Clap than do the Viking Clap

Huh.  Another week of NRL, hey?  Yeah.  I just hope that everyone tries really hard and has a good time.  It would also be nice if no one got hurt.  Good luck to everyone; I think it would be nice if all of the games ended in a draw so every team gets points and no one leaves disappointed.  That would be really, really nice.
It has been a hard week for me. 
You'd probably have to go back to Harold Godwinson's victory over Harald Hardrada at Stamford Bridge in 1066 to find a more impressive victory by a group of knights over a group of Vikings than happened last weekend, and I’m still not over it. 
I don’t want to talk about it. 

Round 11 

Cronulla Sharks (1.50) vs North Queensland Cowboys (2.50)

Cowboys were learning how to play without Thurston, then their back-up half went and injured himself.  I don’t know how they will go with a back-up back-up half.  Probably not well.  Hopefully not well.  For the sake of my tipping, if nothing else.

New Zealand Warriors (1.48) vs St George Dragons (2.65)

I’m still trying to work out why the Warriors are such firm favourites for this game, considering how much they suck.  If you have $10 that you don’t know what to do with, throw it on the Dragons.  Or give it to me.  Actually don’t, I’ll probably just put it on the Dragons.

Brisbane Broncos (1.18) vs Wests Tigers (4.75)

Poor Tigers.  James Roberts is probably going to destroy the absolute fuck out of their left-edge defence.  I would, if I was James Roberts.  I'd do a lot of things if I was him, to be honest, and very few of them would be related to cocaine.

Gold Coast Titans (1.60) vs Manly Sea Eagles (2.35)

I don’t trust either of these teams.  I am tipping the Manly Sea Eagles because I’m a freakin idiot, even though one of their best players died last weekend.  Well, he didn’t die, just his career.  Also, not his career, his knee.  And it didn’t die, it’s just destroyed.  Well, not destroyed, it’s just fucked for the season.  But only for the next four weeks or so. 

Parramatta Eels (2.34) vs Canberra Raiders (1.61)

Go Raiders.  I guess.  Woo.
If I was them, I’d run at Mitchell Moses, because he’s way smaller than everyone else and doesn’t know how to tackle.  I’d avoid the big blokes in the middle though.  Rugby league – it’s a thinking game. 

Newcastle Knights (3.70) vs Penrith Panthers (1.28)

Can the Knights go back-to-back and win two in a row?  Probably not.  But it’s nice to think about. 

Canterbury Bulldogs (2.65) vs Eastern Suburb Roosters (1.48)

I feel like this game was already played last week, but it was just the Dogs getting fucked on by a better team and the Roosters giving a bit of stick to a shit team. 

South Sydney Rabbitohs (3.05) vs Melbourne Storm (1.38)

Yeah I reckon the Melbournes will win this one.  They gurgled their way to a loss last weekend by forgetting how to defend, which was interesting.  Souths played like it was 2014 again, but it was only against the Tigers, so let’s not get too carried away with anything.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

NRL 2017 Round 10: Sex, drugs & NRL

Remember at school when you went on camp and you could get away with a bit more stuff like swearing and fighting, and even though you were still with your classmates and your teacher was there and he kept telling you that you were representing the school so you couldn’t carve your initials and the “Superman S onto every tree you saw and you still had to call him “Mr Dingle” and you knew that you’d have to do some kind of assignment about what you learned at camp, it didn’t really feel like school?  That’s kind of what has happened to the NRL this week.  Players, juniors, officials, everyone’s got white line fever. 

In case you’ve been too stoned lately, just about everyone involved in rugby league and their mums (well, five people) were pinged for cocaine use or possession over one weekend, resulting in bans, suspensions, investigations, finger-pointing and a whole lot of argy-bargey for good measure. 

First of all was old mate Shaun Kenny Dowall, who took some time out of being shit at footy to get caught with some blow in a Sydney nightclub.

He has subsequently been dropped by the Roosters and will await further action by the NRL.  He responded by saying, “I don’t do drugs.”  I also do not do drugs, but the difference between me and SKD is that I don’t carry them around either. 

It’s not great news for Kenny-Dowall, who has been struggling with his form this year, and is coming off contract at the end of the season.  There is a bright side to the story though, as it gives dickheads like me plenty of opportunity to take the piss and use phrases like “first time he’s kept possession of anything” and “they tried to lay other charges on him, but were dropped” and of course “he was intercepted by police,” which just gives me an excuse to show this clip of one of the worst NRL plays in the history of ever However, it still might work out well for SKD, as getting arrested is probably his best chance of being re-signed by an NRL team for next season.  We do love a redemption story. 

A day or so after Shaun decided to ruin his career, Kevin Proctor and Jesse Bromwich from the New Zealand international team decided to get loose after losing a Test match, and hit up a bloke outside Cube nightclub for cocaine.  According to CCTV, the pair snorted some powder off a bloke’s mobile phone in the street, and both players claim that this kind of behaviour is very much out of character.  It sure does reek of a nervous first-time drug user; approaching a stranger on the street at 5am and asking “hey mate, do you have any coke?” and then sharing a few lines off his mobile fucking phone.   At the very least, it's the best promotion that Cube has had for a while.

Very out of character indeed.  Proctor even went so far as to say that the image on the CCTV wasn’t him.  If you are ever asked to identify Kevin Proctor, you have exactly three options out of 7 billion people on earth:  Kevin Proctor, Sideshow Bob and Grug. 
Wasn't me
So everyone in the NRL cracked the shits about who was to blame for all of these rich adult men buying drugs when they were specifically told “do not buy drugs guys seriously” and instead they were strangely vilified by people arguing that they could just as easily have snorted the lines off a toilet cistern like everybody else, but instead they did it in a public street where they were caught, and they had the good sense to snort the coke straight away instead of buying a baggie and tacking it away because on a technicality they never maintained possession of the ball before grounding it in the in goal area, we have a decision and going to the board.

Obviously everyone is free to use cocaine if they have the money and the desire, but like everyone else, should understand that it is currently a Class A illegal drug, and being caught with it or using it will bring about some hefty penalties, including possibly losing your career - and for NRL players, that particular career kind of stipulates "do not use drugs please."  If my workplace said “hey Mister Evil Breakfast you can’t wear black socks any more” I’d be all like “oh man I just bought some new black socks but I guess I can get some other ones are grey socks ok?” and they said “yeah grey is cool oh and by the way your pants are nice too you look pretty good are you working out?” and I’d say “oh thanks I haven’t been doing much differently but I am drinking more water maybe that’s it?”  and the bottom line is that if your career (especially a lucrative and short-lived career) depends on not doing something, maybe then don’t fucking do it.  Just saying.

Round 10

Canterbury Bulldogs (1.60) vs North Queensland Cowboys (2.40)

I can’t trust the Cowboys without Johnathan Thurston, who injured himself in last week’s Test.  Because of the star power of JT, the Cowboys released a statement on his injury, which was a pretty long-winded way to go about saying “No comment.”
 The Bulldogs played just barely well enough in their last game to grind out an ugly win against Canberra, and I’m only just tipping them to go again this week.

St George Illawarra Dragons (3.05) vs Cronulla Sharks (1.40)

The Dragons are without a couple of key players through injury, and in a weekend of drunken drug-fuelled debauchery in the NRL, I bet Josh Dugan's idea of spending a few days on ice turned out a lot differently than he had planned, after breaking his jaw in the Test match on Friday.  The Sharks are only missing one of their board members (also done for cocaine possession).  I doubt this will affect them too much on-field, to be honest (unless he was supplying everyone else with it, which isn’t really beyond the scope of possibility).  Sharkies (reluctantly) to run away with this one.

Wests Tigers (2.05) vs South Sydney Rabbitohs (1.82)

Ummmm.  I don’t really know.  I think I’ll go the Rabbits, because the Tigers have a habit of being fucking horrendously bad in the second half.  If Souths can stay within 20 at the break, they’ll have a fighting chance.

Penrith Panthers (1.77) vs New Zealand Warriors (2.10)

Both of these teams are rubbish and I don’t care. 

Melbourne Storm (1.38) vs Gold Coast Titans (3.18)

Eh.  Melbourne, probably.  I bet the party after this game will be a bit more subdued than anyone was planning.  Getting Bromwich, Proctor and a whole lot of charlie in the same place at the same time could have been interesting. 

Manly Sea Eagles (2.35) vs Brisbane Broncos (1.63)

I’m tipping Broncos but I’m really not that confident.  I think with Hunt and Roberts and probably someone else that I can’t think of right now out of their side, Brissy might struggle against a Manly side that’s lifting in confidence – and more importantly – skill.

Newcastle Knights (4.70) vs Canberra Raiders (1.21)

If the Raiders don’t win, I’m going to punch someone in the face.  Possibly myself.  Canberra really need to continue beating bottom-eight sides if they are going to continue to pretend that they’re good.  In other news, they signed a bloke named Masivesi Dakuwaqa during the week.  I hope it’s just to piss off Ray Warren and Ray Hadley. 

Sydney Roosters (1.50) vs Parramatta Eels (2.60)

Another game that would have been good if SKD and Corey Norman could have got together to really crack out the coke and pills combination for their team-mates.  It would definitely produce some interesting football, which would be a definite improvement for both teams.