So the news of the weekend from the NRL, aside from the NRL pretending to care about New Zealand and exploring the possibility of playing the Grand Final at Eden Park….
As for what could be Sterlo’s next move, I’d have to guess he’s pulling the boots on and making a return to the Eels in his old halfback position, because good lord they’ve gone down the toilet since Mitch Moses sprang his back in Origin III.
3 losses on end and absolute certainties to fall out of the Top 4…. well, we shouldn’t be surprised, it is Parramatta.
On another note, this week I think I found a new way to miss out on a perfect round – the Sharks losing to the frikkin’ Warriors despite being up 16-6, going for a try instead of taking the 2 points with 6 minutes to go, and being a player up twice during the game.
What a game.
Newcastle Knights 28 defeated Brisbane Broncos 20 – Correct
I’d be interested to see how many people actually watched the Knights vs Broncos, because I’d wager there were more people watching the Kookaburras discovering another agonising way to miss out on the Olympic Men’s Hockey Gold.
Fair dinkum, where was Jamie Dwyer when we needed him.
On another note, Mitchell Pearce was there when the Knights needed him, because the Broncos gave the Novocastrians a very tough contest in the 1st Half, even as the Knights got 7 consecutive sets in the opening 8 minutes, but ultimately the difference proved to be the Knights scoring tries on either side of the half to blow the game open, which gave them enough of a cushion to weather the Broncos late comeback.
After that performance, Kevin Walters decided to boldly declare that the Broncos would’ve been playing finals this year had Kotoni Staggs not been repeatedly injured and played only 4 games out of 20, which is pretty much the same as any coach saying we would’ve been better this year had we not had so many injuries.
Unfortunately for Kev, the Broncos are stuck with the classic case of “If my Aunty had balls, she’d be my Uncle.”
Canberra Raiders 20 defeated St George-Illawarra Dragons 12 – Correct
Would you look at that, the Raiders are back in the Top 8 and on course to get belted in Week 1 of the finals.
South Sydney Rabbitohs 40 defeated Parramatta Eels 12 – Correct
A comfortable win for the Rabbitohs over the flailing Eels on a historic night for the Cardinal & Myrtle crew from Redfern, as Adam Reynolds finally overtook Bunnies legend Eric Simms to become the foundation club’s all-time leading pointscorer, a record that Simms had held since he took it from Bernie Purcell in 1971.
Considering the gap back to 3rd, much like Simms, Adam’s going to hold that record long after he’s done at the Broncos or whatever he finishes at.
New Zealand Warriors 18 defeated Cronulla Sharks 16 – Incorrect
Sure the Warriors somehow came back and won, but if you ask me, Kane Evans should’ve had his season ended by the judiciary, not because he threw a punch and got 10 in the bin, but because he threw two punches at a stationary Will Chambers, and missed both times, all while he had the gall to put a blonde streak through his hair.
No wonder Chambers, who many would consider annoying, pissed himself laughing, because he was doing that many laps inside Kane’s head that he should’ve renamed himself Peter Bol.
There’s one campaigner that Kane couldn’t fold.
Penrith Panthers 20 defeated Sydney Roosters 14 – Correct
Matt Burton racked up 211 metres, most of them off a pair of linebreaks, scored 2 tries and went 4/5 off the boot.
I haven’t seen a performance that good by a Burton since Tim Burton produced and directed The Corpse Bride.
Despite Nathan Cleary being kept on ice and Tevita Pangai Junior having a family matter to attend to, the Panthers still got away with the win, thanks in part to Jared Waerea-Hargreaves becoming the first player to actually get sin-binned for interfering in the ruck in several weeks, out of a case study of at least 500 incidents that went unpunished.
On an off note, the Panthers are now 17-0 when Isaah Yeo plays this season, which can’t just be a coincidence.
If Nathan Cleary is the most important player in the Panthers squad, then fair dinkum, Yeo is a clear cut 2nd place.
Melbourne Storm 28 defeated Manly Sea Eagles 18 – Correct
We thought Manly might be able to give the Storm with the form that Tom Trbojevic was in, but this game just further proved this Storm team is on an astral plain of their own, and it turned out Craig Bellamy was wrong when he suggested that a shotgun was the only way to stop Tommy Turbo, even though there’s absolutely nothing in the rules that says a coach can’t get his players to whip out a shotty against an opposition player and gun them down, although the NRL might define it as unsportsmanlike conduct.
Still, if it’s anything like Melbourne’s ganglands, the perfect place for it is in the car park after a kid’s footy game.
So after this professional performance, that’s now 17 consecutive wins for the Storm, matching the second-longest streak in the history of First Grade, and unless Craig Bellamy decides to rest the entire starting 13 in the final month of the home & away season, the Storm have got absolutely nothing standing in the way of them ranging up to what once appeared to be one of the more unbreakable records in First Grade rugby league….
The 19 game winning streak of the 1975 Eastern Suburbs Roosters – 2 teams have made it to 17, the first being the 2002 Bulldogs right before their brown paper bags became public knowledge, and last year’s Panthers on the way to the Grand Final, but nobody other than the ’75 Easts team has made it past 17.
Logic would suggest the Storm could be the second.
Wests Tigers 28 defeated Canterbury Bulldogs 16 – Correct
Bulldogs fans after witnessing that crapshoot:
Fair dinkum, this Dogs team is genuinely rivalling the 2016 Knights for being the worst team in the modern era.
Gold Coast Titans 36 defeated North Queensland Cowboys 14 – Correct
Very rarely do my random comments in the Random Picks before the weekend begins actually turn out to be correct, but my comment about the Titans attack coming up against the Cowboys defence turned out to be pretty spot on:
On another note, I reckon in the spirit of the now former Tokyo Olympics, the Titans should change their nickname for the rest of the season, because if they really want to inspire themselves into making Finals and winning them, they should aim high, and honour a champion adopted Queenslander…
BY CALLING THEMSELVES THE GOLD COAST TITMUS.
There’s someone who knows what real Gold feels like.