Discussion in 'Rugby Union Discussion' started by Fiery, Feb 13, 2016.
Chiefs will top the Conference, [MENTION=2357]Rego[/MENTION]
An immense round coming up this week.
Stormers v Brumbies is gonna be immense, game of the round imo - and there's a lot of them this round. Stormers coming off a defeat, Brumbies making the long trip. This is what's gonna provide us with the confirmation the Brumbies are strong favourites to win the comp.
Canes should beat the Force, even with injuries.
Tahs v Highlanders is another biggy. Tahs got beaten by a very impressive Brumbies last week, Highlanders looking better from their 1st performance, I'm undecided on this one. Lineups will tell a story.
Bulls vs Sharks, once again could go either way, I'm swaying towards the Sharks atm given their last round. Lineups once again will show a better picture.
Sunwolves v Rebels, you'd expect the Rebels here but wouldn't say expect a smashing necessarily.
Crusaders v Kings, as per the Canes game, Saders should get an easy win.
Reds v Blues - the Blues are paying $1.50 atm which is crazy, Blues should get home, I'd recommend jumping on those odds.
Lions v Cheetahs, Cheetahs have been a lil poor so far, Lions coming home from NZ is a factor too, I'll say Lions for now.
Jaguares v Chiefs - it's no secret that the Chiefs have been hit hard with injuries this season, Jaguares have looked exciting so far and will only get better, coming off a bye could be a factor for them (either positive or negative) - this is actually another that could go either way. I'd say the Chiefs still at this stage - Jaguares need a bit more bonding to consistently pull off the wins against these experienced sides.
Stock up the fridges blokes.
NZ conference or Australasian Conference? 1st one - well it's possible but don't see it happening, 2nd one nah. I'd actually be a lil surprised if an NZ team tops that conference. Ironically that's actually saying we have better teams, our conference is and will be a lot tighter IMO. Plus Brumbies are looking the goods.
Had the Chiefs not incurred all those injuries I'd agree with you, they were the top team on paper but those injuries have sucked the blood out of them. The thing that does help them though is I doubt there'll be a NZ team that gets significantly ahead like last year (Canes).
We didn't seem to be lacking any blood on Saturday. I know the Kings are not the best team but it was a pretty impressive performance away in SA I thought. This McKenzie kid looks good. Not sure about that creepy grin before he kicks though...wtf is that?!
People seriously don't understand how bad the Kings are, the Sharks actually beat them in round one by more points and gave away only 3 points.
I'm not saying the Chiefs are gonna be the worst team in the comp by any means but I think lowering your expectations would be wise, injuries are a bitch. The Chiefs loss to the Lions was poor. Mid table is looking relaisitic for them atm, it's a long season sure but when you have mass injuries at the start that's gonna cause issues at the back end. I wouldn't be disheartened though because some mid table teams can sneak into play offs now.
Yeah McKenzie goes alright. Hope he doesn't brace the ABs, for the time being at least.
I'm not disheartened. Quite the opposite.
What exactly are all these injuries you keep referring to? And explain this comment: "when you have mass injuries at the start that's gonna cause issues at the back end". That's a head-scratcher for me.
I know Nepo Laulala is out for the season and Retallick has a rib injury, but he should be back, along with Dominic Bird, in a few weeks to bolster the tight 5. The injury to Pulu doesn't really affect us too badly imo, given we have two other more than capable halfbacks in Kerr-Barlow and Weber.
It's not like we're the only team that has and will be affected by injury.
Laulala - Out for whole season
Karpik - Out for whole season
Pulu - Out for majority of the season
Bird - Out until probs round 7?
Retallick - Out for like 5 more weeks?
Harris - Probably nothing serious
If they ain't mass injuries I dunno what is, Karpik aside they're all ABs. It hurts even more when you have the likes of SBW and Messam not there either.
My comment regarding the back end is in relation to depth, injuries happen but when key players like Bird, Laulala are ruled out completely, should more injuries arise, you're relying on your depth soley. That and it fucks with cohesion with the likes of the players coming back in 5 weeks.
I couldn't take you seriously if you reckon that's not affecting the Chiefs....Karpik aside, all definitely starters. It hurt them in the Lions match.
Bit of a stretch to even consider Pulu, Harris, Laulala and Bird ABs tbh. They must have played about 5 tests between them.
As I said, Retallick (who is the only major loss really) and Bird will be back soon. We'll be fine.
Lol thinking Retallick is the only major loss. They didn't sign Nepo and Bird as a favour or anything. Solid players, I highly rate Laulala. Pulu is really the only not so major injury out of that lot. I'd say Karpik too but he has a future that kid so that's unfortunate for him. Can't really afford to lose fire power when key blokes like Messam and SBW aren't there to begin with too.
The injuries are all at the wrong time for the Chiefs. They go from SA to Argentina in a game they could very well lose, back to Perth where they "should win" but travel and all could fuck them, followed by the Brumbies in Canberra (where at this stage you'd say the Brumbies would win).
Whereas say a team like the Canes, well scheduling has blessed the shit out of them. Had the 3 tough games to start with and whilst ideally 2/3 would have been better, 1/3 is still fine in comparison to everyone else. We now have a good stretch, 2 easy games in the Force and Kings which all going well should see us going into our bye 3/5. Which is nice as we have a couple of niggles stacking up (NMS's dislocation) but plenty of depth to cover him. Proctor needs to come back and replace Aso and we should be good to set ourselves up for at least an ok season.
I just don't know how you can go on to justify the Chiefs as being the top NZ side/ to win the conference when they have a good stack of solid players out until at least round 7 with the potential of more injuries to come.
I do actually think the NZ conference is a lil weaker than the past but a lot more even. Canes were/ are the best team on paper but we haven't been anything too fantastic yet so it's really hard to say.
Mainly because the others are so shit lol. We'll top the NZ teams by default.
Nah the other teams aren't shit. I actually reckon it's the most even the NZ conference has been in quite sometime, usually it's a 3/2 split or a 4/1 split in terms of the performers and slackers. This year no one is standing out (on paper) to be incredibly shit. I have previously said I expected the Saders to do poorly for their standards given their side (weakest it's probably ever been) but they played well against the Blues so should be OK if they keep that form up.
I did say the Landers probably won't quite achieve what they did last year (still believe that) but at this point in time you'd say they'll be in the top 2/3 out of the NZ sides, even with their injuries they're doing well. Just needa make sure they have the ABs playing and they do well as per last year.
Blues should do better than they have done so in the past few years. I'm still undecided on them and still going to call them the red herring even after their 2 recent losses. The potential is there and players like Ranger, Moala and Tevita etc. are starting to look dangerous
Canes have the best squad on paper (not that we've been able to field it yet) thanks to our depth, it's only really our centres that fuck us, Laumape is looking OK but Aso is shit, I dunno why they don't play Woodward at 13 until Proctor is back. James Marshall, Ardie Savea and TJ have been immense for us so far. When NMS is back, Marshall will surely be keeping Jane on the bench. That all being said I'm not all that confident we'll necessarily finish the conference 1st. We were slow to start but have improved with every game and now have two easier games so that's ok but what fucks us is Ardie leaves after Round 7 for sevens. He honestly is a game changer, we'd have won the final if he played. That and our centres aren't anything fantastic. Coles, Broadhurst and Proctor all yet to play this season though and all very key players so hopefully get them back soon.
Basically what I'm trying to say is the NZ conference is a lot less predictable than ever and closer.
My predictions so far:
I feel like that's pretty fair all factors ATM considered.
Fair enough. The reason I'm debating it with you is because I think this prediction is off...
Those predictions are so broad they barely even count as predictions, [MENTION=2357]Rego[/MENTION]
Can you please give me an order of where you'll think they'll finish from 1 to 5. (None of this 2nd to 5th crap )
No I haven't, either them or the Blues to take bottom spot as you'd see from my predictions. Chiefs with the widest range and that's purely because it depends when some of these key blokes come back and if they hit their strides. Filling the void of Messam and SBW is huge too, Seta probably has the ABs curse. Hardest hit by the sevens leavers.
I edited my post after you quoted it.
In any case, there's no way the Chiefs are finishing bottom. You're crazy to think that. Even with an injury-depleted squad we're still better than the others
I honestly can't, it just emphasises what I'm saying. This is the closest the NZ teams have been in quite sometime by looking at them early on.
Before season start you'd have the Canes or Landers at 1, probably Canes. Well actually if the Chiefs had their full squad you'd have them around about there too. But things like the Canes starting poorly, Blues confirming their red herring status, Saders playing shit (which was kinda expected) then really well and the Landers troddling along, it's fucking tough stuff. Long season too and I feel in the next few rounds we'll have a better grasp.
If I absolutely had to pick at top 5 I'd go:
With even 4th/ 5th being close to 3rd.
So I guess I'm saying Blues last - which is ummm well not really suggesting what you think. No team is really a bottom team so it's hard to pick. I guess the Blues have the potential to be the least consistent and that'll end them in 5th but still mid table-ish imo.
They probably won't finish bottom but I do feel like it could be a real possibility if things don't go their way. I can't see them being 1st, anything's possible in sport but 2nd at most.
All bias aside on paper they definitely aren't the best....
Separate names with a comma.