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Rugby League Saints - 2017 - UPDATE

Discussion in 'St George-Illawarra Dragons' started by S J, Aug 30, 2016.

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  1. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    How the Dragons attack has changed:

    Points: 2016 – 14.2 (15th), 2017 – 25 (1st)

    Tries: 2016 – 2.4 (15th), 2017 – 4 (4th)

    Metres: 2016 – 1447 (8th), 2017 – 1482 (2nd)

    Linebreaks: 2016 – 3.3 (15th), 2017 – 3.8 (11th)

    Tackle busts: 2016 – 25.6 (6th), 2017 – 34 (1st)

    Offloads: 2016 – 11 (4th), 2017 – 10.3 (6th)

    Errors: 2016 – 10.7 (12th), 2017 – 10.5 (3rd)

    Penalties awarded: 2016 – 6.6 (10th), 2017 – 8 (1st)

    Red-zone ratio: 2016 – 18.7 (15th), 2017 – 10.1 (4th)

    *Stats courtesy Fox Sports Stats
     
  2. stanleyg

    stanleyg Well-Known Member

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    much improved stats.
    I would however like to see their metres given away in defence stats.
    It would have improved markedly from last season BUT they have still been slipping back into that mode more than a few times during a game.
    They cant a afford a full relapse or all the other hard work will have been for nought as the season progresses and injuries or rep duties take their toll
     
  3. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    Well - we're at Round 6.

    We have achieved the figures I was talking about before Round 1 - and I know we've had doubters.

    BUT - what is to come. We have beaten some "contenders" - even if the media have slowly got off the various bandwagons - eg Wests, Penrith, and Cronulla.

    Seagles, NQ Cows, Roosters and Melbourne are our next 4. We currently have 4/5 - or 80%. At that rate we will win the Comp ! The 60-70% I predicted will get us to the 4. Or - at worst - a top bottom 4 position - eg 5th or 6th.

    I can see us winning 2 of the 4. Thus we will be on 6/9 - or 67%. Not a bad position for a team written off at the start of the season by many.
     
  4. stanleyg

    stanleyg Well-Known Member

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    It is looking good ......however the dreaded injury jinx has started to sniff around.
    Luckily its only the backline at the moment and the Dragons have a few spares up their sleeves.
    The other worrying thing is our midfield defence......its slipping.
     
  5. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    Yes - the slightest slip and we could be 4/9 - below 50%. This is not hard to happen either. The start of the season often goes to the fittest sides - not the best.

    Once the others catch up with fitness it becomes a new ball game.

    But - with winning comes confidence and commitment. If we can make Round 10 on 65-70% - I feel we have made it - ie the 8 or 4. 7 wins is 14 + 4 from byes = 18 points - we only need another 6-7 wins to do it - ie 6-7/14 games (only 50%). We may well get 8-10 from 14 games - which is better.

    But not worth counting your chooks till the eggs are laid.
     
  6. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    The Future:

    How teams who started 5-1 (or better) finished in the 16-team, 26-round NRL era. The 2009 and 2007 seasons are not included due to the Storm’s salary cap scandals.

    2016 – Broncos: 5-1 (Ladder: Fifth; Finish: Semi-finals)

    2015 – Broncos: 5-1 (Ladder: Second; Finish: Runner-up)

    2014 – Titans: 5-1 (Ladder: 14th)

    2013 – Storm: 6-0 (Ladder: Third; Finish: Semi-finals); Sea Eagles: 5-1 (Ladder: Fourth; Finish: Runner-up); Rabbitohs: 5-1 (Ladder: Second; Finish: Preliminary final)

    2012 – Storm: 6-0 (Ladder: Second; Finish: Premiers); Broncos: 5-1 (Ladder: Eighth; Finish: Elimination final).

    2011 – Storm: 5-1 (Ladder: First; Finish: Preliminary final); Broncos: 5-1 (Ladder: Third; Finish: Preliminary final); Dragons: 5-1 (Ladder: Fifth; Finish: Semi-final)

    2010 – Dragons: 5-1 (Ladder: First; Finish: Premiers)

    2008 – Titans: 5-1 (Ladder: 13th)


    Round seven

    Saturday (7.30pm)

    DRAGONS v COWBOYS

    WIN Stadium

    TV: Live on Fox Sports 502
     
  7. stanleyg

    stanleyg Well-Known Member

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    Totally agree BUT you cant really include the Byes to the tally as all the teams get the points.
    The Club will stand or fall on its on field results.
    The Dragons certainly seem to have a higher level of fitness than previous seasons while confidence is a big asset in itself when it comes our attack and defence.
    The other factor apart from injuries is the actual sides you are rostered to play can give an easier run to either the start or finish to the season.
    It would be a more level playing field if everyone played each other twice.
     
  8. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    5/6 or over 80% means the Minor Premiership.

    BUT - that is a big ask. I'd be happy with my 65% prediction at the start.
     
  9. stanleyg

    stanleyg Well-Known Member

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    The higher the % the better the result and a 65% would be a big improvement on last seasons effort.
    I personally don't even mind them losing more than they win providing they lose playing their best and not by turning on crappy defence as well as lacklustre attack.
    Being outplayed is not a disgrace but helping the opposition beat you is.
     
  10. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    [​IMG]
     
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  11. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    Illa Merc:

    THEY’RE sitting pretty at the top of the NRL ladder, but Dragons veteran Jason Nightingale insists his side isn’t dreaming of a top eight finish, let alone the top four berth many are now tipping them for.

    The Dragons have gone without finals action in four of their last five seasons with their lone appearance in that time ending in a golden-point defeat to the Bulldogs in 2015.

    They appear all but certain to get there in 2017 based on early season form but Nightingale said his side won’t fall into the trap of ladder-gazing that has brought them undone in recent seasons.

    “To be completely honest we haven’t set any long-term goals around that,” Nightingale said.

    “It’s an old analogy but the reason it’s a cliche is because it is effective if you just focus on every week. We have not once mentioned a [finals] goal for ourselves.

    “Our two or three worst performances last year came from looking at easier games and thinking about where that would put us on the table. You look back at the Warriors game in New Zealand [round nine] and Manly at Manly [round 17], they were games penciled in where we should’ve won and we didn’t win.

    “I think it was because we didn’t have the right mental approach to the game at hand and were probably looking past that game rather than at the one we were playing in. It’s about not getting too far ahead of ourselves, we know the effort is the biggest thing we need to keep producing. That consistent effort is what builds seasons.”
     
  12. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    Illa Merc:

    A rival buyer to WIN Corporation has shown interest in taking a stake in the table-topping St George Illawarra Dragons as protracted negotiations for the joint venture to offload half of the club's ownership continues.

    Fairfax Media understands the Dragons, who have surged to the top of the NRL ladder before Tuesday's Anzac Day blockbuster against the Roosters, have fielded inquiries from another prospective stakeholder after a stunning start to the season.

    The identity of the potential suitor is being kept under wraps, but it shows the Dragons' resurgence in 2017 is also gaining attention in corporate circles.

    While it is still considered highly likely WIN will eventually assume a 50 per cent stake in the Dragons at this stage, the presence of another interested party will keep businessman Bruce Gordon's television network keen to ward off any challenges.

    The imminent changes to club funding from 2018 means almost all NRL clubs should be sustainable once the next broadcast deal kicks in, making the acquisition of those on the market more attractive.

    The Dragons and WIN have been trying to thrash out a deal for Gordon, a staunch advocate for Wollongong and its surrounding areas, to assume a stake in the club for more than a year.

    WIN would assume the Illawarra Steelers' 50 per cent stake in the St George Illawarra Dragons.

    The negotiations have been closely monitored by the NRL's head of club services Tony Crawford, who has been given a blueprint on how the Dragons' governance would change given the WIN deal. Under the proposal WIN will elect three board members and appoint a chairman with a casting vote to complement St George's three directors.

    Illawarra would still have one board member without full voting rights.

    Given how far advanced the negotiations are, it is only a small chance the presence of another party at the 11th-hour will provide a hitch to WIN's deal.

    But the television network has had an upheaval of their core business in the last 12 months, including a split from the Nine Network and subsequent affiliation with the Ten Network which has slowed talks with the Dragons.

    And it has been a complete about-turn in on-field performances which has helped pique the interest of another buy-out candidate.

    The shareholding is one of the first points of business for new Dragons chairman Brian Johnston.

    Gordon earlier this year told Fairfax Media in a rare interview he had also been discussing with the FFA about backing an A-League franchise based in Wollongong when expansion is on the table.

    The Dragons are one of three clubs - the others being the NRL-owned Knights and Titans - who stand to have significant ownership changes before the end of the year.

    Their on-field performances, despite struggling throughout last season, has certainly made them a more viable proposition from a commercial perspective.

    A crowd of up to 40,000 is expected at Allianz Stadium for the clash with the Roosters which could result in the Dragons and Storm - who play the Warriors - soaring four points clear at the top of the ladder, and facing off on Sunday, should they both win on Tuesday.
     
  13. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    Plus the usual stips - cannot change name, jersey or colours etc. Must remain St George .... . As would be expected and common sense.

    Gordon is a strong Saints supporter - but also believes in Wollongong - so a good compromise perhaps ?
     
  14. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    DRAGONS coach Paul McGregor has launched the Kurt Mann Project 2.0, in a bid to cope with losing in-form captain Gareth Widdop for six weeks.

    Faced with the selection headache after the Anzac Day golden point loss to the Roosters, McGregor had the option to turn to young Jai Field or moving ball-playing forward Jack de Belin to replace Widdop.

    But he has instead entrusted Mann, who was dropped after two games at fullback last year and returned to score 10 tries in 11 games on the wing.

    Mann has played six games this year, including two on the wing, one at centre and three as a bench utility, spending time in the halves after Widdop was injured on Tuesday.
     
  15. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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  16. stanleyg

    stanleyg Well-Known Member

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    You forgot to mention Nona. He was so good the Dragons talked him out of leaving and they might give him a go if the Mann effort doesn't work out.
     
  17. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    Illa Merc:

    It was good to see Dragons coach Paul McGregor’s demeanour on Fox Sports’ Sterlo on the Couch on Tuesday night.

    The rigours, on and off the paddock, of a tough 2016 season had visibly taken their toll at the back-end of last season but he looked a man very much at ease with himself on Tuesday. Winning will do that for a coach but those who spend a lot of time around McGregor know that is his natural way.

    The only time he’s looked frustrated this season was at a well-publicised pre-Anzac Day presser where he was pressured about a supposed disconnect with recruitment man Ian Millward over Josh Dugan’s future. He took time to clear that up on Tuesday.

    “Ian’s got a holistic job to do over a long period of time,” McGregor said.

    “As a coach I coach our playing group right now. He’s got a job to do that is based around the club’s sustainability over a period of time. Whoever is at the club while I’m coach, I’ll be telling them what position they’re playing. Ian knows that and he’s comfortable with that.”

    ----------

    Must admit - he came over very well.
     
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  18. stanleyg

    stanleyg Well-Known Member

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    still you are not going to get the best out of a player when he and his agent are thinking "they are playing me at FB and paying me Centre money ".
    Luckily for the Dragons they have a number of centre options ad fullback options once players are fit with most other clubs already having their FB spot filled.
     
  19. stanleyg

    stanleyg Well-Known Member

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    Looks like the Dugan issue is coming to a head as it has now made a good sized entry in the tele crap sports section
    The Dragons must be having serious behind the scenes salary cap issues (Hunt signing hasn't helped).
    If Millward is prepared to see him leave the club because he either doesn't want to or cant pay him to play in his best position that both he and the coach want him to play.
    You can toss in off contract Packer as well now with rumours a cashed up but struggling Tigpies will make a play for one or both of these players.
     
  20. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    So - Packer gone ... Duges almost gone ... we may need some new blood.
     
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