Five Things We Learned: Collingwood vs Port Adelaide

  1. The Magpies are far too speedy by hand

We’ve watched Collingwood dominate teams all year, but their first term against the Power on Friday night was perhaps some of their best footy. The Magpies kicked 48 points in the first term, their highest ever against the Power. With such a great midfield brigade, it would be expected that Collingwood would have some elite handballers, but it’s more than that. Watching the Pies run through the centre of the ground is exhilarating, they all know to wait until the very last second to handball off, giving the receiver as much time and space as possible to peel away. They cut the Power to ribbons in the first before eventually the Power somewhat restricted their movement in the second.

  1. Darcy Moore looks at home down back

Not so long ago Darcy Moore was going to be one of the great up and coming forwards of the competition. Now, he’s well and truly settled in to a strong Magpies defence at looks at home alongside Jeremy Howe and co. Moore spent most of the night on tall forwards Todd Marshall and Justin Westhoff and looked dangerous in defence, shutting down the Port talls and rebounding off the half-back line, playing a vital quarter-back role. Moore needs more time against the bigger forwards of the competition to really prove himself and with Carlton, St. Kilda and Sydney in the next few weeks he’ll have to wait a little while to do it, but signs tonight were encouraging.

  1. Conor Rozee is taking it up to Sam Walsh for the Rising Star Award

Last year we had a very interesting battle for the Rising Star, with Collingwood’s Jaidyn Stephenson and Adelaide’s Tom Doedee going head to head. This year however, looks even tighter with Rozee looking a star already and Walsh having slotted into the Blues line-up perfectly. Rozee looks calm and composed around the football at all times and has a great football brain. He has fantastic foot skills and looks like a player that could be in Port Adelaide’s line-up for a very long time. For me at the moment he’s just behind Walsh for the award, but at this stage he’s certainly well in with a shot of what is a two-horse race.

  1. Grundy dominates the ruck once again.

Port Adelaide brought two solid ruckmen to Marvel Stadium, but it really was like bringing two knives to one massive gun fight. If you’re not on the Brodie Grundy bandwagon now, you need to be. He is an absolute star and has the potential to be as good as the likes of Dean Cox. Lycett and Ryder both simply didn’t fire on Friday night, even combining their stats would still have them beaten by Grundy. He is such a key cog in the Magpie’s engine room and is irreplaceable as a player. The Magpies are keen to sign Grundy on a long extension, (a seven-year deal has been suggested). At age just 25, Grundy is ready made and would slot straight into any line-up, with interest from his home state of South Australia at an all-time high, but something tells me he will remain a Magpie.

  1. Where to from here?

Another strong win for the Magpies puts them in a very good place heading forward. On the other side of the coin, Port Adelaide were disappointing and Ken Hinkley’s men will need to look at their game to fix a few things before they run into a rejuvenated Crows side in a very interesting Showdown next week. The Pies have what could be called a little easier next few encounters, with the Blues, Saints and Swans to come in their next three. The Pies look the team to beat and will look to establish themselves inside the top two now they find themselves there early in round seven. For Port Adelaide, they need to find some early speed and not be blown away by fast starting teams like the Pies. Robbie Gray is a huge loss and will be sorely missed for the next month of footy. Next week’s Showdown looms as a great contest and will be a ripper on a Saturday night.

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