They say good things come in small packages. There are plenty of AFL examples: Peter Bell, Brent Harvey, Luke Dahlhaus and now Lachie Hunter.
Team: Western Bulldogs
Age: 21 years 2 months
2015 Average: 77
2015 Games: 12
100+ Scores: 4
The Doggies’ number seven isn’t a gun of the competition but he’s well on his way, if his statistics are anything to go by.
Hunter has just turned 21 so he has several pre-seasons under his belt. good start.
His SuperCoach averages year by year aren’t outstanding (53, 60 and 77 from 2013 onwards), but with further break-down there are some real positives.
For example, in his last seven matches he averaged 103, which included four hundreds (125, 124, 104 and 121). The main reason for change was his start to the year had been hampered by five games in the green vest, which has since been abolished.
Hunter’s elimination final (which his Dogs lost to the Crows) was arguably his best match of the season, with 28 touches, nine marks and 111 SuperCoach points. The ability to play well in high pressure matches like his first final is something I take note of, as it can be an indication of mental strength.
The first name that comes to mind if you ask anybody else about a small but talented, mid-priced Western Bulldogs’ midfielder won’t be Lachie Hunter. It will be Tom Liberatore.
This is my main concern for Hunts – how does the return of a gun midfielder effect his midfield time?
I’m predicting it won’t be substantial, but there are lots of options for the Dogs in there now – Mitch Wallis, Jack Macrae, Libba, Liam Picken, Koby Stevens, Lukey Dahlhuas and the Bont.
Also if we look logically, Hunter improved in 2015 by 17 SuperCoach points from his 2014 average. If he does the same, he’ll average 94 this season. If he only reaches that stage, his price won’t rise above $500,000.
We never look into the NAB too closely, but against GWS he racked up 25 touches and 99 SC points in a lazy start to the year. Such a talented player will be in the Doggies best 22 and his dreaded sub vest no longer exists.
Verdict: We know he’ll be a POD considering he’s only available as a midfielder. Snap him up in draft games but be careful in classic. I think he’ll improve plenty but enough to merit selection?