Updated: Apr 1
There are teams you expect to be poor given their rebuilding phase - Adelaide, North Melbourne.
There are teams you don't expect much from because they've been poor for most of the century - Carlton and Essendon
Then there's one team who were and should still be in premiership contention.
Less than two years ago the GWS Giants played in an AFL Grand Final.
Fast forward to now and that team is unrecognisable, the once labelled 'Ferrari' has now moved from the mechanic and is on its journey to demolition.
At this point, only a minor miracle could arrest the slide that Leon Cameron's men are currently embarking on.
In my pre-season predictions I had them finishing tenth, so their extremely poor start to the season isn't a total shock. I ended my pre-season section on them by stating, "for those still offering some faith, be ready to be burnt again."
There may have been some reasons or excuses for last season, not that they themselves would use any. They played on the last day of the season in 2019, did that compromise their 2020 pre-season? Maybe they just didn't adapt very well to the hubs and Covid life, perhaps we could forgive that?
But after two rounds of the 2021 season, there's no valid reasons or excuses, they're just a mediocre football team. A home game against a severely undermanned Saints in round one presented a golden opportunity, one they failed to capitalise on despite a fourth quarter lead. Away from home in round two on Sunday against the Dockers, they never looked in the contest on the way to a 31-point loss.
Prior to the season, the much-lauded 'Making Their Mark' gave an extraordinary insight into a number of AFL clubs, including the Giants.
One of my major takeaways was the perceived difference in coaching styles between Leon Cameron and Damien Hardwick. The former seemed to be negative for much of the documentary, whilst Hardwick professed himself that the Tigers are a "glass half full footy club".
It's easy to be negative when the team is losing, whilst being positive when they're winning. Maybe that's why the contrasting perceptions were ultimately made. But there's also a reason the winning or losing takes place and of course, coaching plays a large role in that.
I didn't agree with the axing of captain Stephen Coniglio at the time, nor do I agree now. That midweek meeting between captain and coach prior to round 17 was captivating viewing on the documentary. It looked like Coniglio wanted to tear his coach a new one, whilst understanding his responsibilities as captain and that a camera was fully focused on him.
Is Cameron the right man to be leading GWS back to their giant aspirations? Time's running out if the correct answer is to be 'yes'.
Right until the culmination of the 2020 home and away season, I held onto hope that they'd draw on their immense talent and get their season back on track. It never came.
For now, Just two rounds into 2021, I sit with no hope or faith left. What could possibly be held onto?
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