“And then there were three”: King’s legitimate flag contenders – Michmutters

“And then there were three”: King’s legitimate flag contenders

David King has settled on three clubs as this year’s legitimate premiership contenders.

After studying a fascinating Round 20, the North Melbourne champion has assessed what he saw and narrowed the flag race down to a trio of teams.

King sees it as Melbourne, Geelong and Sydney as the sides to beat if you want to take out the 2022 premiership.

He explained why he sees it that way.

“And then there were three, that’s it for me – Melbourne, Geelong, Sydney,” he said on SEN’s Whateley.

“We talk about the premiership runway, that you’ve got to have your game in great order, particularly defensively in the last four to six weeks as a run-in to the finals.

“You don’t want to be looking for answers, you don’t want to be looking for things that are going to shake up a forward line or correct a backline or stop the opposition moving the ball.

“You just want to be in good order and tinkering as to who your opponent is and what their likely tactical changes are going to be.

“Through the course of a final series, you end up with asset versus asset, weapon versus weapon. You need to be in good order to maximize what you bring.”

King cites the defensive side of the game as most important at the business end of the season.

He believes the Demons, Cats and Swans, along with third-placed Collingwood, as the teams who have things in best shape from a defensive viewpoint.

“The teams that are in good order defensively are Sydney, Geelong, Collingwood are in really good order defensively but they’ve got other warts, and clearly they’ve won 10 in a row, and Melbourne,” he added.

“When Melbourne are allowed to defend in the way they like to defend, if they get the perfect setup, (they’re) bulletproof. We’ve seen their defensive profile spike considerably over the past few weeks.

“We’ve been waiting for it, in fairness. We’ve held blind faith, but it has been blind.

“I just think there’s a bit of a gap now. To me, there’s only three that can win it.”

Round 21 looms as a big weekend for the top four with second-placed Melbourne taking on the Magpies at the MCG on Friday night.

The top-of-the-table Cats host eighth-placed St Kilda on Saturday night while the Swans face North Melbourne on Sunday.


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