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Brisbane Lions Season Predictions


Will Ashcroft (NAB Draft Pick 2, Father-Son), Shadeau Brain (Category B Rookie), Josh Dunkley (Trade, Western Bulldogs), Jaspa Fletcher (NAB Draft Pick 12, Father-Son), Jack Gunston (Trade, Hawthorn), Darragh Joyce (Pre-Season Supplemental Selection),  Darryl McDowell-White Jnr (Category B Rookie), Conor McKenna (Pre-Season Supplemental Selection)


Tom Berry (Trade, Gold Coast), Mitchell Cox (Delisted), Connor McFadyen (Delisted), Dan McStay (Free Agent, Collingwood), Mitch Robinson (Retired), Ely Smith (Delisted), Deividas Uosis (Delisted)

Draw (what teams twice) : Based on the new weighted fixture brought in for 2023, Brisbane statistically have the 7th hardest draw. The Lions will face Adelaide, Collingwood, Fremantle, Gold Coast, Melbourne, St Kilda twice throughout the year.

Forwards:  Shadeau Brain*, Charlie Cameron, Nakia Cockatoo*, Blake Coleman, Joe Daniher, Tom Fullarton, Jack Gunston, Eric Hipwood, Kai Lohmann, Lincoln McCarthy, Darryl McDowall-White Jnr, Cameron Rayner, Henry Smith

Will Ashcroft, Zac Bailey, Jarrod Berry, Josh Dunkley, Jaspa Fletcher, Jarryd Lyons, Rhys Mathieson*, Hugh McCluggage, Lachie Neale, Jaxon Prior, Deven Robertson, Harry Sharp, James Tunstill

Rucks: Darcy Fort, Kalin Lane*, Oscar McInerney

Defence: Marcus Adams, Callum Ah Chee, Harris Andrews, Noah Answerth, Keidean Coleman, Darcy Gardiner, Darragh Joyce*, Ryan Lester*, James Madden, Conor McKenna, Carter Michael*, Jack Payne, Daniel Rich, Brandon Starcevich, Darcy Wilmot, Dayne Zorko

* Indicates Rookie or long term injury list player

 Ones to watch: With the inclusions of Josh Dunkley and Will Ashcroft into the midfield, expect a huge year from Zac Bailey, everything about this guy screams superstar and this could be the year everything clicks, hopefully gaining consistency over the season. Cameron Rayner will also be looking forward to a bigger and better year with another pre-season under his belt. He showed glimpses of his best last year as he returned from a serious ACL injury.

Strengths: Where do we start? Brisbane’s list last year was outstanding but adding a star in Josh Dunkley and a ready-made quality 18-year-old in Will Ashcroft will make this one of the best midfields in the competition along with Melbourne. Lachie Neale, Josh Dunkley, Zac Bailey, Jarrod Berry, and Hugh McCluggage have all shown their ability to stand up and win games off their own boot. Their defence is another strength for the Lions. They have matchups for every side with quality tall and small defenders alike, and excellent ball users in Coleman and Rich.

Weaknesses: There aren’t many weaknesses in this Lions list, however, with Dan McStay leaving there will be a lot of pressure on Joe Daniher and Eric Hipwood, both who have had injury and form issues in the past. Jack Gunston will be a more than handy recruit for the Lions but keeping Daniher and Hipwood on the park will be the biggest key in the Lions flag tilt. The Depth in the Lions ruck department could also be tested if either Fort or McInerny go down, especially when up against sides with two elite ruckmen (Melbourne/Fremantle).

General thoughts: If the Lions are going to finally get that premiership, this must be the year for them. They have added class and premiership experience to their side in Dunkley and Gunston. All eyes will be on them when finals come around, for so long they have been around the mark but have underachieved with their list. Expect the Gabba to be a fortress this year and their premiership dreams to be boosted by a top 2 finish and several home finals.

Coach Pressure Gauge: 8/10 – The time is now for the Lions to take the next step. Whilst being one of the best regular season performers over the past 6 years, their finals record by their own admission hasn’t been up to their high standards. With the Hawthorn saga still hanging over his head, and a list ready to win a premiership, the pressure is high in 2023 for Fagan.

Breakout year : Will Ashcroft, Darcy Wilmot

B&F Winner: Lachie Neale

Fantasy relevant:

Josh Dunkley – $963,000 – Mid/Fwd

Lachie Neale – $947,000 – Mid

Zac Bailey – $622,000 – Mid/Fwd

Will Ashcroft – $298,000 – Mid

Darcy Wilmot  -$200,000 – Def

Finishing spot prediction: 2nd

Brody is the founder and head of content at Straya Sports. A self-confessed sporting tragic, Brody has covered (and played) nearly every sport imaginable on a variety of different media platforms.

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