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TK's PlayBook - Round 8 (part a)

Welcome back to TK’s playbook where I break down the winners, losers and black bookers from each game. I’ll do this in written and audio format which will be released every Monday. Brought to you by - GameDay Squad. Create, Coach, Compete in Fantasy Footy. Be the coach & WIN. Download the app and play now.

Main takeaways

  • Hip drops mania is out of control.

  • Some big name and fantasy relevant players are getting cheap but can we trust them.

Trades on my mind

Bit to decide with the Storm having a bye, Haas potential suspended. I could look to move all my Origin stars out early and load up a squad for the Origin period.

Watchlist / Hit list

Tohu Harris, Reece Robson, Scott Drinkwater, Josh Hodgson, Raymond Faitala-Mariner, Kalyn Ponga, Cameron McInnes, Joey Manu, Brandon Smith, Jake Granville

The likes of Ponga, RFM and Hodgson in stockbroking where I work, this is called a distressed asset at a heavy discount. It's all about picking the bottom and return to form for these guys.


  • Ryan Campbell Gillard - Groin/Hip

  • Bailey Simonsson - HIA

  • Sunia Turuva - Ankle

Player charges

  • Fines - Murray Taulagi, J’Maine Hopgood

  • Ezra Mam - Hip drop - 1 to 2 weeks

  • Payne Haas - Hip drop - 1 to 2 weeks

Panthers vs Rabbitohs


  • Trell Mitt is on fire. Scores of 82,66,75 as a last 3. A little too close to Origin to want to take a punt here.

  • Cam Murray looks a little cooked. The huge minutes is coming back to bite him. Not an urgent sell but not a hold through Origin. The bunnies Origin players miss a minimum of 4 out of 8 games during round 13 to 20. His base was close to average but had zero attacking stats in this one despite 74 minutes played.

  • Sele was the main beneficiary of Host’s hooking with Arrow moving to the edge he got 50 minutes. He would be super valuable if he got these minutes but this is coming off a 31 and 36 minutes. So i’m an avoid for now.

  • Host had a horror night. Was defensively found on early and hooked after 20 minutes. Surprisingly he came back when the comeback started. It will be interesting to see what his coach does. JD hooked Illias last year in the Dragons smash up and could be the wake up call he needs. In his defence he was coming off two very good performances. Atleast he only loses around $4k. HOLD but monitor closely.

  • Nathan Cleary did really well to knock out 63FP. He entered the game with unusual long skins which was kind of giving away something wasn’t right. Reportedly it's a minor groin strain. He looked very free in chasing down a couple of Bunnies breaks and still had 446KM, but couldn’t goal kick.

  • Kenny is an interesting one if you want a cheapish hooker. Two 80 minute games where he plays a hybrid between hooker and small prop. Actually looks better as a small prop but only issue is James Fisher Harris may be back shortly.

  • Hosking got managed in this one and only saw 59 minutes. I wouldn’t worry too much, this can happen from time to time.

Eels vs Broncos


  • Much better game from Shaun Lane. Knocked out 60FP with 4 TB and 2 OFH. Still couldn’t spark Dylan Brown who’s 36 FP was inflated by a late TA. Dyl Bags we just been waiting for his spark to return as he's getting cheap. Had a few miss tackles and his run metres were pretty much half his normal average. Monitor both as we know their class.

  • Josh Hodgson only saw 31 minutes with Brandan Hands seeing 49 minutes. Hodgson had zero runs and 5 miss tackles. Strange that he saw three 80 minute games to start the season then has had 49, 50, 52 and 31 minutes with his defence just atrocious and his running game non-existent. Loses $50k to around $370k and will only continue to drop cash. But monitor as he may bottom at some stage and he could provide some value if his situation changes.

  • Great to see Carrigan return to form. Even though I sold him 3 weeks ago I’m a huge fan. Did have 3 off loads in a lively performance. Broncos will be interesting to track as they have Souths, Manly, Melbourne and Penrith before the Origin season starts.

  • Haas had an unusually quiet defensive game but knocked out 57FP in 54 minutes. Given the draw ahead they may elect just to take the 1 week for the hip drop but I do think they should fight this charge.

  • Walshy with a season low 28FP. Was just a scrappy game in terribly wet conditions. This will happen from time to time, we know his quality.

  • If there was one thing I did get right I was to punt the Staggs. Scored a try for 26FP, 19 of those were in the first half. Just didn’t do any work. I sold last week and I think you can use the money better. We were clutching with the whole round 13 tag. SELL.

Dogs vs Sharks


  • Nicho did Nicho things to push out 72FP despite an unusual 12 demerits which he will need to tidy up. His touches are classy and I can see him toning up on someone shortly. Sharks have Cows, Fins, Manly and Newcastle before their round 13 bye. Tracking Cleary vs Hynes, they have only played rounds 4,5,7,8 due to Nicho’s injury. Nicho averages 78 in those rounds vs Chin’s 69.5.

  • Nikora smashed out another 60 FP. Just runs those lines so well off Nicho. Monitor for the run home.

  • McInnes has added a nice element as the starting lock. His price is still very nice also. Don’t rush in as Finucane still has one game to serve. But if he knocks out another 50 and they move Dale to the front row then he would be a BUY.

  • Will Kennedy was superb in the first half with three outstanding tries. Good to see then use common sense when Flano tried to milk an obstruction. Ronaldo Mulitalo needs to pull his head in. That bomb try after the bomb try against the Bunnies in round 1 are two absolute shockers particularly for someone who talks so much smack during a game.

  • Brailey has bottomed out also if you're looking for a hooker. Back to back 64 and 48 scores with his defence pretty sound and his running game picking up.

  • Burton knocked out 58FP with the coach forcing his hand to take ownership of the team. The Dogs have had a horror draw to open the season but now get the Dragons, Raiders, Warriors and Titans, so if you want to punt on the Dogs finding form then now is the time to do so.

  • Alamoti was a nightmare. 25 minutes in and he was on negative 5 as the Sharks targeted his poor defence. Made up for it in the second with a few strong carries and offloads. I’m a holder and he has 1 game next week to win my love. The only thing giving him this break is the draw.

  • Preston did well for 48FP. I was a seller as I wanted another MID as I was holding too many edges. That's the only reason to sell if you are worried about your team structure, hold otherwise.

  • Reed Mahoney is a SELL. Another player I think needs to start being spelled during the game. Over plays his hand, misses tackles and doesn’t pick off the defence with his running game. I think cut your loses. If you’re holding Ryan Sutton for any reason he is also a sell, had some poor errors in this one.

  • Raymond Faitala Mariner looked way better in this one. Showed his intent in the first set with two carries. Still not a buy but definitely a monitor as we know his track record and skill set. Falls under $400k.

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The next live podcast will be Saturday 6th May at Magic round weekend. Meet and greet from 12pm and live podcast at 1pm. The venue is Leftys music hall Caxton street across the road from Suncorp Stadium. Come hang out with TK, Andy, Corby, Riley, Rich, Jake, Robo and Sean. Entry is free just get in early for some banter and beers, first game for the day is 3pm with the Warriors and Panthers.

Cowboys vs Knights


  • That’s old school Scott Drinkwater. His touches out of shape was really good. Bombed a put down in the in goal from a classy Robson grubber. His running game was elite in this one. Monitor as you would need to see another good display against Cronulla this week but his price is very tempting at the moment.

  • Jake Granville scored an impressive 42FP and played 59 minutes. His the teachers pet and with no Lolo back would likely continue in a big minute role. Given a negative BE ahead he might actually be a BUY. Payten didn’t use both Dunn and Chester going with a 15 man team despite the close game.

  • Cotter was back to his best and that's back to back good performances in a relief for owners and Cows fans.

  • Robson was electric in the first half with a nice try and Drinky cost him a TA. Has developed that short kicking game really nicely. What I do think his the best in the NRL at is spotting lazy markers and slow players to rise from the tackle, never misses a beat in this area.

  • Nanai’s form would be a concern for Origin selectors. Only just turned 20 and had 8MT’s in a very concerning performance for Todd Payten and QLD coach BIlly Slater. Will Fifita or Kaufusi get the jump on him.

  • Kalyn Ponga returned from the bench and I liked what I saw. Scored 41FP in 53 minutes and had 4TB, a really nice TA going down the Cows left edge when Taulagi was sin binned and even introduced some long kicking late. The only disappointment was him failing to get his hands on the ball more in the last 5 minutes. Fools would rush in and get him ahead of their round 10 bye however you need to monitor him as he is cheap. WIll be around $450K.

  • Crossland continues to make money with 38FP. Again all in defence with only 16 run metres. NRL team can’t win with a dummy half only running for 16 run metres so something will have to give eventually.

  • Dane Gagai is averaging 54 and will be over $700K. This just shows how strange this season is. Bradman Best is starting to fulfil his promise. 49FP in this one with 155MG and 4TB, 1 TA and 2LB. Scores of 55,40,47,29,49 which is the best run we have seen from him in some time. The Knights have 2 byes in the next 5 weeks so it’s hard to make a move on any of them at this point.

  • Lachie Miller had some really poor errors. But at this point just hold but I do not think he is a keeper as many have suggested.

Dolphins vs Titans


  • Tanah Boyd smashed it in this one particularly in the first half where he was looking like Alfie Langer. 1T, 600KM, 2 OFH, really liked his work.

  • David Fifita has improved tremendously. Again no try but worked hard for 37 tackles, 192MG and 6TB. Surely his close to Origin given his output.

  • Titans just really struggle once the starting middle go off. Literally happens every week and I’m not sure the value of Campbell at 14. Thomas Mikaele was playing well but saw 12 minutes. Moe Fotuaika smashed it again for 62FP, Sean recommended him on Wacky Wednesday, so good start to that recommendation.

  • Jarrod Wallace with maybe his greatest ever game. Put Nicholls over for a neat try before a smashing try running off Marshall King. Was everywhere with 4 offloads and 2 TB.

  • Lemuelu was busy and this is what he was doing early season. Great base and added a tidy offload and we would tak 48FP from a centre every day of the week.

  • Young Isaiya Katoa didn’t do much but kick in the first half but his poise and class shown through in the second half. 423KM, 89MG and a TA. Still had 5MT but we know that an 18 year old on Fifita’s edge was always going to concede that. Starts making some nice money.

  • Poor Robert Jennings and Hammer owners really. That bombed try where he stops after all that great work from Hammer would have sent owners into a frenzy. Hammer is an interesting watch after a last month scoring of 28,65,32,27. I still think hold into the Origin period and see if he takes the 18th man role. No need to freak out on him at the moment, he has had no tries or try assists for 2 games.

  • Euan Aitken has been great the past three games. Scores of 40,58,54. Now not saying buy him as I prefer him on an edge but defo keep him on your watchlist.

Tigers vs Sea Eagles


  • Turbo is a sell. Started the game well to set up the DCE try however he was run down by Stefano in this. Left the field in the 71st minute with what looked like a groin injury. Only scored 20 FP to put things in perspective. He drops $43k to around $550k.

  • Sipley had another great game with 60FP as did Paseka with 49FP, but can’t trust those two.

  • Watch the injury report to Turbo as Garrick loses around $40K to mid $500k. Garrick has a 49 average at fullback.

  • Api was the Tigers best with a try and busy performance. Back to back 50’s and will be still under $600k. Don’t mind him as a BUY however you are taking a massive gamble on him not playing Origin which would be 50/50 at this stage.

  • Starford To’a has been on fire lately. 57FP scoring a great try to beat Schuster and Fainu on the right edge. Scores of 37,47,57 in his last 3 and will be around $400K which isn’t bad for a dual outside back.

  • I wouldn’t be rushing to buy Jahream Bula unless you desperately need a cash down. 29FP on debut and had a really good start to the game. 173MG in a busy display but got caught out a couple of times and his hands let him down also. Would need to knock out a 45-50 performance to have my attention. Do we want Tigers players at the moment is the other consideration.


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