Batten's Best Buy

Batten’s Best Buy Round 20 – Clayton Oliver

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As SuperCoaches, we are faced with many tough decisions on a week-to-week basis. Dan will aim to outline the ‘best buy’ of the Round in terms of price, overall output and/or cash generation for the rest of the season.

Previous BBB’s: Isaac Heeney (Round 8), Josh P. Kennedy (Round 9), Todd Goldstein (Round 10), Joel Selwood (Round 11), Tom J. Lynch (Round 12), Marcus Bontempelli (Round 13, Jake Lloyd (Round 14), Matthew White (Round 15), Patrick Cripps (Round 16), Dayne Zorko (Round 17), Dayne Beams (Round 18), Josh J. Kennedy (Round 19)

We don’t like to talk too soon here at BBB incorporated, but we appear to be back on track.

A six goal haul for JJK last week accompanied by another big outing for Dayne Beams means we are officially in form after a disastrous few weeks prior.

It was only a matter of time before a red-head entered the gang, so without further ado, welcome Clayton Oliver.

Clayton Oliver

Price: $554,700
Current Average: 112.2 (18 games)
2016 average: 70.3 (13 games)
Predicted average from here on: 115
Breakeven: 47

I have been wanting to write a piece on this guy all year, but I have a dark confession to make.

As a SuperCoach traditionalist, I believe strongly in the existence of second year blues.

Second year blues can be defined as a drop off in a player’s second season in the competition.

In all honesty, I didn’t think his form would last for this reason.

I was so, so wrong.

By Round 5, Clarry had an average of 115 points, but I said nah, this form can’t continue.

By his 11th game in Round 12 his average was at a formidable 111. At this point I questioned if he could keep this going during the back-end of the season. I said yeah nah, there are better options from here-on-out than old mate Clarry.

I am left here eating my words.

As it stands, Clayton Oliver is the fifth most prolific SuperCoach scorer in the competition, and the sixth ranked midfielder by average (this is including GAJ who has played just 13 games for the season).

It shouldn’t have taken his barnstorming 170-point effort last weekend for me to realise that he isn’t just a good option, he is a MUST-HAVE.

He is absolutely, positively, 100% the real deal, folks, and he looms as the ideal replacement for Josh P. Kennedy (without spending much cash) and Dangerfield (to save a bit of coin).

I have seen the light, SuperCoachers.

Let’s dissect that herculean outing last Saturday afternoon.

In blustery conditions down at Blundstone, Clayton Oliver dominated in the coalface. Oliver topped the round for contested possessions (26), clearances (12) and tackles (12), collecting 33 disposals in the Demons’ narrow loss.

Oh, and he also had the most handballs for the round for a change.

The thing that has staggered me about Oliver this season is his consistency. Clarry has not fallen under 80 on one occasion in 2017, and has hit the ton in all but four matches.

Now this is the sort of reliability you want in SuperCoach Finals.

For me, last week proved that he is not just a consistent performer, but also a scorer with a high ceiling.

This weekend Oliver plays the Giants at UNSW Oval (I had no idea where it was before I googled it, either) in Canberra, a very similar ground to Blundstone. A small, windy and chilly ground where there should be plenty of stoppages for Clayton to feast upon.

In his remaining three games, the ball-magnet plays Brisbane, St Kilda and Collingwood at the G’. Oliver scored 109 and 107 against the Saints and Pies respectively earlier in the season, and will rack up pill against the lowly Lions.

Some will be apprehensive buying into Oliver with Nathan Jones back in the side this week, but the contested beast has still gone at 110 points per game with the skipper next to him in the guts. Clarry was actually tagged by Mark Hutchings in one game without Jones in the line-up, a tactic that no other side has used on Oliver this season.

Another knock on Oliver is his handball-happy nature, but this hasn’t stopped him all year long and it darn-won’t stop him across the last month of the home-and-away season.

I can see Clayton having a fruitful end to the SuperCoach season. Every game for the rest of the year is a must-win for the Dees, especially after their shock loss to the Roos last week, meaning there will be no drop-off from him whatsoever.

23.7% already own the lad and if you don’t have him, there is no better time to jump on.

He is the 5th highest scorer of SuperCoach 2017

Fresh off a 170 with a breakeven of just 47, Batten believes Oliver is the ideal trade-in for JPK or Danger

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