Mark Ricciuto always enjoys St Kilda-Geelong match-ups, and even though this Friday night's game will be a close one, the form the Cats have worked themselves into will be enough to see them victorious.
Geelong and St Kilda generally produce thrilling contests, and Friday night's match at Etihad Stadium is certain to be another.
While the Saints are tenth on the ladder, only two games separate them and the Cats in seventh, so a win would give their push to September a massive jolt. The Cats return from a tough trip to the west where they were unlucky not to come home with the four points. Tom Hawkins concussion is a concern given his importance, and they'll be sweating on the fitness of Trent West, Joel Corey, Paul Chapman, James Kelly and Josh Hunt. These players will be vital for the Cats if they are to win.
However the bad news for the Saints is skipper Nick Riewoldt looks certain to miss with a knee injury, though Beau Wilkes (five goals last week) and Justin Koschitzke's return to form should give supporters some confidence.
I think this game will be a tight one, with the Cats to win, but I do like the Saints to win with a +15.5 point head start (2.06).
Essendon and Carlton's game on Saturday afternoon at the MCG is shaping as a massive one in the contexts of their respective seasons.
Essendon sit eighth and Carlton eleventh, with only a game separating the pair. Both sides need to win their last three games to participate in September, and the dream will end for one of these sides Saturday.
Essendon have fallen away dramatically over the last month, largely due to injuries, which has affected their ability to run out games. They did get through their loss to North Melbourne unscathed, and could regain Brent Stanton, Paddy Ryder and David Zaharakis from injuries.
Carlton has had a positive month, winning three of their last four, buoyed by the inclusion of their injured stars and some youth. Chris Judd returns from suspension and has the potential to have a huge influence given Essendon's struggling midfield.
I just think Carlton are playing better footy at the moment, and I think they can cover the line of 5.5 points (1.94).
But punters beware; these games often have a habit of producing an upset, so only make a small investment here!
To say GWS and Melbourne's game on Saturday in Canberra is unlikely to be one for the ages is the understatement of the century!
For the Giants, a win could see them miss out on the prized number one pick, and while I'm sure they wouldn't tank, I don't think they would be too disappointed with a loss given a top pick will help set them up for the future.
And we cringe when the Demons and tanking are mentioned in the same sentence, so no doubt they'll be out to give the Giants a touch up, particularly given Tom Scully's involvement.
The Giants injury list is lengthy, with first choice players Ward, Cameron, Patton and Shiel all done for the year.
I think the Demons will win this and win it well. Punters should invest heavily in the Dee's straight up, trading @ Betfair odds of (1.24), and to make a small bet on them to cover the line of -34.5 points (1.89).
Sydney will be out for redemption on Sunday as they take on the Western Bulldogs at Etihad Stadium.
Make no mistake; the end of the season can't come quick enough for the Dogs, who have well and truly run out of bark! They've lost their last eight matches by an average of 59 points, and it won't get any easier running into the ladder-leading Swans.
The fast track and perfect conditions will suit the Swans, who have added swift ball movement and run to their strong inside game this year. Given the Swans stingy defence (ranked first for points against), and the Bulldogs inability to kick big scores, they should build on their already healthy percentage and cover the line of -50.5 points (1.85).
Hawthorn takes on the Gold Coast at the MCG in the Sunday twilight game in what appears to be a dead rubber.
However, it shapes as an interesting game for punters. Hawthorn will smash Gold Coast: you'd be hard pressed to find anyone who would disagree with that.
Yet there is a very good chance that Hawthorn will rest some of their key players in the lead up to September, and with games against Sydney and West Coast to come, this is an ideal week. With Cyril Rioli and Josh Gibson set to miss, and Jarryd Roughed and Lance Franklin no certainties to return, it will be interesting to see whether the Hawks hold back any more of their stars.
Gold Coast got the monkey off the back with a win at home and will no doubt be keen to put in a competitive showing against a top side. Given the huge head start, and the likelihood of a Hawks side minus some scoring power in Rioli, Roughead and Franklin, I'm tipping the Suns to do the job with the +105.5 point head start (1.80).