NRL Fantasy

Not quite the Friday Night blockbuster we were hoping for, after a rather anticlimactic second Origin on Wednesday night. The Dragons host the Warriors at WIN Stadium, in a game that probably has more intrigue on the Dragons number 7, than the actual game. Nevertheless, we have a big Draftstars contest for the game, so let’s dig in and find some value selections.

Draftstars has a $10,000 guaranteed contest for the Dragons and Warriors, with several other contests available, there’s something for everyone, so get involved and make this game even more exciting!


Team News

The Dragons are off the bye, however welcome back Jack de Belin and Jack Bird, who were omissions during their round 15 victory over the Rabbitohs. De Belin and Bird return to the starting side, with Michael Molo and Ben Murdoch-Masila reverting to the bench. Josh Kerr (released) and Jaiyden Hunt (reserves) drop out of the 17.

As for the Warriors, they also come off the bye in round 16. They also welcome back some regular first graders, with Rocco Berry replacing rookie Ali Leiataua at centre, whilst Dylan Walker returns to replace Mitch Barnett (suspension). No other changes expected.

Betting Markets

St George Illawarra Dragons ($2.75) vs New Zealand Warriors ($1.45)

Points total: 43.5 points

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The Warriors have been tremendous since their first bye, with a tight loss to the Broncos followed by two straight wins. They take on a Dragons side that has also looked far better since sacking Anthony Griffin, however an even bigger storm cloud has come over the club this week, with Ben Hunt requesting an immediate release.

The Warriors should be too good here, and with so much turmoil at the joint venture club, it could get ugly.

Love It – Dallin Watene-Zelezniak - $12,870

Not a great deal to pick from in this game for outside backs, so I’m stacking a couple of Warriors’ backs in the hopes of a blowout win here for the Warriors. DWZ has 3 scores above 50 in his 8 games this season, with a high score of 77.2. He has a solid upside, and has been in good form for the Warriors, with 6 tries in his past 4 games. 

Love It – Shaun Johnson - $23,150

Top dollar for SJ, but he is well worth it. The Warriors halfback has turned back the clock this year, showing form that we haven’t seen from the kiwi half for years. With zero scores below 50 this entire season, Johnson has a tremendous floor. But it’s not his floor that you’re buying him for, but his ceiling. 8 scores above 70, with a high of 107.6, has Johnson with arguably the highest ceiling in the competition this season. As mentioned above, I see a big Warriors win, and another potential 100+ for SJ.

Love It – Jaydn Su’A - $17,200

The big Dragons’ backrower has been in tremendous form of late, highlighted by his 3 tries in the past 4 matches. His consistency has been tremendous, with 8 scores of his past 9 between 50 and 62.5. In fact, his only poor score this season (save for round 1), was when he had an injury effected 18.8 against the Dolphins, where he only managed 24 minutes. I expect another 50+ showing here.

Hate It – Ben Hunt - $20,660

Hunt has far too much on his mind right now to be a serious buy at over $20,000. Despite his solid form over the entire season, I can’t advocate for Hunt in this spot, and far prefer the Shaun Johnson choice. Hunt has 4 scores under 40 this year, and given he is backing up from Origin, he could be in for a less than stellar performance this weekend.

Hate It – Addin Fonua-Blake - $19,970

I believe there’s a chance AFB gets a rest in this game, with a Warriors blowout on the horizon. AFB had a massive run about a month ago, where he couldn’t stop scoring tries, however over the past few weeks he has reverted to his mean scores of high 50’s. Given this, I prefer to save $2,000+ on a forward who could score close to these high 50’s, and spend the difference on a game breaker like Shaun Johnson. If AFB scores another try, there will be egg on my face, but otherwise, another 55-65 score is on the cards.

Who Knows – Jack Bird - $19,710

Bird has been solid this season, scoring 2 tries whilst scoring three 60+ games in DFS. Whilst solid is a good description of his overall season (56.3 average), he has been tremendous over the past two months, averaging 60 in his past 8 games, with 3 scores in the high 50’s, a 66, and two 75+ scores. Bird is definitely someone to consider in this form, with a high-ish upside for a backrower, however he does have sub-50 scores in his arsenal, which would be a poor return for this outlay.

Draftstars Suggested Lineup



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