We are 3 rounds into the 2023 AFL season, and it's our first opportunity to get attain a decent sample size of the movements within the 'Brownlow Predictor' markets! As I mentioned in my latest edition of the 'Butters Blog', these early rounds were always going to be extremely volatile as the 2023 Footy Stars release has now allowed the 'Platinum' variants to be circulated from the beginning of the season!
As you can see pictured above, over the last 3 weeks I've been keeping watch of the Brownlow Predictor movements for the top 10 Brownlow candidates according to Sportsbet! I thought comparing an external market against organic hobby behaviour would provide some interesting contrasts!
How did I find the prices for the 'Gold' and 'Platinum' predictors? Well all these prices were calculated on the Monday AFTER the corresponding round had been completed, but instead of diving straight into 'EBay Comps', I decided to prioritise the prices of cards that are READILY AVAILABLE! Comparative prices are helpful to gauge card worth, however no-one can fly back in time before the start of the round to capitalise on performance. However, sometimes there were no cards listed for sale at the time of collation, so in this instance I then included the lowest comparative prices of the card that occurred AFTER the completion of that players game! When neither of these data sets were available, I just entered N/A in the hopes of future weeks creating a clearer picture.
With all that out of the way, lets look at some of the findings across the first 3 weeks of games!
As of writing this article, there have been 13 different players to enter the market for top 10 Brownlow contention! The most notable accension up the leaderboard, has been, you guessed it.... Nick Daicos. I can't fully remember what the 'Macedonian Marvel' opened up at prior to Round 1, but at a minimum it must've been more than $21 as his cards were added in the second week of calculations. Fair to say if you rolled the dice on the Daicos hype-train, you'd be happy with his early production!
Another young player who has had a barn-storming beginning to 2023 is Luke Davies-Uniacke! As detailed recently on the Card Authority Instagram, LDU has been in the 'thick of things' down at Arden Street during the first 2 weeks. But more importantly, North have been able to pencil in 2 wins giving their young star the best chance to achieve maximum votes during Rounds 1 & 2. Unfortunately LDU was a late withdrawal in Round 3, which was a shame as it would've been interesting to gauge the increased demand for both his trading cards and predictors! Definitely is the value play, and one to watch as this matrix continues to be filled throughout the season!
Your more "traditional" Brownlow contenders: Oliver, Bontempelli, Neale, Cripps, and Miller, have all been treading water in both the betting and predictor markets. I think this is mainly due to their historical records as poll-getters on Brownlow night and the notion that 3 rounds isn't a large enough sample size to adjudge whether these players are no longer in contention for the award!
Then you have the players whose predictor values have fallen off a cliff.... We all knew it was bound to happen with the big hype surrounding predictors this season, and the physical nature of Australian Rules Football! But who are these players in particular?
For starters, Sam Walsh started the season "loosely" in the top 10 Brownlow contenders, tied with a few other $21 fancies. His 'Gold Predictor' however had some currency for the first few days of the release with those who were buying hoping he'd suit up in round 2. Not only has he STILL not played, his return timeline is still murky, so it's safe to say he is no longer a chance to win the 'Charlie'.
Another star of the competition whose been marred by injury is St Kilda captain Jack Steele! His predictor prices started very strong, but a broken collarbone has stopped his progress for the next 4 weeks. Which hurts holders of his predictors as the 'Saints' are playing good footy and he definitely could've been one player to feature prominently in their winning fixtures!
Form-related slides feature the likes of WA superstar Andrew Brayshaw whose predictor stocks have plummeted 50% within a 3-week span! 'Freo' have started the season with some very lackluster performances, but here's to hoping that for those who have invested in Brayshaw predictor see an uptick in form VERY quickly!
A weird occurrence that popped up a fair bit last year is the movements of the Gold and Platinum wildcards! For those who don't know, Christian Petracca is the Melbourne Wildcard for 2023, as he was for 2022, but it seems his image-facing Gold Predictor is getting more 'Traction' than his much scarcer Platinum Wildcard! Moral of the story, always check who the wildcards your selling represent before moving them on, as it could leave you blue in the face!
Which would definitely happen if you decided to sell the Collingwood Platinum Wildcard for peanuts, as it's proving to be the HOTTEST predictor to come out of Footy Stars 2023! Only problem? Good luck finding one as the season continues to roll on! Not only does the card include the results of future performance from Nick Daicos, but also the performances of the weeks newest entrant into the top 10, Jordan De Goey!
So is this card a "must-have" if you're trying to predict the winning Brownlow ticket? I think there's genuinely an argument for this card being "bad value"! Here my out before you click away! It needs to be remembered that while these cards provide owners with 'multiple bites of the cherry', they also actively work against themselves. So while two players on the same team can be considered "genuine contenders", much like the Petracca-Oliver situation over the past couple of seasons, this dynamic can cost both players the ultimate glory! There's only 6 votes that can be given out each game, and the threat of players stealing votes off each other MUST be considered!
To finish, I thought I'd give my opinion on 'when is the right time to enter the predictor market?'., and its slightly different to the usual chat that gets thrown around. I.e. Why don't you just put X amount on player Y to win the Brownlow and buy the winning ticket later?. Betting markets are a good reference point as they accurately reflect the habits of consumers in a liquid market. However they can also be flipped into probabilities which can be just as useful for buying predictors!
What do I mean by this? Take the Collingwood Platinum Wildcard again for example, with the idea that De Goey and Daicos are the two LIVE chances associated with that card. As of writing this article, Nick Daicos is priced at $9 and De Goey at $17, by using those figures to divide by 100, you can estimate what an external market views as the true probability for either of the players to win! To save you the math, it churns out roughly 17% for either player to win the Brownlow. Now looking back at that recent sale of $450 would you be paying that sum of money to have a 17% chance of that particular predictor being the winning ticket? It's up to the individual to answer that question, but by using this method it puts your risk profile into a more realistic light!
Check back after the completion of Round 6 where we will discuss the following 3 weeks, which I'm sure will be filled with as many twists and turns that the first 3 rounds presented!