Impressive concept and a bloody good team too.Official Raiders GM game overview:
I am about to take you on a jovial journey of my jaw dropping team:
I started with last years Grand finalist line up. I developed it after purchases closed and probably could have sat and tweaked my squad and been unbeatable But where’s the fun in that!!!
So we brought in Richard Fale, the master strategic analyst (who floated the Warriors Tongan team concept), to develop our new strategy. Over some jellybeans, we agreed a concept where we would use a strict limiting recruitment factor (comparable to Fale’s Tongans) and see if we could build the best team possible based around one overarching feature.
We have all heard of moneyballing a team, this is funnelballing where the entire player market was funnelled down to players that only met my criteria.
We considered the easy criteria being players weight; height; a racial based team, etc. But that’s easy - so we went with.... drum roll please... players whose first names started with the letter ‘J’. This was a unique challenge and is the first team in professional sporting history where all recruitment decisions where driven by the players first name!
1- Jordan Rapana 118 nrl - 11 nz
2- Josh mansour 138 - 7 aust
3- Jarrod Croker (gk) 258 nrl
4- Jordan Pereria 21 nrl
5- Jorge Taufua 151 nrl - 9 int.
6- Jack Wighton 3 NSW - 2 Aust.
7- Jake Clifford 21 nrl
8- Josh McGuire 213 nrl - 8 aust
9- Josh Hodgson (c) 244 nrl 22 England
10- Jacob Saifiti 56 nrl - 7 Fiji
11- Joel Thompson 222 nrl
12- John Bateman 2019 Daly m 2nd row
13- Joseph Tapine 100 games - 11 nz
14- Jazz Tevaga 57 nrl - 4 Samoa
15- Jason Bukuya 186 nrl
16- John Asiata 119 nrl - 4 int.
17- Josh Curran 3 nrl, all star
Now this may seem like a crazy recruitment strategy. Insanity! But in an obscure way it is just an extreme parallel to the real life recruitment challenge for the Warriors, where our recruitment is essentially mainly ‘Kiwis’. It showed me dramatically how you can still make a decent team but also highlights how restrictive it is and how you must always compromise when you are confined to a limited part of the player pool.
So it was a personal experiment in a tunnel vision approach to recruitment and the mega challenge of ending up with a half decent team!
Now, most improved team is unquantifiable and subjective. I believe it could be best described as developing a strategic goal for a team and seeing how well you execute it. In this respect I have achieved this. My top 17, is a competitive outfit, while all meeting the unbelievable selection criteria that their first names start with J. Bet you didn’t even know there were 17 players with a J name!
- the Wizard of Canberra
Entertainment value? I haven’t even started on the style of game my teams going to play - it could be boring defensive orientated but I think you guessed it. We will probably be playing entertaining Warrior-ball styleRaiders also should get a prize for entertainment value!