Final Word: Trades, tactics, tips, Round 21

2019 champion Dez Creek has the final say on the major Round 21 plays, including PODs, skippers, trades and more.


Those of you who have been following SC Playbook content for the last few years would know that I’ve played a very subdued season in 2022 compared to my normal shenanigans. Fears of a mass covid outbreak running through team(s) has always been at the back of my mind and has forced me into a more conservative and vanilla approach where I’ve saved a few more trades than I normally would have, and probably has me sitting at a much higher rank aswell. Though rest assured, this week I’ll be taking the bull by the horns and making some more aggressive trades in a forceful top 100 push over the last 5 rounds.

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My first trade will be Cleary to DCE. Despite his 140 breakeven and non-favourable matchup against the Eels, I still believe Cherry is the man for the moment. He showed his supreme class in the origin series, and even more in last weeks front up to the media as Manly captain. This is a man who wants the final years of his career to be something to remember, and you best believe he will touch the ball 50 times a game if that’s what Manly need him to do to make the top 8. 

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Last week I traded out Olakau’atu to Murray, which I was happy with, however with Olas ownership at 61% in the top 1000 I need to protect myself from a hattrick by bringing in the guy who will surely have a hattrick of assists if it occurs.

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I said this already on the playbook podcast and got a bit of pushback, but I really think both Taylan May and Izack Tago could be sells from here. Penrith will still win games and both these guys will almost certainly still score tries, but I just don’t see the value in having them at their ownership % when there are fantastic POD options in the CTW who will likely outscore them if Penrith go off the boil even just a little bit.

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Adam Doueihi is the number one trade in option this week for mine, and as such he is coming straight into my team for Taylan May this week, no questions asked.

I also lend serious credibility to the likes of Jesse Ramien and Kotoni Staggs as serious upside CTW pods for the run home considering their relatively soft draws.

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Most overall teams should be pretty much set for the run home after this week with minimal or no trades left. It’s the time of year to sit back and watch the carnage unfold and pray to the supercoach gods that they don’t strike vengeance down onto your team.  I’ll be saving my final two trades just for reactive purposes, i.e., any injuries or restings over the last month. Good luck to all this week in h2h finals, all aboard captain Munster!

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