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  • Brady Athanasiov

AFL Fantasy Team Preview - North Melbourne Kangaroos

Welcome to all GameDay Squad coaches, AFL fantasy coaches, AFL fans or just the curious. GameDay Squad is going to be releasing a series of AFL seasonal reviews that will provide you with all the fantasy insight and recommendations your heart desires. We are just weeks away from the commencement of the 2023 AFL season and if you are late to the party and haven’t done your fantasy research, let GameDay Squad handle that for you. Enjoy this installation of fantasy breakdowns for the North Melbourne Kangaroos.


Aaron Hall, Luke McDonald and Todd Goldstein ahead of the 2023 AFL fantasy season

Must start player:

Ben Cunnington has aged like a fine wine, getting better every year. He’ll be 32 by the halfway point of the season, and yet, he will be in the top echelon of midfielders once again this year. He had a quiet year in 2022 after a battle with testicular cancer kept him out for most of the season, but all reports have him back to full fitness this preseason, and with reports that he will be a midfield/forward hybrid this season, he should be racking up plenty of touches, as well as a couple goals along the way.


Ben Cunnington Gold GameDay Squad player card

Dream legend card:

Luke McDonald is the defender we always want to have on our team. He averaged 20.3 disposals per game in 2022, which is quite healthy for a defender playing in a struggling side. North Melbourne have a new coach at the helm, with a decent coaching record to say the least, and will be looking to improve this season. While the number of wins they find should change, one thing that shouldn’t is McDonald getting plenty of touches rebounding off the half-back line.


Luke McDonald Legend GameDay Squad player card

Avoid this Bust:

Todd Goldstein unfortunately will be pushed out by Tristan Xerri as North’s Number 1 Ruck. Unfortunately for the 34 year old veteran, with another young ruck in the ranks, Goldy will probably see less game time again this year, and only an injury to either of the young rucks will see him get the game time he has amassed in previous seasons. Without that higher game time, Goldy will struggle to hit the stats that he has seen in previous seasons, making him one to avoid for this season.


Todd Goldstein Bronze GameDay Squad player card

Value on the rise:

Daniel Howe will be a big improver in 2023 for the Kangas. It’s not an exact science, but when a player follows a coach to a new club, this can signal they are in for a big year. 2023 will be season number 9 for the midfielder/defender hybrid, and after moving to North Melbourne to reunite with the head coach that was in charge for his most successful season at Hawthorn in 2021, Alistair Clarkson, Howe might just reach those heights again.


Daniel Howe Diamond GameDay Squad player card

Value on the decline:

Aaron Hall is an enigma when it comes to predicting his season. It seems like the 32 year old should be peaking, but he continues to pull out big games in recent years. One thing is against Hall however, with injuries starting to take its toll for Hall, with 2 injuries taking Hall out in 2022, and reports of an Achilles injury over the preseason might spell concern for those thinking of taking Hall in their sides. In typical Hall fashion, he will probably rack up plenty of touches when he hits the field, but how many games he can play with an ageing body and repeat injuries will be the golden question.


Aaron Hall Silver GameDay Squad player card

2023 Hot take:

The departure of Horne-Francis from North will allow them on improving as a team and not focussing on individuals, which has been their downfall in previous seasons. With Alistair Clarkson at the helm, some young talented players, and leaders in the form of some solid veterans, North should see some more success this year. While it might take a couple seasons for the Clarkson effect to bring the club to a top 8 side, I believe they are on the right track and we should see the ball start rolling in 2023.

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