Back where it all began, the flying russian Paul Momirovski returns to the Roosters thanks to the retirement of Brett and Josh Morris. With Joseph Manu parked on the right edge, Momirovski looks set to line up at left centre with Keary, Crichton and Tupou his counterparts, forming what may just be the most formidable attacking edge in the NRL.
In his career to date, Momirovski averages a very healthy 40.2 fantasy points when lining up at centre for a full 80 minutes with no goal kicking included. Thanks to sharpshooter Nathan Cleary, Momirovski didn’t kick goals at the Panthers, but he has a career 21/28 (75%) goal kicking record, no mean feat given he has not been given ownership of the kicking tee throughout his career. For context, Sam Walker kicked at 55% in 2021 and Taukeaho at 78.6%. It is entirely possible that Robinson gives Momirovski the duties in 2022, which would mean at least an additional 6 fantasy points per game with upside.
It isn’t all upside though. In a red hot Panthers team, Momirovski had a 38.5% try scoring rate, and relied on 3.5 tackle busts per game to boost his attacking scoring with only 0.5 offloads per game, which brings Momirovski back to 37 points per game + the goal kicking.
There is some potential to increase the try scoring rate, but with so many attacking weapons for the Roosters including all three of his edge partners, it may be that this try scoring rate is what we should expect. He also has a few games in his sample where he obviously started at centre before shifting to the wing to cover injury (can tell by the tackling volume), and we also need to apply the turnover tackles to every season and new escape in goal points rate.
With a full opportunity to build preseason combinations and a permanent role in the team which includes goal kicking, Momirovski has the upside to be a gun 45+ average centre with scoring similar to the 2020 Zac Lomax season. At $466k with a 37 BE there is definite value and upside here, particularly if he wins the role of goal kicker which would add points plus a bit of job security given the Roosters goal kicking struggles in 2021. If he doesn’t win the goal kicking, he looks a high 30s-very low 40s average option.
The problem with Momirovski is that even the 45 average with the goal kicking looks to be the floor for a player like Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow, who is only $4k more expensive and has dual position eligibility, and well short of gun options Matt Burton and Euan Aitken who also have dual position eligibility, leaving Momirovski in a no mans land of value as a stand alone borderline keeper centre. Add to this, many of the cash cow options for 2021 are in the centres, and you have to come to the obvious conclusion that there isn’t a realistic place for Momirovski in 2022 Fantasy rosters.
UPDATE: Ok maybe that summary final sentence is a bit dismissive. If you don’t believe in Hamiso, I can see you landing with Momirovski on your team – assuming he gets the goal kicking role which I am pretty confident he will.