Basement to the Penthouse…
Luke garner makes the move from the spooners to the premiers for 2023 and finds himself competeting for the vacant edge spot left by kikau against Zac Hosking and Scott Sorenson with the latter not really being in contention given his effectiveness as a bench middle. Garners tipped to win the race for the edge given his history with Ivan Cleary who handed him his debut at the tigers in 2018 and Hosking being a newcomer having only 2 games NRL experience to his name.
Garner is priced at 478k which is roughly a 32.7 avg which should be a slam dunk if he plays 80 mins on the panther’s edge but it’s more likely he plays 60-65 with Liam martin being the 80 minute edge which is why we need to dig deeper to see if there is substantial value here to warrant selection.
Garner only has a small sample size of 3 games at 60-65 mins for a 43.7 avg including one try but a healthy 34 pts in base but again this sample size is a bit too small to look into a lot so let’s expand our search to include games ranging from 60-71mins (extra minute because there’s a 71 in there which should be included in this sample) which gives us a 40.5avg with a TSR of 31% and base pts avg of 37.9 so there’s some value on offer here even at 60mins on the edge but nothing to really get excited about and in the unlikely scenario that garner plays 80 he has an avg of 47.4 with a TSR of 45%.
So basically best case scenario here is a potential keeper edge or 15pts value to then use a stepping stone and the worst case scenario is probably a 37 avg with some drip-feed cashflow if he jags some points which could happen in this lethal panthers edge with a rd 3 bye and playing the broncos, bunnies and eels In the first 4 weeks it could be a slow start if garner doesn’t get a lot of action or if penrith start slow due to the adjustment of the new cogs in the team but after that they play manly, knights, bunnies, tigers and then the warriors which could yield some good results.
I think it’s safe to project garner for a 40pt average in 65-70mins with big upside in this panthers team, a safe selection in a hard position to fill this year, probably makes 100k by the rd 13 bye one way or another just depends how highly you rate this panthers outfit without koroisau and kikau.
This advice also applies to Zac Hosking who managed a respectable 61avg in 3 80 minute appearances for the broncos in 2022 but given the sample size is so small its not really a good idea to take this as an indication of expected output but it does show he can put the numbers up if given the chance and in this team it shouldn’t be that hard to average 40pts in a 65-70 minute role like garner for the same price.