AFL star slammed for 'vicious' collision that left Bailey Smith flattened
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Kysaiah Pickett’s ‘vicious’ bump on Bulldogs star Bailey Smith has become the talk of the AFL world.
The AFL season kicked off in fiery fashion with controversy already coming out of round one following Melbourne’s fixture with the Western Bulldogs.
Pickett’s name was taken in the second quarter of the game after he launched himself toward Smith after the 22-year-old had already kicked the ball.
The Demon’s player caught Smith right underneath the chin with his shoulder and absolutely floored the young player.
Kysaiah Pickett was placed on report midway through the second quarter for this incident.#AFLDeesDogs pic.twitter.com/wzzMINxvHw— AFL (@AFL) March 18, 2023
The collision sparked a brawl between the two teams and left many AFL fans and personalities sickened.
Footy great Kane Cornes spoke on Nine’s AFL Footy Show claiming that Smith was lucky he was able to get back to his feet.
He called it ‘as vicious an incident as you’re going to see for a long time’.
He said, via Wide World of Sports: “That's a human missile there ... launching himself really dangerously.
"He chooses to bump, he leaves the ground, and he launches, and he's really lucky that Bailey Smith got up."
Pickett was handed a two-match ban for the incident - graded careless conduct with high impact and high contact.
He’ll miss his side’s games with Brisbane and Sydney.
However, Cornes told AFL Media’s The Round So Far that he believed it should have been a ‘three our four week incident’.
Richmond great Nathan Brown was also hoping that Pickett would face a harsher punishment.
He said: “Does (match review officer) Michael Christian have the ability to override the point system and say, 'OK, we're going to ban the action, not the outcome.
One of the worst hits I’ve ever seen happened in the AFL this morning.— Tight Five Rugby (@TightFive_Rugby) March 18, 2023
"This is the perfect example. Round one - and you don't want to see anybody miss a game - but you ban the action and does he have an override button? Where he goes, 'Well, one week doesn't fit. Does it become three weeks on my override'."
Traditionally the AFL tribunal has been lenient on incidents that haven’t resulted in injury - as was the case here.
Many fans also agreed that it should have been a longer suspension for Pickett.
One wrote: “This is the worst bump I’ve seen. Should spend a long time on the sidelines.”
Another said: “If Kysaiah Pickett’s bump isn’t graded as intention, what is considered intentional? Two weeks is rubbish, it should’ve been longer.
A third added: “Understand they take the outcome into consideration, but 2 weeks seems inadequate for the action.”
Featured Image Credit: @AFL/Twitter.
Topics: Australia Afl, Aussie Rules Football