Tonight the Australian Football League gets back in action, and the diehards can stay awake until 4:25 a.m. — or wake up that early! If you’re looking for something to watch (and wager on), you really can’t do better than the AFL. There’s passionate crowds (but not today, empty stadium for this one), hard-hitting action, lots of scoring, and serious feats of athleticism.
This is Opening Day (Night?? Morning??) for the league, and much like in the NFL they have the champions open the season at home on Thursday. The AFL Grand Final winners of 2019, the Richmond Tigers, are 20.5 point favorites at home against the Carlton Blues. Carlton finished in 16th place in the 18-team league last year, and this is a big spread by AFL standards. If you need a primer on the rules for what might become your new favorite sport, we put one together here.
Dustin Martin of Richmond is considered one of the best players in the Aussie Rules, and his Tigers have won the Premiership in both 2017 and 2019. He was also the winner of the 2017 Brownlow Medal, which is basically the league MVP award.
You can watch the game with the pregame show and ceremonies starting at 4:00 a.m. ET on Fox Sports 2, live from the legendary Melbourne Cricket Ground in East Melbourne.
Here are the current odds and bet splits for the opening game of the AFL season from DraftKings Sportsbook:
Carlton Blues (+20.5) 52% of handle, 56% of bets
Richmond Tigers (-20.5) 48% of handle, 44% of bets
Over 139.5 69% of handle, 56% of bets
Under 139.5 31% of handle, 44% of bets
Carlton Blues +255 25% of handle, 17% of bets
Richmond Tigers -335 75% of handle, 83% of bets
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