AFL 2023; GWS Giants forward Brent Daniels, Giants venue winning record, Orange Tsunami, comeback from injury, Semi Final against Port Adelaide Power

They‘ve developed a reputation of being the ’Anytime, Anywhere Giants’ in season 2023.

Of the 12 venues the Giants have suited up to play a game of football this year, they‘ve saluted at 11 of them.

From Giants Stadium to Alice Springs and completing the “special” record last week at MCG in the Elimination Final victory over St Kilda, it‘s a record that the wandering Giants are immensely proud of – and one that small forward Brent Daniels believes will ”never be broken”.

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“It‘s something really unique about playing here (at the Giants),” Daniels told this week.

“Once we realised that we had won at quite a lot of different venues we sort of ran with it. I think it‘s built a fair bit of momentum now and it’s a really special record really.

“Anywhere anytime is a mantra we‘re going to run with.”

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Daniels has grown used to playing in hostile crowds and environments across his six years at the Giants.

Having experienced the thrill of playing interstate finals as a teenager in just his second season, Daniels, while young in his career, is a veteran in embracing a hostile environment.

Yet, the 24-year-old has spoken about how he has implored his younger teammates to “embrace” the hostility of an interstate crowd which has spurred his side on their giant-killing run into the second week of September.

“We just want to embrace it,” he said.

“We know it‘s going to be a really tough and hostile environment, but then also understand that we just need to find a way that we’ve been playing for the last three months of season.

“We firmly believe that if we do that, we can beat anyone. I think that the major thing is to embrace the environment, embrace the hostility, but also focus on what we can control and play our way.”

The Giants way in 2023 has seen the return of the vaunted and famed ‘Orange Tsunami’.

A style of play that new coach Adam Kingsley had a clear vision of when he was appointed, and was hell bent on bringing the successful style back to the Giants.

The small forward is relishing being back on the park in 2023 – having had last season wiped out with persistent hamstring injuries – playing a crucial role in unlocking the Tsunami.

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Along with standout recruit Toby Bedford, Daniels is often pushing high up the ground from the forward line before bouncing back to goal at speed.

But while the characteristics of the Orange Tsunami may seem to be run in a wave, at pace towards goal, Daniels explains that the key characteristic of the style that is taking the competition by storm has always been about defence first.

“The first time we spoke about the Orange Tsunami, it wasn‘t about our offence but more about our defence, Daniels said.

“We wanted our defence to be really frenetic and, in your face. That was what we spoke about first.

“It was nothing to do with our offence. But you know, when people speak about us they do talk about our run and carry and speed and power through middle of the ground and off the halfback line. But to be honest, with myself and Toby it’s more about our pressure and how we can create turnovers for our teammates and hurt them on the way back in.

Brent Daniels celebrates a goal in the Elimination Final win (Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)Source: FOX SPORTS

“So, everyone loves to speak about the about the Orange Tsunami as an offensive weapon, but it‘s a lot of defensive work as well.”

Having spent time overseas last off-season to correct his issues with his body, Daniels’ inclusion into the Giants team has been incredibly impactful.

He‘s registered 59 tackles and kicked 25 goals from his 18 games this season and, according to St Kilda Hall of Famer Leigh Montagna, is one of the most “underrated players in the competition” with his pressure and speed.

“He‘s the fourth ranked player in the competition for forward half pressure … Out of all general forwards, he’s ranked the third best in the competition behind only Toby Greene and Dustin Martin.” Montagna said on AFL 360.

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Daniels opened up on the “disappointing few years” that put an early halt to his career, but while returning to the field this season has been a step in the right direction, he maintains he ”isn‘t over the hump just yet.”

“You really don‘t take for granted playing footy when you’re missing time with some injuries and last year was a really tough year for myself in the club in terms of how we went. But I was really excited to get back this year because there was going to be a new change up, we’re going to go a slightly different way,” he said.

“The joy of being back out there and competing is really special. I don‘t take it for granted. It really drives me to continue to stay on the park and play a role for this club.”

He explained how he needed to become “smarter” with his training this year and how the high-speed game plan, and being a senior player, helped him adjust to the new game-plan and style of play.

“I guess now, I‘m a bit older and a bit of a leader in the forward line, so people look to me with training standards and to play well as well so there is a bit more responsibility in terms of that,” he said.

“I think it was smarter this year, not overtraining and doing too much, but also training some high quality and high speed, which was one thing that Kingers (Adam Kingsley) wanted about the whole group.

“So, the training around the team changed. We did more high-speed numbers and drills that we did a lot faster, which was good for myself in preparing my body in the off-season.”

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The country-trotting Giants return to Adelaide Oval this weekend, preparing for another hostile environment against a Port Adelaide side looking to bounce back.

While the venue is the one that the Giants’ most recent loss came at, Daniels and the Giants believe that Saturday night’s matchup will be a “different game”.

Having missed that game through suspension, Daniels is chomping at the bit to get there.

“Obviously we got a pretty flat loss over there last time But we think it’s going to be a completely different game this week,” he said.

“We‘ve got myself and Toby back in, (which) I think is really important to how we want to play. We’re excited, we think it’s going to be a really different game.”

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