1. The Swans are back
After six successive losses to start the season, many pundits wrote off Sydney's finals chances. John Longmire's men looked a completely different side to the one that reached last year's Grand Final. It seems that assessment might have come too quickly. Beating the Brisbane Lions was the Swans' first step in turning their campaign around and they showed it wasn't a one-off on Sunday. Reaching September will no doubt be a tough ask after having dug themselves into a sizable hole but if they keep playing in this fashion, the Swans could be dangerous come the end of the season. Captain Josh Kennedy is continuing to play brilliant footy while Dan Hannebery played as if Sam Gibson wasn't trying to limit him and won plenty of the ball. Luke Parker was back to his best while young guns Callum Mills and Isaac Heeney were in fine form.
2. Concerns for both clubs
A high right arm from Lance Franklin on North Melbourne defender Sam Durdin in the third quarter will likely garner the attention of the Match Review Panel. There didn't look to be a whole lot in the incident but the Swans would not like to see their superstar miss a match, especially since they are just starting to pick up some momentum. Meanwhile, veteran Jarrad McVeigh spent plenty of time on the bench in the third quarter and looked to be carrying an injury in his lower body. Despite finishing with a couple of goals, he looked very slow at stages and finished the game with ice on his right hamstring. For North Melbourne, young gun Jy Simpkin copped a right shoulder injury and didn't come back on after quarter time. The Roos would be desperately hoping the No.12 pick from last year's NAB AFL Draft doesn't have to miss too many games.
3. North unable to repeat stellar effort
The Roos pulled off one of the bigger upsets this season last week when they beat the then-undefeated Adelaide by 59 points at Blundstone Arena. It followed on from what had been a very competitive season, despite entering Sunday's clash with a 2-5 record. They couldn't back it up through and were outworked against a determined Sydney outfit at Etihad Stadium. The contested possessions stats were damning, with North going down 169-134. Ben Cunnington (17 contested possessions) and Jack Ziebell (11) won their fair share in the clinches but they didn't have a whole lot of support. Not a lot was expected of the Roos coming into this season after the departure of several veterans but they would have been disappointed with their output on Sunday.
4. Sydney will have to pay big bucks for Reid
In light of news that Swans tall forward Sam Reid could command offers of up to $800,000 a year, the 25-year-old slotted three goals on Sunday in an impressive performance. He kicked a couple from 50m, one after he marked the footy one-handed with Scott Thompson holding his left arm, and snapped another on his left. With Lance Franklin and Kurt Tippett also signed up, the Swans have plenty of money invested in their tall forwards, but having seemingly overcome injury issues, Reid looks like he has gone past Tippett. The former Crow kicked four goals in the NEAFL on Saturday but is 30-years-old and probably has more value as a ruckman, rather than up forward.
5. Captain watches on as the sides scuffle
There was a bit of feeling in this game, with several scraps breaking out during the game. A mildly amusing moment happened at half time when the Sydney and North Melbourne players were involved in a tangle. Nothing too serious happened, but if any Swans were wondering where their star skipper was, they needed to look about 100m away. Josh Kennedy was being interviewed for Fox Footy's coverage and the skipper himself had a chuckle as he watched his teammates on the big screen. After a dominant opening half with 27 disposals, 13 contested possessions and nine score involvements, Kennedy had a decent excuse not to do take on any more additional work.