Lions have ton of fun over premiers
It was the night the atmosphere at the Gabba shifted from warm and fuzzy to a snarling intensity.
The Lions delivered on a summer of promise with a stunning 44-point victory over West Coast the Gabba.
Terror twins Lincoln McCarthy (four goals) and Charlie Cameron (three) ran rings around the Eagles defence' to combine for seven goals in the 15.12 (102) to 8.10 (58) victory in front of 20,092 fans but the reality was it was a genuine team effort.
The last time they were this convincing against a reigning premier was 10 years ago when they stunned Hawthorn at Launceston.
Prior to that was probably an intra-club scratch match back in the glory years of 2001-03.
The Lions won the footy on the inside and outworked the visitors on the outside, although the heat and 80 per cent humidity may have assisted them, and their pressure, especially in the forward half, was really good.
The proof of the merging depth at Brisbane was that young midfielders Hugh McCluggage, Jarrod Berry and Rhys Mathieson slightly outshone older heads Lachie Neale, Jarryd Lyons and Dayne Zorko.
The competition has fallen in love with Brisbane since coach Chris Fagan arrived.
Even AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan said this week there was a lot of "feel good" about them.
Try telling that to West Coast.
Other than a six goal first quarter, when Brisbane was its own worst enemy, the Eagles were little more than onlookers.
Even in that first quarter the Lions were on top around the stoppages but they struggled to hold onto possession as they missed targets or dropped marks.
Their forays into the forward fifty repeatedly came up short too as they missed simple shots on goal.
West Coast was the exact opposite, they showed none of the rust that can be expected from the reigning premiers in round one and were cleaner by hand and foot.
It allowed them to get their running game going and provide plenty of chances for their forwards.
At quarter-time the Eagles had booted 6.2 to the home side's 1.5.
However the Lions' must have believed the gap between the two sides was not as great as the scoreboard suggested because they came out in the second quarter a totally different side. The reason for the hype that has surrounded the Lions all summer was on display in the second quarter when the hammered in seven goals.
A Daniel Rich shocker from the kick-in when he gift wrapped a short pass to Daniel Venables about 25m from goal provided the Eagles' only goal of the quarter and Brisbane's only blemish.
At half time they had reeled in the 27-point deficit and led by seven points.
Once again the margin was not an accurate reflection of the gap between the two sides, only this time it was much greater.
Brisbane, who had kicked the last five of the first half opened with the next four of the third. Their fans gave them a standing ovation at three quarter time when the only thing in doubt was the final margin.
But the players didn't let up. This young side didn't want a gutsy win, they wanted a killing.
Only when Rich got the goal he gave away back with a 40m snap in the dying minutes, and every one of his teammates swamped him, did the celebrations start.