Melbourne win by 44 points
In another week where their existence was being questioned, Fitzroy players understandably had other matters on their mind at league headquarters, but that didn't explain going 46 points down at the first change. The Demons had troubles of their own. During the week it had been revealed that the two sides were talking about a merger, but even more importantly Melbourne had just become the first side that year to lost to St Kilda.
Even Ron Barassi and Brian Dixon had been moved to attend training during the week to see what was going on. Dixon claimed to not have seen the Demons train since 1968 but was so moved by their shambolic performance at Moorabbin that he had to see the players for himself. Ironically considering his later opposition to the merger with Hawthorn, Dixon said that he would be happy to merge with the Lions as long as the side were called the Melbourne Lions. He even said he'd accept a compromise jersey.
With both clubs in crisis, and neither certain to start 1987 in their existing form it was the Demons who shot out to a match winning lead early. The key behind the first quarter lead was John Fidge, who kicked three of his five goals for the day in the opening term.
Brian Wilson was continually cutting the Lions to shreds on a wing. The Age described him as having "split the centre square open like a clam", but despite his brilliance didn't get a Brownlow Medal vote. David Allday received the three votes for his dominant ruck performance despite on having seven disposals and one goal game in just his 9th appearance. Healy and Newport were also in the best. There were a number of brief brawls during the day but no reports were laid.
John Northey said, "We got a little pride back today".
Fitzroy 16.13.109 d. Melbourne 12.18.90
Goals - Giles 3, Gandini 2, F. Rugolo 1, Bourke 1, Eishold 1, Cordner 1, Jackson 1, 1, Sparks 1, Sizer 1
Best - Sizer, Connolly, McCarty
Fitzroy 15.15.105 d. Melbourne 11.16.82
Goals - Stoney 5, Dann 2, Gow 2, Lawrence 2
Best - Dann, Allardice, Kiley