In the early Ken Hinkley days at Port Adelaide, the mantra was always ‘we will never, ever give up.’
While the mantra is still spoken about, it doesn’t have as much of an impact as it did in 2013 and 2014, when the Power were massive underdogs after years in the wilderness.
It hasn’t helped that there has often been players who look disinterested or over the top frustrated when the going gets tough.
However, one player lives and breathes that ‘we will never, ever give up’ mantra, and that is Zak Butters.
Imagine you’re 181cm and 74kg going up against giant defenders who are 15-20cm taller and about 15-20kg heavier.
Now, also imagine throwing yourself at them with a hell bent determination to get the ball.
That’s what Butters does.
Late in the game against West Coast, Butters flew in to crash a pack with no regard for his own safety, taking out most of the pack and allowing a late goal for Brad Ebert.
So much is spoken about the brilliance of Connor Rozee, the class of Xavier Duursma, but the absolute carnage and composure of Zak Butters is what makes this trio tick.
In the round five loss to Brisbane, Butters, aside from Travis Boak, was Port Adelaide’s best and refused to give up.
He was aggressive, rapid and tried to take the game on at all costs – which absolute sums up the ‘we will never, ever give up’ mantra.
It’s something he does week in, week out, which will always give Power fans some form of hope, even in a heavy loss.
Butters’ importance to the Port Adelaide line-up cannot be understated, and hopefully us football fans are blessed with more of his ‘never say die’ attitude.