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‘Be water’: Shaw swears by Bruce Lee mantra during AFL’s COVID-19 year

“This year is a little bit different, and I was watching a documentary last night on Bruce Lee. And it was ‘be water’,” Shaw said.

“The theory behind it is you just adapt to the environment. And water, so if you put water in a cup, the water becomes a cup. If you put water in a bucket, the water becomes a bucket.

Bruce Lee's name doesn't often come up at AFL media calls.

Bruce Lee’s name doesn’t often come up at AFL media calls.

“That’s sort of our program at the moment and the way our routine and week-to-week is. We’ve just got to adapt to what’s coming at us and be water.

“I think the human body, we’re like 80 per cent water anyway, so we’re nearly there. A little bit of philosophy for you guys, I thought you might like it. He’s an impressive unit, Bruce Lee.”


Little surprise, then, what Shaw had to say when asked about the prospect of shorter breaks between games over the coming weeks as the AFL seeks to squeeze in an extra round of fixtures while the Victorian teams are in interstate hubs.

“You’ve just got to be water, mate,” he said.

“You’ve got to adapt to it and you’ve got to go with the flow, because to be honest, we’ve got a squad of 45. Our guys who miss out on selection during the week, they’ve played some top-up games … they’re ready to come in and we’ve got guys banging down the door.

“If that means resting guys throughout, the long-term view, then so be it, but at the moment, the Giants are going to be water.”

As for becoming the top dog in the Shaw clan, he is yet to hear from his uncle Tony, but is looking forward to gloating the next time he sees him.

“To be honest, it’s not like a huge thing, but it is amongst the Shaw family. At Shaw functions, weddings, and all that stuff, I’ll definitely be up the back giving him a bit of stick about that and taking over as head of the family, which is the main thing,” Shaw said.

“[I’ll be] head of the dinner table, do most of the speaking, raising the glass, cheering people – that responsibility’s obviously been handed to me now and I’m looking forward to that because I do enjoy listening to myself talk.”

Meanwhile, the Giants have opted against naming Tim Taranto for their clash against the Power, despite the club’s reigning best-and-fairest having fully recovered from the dislocated shoulder he suffered during pre-season. Coach Leon Cameron will instead give Taranto a tune-up in a practice match before considering him for AFL selection.

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