|Full name||Paul Salmon|
|Date of birth||20 January 1965|
|Original team(s)||North Ringwood|
|Height||206 cm (6 ft 9 in)|
|Weight||112 kg (247 lb)|
|Position(s)||Full Forward, Ruckman|
|Representative team honours|
1 Playing statistics correct to the end of 2002.
|Sources: AFL Tables, AustralianFootball.com|
Paul Salmon (born 20 January 1965) is a former Australian rules footballer who played in the Australian Football League for Essendon and Hawthorn. Recruited from North Ringwood, Salmon had a prolific career, with many accolades such as being inducted into the Australian Football Hall of Fame, a two-time premiership player, seven-time leading goalkicker at Essendon, and the fourth-highest goalkicker for Essendon.  
At 206 cm (6 ft 9 in), Salmon was, at the time, along with Carlton's Justin Madden, the tallest man to play in the AFL upon debut; however, this record would be broken several times.  Also known as "Fish", Salmon was a well-known full-forward and ruckman in the Australian Football League over a long period of time. 
He made his debut in 1983 with Essendon;  however, it was during the 1984 VFL season that he established himself as the league's leading full-forward, kicking 63 goals in 13 games.  Essendon's leading ruckman at the time was the illustrious Simon Madden, which allowed Bombers coach Kevin Sheedy the luxury of playing the accurate kicking "Fish" up forward. His effectiveness in the position was due to his athleticism and ability to win one-on-one marking contests, using his superior height and mobility. At the time, Salmon was the VFL's equal-tallest player alongside Carlton's Justin Madden (coincidentally, Simon Madden's younger brother), and one of only a handful of VFL players who stood over 200 cm (6'7") tall at the time. 
While leading the goalkicking with 63 goals in just 13 games, halfway through the 1984 season, a serious knee injury which required a full reconstruction left him sidelined for over a year;   he then recovered to kick 6 goals and 4 behinds in the 1985 premiership side.  From this point onward, the 20-year-old Salmon would rotate between full-forward and his favoured ruck position with Simon Madden.  Salmon endured further minor complications with his knee injury and numerous soft tissue injuries over the next few years and was never allowed to settle in a specific on-field role; despite this, he played a vital role for the team, becoming vice-captain in 1992 and culminating in leading the Bombers' season goalkicking tally on seven occasions as well as playing in Essendon's 1993 premiership, where he kicked 5 goals to help Essendon to a 44-point win over Carlton in the Grand Final in front of 96,862 fans at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. 
After serious injuries to his Achilles tendon and groin in 1993 and 1994, respectively, and with the knowledge that his playing time was running out, he decided his time as a Bomber was over at 31 years of age, so he requested a new home and was subsequently traded to Hawthorn, the club whom he supported as a child.  He was selected in Kevin Sheedy's best team of his 27 years as coach and at number 26 in the 'Champions of Essendon',[ citation needed ] which was a list of the best of the past century who wore the red and black, missing the top-25 cutoff by a single position.
Salmon has been quoted saying that, while he has great respect for Sheedy, he felt at times he didn't get the best out of him, from perhaps lack of communication.  However, he has also spoken in glowing terms about Sheedy being good for his career. In such situations such as in late 1985 when Salmon had recently come back from injury, and was out of form and playing in the reserves, Sheedy made a deal with him that, if he trained hard and if Essendon made the Grand Final, he would play him regardless of his form, a promise that was delivered by both parties. 
At the end of 1994, Salmon moved to Hawthorn, where he played from 1995–2000, and revived his career by winning the Best and Fairest in 1996 and '97 as well as the Most Consistent Award in '98.  He became vice-captain in '98 and also finished in the top ten in every best and fairest in each of his five years at the club. After 5 seasons and 100 games with the Hawks, he retired at the age of 35; and, after his retirement, he was named in Hawthorn's Team of the Century. 
In 1997, Salmon achieved All-Australian selection, being named in the ruck. 
In 1999, he won the Michael Tuck Medal for a best-on-ground performance in the winning Hawk's Night Grand Final.
Salmon retired from playing football at the end of the 2000 season.  He made a comeback in 2002, after being drafted by Essendon at 37 years of age.  He played 15 games in 2002 before permanently retiring from AFL football. 
Salmon had a prolific State of Origin career, kicking 45 goals in 14 games. He first played for Victoria in 1984, against South Australia, kicking 5 goals. Salmon next played at State of Origin level in 1986 against South Australia, kicking 4 goals. In the same year, he participated in a game against Western Australia that has been regarded as "one of the greatest games in the 150-year history of Australian Football", but didn't trouble the scoreboard. 
In 1987, he performed well, kicking 5 goals and being named in the best players, against Western Australia in Perth.  The following year Salmon performed in the State of Origin Carnival, winning the Tassie Medal, kicking 7 goals in the semi-final, and 1 goal in the final. 
In 1990, he was picked against New South Wales, in a wet day at the SCG, scoring 1 goal, in an upset loss against favourites Victoria.  In 1992, he kicked 5 goals against South Australia and was named in the best players. 
In 1993, in the State of Origin Carnival, Salmon kicked 6 goals in the semi-final against the combined New South Wales–Australian Capital Territory side, but he didn't perform in the Grand Final, failing to score a goal.   Salmon last played for Victoria in 1997, against South Australia. Being named in the Ruck for the first time, Salmon performed well, being named best on ground. 
|Season||Team||No.||Games||Totals||Averages (per game)||Votes|
Salmon has also worked in the media co-hosting Sportsworld for the Seven Network and Time Out for Serious Fun for the Nine Network, and he has released several books. He released an autobiography called The Big Fish: Paul Salmon's Own Story in 2001;  Fish Tales, a book recalling humorous on- and off-field incidents, in 2002;  and he followed up in 2003 with another book, called More Fish Tales: Favourite Yarns From A Footballing Life. 
He also worked as a coach of the First XVIII Football team at Carey Baptist Grammar School; he retired from that position in 2008 to spend more time with his family and concentrate on business interests.[ citation needed ]
In August 2022, Salmon defeated former Essendon teammate Jason Johnson on the "Lou's Handball" segment of The Sunday Footy Show with a score of 76–74. 
The Essendon Football Club, nicknamed the Bombers, is a professional Australian rules football club. The club plays in the Australian Football League (AFL), the game's premier competition. The club was formed by the McCracken family in their Ascot Vale home "Alisa", and while the exact date is unknown, it is generally accepted to have been in 1872. The club's first recorded game took place on 7 June 1873 against a Carlton Second 20. From 1878 until 1896, the club played in the Victorian Football Association, then joined seven other clubs in October 1896 to form the breakaway Victorian Football League. Headquartered at the Essendon Recreation Ground, known as Windy Hill, from 1922 to 2013, the club moved to The Hangar in near Tullamarine in late 2013 on land owned by the Melbourne Airport. The club currently plays its home games at either Docklands Stadium or the Melbourne Cricket Ground. Zach Merrett is the current club captain.
Kevin John Sheedy AO is a former Australian rules football coach and player in the Australian Football League. He played and coached in a combined total of 929 games over 47 years from 1967 until 2013, which is a VFL/AFL record. Sheedy was inducted into the Australian Football Hall of Fame in 2008 and on 29 May 2018 was elevated to legend status.
Gary Ablett Sr., is a former professional Australian rules footballer who represented Hawthorn and Geelong in the Australian Football League (AFL). Nicknamed "God", Ablett is widely regarded as one of Australian football's greatest players, and was especially renowned for his high-flying spectacular marks and his prolific goalkicking.
Matthew James Lloyd is a former professional Australian rules footballer, who played for the Essendon Football Club in the Australian Football League (AFL).
Simon Madden is a former Australian rules footballer who played his entire 19-season career with the Essendon Football Club from 1974 until 1992. Madden is one of the most decorated players in the club's history and widely regarded as one of the finest ruckmen to ever play the game.
Garry Peter Lyon is a former professional Australian rules football player and was captain of the Melbourne Football Club in the Australian Football League (AFL). Since his retirement from football, he has been mainly an Australian rules football media personality, featuring on television, radio and in newspapers. He has also coached during the International Rules Series. He is the most recent VFL/AFL player to kick ten goals in a finals match, having done so in the 1994 Second Semi-Final against Footscray, and the first since Geelong's George Goninon in 1951, 43 years prior.
Peter Knights is a former professional Australian rules footballer who played for Hawthorn in the Victorian Football League (VFL). After retiring as a player, he was appointed the inaugural coach of the Brisbane Bears and later returned to coach Hawthorn during the 1990s.
Paul Chapman is a former professional Australian rules footballer who played for the Geelong Football Club and Essendon Football Club in the Australian Football League (AFL).
Rivalries in the Australian Football League exist between many teams, most of which typically draw large crowds and interest regardless of both teams' positions on the ladder. The AFL encourages the building of such rivalries, as a method of increasing publicity for the league, to the point of designating one round each year as "Rivalry Round" when many of these match-ups are held on the one weekend. Whilst some rivalries, such as between teams from adjacent areas, are still strong, the designation of an entire round of fixtures as a Rivalry Round is often criticised due to some arbitrary match-ups, or ignoring stronger and more recent rivalries.
Lance Franklin, also known as Buddy Franklin, is a professional Australian rules footballer playing for the Sydney Swans in the Australian Football League (AFL). He previously played for the Hawthorn Football Club from 2005 to 2013. Regarded as the greatest forward of his generation and among the greatest players of all time, Franklin has kicked 1,054 goals, the most of any current player and the fifth-most in VFL/AFL history, and has been his clubs' leading goalkicker on 13 occasions, kicking at least 50 goals in each of those seasons. He has been selected in the All-Australian team on eight occasions, including as captain in the 2018 team, and has won four Coleman Medals throughout his career, with his biggest haul coming in 2008 with Hawthorn, when he kicked 113 goals.
Paul Sproule is a former Australian rules footballer who played for the Essendon Football Club and Richmond Football Club in the Victorian Football League (VFL), as well as for the Hobart Football Club and Sandy Bay Football Club in the Tasmanian Australian National Football League (TANFL). He also served brief stints as senior coach of Richmond, Hobart and Sandy Bay.
Garry Foulds is a former Australian rules footballer who played 300 games for the Essendon Football Club between 1974 and 1989. Described as "a ball magnet", Foulds spent the majority of his career playing on the wing or floating across the half-back line. He made his Victorian Football League (VFL) debut against Fitzroy in round 8 1974, after playing in the Essendon under–19s. He struggled to hold his place in the side before becoming a regular in 1977. Foulds was part of Essendon's Grand Final winning sides over Hawthorn in 1984 and 1985, along with playing in the 1983 Grand Final loss against the same opposition.
The Victoria Australian rules football team, known colloquially as the Big V, is the state representative side of Victoria, Australia, in the sport of Australian rules football.
Paul Vander Haar is a former Australian rules footballer who played 201 games with Essendon in the Victorian Football League (VFL).
The 1990 AFL Grand Final was an Australian rules football game contested between the Collingwood Football Club and the Essendon Football Club, held at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in Melbourne on 6 October 1990. It was the 94th annual grand final of the Australian Football League, staged to determine the premiers for the 1990 AFL season. The match, attended by 98,944 spectators, was won by Collingwood by a margin of 48 points, marking that club's 14th premiership victory.
The 1984 VFL Grand Final was an Australian rules football game contested between the Essendon Football Club and Hawthorn Football Club, held at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in Melbourne on 29 September 1984. It was the 88th annual grand final of the Victorian Football League, staged to determine the premiers for the 1984 VFL season. The match, attended by 92,685 spectators, was won by Essendon by a margin of 24 points, marking that club's 13th premiership victory.
The 1985 VFL Grand Final was an Australian rules football game contested between the Essendon Football Club and Hawthorn Football Club, held at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in Melbourne on 28 September 1985. It was the 89th annual grand final of the Victorian Football League, staged to determine the premiers for the 1985 VFL season. The match, attended by 100,042 spectators, was won by Essendon by a margin of 78 points, marking that club's 14th premiership victory.
Steven Clark was an Australian rules footballer who played with Essendon, Melbourne and St Kilda in the Australian Football League (AFL), previously Victorian Football League (VFL).
Graeme William Schultz is a former Australian rules footballer who played with Essendon in the Victorian Football League (VFL).
Sam Grimley is a former Australian rules football player who played for the Hawthorn Football Club and Essendon Football Club in the Australian Football League.