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Trade Wrap: October 9, 2017

Nathan Schmook, Nick Bowen and Callum Twomey -  October 9, 2017 7:49 PM

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs.

How can the Bombers maximise pick No.11?

Essendon's pick No.11 will be crucial in negotiations for Western Bulldogs forward Jake Stringer, but not necessarily in the straight swap the Bulldogs angled for on Monday.

The Bombers acknowledged on the opening day of the NAB AFL Trade Period that they would need to use their prized pick in some way to get Stringer, Devon Smith and Adam Saad to the club.

Stringer officially nominated the Bombers as his preferred club on Monday, so where do things sit?

  • The Bulldogs have stated Stringer's value is an early to middle first-round selection and they asked for pick No.11 on Monday.
  • But the clubs are a way apart in negotiations with Essendon unlikely to part with that pick in a straight swap.
  • As such, the Bombers could look to get involved in a swap of picks that lands them a later first round selection to offer for Stringer.

Could the Giants get involved?

GWS is staying abreast of all conversations involving the Bombers, given it will be sending Smith to Tullamarine. The Giants are masters in improving their draft position, so watch this space.

The Bombers' chats with GWS and Gold Coast on Monday were more fruitful, with both clubs stating their price for Smith and Saad respectively.

  • The Giants value Smith as a first-round pick
  • The Suns value Saad as a second-round pick or equivalent player

Can Essendon retain Aaron Francis and bring all three in?

"I think we can. We've got a strategy that would allow us to do that," football manager Rob Kerr said on Monday.

Right now the Bombers hold picks No.11, No.28, No.46 and No.65. The Bombers said on Monday it was a bit early to discuss using future picks as part of the deals.  

Schache headed home after all

It was only four months ago 2015 No.2 draft pick Josh Schache surprised many in football by recommitting to the Brisbane Lions until the end of 2019.

It was not long, however, before speculation resurfaced that the key forward would return to Victoria at the end of 2017.

Just hours before the competition's 18 clubs gathered at Etihad Stadium for the start of trade period on Monday, that speculation proved correct when news broke the Lions had mutually agreed with the homesick Schache to pursue a trade over the next two weeks. 

Which clubs will be interested?

The Lions fielded preliminary inquiries from some Victorian clubs on Monday, but are not expecting a deal to be done until late in the trade period.  

Richmond, Collingwood, Carlton and the Western Bulldogs were linked with Schache before he re-signed, each keen to bolster its height in attack.

The Tigers' interest appeared to have waned last month, when talent manager Dan Richardson said they were unlikely to pursue a trade for Schache. But could their position change now the 199cm forward is officially on the market?

Essendon and St Kilda ruled themselves out of the race on Monday. 

What is Schache worth?

It's believed the Lions have yet to put an official price on Schache's head, but a late first-round pick seems around the mark. 

Richmond appears well placed with picks No.15 and No.17. Other clubs could look to trade their first-round pick for Schache and one of the Lions' No.12 or No.18 picks. The Bulldogs, with pick No.9, are best placed to claim Schache by sliding down the draft order in this way.

Gibbs all but off the table

No matter how many times the Blues maintained Bryce Gibbs would serve the final two years of his contract ahead of trade period, speculation raged the South Australian would again seek a move to Adelaide.  

The Crows finally appeared to put that talk to bed on Monday afternoon. After emerging from the club meetings at Etihad Stadium, Adelaide list manager Justin Reid all but conceded the Crows had fired their one and only trade shot at Gibbs last year. 

"Bryce is a contracted player, I think he's happy where he is, so respectfully we'll all move on," Reid said.

Is that it?

Never say never where Gibbs is concerned, but it appears so.

Carlton's inability to bolster its midfield depth with Tom Rockliff and Devon Smith probably killed off any chance the Crows had of luring Gibbs home. The Blues entered this trade period determined to add experienced midfielders and, as pleased as they are to have second-year Giant Matt Kennedy nominate them as his preferred club, that looming addition won't be enough to convince the Blues they can afford to let Gibbs go. 

Unless Carlton can snare an experienced, contracted opposition on-baller before the end of trade period – a tough assignment, just ask the Saints – then Gibbs almost certainly remains a Blue.

Mummy's future still clouded

A week after it emerged Shane Mumford might not play on with Greater Western Sydney despite being contracted for 2018, the ruckman's future remains clouded.

Mumford's manager, Anthony McConville of Mac's Sports, told on Monday he remained in "ongoing discussions" with the Giants, with both parties in "no rush" to make a final call. 

The 31-year-old's career is under threat because of the foot, ankle and knee injuries that have dogged him over recent seasons. 

McConville said his client believed he was capable of playing on. GWS list manager Craig Cameron said on Monday Mumford was "still waiting on specialists' advice, so we've got to wait for that".

Where to from here?

The Giants are mindful of the excellent service the Swans premiership ruckman has given in his four seasons with the club, but have genuine doubts his body can get through another AFL season.

The medical reports on Mumford's body will largely determine his future.

If Mumford ultimately decides not to play on, GWS will likely try to trade in a ruckman before next Thursday's 2pm deadline.

Uncontracted Cat could boost Blues' on-ball brigade

Carlton is interested in Geelong's Darcy Lang as the Blues look to add to their midfield during this year's NAB AFL Trade Period.

Lang is out of contract at the Cats and looks headed for a new home after not being offered a new deal, despite a promising finals series.

The Blues are among a number of clubs who are in the mix for the 21-year-old, with interest growing for the former Geelong Falcon on the first day of the trade talks.

Lang is unlikely to be a priority for clubs, but with some bigger names around the competition nominating their new preferred destination, including Devon Smith at Essendon, the tough ball-winning Cat shapes as a valuable recruit.

The Blues were seen as one of the front-runners for Smith before the Greater Western Sydney forward last week revealed he wanted to be traded to the Bombers.

What would it take?

  • It should be relatively straightforward to get a deal done for Lang. He was a first-round draft choice in 2013, having broken his leg during his under-18 season, but has played only 44 games in four seasons. The Cats have bigger priorities, particularly with Ablett set to return to the club. Lang had been floated as a potential part of that deal. 
  • The Blues are likely to land departing Giants midfielder Matthew Kennedy, so to bring in Lang as well would be a handy addition to a solid but ageing midfield unit.

What you also need to know

  • Adelaide list manager Justin Reid reiterated on Monday the club's desire to retain Charlie Cameron despite the contracted speedster's request for a trade to the Brisbane Lions. The Lions, however, remain hopeful the Crows will eventually entertain a deal. 
  • Restricted free agent Steven Motlop was in Adelaide on Monday touring the Crows' facilities. He said he had not made any decisions on his preferred club as he prepares to meet with Gold Coast later this week. Motlop has already met with Port Adelaide, and the two SA clubs appear to be in the box seat, with premiership success high on the 26-year-old's agenda. "I haven't made any decisions yet," he told Channel Nine. "I'm pretty lucky in this trade period and I've got some opportunities, so I've got to work through it."

  • Contrary to speculation linking Daniel Menzel to Fremantle, the Dockers have no interest in the Geelong free agent, according to list manager Brad Lloyd.
  • Out-of-contract Port Adelaide speedster Matt White probably won't know whether he has a future at Alberton until the end of trade period, although the impending departures of Jarman Impey (Hawthorn) and Brendon Ah Chee (West Coast) could improve his chances of a new contract.
  • Jack Watts is yet to nominate his preferred club and will meet with Sydney this week before doing so. The Melbourne forward has already met with Geelong and Port Adelaide. Melbourne says offers for the versatile forward have been "off the mark" so far.   

  • GWS is after a pick between 15-20 from Fremantle in exchange for Nathan Wilson. The skilful half-back is settling back in Perth and talks between the clubs have started, with both trying to establish his value. Fremantle holds pick No.40, which it knows won't get a deal done, so there could be a hold-up in Wilson's move as the club searches for a suitable selection.