Have Hawthorn booby-trapped their own regeneration?

Matt Somerford Roar Rookie

By Matt Somerford, Matt Somerford is a Roar Rookie

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    In a city where conversation is regularly framed by the sporting landscape, Melbourne’s famed changeable weather is arguably a gift of Mother Nature’s sense of humour.

    Sporting opinion clouds and clears the airways of the Victorian news cycle with the fleeting disturbance of a Nick Kyrgios tantrum or Kevin Bartlett opinion.

    If you don’t like it, wait five minutes.

    For Hawthorn fans the wait might be a little longer.

    For the best part of a decade Hawthorn have lived above the Monday-to-Friday parapet of white noise that is *expert* analysis and Facebook memes.

    Four premierships in eight years – including a hat-trick of titles – will do that. The Hawks were untouchable, on and off the field.

    You couldn’t so much as shout ‘power’ in their faces without being vigorously cast aside and discredited. Certainly don’t do it in an Adelaide train station.

    The Hawks did everything well. Whether you liked it or not.

    Most didn’t.

    Brutal efficiency rarely wins many admirers outside of the club’s four walls and the Hawks swaggered with the sort of arrogance that paves the way for greatness.

    For sporting purists it was a (brown and) gold standard in dynasty making.

    For everyone else it ruined their winter weekends; least of all September.

    The resentment that grew in between the gaps of sporting purism and Hawthorn support is now measurable in the levels of schadenfreude that has appeared on social media following Hawthorn’s 0-4 start.

    Jarryd Roughead Hawthorn Hawks AFL 2017

    A horrible winter at the trade table has only further served to empower the social media trolls with the number of Ty Vickery memes an effective unit of measuring Hawthorn’s decline.

    Just how it has come to this – just 18 months after clinching a premiership hat-trick – has been poured over this past week and shedding the spotlight will take more than a win this weekend against a West Coast side that routinely roll over at the MCG.

    From an outsider’s point of view it is strange to see Hawthorn cast into this dynamic. What’s most alarming is that they’ve been complicit in their decline.

    Every great era comes to an end – it is the nature of the AFL’s equalisation policy – but in their haste to fast-forward through the usual restoration period that follows Hawthorn instead appear to have booby-trapped their future.

    The headline act was the departures of Sam Mitchell and Jordan Lewis and while list manager Graeme Wright made a reasoned statement as to why they were ending their storied careers elsewhere, the messy nature of Lewis’ exit was the first sign the Hawks had not fully calculated the risk they were taking on.

    There was a naivety about the decision that Hawthorn had never before displayed during Alastair Clarkson’s tenure, like allowing the kids to finger paint over a Monet rather than yesterday’s newspaper.

    Now the legacy of Clarkson’s masterpiece is in very real danger of being tarnished.

    Vickery has unwittingly become the punchline to the winter’s mis-steps and the pathway towards restoring the lost ground is further complicated by the fact Hawthorn’s desire to re-generate as quickly as possible with Jaeger O’Meara and Tom Mitchell also saw them give up their first-round pick in the next draft.

    If that pick falls first on the board, as is now increasingly more possible, the joke will only grow more painful.

    After effectively being absent from last year’s draft Hawthorn face the double whammy of an ageing list and no young players to replace them.

    Jaeger O'Meara Hawthorn Hawks AFL 2017 tall

    Hawthorn fans will at least be spared the ignominy of facing Mitchell this weekend but the inevitable crossed paths await. Even more sobering is the realisation that one day Mitchell and Lewis will step out for their final game to the acclaim of a different club.

    The image of Mitchell waving goodbye to his career in front of an adoring crowd at the new Perth Stadium is difficult to conjure up. Yet it will almost certainly happen.

    So too Lewis being chaired off the MCG in red and blue.

    It doesn’t need a football purist to argue that such moments should be Hawthorn moments. A chance to reminisce over one of the great eras among their own.

    The truth is those moments are lost to Hawthorn and any hope they might be palatable in any sense will come if the Hawks are winning at the same time.

    That, of course, may yet happen. To write off this Hawthorn team is to forget it is still filled with multiple premiership-winning players and led by one of the great coaches of the modern era.

    But the fact remains that the narrative around this Hawthorn team is now about vindicating what happened last winter at the trade table.

    While media narratives won’t much bother Clarkson and his backroom team – wins are the only currency that counts to them – after watching their leaders unceremoniously shipped out the Hawthorn players could be forgiven for feeling some level of disconnect from the task.

    And in the back of their minds will be the knowledge that if Hawthorn are to stay relevant in the draft then trades will have to be made for picks.

    Professionalism and pride dictates any sportsman worth their salt plays to win every time they step onto the field of play, but it’s harder to be invested in repairing the damage of off-field decisions as opposed to going all-out for a premiership.

    Especially if you know the club is willing to move you on at the right price.

    It’s a millstone that, at the back end of some glorious careers, these players hardly deserve and for the moment at least appear disinterested by.

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    The Crowd Says (81)

    • April 21st 2017 @ 7:20am
      John said | April 21st 2017 @ 7:20am | ! Report

      The Hawks got it so wrong in the off season. Mitchell and Lewis were their 2 best performing older guys they should have got rid of Gibson and Burgoyne instead.
      Trading them for nothing was a mistake you don’t give away guns for nothing in return at the time I thought it was a salary dump but then the hawks said they could have afforded to keep them which just makes the trades even more bizarre.

      • April 21st 2017 @ 7:45am
        DH said | April 21st 2017 @ 7:45am | ! Report

        It was a debacle. Regardless of the T. Mitchell and O’Meara trades which were not involved in moving on S. Mitchell and Lewis.

        Moving those two legends on is 90% of the reason they are where they are on the ladder. The kind of arrogance it takes to think you can move your two best players on and still compete at the top level is the kind of misplaced pride only possible before a great fall.

        And lo, it has come to pass.

        Hawthorn fans haven’t come to grips with it yet, but if the Hawks make another series of bone-headed trades this summer, a few of them will be shown the door.

        Unfortunately for hawks fans, by the time they realise this, it will be too late. The list next year will look twice as bad as the list this year. There’s no way Hodge, Burgoyne and Gibson go around again and they’ve got no draft picks to replace them. The alternative would be to make another O’Meara trade with 2018’s draft picks. Then they could have 3 really good midfielders and nothing else. At least clubs dealing with them will know they’re going to get good draft picks in return.

        • April 21st 2017 @ 9:25am
          Birdman said | April 21st 2017 @ 9:25am | ! Report

          DH (how apt) I hope your club (?) has given you as much joy over the last decade as Hawthorn has obviously given you over the past 6 months.

          In other words, get a life.

          • April 21st 2017 @ 10:10am
            mattyb said | April 21st 2017 @ 10:10am | ! Report

            Birdman,it seems your not taking Hawthorns plummeting down the ladder and ridiculous trading policy very well but you must allow others to comment without personal attacks.
            DHs comments are perfectly legitimate and in many ways spot on the money.

            • April 21st 2017 @ 10:45am
              Birdman said | April 21st 2017 @ 10:45am | ! Report

              Fair call.

              However, IMHO some of the commentary has been akin to trolling at times this week.

          • April 21st 2017 @ 10:24am
            I ate pies said | April 21st 2017 @ 10:24am | ! Report

            No need to get personal Birdman. I assume you’re a Hawthorn fan; a criticism of the club isn’t a critcism of you.

        • Roar Guru

          April 21st 2017 @ 2:41pm
          Wilson said | April 21st 2017 @ 2:41pm | ! Report

          DH as a Hawk fan I think something needed to be done we need to let go of some of the older body’s as I said above agree with the Lewis being let go but think Mitchell should have been kept.

          But over the long run I think letting them go will be for the best in the long run. it has given the chance for younger players a chance to play and get experience and help from the like of Hodge, Burgoyne.

          also I don’t think you know the Hawks list well we have a good mix of young players across the field that are showing promise Brand, Burton, Howe, Sicily and Stewart. All need time to develop and learn and that is what I think this year is for them to develop.

      • April 21st 2017 @ 9:32am
        Birdman said | April 21st 2017 @ 9:32am | ! Report

        John, it was both a salary dump and an admission that those two guys weren’t going to get the club back in the hunt with their inability to impact contested possession.

        I do concede that the drop off in kicking efficiency in the midfield is a worry with Titchell, Langford, Shiels and O’Meara (at this stage) not great kicks of the footy. Missing their best ruck in Ceglar doesn’t help either.

        Fingers crossed they find their mojo soon.

        • April 21st 2017 @ 11:20am
          Paul2 said | April 21st 2017 @ 11:20am | ! Report

          I’d always thought it was a salary dump, but that really underscores the mismanagement. By the look of things, they re-signed more or less all of their older players mid-season, only to then decide that they needed to move some of them on. It would have been much better to not have Mitchell contracted: they’d have gotten some genuine compensation for him as an exiting free agent. As it happened, WC knew that Hawthorn were desperate for the cap space, and so got him for nothing.

          That aside, getting rid of players that are no longer very good would have been a much better way of clearing cap space: Mitchell is clearly better than any of the over 30s still on the list.

          • Roar Guru

            April 21st 2017 @ 2:22pm
            Cat said | April 21st 2017 @ 2:22pm | ! Report

            At the time they resigned mid-season it was reported they all took big pay cut, so this being a slary dump I have strong doubts on.

            • April 21st 2017 @ 2:37pm
              Birdman said | April 21st 2017 @ 2:37pm | ! Report

              I think Clarko realised after finals that his list wasn’t going to cut it so he looked at who was gettable and started to ease one of Mitchell or Lewis out but both found great deals so he let both go which freed up salary for O’Meara and Titchell.

              • Roar Guru

                April 21st 2017 @ 2:52pm
                Cat said | April 21st 2017 @ 2:52pm | ! Report

                I’m not convinced hey couldn’t fit them all in anyway. Perhaps signing Vickery wouldn’t have happened, but would that have been a bad thing?

              • April 21st 2017 @ 3:28pm
                Birdman said | April 21st 2017 @ 3:28pm | ! Report

                maybe but as I’ve said below, Vickery was cover for Roughy and Ceglar who were both out of the equation during trade week.

                as it turned out with Roughy getting the all clear, they may have just grabbed a cheap ruck like Minson or Vardy and left Tyrone with the Tiges.

                Oh well

        • April 21st 2017 @ 5:59pm
          Don Freo said | April 21st 2017 @ 5:59pm | ! Report

          O’Meara is a wonderful kick. You needn’t worry there.

          Absolutely nothing wrong with the O’Meara pick up. He is worth a number one and he didn’t cost you that.

          How you thought Henderson or Vickery were going to be useful is beyond me. Someone speculative for nothing might have made sense…Morabito, for instance…but a number 88 or 91 draft pick would be better than Vickery or Henderson.

        • April 22nd 2017 @ 7:55am
          Nineteen said | April 22nd 2017 @ 7:55am | ! Report

          How many games will O’Meara and MItchell play for the Hawks? 150? 50? Who knows? All I know is that you can’t draw sample of four games and conclude what their playing careers will look like. What the detractors are saying is “I’ve seen 3% of their playing career at the Hawks and this is how they will play for the rest of it.”

          Sam Mitchell wasn’t Sam Mitchell in his first game. Lakey when interviewed with Mike Sheean said in his first season at the Hawks he got yelled at all the time in the back line and the only decent game he played was the one where he won the Norm Smith. Even Lakey wasn’t Lakey in his first three years! (Yeah I know he was Harris!)

          We are following a similar course as Carlton but eighteen months behind. Next year will be worse and it’s going to be five years of pain. Look at it as one long preseason: note which kids are standing up but expect to lose.

      • April 21st 2017 @ 10:00am
        Scott said | April 21st 2017 @ 10:00am | ! Report

        It seems like it was Lewis and Mitchell out so they could afford to get Vickery (correct me if I’m wrong). Imagine if they ignored Vickery and added Tom Mitchell, Omeara and Roughead to last years list. They would prob be premiership favourites again and be performing accordingly. They then could have let Mitchell, Lewis, Hodge, Gibson, Burgoyne and Roughead retire together over the next 2 years, freeing up salary cap space both years to go after a really big fish in Free agency. Fyfe or Martin this year. Then next year, if any are available from the 2010 draft like Tom Lynch, Parker, Gaff, Swallow, Heppell etc. They would’ve had a better chance of luring them if they were still a champion club. Now that would’ve been a master stroke by Clarkson

        • Roar Guru

          April 21st 2017 @ 10:08am
          Paul D said | April 21st 2017 @ 10:08am | ! Report

          You make it sound like it’s as easy as assembling a fantasy football side

        • Roar Guru

          April 21st 2017 @ 12:31pm
          Pumping Dougie said | April 21st 2017 @ 12:31pm | ! Report

          Scott, I think you’ve failed to grasp the true extent of Hawthorn’s decline since the end of the 2015 season.

          The ageing warriors got Hawks over the line in 7 close ones last year, with the support of guys like Poppy and Cyril. But most of the ageing warriors all showed clear signs of decline throughout 2016, including Sam Mitchell. Even Hodge on the weekend, who was praised in the media for a good game against Geelong and plenty of possessions, looked poor to me – fumbling balls, hurrying possessions, not clean or composed.

          I hope Roughy returns to form, but so far he’s looked well below his best and it’s hard to believe he will recapture his best given the health issues he’s suffered. The middle tier players like Breust, Poppy, Smith, Stratton, Gunston, etc. are struggling to step-up to fill the breach of the declining warriors, and the youth coming through is barely making a mark.

          So even if you’d kept Sam Mitchell and Lewis, and added Tom Mitchell, O’Meara and Vickery, the Hawks would still be struggling. A couple of good midfielders added to any side helps a lot, maybe it would help you finish in the 10 – 12 bracket, but to think you would be a premiership contender with them still in your side is fanciful.

          • April 21st 2017 @ 1:33pm
            Birdman said | April 21st 2017 @ 1:33pm | ! Report

            good post Dougie but your knock on Hodge is way off the mark – it was a tight game up to 3/4 time which impacted on the skills of players of both side but Hodge was enormous IMHO.

            Of course he won’t be there in 2018 but he’s still giving genuine leadership and effort 4 rounds into 2017 which isn’t the case for many Hawks in their leadership group.

            • Roar Guru

              April 21st 2017 @ 1:45pm
              Pumping Dougie said | April 21st 2017 @ 1:45pm | ! Report

              Fair enough Birdman, just my perception. I agree his leadership is still very evident and he has been a champion player in the past (with his “legend” reputation soured in my opinion by some regrettable incidents, such as the Wingard beheading). But I reckon he struggled to be damaging on the weekend, even though he got plenty of the ball. Yes the pressure was high, but in the past he would have been smooth and clean in the same scenarios and used the ball nicely. He’s showing clear signs of age affecting his performance last year and this year.

              • April 21st 2017 @ 1:48pm
                Birdman said | April 21st 2017 @ 1:48pm | ! Report

                in the past he might have had some decent targets to kick to…….

              • Roar Guru

                April 21st 2017 @ 1:56pm
                Pumping Dougie said | April 21st 2017 @ 1:56pm | ! Report

                Yeah, that’s the other issue. When the collective team form drops, good players can quickly look ordinary, simply because teammates aren’t delivering the ball precisely or releasing into space, and not running and creating good options to give it to, so champs get caught with the ball.

        • Roar Guru

          April 21st 2017 @ 1:53pm
          Pumping Dougie said | April 21st 2017 @ 1:53pm | ! Report

          Btw, at the end of round 5, Lewis and Mitchell have only played 6 games out of a possible 10 between them. So they wouldn’t have helped Hawthorn much if they weren’t on the field.

          • April 21st 2017 @ 2:18pm
            Brian said | April 21st 2017 @ 2:18pm | ! Report

            If we had kept Lewis and Mitchell we would probably be 1-3 now (probably held off Essendonemotion fuelled charge in Round 1) but still no threat to indent on the 8.

            The rebuild has started as it should when the premiership window closed. Clarko knew this but he was hardly going to go into the season going we are going to miss the 8.

            Vickery was only bought across because they did not think Roughy would play.

            As it there are 4 players I would look to trade at year’s end. Birchall, Smith, Puopolo and McEvoy. Langford & Schoenmakers too or delisted if there is no demand. Burgoyne and Gibson at least to retire.

            Now just imagine if we still had Buddy running around with another 6 years left on his contract.

            • April 21st 2017 @ 2:31pm
              Birdman said | April 21st 2017 @ 2:31pm | ! Report

              hmm….Smith is the only one with decent trade value (early to mid second round at best) but I doubt the co-vice captain will be going anywhere.

              Of the rest I can only see clubs come in for Shoenmakers purely for depth so maybe round 3 pick at best.

              McEvoy will be better with Ceglar back in the side and the rest we will keep (maybe delist Langford?) although the length of Birchall’s contract (end of 2019) is a joke.

        • Roar Guru

          April 21st 2017 @ 2:47pm
          Wilson said | April 21st 2017 @ 2:47pm | ! Report

          Scott I think if Ceglar had not gone down late in the 2016 season Vickery would not have been at the club. Ceglar was becoming the next Hale for Hawks and the top Ruck-men for them as well. the Loss of Ceglar has effected the Hawks the a lot think it would.

      • Roar Guru

        April 21st 2017 @ 2:31pm
        Wilson said | April 21st 2017 @ 2:31pm | ! Report

        John for me I Half agree with you I think letting Lewis go was the right move but should have kept Mitchell and let Gibson go. Gibson has not looked right for about the last 8 months

        • Roar Guru

          April 21st 2017 @ 2:46pm
          Pumping Dougie said | April 21st 2017 @ 2:46pm | ! Report

          It was strange to see Gibson fisting balls away last weekend that he could have easily marked instead. He seems to have lost confidence.

          • Roar Guru

            April 21st 2017 @ 2:49pm
            Wilson said | April 21st 2017 @ 2:49pm | ! Report

            he has not been himself for the last part of last season and has continued this year I think age has caught up to him.

          • April 21st 2017 @ 3:31pm
            Birdman said | April 21st 2017 @ 3:31pm | ! Report

            he’s not called the Golden Fist for nothing but yes he picked the wrong option a couple of times on Sunday

    • April 21st 2017 @ 8:35am
      Philby said | April 21st 2017 @ 8:35am | ! Report

      I thought it a bit disproportionate that 29-year-old Brett Deledio was traded for a first round draft pick, while 30-year-old Jordan Lewis was traded for (was it pick 76?) a bag of old chaff.

      • April 21st 2017 @ 9:22am
        Birdman said | April 21st 2017 @ 9:22am | ! Report

        that might say more about the Deledio deal made by a club with a wide open premiership window rather than the Hawks with a fast closing one.

        Too early to tell which deal was better.

      • Roar Guru

        April 21st 2017 @ 12:36pm
        Pumping Dougie said | April 21st 2017 @ 12:36pm | ! Report

        Philby I totally agree the Deledio trade by GWS was a shocker for GWS.

        He was an ageing gun star with a recent history of consistent injury struggles. They didn’t need him. Why on earth any team would give a first round pick for him is beyond me. It’s similar to the Daniel Wells recruitment by Collingwood.
        Both were poor decisions.

        I think Lewis was probably worth a third round pick at best. He’s never been as good as Deledio and he’s in a similar age bracket with a beaten-up body and is a sniper prone to suspension.

        Pretty bizarre that the Hawks traded Sam Mitchell for nothing. Surely you keep him for one more year on a reduced contract then tell him to retire.

        • Roar Guru

          April 21st 2017 @ 12:40pm
          Paul D said | April 21st 2017 @ 12:40pm | ! Report

          When you have as many first rounders and primo draft talent as GWS you can afford to fritter one away on a speculative investment

          • April 21st 2017 @ 1:33pm
            Birdman said | April 21st 2017 @ 1:33pm | ! Report

            yep. this

            • April 21st 2017 @ 2:20pm
              Brian said | April 21st 2017 @ 2:20pm | ! Report

              I agree. People are underestimating that the week off pre-Finals has changed the dynamic of the final 8. 4 good games and you can win from anywhere. So you can’t assess the Deledio trade until September. If he plays 6 games this year and 3 or 4 are winning finals it a good trade.

        • April 21st 2017 @ 6:04pm
          Don Freo said | April 21st 2017 @ 6:04pm | ! Report

          I expect Daniel Wells will prove you wrong about him…starting this weekend.

    • Roar Guru

      April 21st 2017 @ 9:37am
      Paul D said | April 21st 2017 @ 9:37am | ! Report

      I don’t agree with the assertion that the Hawks were somehow negligent in letting Lewis and Mitchell go for nothing. I see that as a club not wanting to stand in the way of two loyal longstanding servants wanting to further their careers elsewhere. Mitchell was going to West Coast as a step towards a future coaching career, and Jordan Lewis had already been told he wasn’t going to be more than a depth player at the Hawks and wanted the security of a longer term contract and more regular game time. So if the Hawks had played hardball and possibly frustrated Lewis’ trade the same people would be lining up to whack them for ingratitude. You could make the argument that they should have kept Lewis but that’s easy to say with hindsight, and they’re already the oldest list in the competition. At some point you have to bite the bullet and regenerate. A year out of the 8 won’t hurt them. It’s still too early to say if it’s going to lead to years and years of irrelevance.

      O’Meara’s long term health and ability to continue playing football is the real unknown. If he were to succumb to chronic knee injuries and head off into early retirement, that will be a disaster.

      • April 21st 2017 @ 9:42am
        GJ said | April 21st 2017 @ 9:42am | ! Report

        Yes to all of the above

      • April 21st 2017 @ 2:13pm
        Hawker said | April 21st 2017 @ 2:13pm | ! Report

        well said Paul. Hawks fans can only hope the club has done the utmost due diligence on Jaeger prior to making these trades

    • April 21st 2017 @ 9:39am
      GJ said | April 21st 2017 @ 9:39am | ! Report

      So Hawthorns start to the season has surprised a lot of people. There seems to be a lot of doom and gloom floating around. I expect that internally at the club they would be considering the future with far less emotion. They wouldn’t be happy about the losses. However cannot help but expect they would be exploring their options and planning their future.

      Mitchell and Lewis have gone. Their names wouldn’t even come into internal conversations, except perhaps using what they have learned to deal with other ageing players on the list.

      Something not many people have talked about is Clarkson’s background in teaching, as well as the number of teachers Hawthorn had/have within their coaching and development staff. Hawthorn still have 7 teenagers on their list and 8 players who are yet to debut.

      I imagine that apart from getting their current game day 22 performing to their potential, getting extremely creative with trading, that their best option would be to throw a huge amount of energy into fast tracking the development (teaching) of the younger players on their list.

      They’ll treat it as a challenge, create a new plan, tweak it along the way and get on with it.

      • Roar Guru

        April 21st 2017 @ 12:37pm
        Pumping Dougie said | April 21st 2017 @ 12:37pm | ! Report

        Was Clarkson formerly a teacher?

        • April 21st 2017 @ 1:35pm
          Birdman said | April 21st 2017 @ 1:35pm | ! Report

          yep as were Bolton and Fagan

    • April 21st 2017 @ 9:56am
      Birdman said | April 21st 2017 @ 9:56am | ! Report

      Some have said that the Vickery deal is the one that could hurt most based on return on investment but he was a free agent and so the downside is the Hawks burn some cap space for a couple of years which is hardly a problem for them with a bunch of retirements coming up.

      I’m starting to wonder whether he might deliver some value in defence but does he have the smarts and concentration to make a decent tall defender? It seems unlikely on exposed form,

      • April 21st 2017 @ 10:05am
        Scott said | April 21st 2017 @ 10:05am | ! Report

        I put my thoughts on the Vickery deal in a comment above. They could’ve ignored Vickery then gone for 2 real big fish in each of the next 2 years

        • April 21st 2017 @ 10:15am
          Birdman said | April 21st 2017 @ 10:15am | ! Report

          True but they needed cover in the forward line for Roughy (no-one knew at the time he’d beat his cancer) and ruck for Ceglar.

          He was probably the best available option.

          I just hope the guy can get near his potential – only time will tell but early doors it’s not looking great.

      • Roar Guru

        April 21st 2017 @ 10:09am
        Paul D said | April 21st 2017 @ 10:09am | ! Report

        Vickery is too slow to be a defender. I think you need to work out a niche role for him in the forward 50. You do have the most innovative coach in the game so I’d back him in to work out a way to maximize his usefulness. Plenty of time – 2 and 3/4 years left!

        • April 21st 2017 @ 10:17am
          Birdman said | April 21st 2017 @ 10:17am | ! Report

          cheers Paul.

          Clarko’s got less time than that – it was only a 2 year deal 🙂

          • Roar Guru

            April 21st 2017 @ 10:26am
            Paul D said | April 21st 2017 @ 10:26am | ! Report

            You may well be better off in that case

        • April 21st 2017 @ 10:56am
          GJ said | April 21st 2017 @ 10:56am | ! Report

          At some level I hope that Vickery turns into a good, solid, reliable player and an automatic pick in the 22

    • April 21st 2017 @ 10:02am
      Birdman said | April 21st 2017 @ 10:02am | ! Report

      The other factor that rarely rates a mention is the Bradley Hill trade to Freo which left the Hawks short of outside run and another precise ball user.

      So throw in Ceglar and Hill and the slow development of a ‘replacement’ for Brian Lake in Kaiden Brand, the decline has been not just about Mitchell and Lewis.

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