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The 2012 trade period revisited: Who actually won each trade?

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19th April, 2020
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Our April series looking back on the last decade of trade periods is back today, with 2012 going under the microscope.

While we didn’t have a new team joining the competition this time around, there were still plenty of compensation picks floating around the joint. This was also the first offseason with free agency.

On the field, Sydney had just won one of the all-time classic grand finals.

You can check out the series so far, here. If you want a quick summary, Gold Coast made lots of mistakes.

Trade 1

Gold Coast received: GWS mini-draft pick 1, compensation pick (Rhys Palmer)
GWS received: Picks 2 and 67, compensation pick (Jared Brennan)

With such juicy draft picks trading hands, this trade really should’ve ended up being a hell of a lot more interesting. Instead both clubs held onto their compensation picks for at least two years before trading them again, while the Giants ended up just passing on pick 67 altogether.

All we’re left with is the Suns taking Jack Martin in the GWS mini-draft and the Giants taking Jonathan O’Rourke with pick 2. Martin has proved serviceable, whereas O’Rourke was a massive disappointment – especially considering how many hoops to Giants jumped through to secure the pick.

Winner: Gold Coast


Trade 2

Port Adelaide received: Angus Monfries
Essendon received: Pick 51

Touted as a win-win for both clubs at the time – due to Monfries’ free-agent status – this was clearly a win for Port Adelaide.

Victorian footy media talking up the Bombers at trade time, how unusual.

Monfries slotted 83 goals in his first three seasons at Port before the 2016 ASADA suspension completely ruined his career, while pick 51, Dylan van Unen, played only one game for the Bombers.


Yes, Essendon got something out of losing a free agent, but this trade also meant the Power’s free agency compensation for losing Danyle Pearce and Troy Chaplin wasn’t diluted – they won this deal hands down.

Winner: Port Adelaide

Trade 3

St Kilda received: Tom Lee, picks 24 and 45
GWS received: Pick 12

It’s really hard to see how anybody benefitted here. Lee pulled on the jumper just 17 times for the Saints, while pick 24, Nathan Wright, managed 35 appearances across six seasons and pick 45 was later sent to West Coast alongside Jamie Cripps.

The Giants take the loss here as they picked seven-gamer Kristian Jaksch at 12. They really didn’t need to send two draft picks and Lee for a first-rounder, although they were able to somehow get the Blues to pay way too much for Jaksch a few years later.

Winner: St Kilda

Trade 4


Hawthorn received: Brian Lake, pick 27
Western Bulldogs received: Picks 21 and 43

Brian Lake put the Bulldogs in a tough spot requesting a trade when he did, but you have to ask whether they really had to send pick 27 Hawthorn’s way too. Lake’s resume at the Hawks speaks for itself: three seasons and three premierships, including a rare Norm Smith medal win for a defender.

The Bulldogs didn’t exactly strike gold with Nathan Hrovat at pick 21, although 2012’s draft has also proven to be somewhat lacklustre. Both other picks in this deal were traded away for middling returns.

Winner: Hawthorn

Trade 5

Melbourne received: Dom Barry, GWS mini-draft pick 2, compensation pick (Phil Davis)
GWS received: Pick 3, compensation pick (Tom Scully)

This is one of the tougher ones to work out. Dom Barry only managed five games, with the compensation pick being flipped later on to secure Chris Dawes.

The big fish here is obviously GWS mini-draft pick 2, Jesse Hogan. While injuries and personal misfortune have him currently at risk of becoming one of the greatest forwards that never was, his four seasons at Melbourne netted three 40-plus goal returns and kept the fan-base sane.

Jesse Hogan

Jesse Hogan during his time with Melbourne. (Photo by Michael Dodge/Getty Images)

How does that match up against the Giants’ draft haul of Lachie Plowman and Aidan Corr? Plowman may have been shipped off to Carlton after three seasons, but Corr has been atop GWS’s second tier for several years now and, at just 25, could actually still have some of his best football ahead of him.

Given the Giants were never allowed to actually draft Hogan themselves, it’s tempting to call this a win-win or even a Giants triumph. I’ll stick with a Melbourne win for now, but the verdict could definitely be different in a few years’ time.

Winner: Melbourne – for now.

Trade 6

West Coast received: Sharrod Wellingham
Collingwood received: Pick 18

Sharrod Wellingham has to be one of the most disappointing trade acquisitions this decade. Apart from a strong 2015, he was mostly a shadow of his promising former self at the Eagles, eventually fading into obscurity.

Coughing up pick 18 to land him would’ve been a loss regardless, but when you learn Collingwood used that pick to land Brodie Grundy it becomes very one-sided.


Winner: Collingwood

Trade 7

Melbourne received: Chris Dawes, pick 61
Collingwood received: Compensation pick (Phil Davis), pick 47

If there’s a trade that sums up the catastrophic Mark Neeld era at Melbourne, this is it. Imagine ever paying pick 20 for Chris Dawes. By all reports, he was one of the nicest players in footy, and I suppose he was only 24 at the time, but from day one this trade reeked of desperation from a club spiralling out of control.

The Demons used pick 61 to rid themselves of a horrid drafting mistake later on in the week, while the Magpies took Tim Broomhead with the aforementioned pick 20 and used 47 to improve their draft positioning.

Not a disaster by any stretch, but if you’re going to spend pick 20 on an established player, you need to do better than this.

Winner: Collingwood

Trade 8


Geelong received: Hamish McIntosh
North Melbourne received: Pick 38

North Melbourne didn’t do too badly here. McIntosh had some excellent moments with the Kangaroos but was never going to get a full run with Todd Goldstein in the same 22. Injuries ended up cruelling the big man’s stay at the Cattery, while the Kangas managed to flip pick 38 via another trade into Mason Wood.

Winner: North Melbourne

Trade 9

Geelong received: Josh Caddy
Gold Coast received: Compensation pick (Gary Ablett), Pick 57

It’s been a while since a Gold Coast blunder, but here’s a purler. Caddy was first cab off the rank in what ended up being a deluge of players leaving the Suns and, true to form, the club squandered the compensation badly.

They get a tick for not electing to use the mid-first round Ablett compensation pick in a weak draft, but holding onto it for two years in order to pick Jarrod Garlett? Come on.

Pick 57 was used to promote three-gamer Kyal Horsley off the rookie list. Neither player is still with the club.


Winner: Geelong

Trade 10

Adelaide received: Angus Graham, pick 53
Richmond received: Pick 42

Very much a nothing trade. Angus Graham never made his Crows debut, while the club was forced to forfeit pick 53 as punishment for the Kurt Tippett contract saga.

Incredibly, pick 42 Matthew McDonough’s ten games in the yellow and black are enough for the Tigers to get the points.

Winner: Richmond

Trade 11

Port Adelaide received: Jack Hombsch, Jake Neade
GWS received: Pick 28


Clear win for Port here. Hombsch was a fairly underrated key defender during his stint with the Power, while Neade was a dangerous if inconsistent small forward.

The Giants shipped pick 28 to Hawthorn for not much.

Winner: Port Adelaide

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Trade 12

St Kilda received: Tom Hickey, picks 25 and 46
Gold Coast received: Picks 13, 36 and 55

St Kilda really tried to help the Suns out here. Pick 13 for a 12-game ruckman is absurd overs, even if they did get picks 25 and 46 back. Pick 25, Spencer White, played twice and pick 46 was dealt for ten-gamer Trent Dennis-Lane. So the Saints lost, right?

Nope. Gold Coast plucked Jesse Lonergan at pick 13, Tim Sumner at 55 and sent 36 Fremantle’s way for Greg Broughton. Incredible.

Winner: St Kilda

Trade 13

Western Bulldogs received: Koby Stevens
West Coast received: Pick 43

Koby Stevens wasn’t bad in his four-season stint at the Kennel, but the pick 43 West Coast got in return was the key to prizing Jamie Cripps away from the Saints.


Winner: West Coast

Trade 14

Gold Coast received: Greg Broughton, pick 58
Fremantle received: Pick 36

The only interesting thing about this trade is that it goes down as a Suns win. Broughton was at least handy in his first two seasons with the club, while the 23 games they got out of pick 58, Clay Cameron, towers over the four Freo got from Tanner Smith.

Winner: Gold Coast

Trade 15

Western Bulldogs received: Tom Young
Collingwood received: Pick 69

Very much a nothing trade. Bulldogs get the points here by virtue of Young managing 19 games in his two-season stay, while the Magpies traded this pick on and didn’t get the same return.


Winner: Western Bulldogs

Trade 16

Melbourne received: David Rodan
Port Adelaide received: Pick 88

Trade mastery from the Demons here. Not only did they ship such a late pick to secure candy-seller turned goal umpire David Rodan, they actually got pick 88 back two trades later – then they passed on it for the ultimate power move!

Winner: Just kidding, nobody

Trade 17

Collingwood received: Jordan Russell
Carlton received: Pick 69

Jordan Russell played only the nine games with the Pies, but Carlton passed on pick 69 (unforgivable).


Winner: Collingwood

Trade 18

Port Adelaide received: Lewis Stevenson
West Coast received: Pick 88

Stevenson played nine games for Port Adelaide before never being heard from again.

Winner: Port Adelaide, technically

Trade 19

Port Adelaide received: Campbell Heath, pick 82
Sydney received: Pick 70

Really getting into the dregs here. Heath played 12 games in his only season at Alberton, while pick 70 was flipped by the Swans for someone who never debuted.


Winner: Port Adelaide

Trade 20

West Coast received: Cale Morton
Melbourne received: Pick 88

My favourite part of this pick 88 merry-go-round is that it never needed to happen. Melbourne, Port and West Coast could’ve just done a simple three-way trade with Rodan, Stevenson and Morton, but they didn’t.

Winner: Nobody

Trade 21

Richmond received: Aaron Edwards
North Melbourne received: Pick 72

Edwards did virtually nothing in his two seasons at the Tigers, but North did nothing with the return.


Winner: Richmond

Trade 22

Melbourne received: Cam Pedersen, pick 72
North Melbourne received: Jordan Gysberts, pick 61

A rare win for the Demons here. Pedersen held the fort somewhat during Melbourne’s darkest days and it’s fair to say the club got great value out of him for the price they paid. Gysberts, who was taken nine picks ahead of Nat Fyfe back in 2009, never made his North debut.

Winner: Melbourne

Trade 23

Hawthorn received: Matthew Spangher, pick 70
Sydney received: Pick 64

Bit of a steal for the Hawks. Spangher’s 2014 season cameo was surprisingly helpful in that year’s premiership success, while pick 70 was used to redraft veteran Michael Osborne.


The Swans used pick 64 (Hawthorn’s compo pick for losing Clinton Young to free agency) on Matthew Dick, who never debuted.

Winner: Hawthorn

Trade 24

Hawthorn received: Jed Anderson, picks 28 and 66
GWS received: Stephen Gilham, picks 27 and 63

Amazingly, Gilham played more games for the Giants than Anderson did for the Hawks, but Hawthorn’s superior draft haul of Tim O’Brien and Kaiden Brand beats out James Stewart and a passed pick.

Winner: Hawthorn

Trade 25

Brisbane received: Stefan Martin
Melbourne received: Picks 52 and 71

Max Gawn of the Demons and Stefan Martin of the Lions

Stefan Martin (L). (AAP Image/Joe Castro)

Nobody could’ve seen Stefan Martin’s transformation into one of the game’s premier ruckmen coming, especially not back in 2012. Can’t go too hard at Melbourne over this one, especially as pick 52, Matt Jones, carved out a relatively reasonable four-season career, but it’s a decisive win for the Lions.

Winner: Brisbane

Trade 26

Collingwood received: Pick 38
North Melbourne received: Picks 41 and 47

North did well here, surrendering their place in the draft order but managing to snag Mason Wood at 41 while Collingwood picked Jackson Ramsay at 38.

Winner: North Melbourne

Trade 27


St Kilda received: Trent Dennis-Lane
Sydney received: Pick 46

Funny little trade, this, with the Swans using pick 46 to draft Tim Membrey and then letting him walk to the Saints as a delisted free agent two seasons later.

Winner: St Kilda

Trade 28

West Coast received: Jamie Cripps, pick 45
St Kilda received: Picks 40 and 43

West Coast really did pull off a coup here. This was supposed to be a straight swap of homesick players, Jamie Cripps for Mitch Brown. The Eagles held firm and, incredibly, the Saints buckled big time, shipping Cripps and pick 45 and getting just two picks in the 40s back.

St Kilda’s two draftees played 22 games each across four seasons. They should’ve gotten more.

Winner: West Coast


That’s three of the last decade’s trade periods revisited. Check back in on Wednesday as 2013 gets a look.