Could you imagine seeing Sam Mitchell and Luke Hodge on the vast spaces of Subiaco Oval wearing purple? Hell, they might have even had Andrew McLeod by their side for a period of time. How about Jordan Lewis in a Magpies guernsey and Josh Kennedy in a Hawks one? All of these things could have been a possibility if it wasn’t for some offseason trades that altered history. The players already mentioned weren’t the only big names involved in now-infamous trades and it’s incredible to think how the past 20 years could have been different if those deals never occurred.
PRE-WARNING: It’s not pretty Fremantle fans.
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1994 – The Fremantle Dockers Are Born!
Crows get: Andrew McLeod (draft rights)
Dockers get: Chris Groom
*SIGH*. Oh, what could have been. Take solace Dockers fans in knowing that McLeod stated before this trade that he refused to play at Fremantle after he felt belittled and disrespected by head coach Gerard Neesham. And at the time Chris Groom had put forward a very promising young career in Adelaide so a swap might not have seemed like a terrible idea at the time. Today it is now known as the most lopsided trade in AFL history. McLeod played in two premierships and is the Crows all-time games holder at 340. Groom managed just seven games at Fremantle. Yikes.
2000 – Drew Petrie
Kangaroos get: 2000 pick (#23 – Drew Petrie)
Crows get: Evan Hewitt
Trading pick 23 for a former rising star nominee seems like an OK deal right? Wrong. Evan Hewitt played 15 games for the Crows and then went on to play WAFL football in Perth. Drew Petrie, however, became a Roos legend and played the 2nd most games ever for the club kicking over 400 goals for North. Based on simple statistics one season of what Drew Petrie did outweighs everything that Hewitt did on a football field.
2001 – I’m Sensing A Pattern…
Hawks get: 2001 draft picks (#1 – Luke Hodge, #20 –Daniel Elstone & #36 – Sam Mitchell)
Dockers get: Luke McPharlin, Trent Croad
Alright, let’s do a quick count. How many premierships did Hodge/Mitchell/Croad combine for? That’s right nine. How many of them came for the Fremantle football club…? Correct, ZERO. No offence to Daniel Elstone, but Luke Hodge and Sam Mitchell went on to become modern-day greats and Elstone, well, he didn’t do much. Fremantle got more than enough out of Luke McPharlin becoming a club legend, but after a measly 38 games at Freo, Croad jumped ship AND WENT BACK TO HAWTHORN. Making matters worse Croad played a key role in their ’08 flag. Classic Freo.
2004 – Oh Dear Collingwood
Magpies get: Chad Morrison and 2004 pick (#10 – Chris Egan)
Hawks get: 2004 draft pick (#7 – Jordan Lewis) & Bo Nixon
Eagles get: 2004 draft pick (#37 – Mark LeCras)
Only two Eagles have kicked more goals than Mark LeCras (Josh Kennedy and Peter Sumich). Jordan Lewis played more games than Dipper, Dermott and Jon ‘The Rat’ Platten for the Hawthorn football club and won four flags (more than 97.9% of other AFL players in history)*. Chad Morrison and Chris Egan on the other hand? Well, they played a combined 48 games for Collingwood kicking a massive 23 goals between them, Do I need to say more?
*This may or may not be an accurate stat, but damn Lewis was good
2009 – Hawthorn Makes A Rare Blunder
Swans get: Ben McGlynn & Josh Kennedy
Hawks get: 2009 draft picks (#39 – Sam Grimley, #46 – Ben Stratton & #70 – Matt Suckling (rookie elevation))
I’m not letting you off the hook Hawthorn. Sure, Ben Stratton and Suckling’s rookie elevation have panned out, but you traded away two star players for well, not a lot at all. Both McGlynn and Kennedy played over 300 combined games for the Swans and were a key part of their run towards the 2012 flag. Stratton, as I said above, was OK and they don’t get credit for Suckling (because he was already on their list) while Grimley only played three games for Hawthorn. Cheer, cheer the Red and the White.
Image from dailytelegraph.com.au
2009 – Fev Changes Postcodes
Blues get: Lachie Henderson & 2009 draft pick (#12 – Kane Lucas)
Lions get: Brendon Fevola & 2009 draft pick (#27 – Callum Bartlett)
Fev didn’t pan out into the key forward that the Lions wanted and the draft pick they received didn’t eventuate to much either (literally zero AFL games). Kane Lucas wasn’t exactly a Brownlow medalist, but he stayed a Blue for four years chalking up 42 games. Lachie Henderson was the big piece of this trade kicking over 100 goals for Carlton in his stay as a key forward/backman at Carlton. Brisbane could certainly use a forward that hangs around long enough to kick 100 goals now.
2010 – Carlton Isn’t A Fan Of Sauce
Crows get: Sam Jacobs
Blues get: 2010 draft picks (#34 – Patrick McCarthy & #67 – Andrew McInnes)
18 games as an AFL footballer is 18 more than I will ever bring up (or 18 more than anyone reading this I’m sure). However, to trade two picks that spent a combined three years on Carlton’s list for a player that is still an impressive Adelaide club man and a premier ruckman in today’s league is a brain fart by the Blues. Jacobs has appeared in 157 games for last year’s grand finalists which is enough to make Crows fans look back on this trade with a smile on their dial.
2014 – A Premiership Defining Trade?
Bulldogs get: Tom Boyd
Giants get: Ryan Griffen & 2014 draft pick (#6 – Caleb Marchbank)
There was a time when we weren’t quite sure if this was a good trade for the Bulldogs. But when it hit ‘winning time’ in the 2016 Grand Final it was Tom Boyd’s 65M bomb that will be replayed on AFL Final’s montages for decades to come. In exchange, the Giants got 46 games of experience with a combined Griffen and Marchbank combo that is no longer at the club. Boyd may not have reciprocated the same heroics for GWS, but the only thing we can look back in history and ask is “what if”.
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