Trade Tirades

Well that didn’t take long, did it?


No sooner had Jake Lever confirmed another badly kept secret (well technically, it was the Crows that got in first with the news), then this appeared on-line.



Although the “$nake” references have since been expunged, this sort of reaction has me asking:


a) Once a player’s contract is up, then if they and their current club can’t come to new terms, should the club have any say over what happens next? I guess if they didn’t, then this would be tantamount to virtual free agency.


b) Can anyone blame a player for wanting to extract the maximum financial benefit from their limited time in footy?


c) Is this just something that clubs need to get better at? Or is it just the fans?


d) Did anyone complain when Adelaide was prepared to pay more for Eddie Betts than Carlton offered?


e) How did the Crows manage to keep Rory Sloane? Does it get down to the nature and background of the players (and perhaps their families)?


f) Why would you want to play for Melbourne anyway?

About Mark 'Swish' Schwerdt

Saw my first SANFL game in 1967 - Dogs v Peckers. Have only ever seen the Dogs win 1 final in the flesh (1972 1st Semi) Mediocre forward pocket for the AUFC Blacks (1982-89) Life member - Ormond Netball Club -That's me on the right


  1. (a) I think that this is a significant loophole in the CBA. Clause 22.2 states “No AFL Club shall exchange any Player unless the Player has been given as much notice as possible by the AFL Club of its intention to trade without any duress being applied by the AFL Club, its employees or agents to the player and the Player genuinely consents to the trade”. “Genuine Consent” was clearly written there to prevent a coercive trade; in fact, it has opened up de facto free agency for everyone, whether it’s Kennedy to Carlton, Lever to Melbourne or any other player coming off contract with less than 8 years service.

    (b) not at all, it’s a pretty short window to earn big money.

    (c) I think fans are sort of comfortable with free agency. I don’t think fans are sort of comfortable with players announcing who they will be traded to, particularly when they are on the “losing” end of it.

    (d) apples and oranges – Eddie was a free agent under the rules. Lever isn’t.

    (e) Not just Rory – McGovern, Talia, the Crouch brothers… I think the Crows have something like 12 players from SA on the books, with the rest from interstate.

    (f) to experience losing a place in the finals in Round 23?

  2. Sean Curtain says

    (f) maybe he wants to have September off next year?


  3. This is all agency stuff is angst ridden for the fans. What sort of Hell did the Catters go through the year Ablett Junior left them? And what did the LSPRF go through over Dusty?

    Then there’s the other side of it. Around at Punt Road we never thought Hawthorn would fall for the Ty Vickery trade. Just like Carlton never thought we’d fall for the Yarran deal.

    But what about the goals/trades that have backfired? I can think of Judd for Kennedy to open the discussion. Another Kennedy to The Swans is another. A 3G player at Glenferrie Oval, his Grandfather a GoldenBrown Icon, for crying out loud.

    Snake Lever? Is he trying to tell the Crow Faithful something? Or is it just about the money?

  4. “f) Why would you want to play for Melbourne anyway?”

    Why would you want to play for anyone else?

  5. i) GFF – or GFFA at least. Rulebook needed a replacement for the tired and now redundant Troy Chaplin trope. Looking forward to many years of the Snake Lever running gag.
    ii) For every complex problem there is a simple and obvious answer. “Snake” (how good is that) infected the team with his subtle lack of application and tackling pressure. Benedict Arnold; Kim Philby; Quisling………Jake Lever.
    iii) The bloke has a bit of the too cool for school look about him. Why do I keep thinking Warren Beatty and “You’re So Vain – you probably think this song is about you”.
    iv) Jack Watts in a trade deal is too delicious to deny. Crows as what the Cats were to the 90’s?

  6. Phillip Dimitriadis says

    Swish – I have an awful feeling that Jack Watts might be Magpie next year and we know how that will end.
    ‘$nake’ Lever (Leaver) to Melbourne ? Why ??

  7. Mark 'Swish' Schwerdt says

    Some salient points made so far, thanks.

    Nutshell: No one is happy to see someone leave their club, everyone is happy to see someone arrive. I’m not sure that supporters care whether the transaction occurs within the scope of free agency or otherwise. The ones leaving are always painted as greedy, selfish and treacherous.

    It often gets down to the manner of the departure. How much deception, breaches of trust etc. Did they leave before repaying any (perceived) debt to the club and its players? That sort of thing.

    Lever’s entitled to ply his trade elsewhere, but don’t expect anyone from Crowland to welcome him back next time he sets foot in postcode 5000.

  8. Dave Brown says

    Crows are doing fine, fans not so much (also note there’s a fair amount of referred boot sinking going on from other clubs’ fans). Lever is perfectly entitled to seek the biggest pay packet but should also acknowledge that in a salary capped league him maximising his salary necessarily takes away from teammates/decreases the overall quality of the squad he will play with. Much like the Gibbs non-trade last year where both parties have irreconcilable positions why does someone have to be right and someone wrong?

  9. Mark 'Swish' Schwerdt says

    Speaking of Gibbs, the dynamic has changed a bit since last year. He’s a year older, B Crouch established.

    How would he go across half back?

  10. Dave Brown says

    He’d go well. I’m just not sure Carlton are realistic about his comparative value given his age, however. Wouldn’t be surprised if a deal isn’t done again. Re. Lever, again I don’t think a lot of people are aware of his comparative value. The Hurling People Now website has a player trade value rating system. Here is the player from each club closest in value to Lever (where one exists):
    Brisbane – Hipwood
    Carlton – Weitering
    Collingwood- Maynard
    Essendon- Daniher
    Gold Coast – Ainsworth
    GWS – Taranto
    Melbourne – Petracca
    Port – Wines
    Richmond – Rioli
    Sydney – Papley

  11. On the 24th of April 1997 a (in)famous man, who was heavily involved in shaping the political landscape in Australia during his life, was interviewed about his love for football (I won’t disclose who it is at this point). It makes for interesting reading:

    And what is it about football that has this incredible attraction for you?

    Well, I want to say that it has much less of an attraction today. I still go every Saturday, but it has much less because it has been taken over by an economic philosophy that I don’t like in any aspect of its life. It’s been taken over by people who now produce football for television. In other words, it’s no longer a game, and the players are no longer really faithful to a club. But originally, what it was, it was part of your local loyalty. The conflict between Carlton and Richmond, for instance, or Carlton and Collingwood, was a matter of the blood, and it was, I think, largely due to the fact that they were all pretty well working class people who used to go, except the Melbourne barrackers, who weren’t. And it was a conflict of localities. And that’s what I dislike most in what happens today. It’s not a conflict of localities any longer. It’s a conflict of incorporated companies.

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