This week’s list of top trades features starters and superstars, with coaches clearly focussing on the guns ‘n’ rookies approach again this year, despite the dearth of downgrade options. The mid-season draft may provide though; for future reference, here’s a quick review of those selected and their respective price tags:
Josh Deluca (CAR) $154k MID
Mitch Riordan (GCS) $102k MID
Kyle Dunkley (MEL) $102k MID
Michael Knoll (SYD) $102k RUCK
Lachlan Hosie (NTH) $102k FWD
Ryan Gardner (WBD) $102k FWD
Will Snelling (ESS) $117k MID
Jack Mayo (STK) $102k FWD
Cam Sutcliffe (PTA) $199k MID
Dillon O’Reilly (FRE) $102k DEF/FWD
Marlion Pickett (RIC) $102k MID
John Noble (COL) $102k MID
Cody Hirst (SYD) $102k MID
Here are this week’s most popular trade targets, as of 12pm, Wednesday May 29:
1. Mitchell Hinge (BRL, def, $123 900)
+ Fourteen disposals and his first AFL goal gave Hinge 73 points in his second game, and puts him on the bubble at a break-even of -55. He is the prime target for a defensive downgrade this week.
+ Taken at pick 20 in the 2017 rookie draft, Hinge has taken a longer road than many to get to the AFL, developing his game through stints in the SANFL and NEAFL. This has been reflected in his elite kicking and decision making in his short time in the senior league.
+ With Jarrod Berry looking at an extended break due to surgery, the opportunity is there for Hinge to have a sustained run in the Lions’ best 22.
– Zac Bailey is recovering quicker than expected from a hamstring injury, and could return as soon as two weeks from now. He plays a similar HBF/wing role to Hinge.
– Yet another defender with a round 13 bye, along with popular picks such as Lloyd, Hore, Answerth, Moore, Clark and Hurn. How’s your team balance looking that week?
2. Oskar Baker (MEL, mid, $123 900)
+ Playing as a high half-forward, Baker showed some nice touches during his second game. 16 disposals at 75% efficiency, including two goals, totted up 57 for the young Demon. Now on the bubble with a break-even of -24.
+ The Dees were abysmal for most of the game against the Giants, but Baker was far from being their worst, using his speed and energy to good effect. He is really your only viable midfield downgrade option this week (assuming that Hately misses selection again).
+ With the Demons languishing at 3-7, is there a chance Goodwin will down tools and take this opportunity to give more game time to the kids?
– There’s a long, long list of possible ‘ins’ for the Dees in the next two weeks, including names like Hibberd, Kolodjashnij, May, Neal-Bullen, Lewis and Salem. Is there still room for Baker amongst all that lot?
– Playing in two losses straight up is probably not going to help Baker’s prospects either.
3. Lachie Whitfield (GWS, def, $556 100)
+ The highest averaging defender of the year thus far, Whitfield is currently maintaining a 116 ppg mark, which is better than most midfielders. At this price tag, it’s really a no-brainer whether Whitfield is a good choice for your defence.
+ After suffering a severe cork against the Swans in round 6, Lachie had two weeks off to recover. He has since recorded scores of 170 and 115, and his break-even has now plummeted to 46. With the Suns in the crosshairs, this is really your last chance to jump on.
+ I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – any consternation about Whitfield’s ‘role’ is a complete waste of hot air. The guy can run like few other players in the game, and he gets the ball everywhere!
– Lots and lots of prime Supercoach stock at the Giants this year…Kelly, Taranto, Williams, Coniglio, Cameron…is there going to be enough points to go around for Whitfield to maintain his scoring touch?
– The round 14 bye may be an issue for you, particularly if you’ve loaded up on defenders from Adelaide and GWS.
4. Darcy Fort (GEE, ruc, $117 300)
+ He was everyone’s pre-season R3, and Fort has ranged from solid to impressive in his first two games. Seven disposals, 12 hitouts and 51 points against the Suns puts Darcy on the bubble this week with a break-even of -86.
+ Fort’s ability to pinch-hit in the ruck, as well as play as a forward target, should aid his job security. Plus, the Cats face the Swans this week, who have given up a truckload of points to opposition rucks in recent weeks.
+ Reilly O’Brien has just about maxed out, making Fort the prime candidate for a downgrade option at R3. You can bank a juicy $285K from this trade!
– Fort shares the bye in round 13 with the prime rucks Gawn and Grundy, so picking him up now means you’re locked into having no ruckmen available in a couple of weeks. Plus, no DPP status may be undesirable if you’re one of the chosen few with Bines currently stuck in your forward line.
– Fort may struggle to hold his place if Scott opts to recall Ratugolea this week
5. Josh Kelly (GWS, mid, $645 500)
+ The classiest of class acts, Kelly the Giant has been utterly unstoppable recently, averaging 144 in his last three games. Despite starting the season at over $600K, Kelly has actually gained value!
+ Since being selected at pick 2 in the 2013 draft, Kelly has rapidly developed into one of the premier midfielders in the entire competition. He finished 5th in the Brownlow in his breakout season in 2017, and has averaged a touch over 115 since the start of that year.
+ Having signed a lucrative new two-year contract with the Giants last month, there are no outside distractions for Kelly this year, leaving him free to focus on driving GWS to September.
– Good gravy, will you get a load of that price tag. Can you really afford to blow all your cash on one player right before the bye rounds arrive?
– Not only is Kelly expensive, he’s also injury prone, having already missed three games this year after missing seven last year. How do you feel about spending so much on a player who likely won’t appear in every game?
#6 – 10: Brett BEWLEY (FRE), Callum COLEMAN-JONES (RIC), Josh DUNKLEY (WBD), Jake LLOYD (SYD), Tim KELLY (GEE)
Most traded OUT players this week: Charlie CONSTABLE (GEE), Jack SCRIMSHAW (HAW), Willem DREW (PTA), Jack PETRUCCELLE (WCE), Sydney STACK (RIC), Tom ROCKLIFF (PTA), Darcy MOORE (COL), Michael GIBBONS (CAR), Jay LOCKHART (MEL), Will SETTERFIELD (CAR)
Most popular trades so far this week:
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