MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 06: Kaiden Brand of the Hawks in action during the 2016 AFL Round 20 match between the Melbourne Demons and the Hawthorn Hawks at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on August 06, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Media/Getty Images)

Former Hawthorn and Sydney defender Kaiden Brand has linked up with his former SANFL club West Adelaide for the 2022 season after not being offered a new deal by the Swans past this year.

Brand was drafted to the Hawks in 2012, making his AFL debut four years later against Richmond.

The key-defender played a further 42 games in the brown and gold before being delisted by Hawthorn at the end of the 2019 season, with the Swans swooping on the South Australian and axed Port Adelaide forward Sam Gray in the same off-season.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 20: Kaiden Brand of the Hawks in action during a Hawthorn Hawks AFL press conference and training session at Waverley Park on January 20, 2017 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Media/Getty Images)

Brand played just the five games for Sydney as injuries and selection masked his exposure across his two seasons in the Harbour City, with the club announcing his delisting - along with Gray and two others - last month.

After battling to find a spot at senior level and subsequently facing a cut for the second time in his career, Brand has looked to make a move back to his former the West Adelaide Bloods.

“As soon as I realised my AFL career was finishing at Sydney I was pretty keen to get back to Adelaide and back closer to family and friends,” Brand told SEN SA.

“The decision to head back to South Australia was an easy one really. I’ve been planning for that for a while for whenever footy did finish to head back there.

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“I’d been speaking to [West Adelaide] for a while. Being my old club they kept in contact over the last couple of years to see what my movements were.

“There’s still a lot of people there who were there when I left. I think they’ve got the right people in place now to move back up the ladder."

The Bloods managed to claim the wooden spoon in 2021, winning just the two games and finishing their year with a 13-game losing streak.