With the season over, it’s time to start reflecting on 2015, and assessing how the off-season must be attacked.
ADELAIDE CROWS: How can they replace Dangerfield’s output?
The Adelaide Crows’ off-season improvements have already taken a huge blow before they even started, with best and fairest winner Patrick Dangerfield telling the club he’d like to return home to Victoria to join Geelong.
While Adelaide will get good return for Dangerfield, it will not likely be anything tangible to play with now and will more likely be compensation in the form of high draft picks and/or young talent.
David King has already proposed a trade that would see Danger, pick 13 and a C-grade player go to Kardinia Park for picks 9, 14 and an A-grade talent, presumably the likes of Nakia Cockatoo or Jordan Murdoch.
A deal like this would likely be about as good as the Crows could hope for. While no player on Geelong’s list would be able to make up for the loss of a talent like Patrick Dangerfield, the Crows would get three quality young players in return.
A situation like this is all about maximizing gain and a deal like this could do that for Adelaide.
FREMANTLE DOCKERS: How can they get over that last hump?
The Fremantle Dockers have been so painfully close to the top so many times in the last few seasons, but just haven’t been able to clear that final hurdle. Part of the reason may be inactivity on the market.
They have already had a few names linked to them so far, such as troubled Sun Harley Bennell and wantaway Giant Cameron McCarthy. The pair would add speed and goal-kicking ability, both of which Fremantle could do with.
With the confirmed departure of Luke McPharlin, Freo would also like to add another key back to the fold.
To win the first flag for the Dockers in their 20 year existence, the club must be willing to spend more and be pro-active on the market and this offseason would be the perfect time to start.
HAWTHORN HAWKS: Who will be the next genius addition?
As scary as the thought of the Hawks getting even better is, it is exactly what they will look to do this off-season – and they have the space to do so.
Hawthorn has two off-contract players on their list – defenders Matthew Suckling and Brendan Whitecross. The former has already garnered some interest and the latter is likely to as well. As well as that, Brian Lake and David Hale have both retired, freeing up some salary cap space.
If one or both leave the club, the Hawks will likely look to do what they are best at – acquiring savvy additions to fill needs. Players they may look to pick up include Jed Adcock from Brisbane, Dennis Armfield from Carlton and Courtenay Dempsey from Essendon.
While these at first seem like low value additions, they are all players that would bring experience and fit perfectly into Hawthorn’s style of play.
They kept their foot on the gas against West Coast in the Grand Final and expect them to keep it on this off-season.
NORTH MELBOURNE KANGAROOS: How can they improve their defence?
In North Melbourne’s improbable run to the preliminary final this year, one thing stood out all year – a defence that left a bit to be desired.
They were well in the bottom half of the league in points conceded and in the end, perhaps it was one quality key defender that cost North their first Grand Final in 16 years.
Not to worry though – the Kangaroos picked the right year to need a key defender. There are plenty going around in the market this off-season.
If the Roos could add just one of key defender to the fold, they will have just the kind of side required to make a push toward a premiership.