Adelaide young gun Jake Lever officially requested a trade to Melbourne last week after accepting in principle a four-year deal believed to be worth just under $1 million per season.
Following Lever’s decision, he reportedly copped the wrath of skipper Taylor Walker, who was non too pleased with the 21-year-old’s move away from the Crows after just three years at the club.
Lever was even advised not to attend the club’s best and fairest night such was the disappointment from the Crows.
With the trade period now underway, Walker has had another crack at Lever, this time on Triple M radio.
“I was pretty honest because I don’t like people leaving our footy club,” Walker said of his chat with Lever last week.
“I was honest that if that was the decision he wanted to make, I’m not going to agree with him because I don’t like people leaving our footy club. But I don’t think I was arrogant, aggressive towards him. I was probably blunt.”
Walker said he believed Lever’s decision to join the Demons was based solely on money and not on football.
“I think it’s pretty much choosing money over success,” Walker added.
“I was disappointed when Jake rang me and it probably took me a couple of days to get over because I’m pretty loyal and I’d love everyone to stay but I think the AFL have generated this that there’ll be a lot of player movement going forward and it’s going to get worse.
“But in saying that, as a footy club we’re so lucky to get guys like Tom Lynch, Josh Jenkins, Eddie Betts, Sam Jacobs. So we’ve been lucky to get people into our club but it’s also disappointing that we lose players of the calibre of Jake Lever and I could go on – Nathan Bock and Phil Davis.”
Lever played 20 games in 2017, including the Grand Final, taking his career tally to 56 games in three seasons.
He was recruited with pick No.14 from the Calder Cannons in the 2014 National Draft and the immensely talented defender has become one of the most exciting and promising key backmen in the competition.