MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - MAY 03: Dayne Beams of the Magpies is congratulated by team mates after kicking a goal during the round seven AFL match between the Collingwood Magpies and the Port Adelaide Power at Marvel Stadium on May 03, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

Former North Melbourne premiership player David King believes three sides have separated themselves from the travelling pack following the conclusion of round seven.

It's no surprise which sides King has gone for while looking at the ladder, with Geelong, Collingwood and GWS King's preferred trio, and all currently in the top three.

The Cats are the only team at 6-1, while both the Pies and Giants boast a 5-2 record, with only Brisbane joining them on 20 points.

“I think this is the closest year we’ve had for some time. At Round 8, all we probably know is what divisions they’re falling into,” King told SEN’s Whateley.

“Today we’ve sort of said, as the ladder reads, Geelong, Collingwood and GWS are a fair way in front of the next group.

“What the next group is, I don’t think it’s that deep. I think it’s becoming really obvious that there’s not a great deal of quality this year.

“We don’t have six sides, eight sides, that can win the flag this year in my opinion. I think it’s a race in three and they’re a fair way in front.”