PERTH, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 19: Lachie Neale poses during a Brisbane Lions AFL Media Opportunity at the Swan River on October 19, 2018 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images)

With the AFL trade period officially kicking off today, we take a look back and rank the top five trades from 2018.

  1. Lachie Neale to Brisbane

Lions received: Lachie Neale and Pick 30

Dockers received: Pick 6, Pick 19 and Pick 55

By far the best trade made in 2018, the Lions benefitted greatly from the addition of Neale who took out the Merrett-Murray Medal as Brisbane’s best player for 2019. Neale also came equal-third in the Brownlow Medal count, capping off a stellar first season in the sunshine state. The Dockers on the other hand would go on to use pick 6 in the Jesse Hogan trade, and although he only played 12 games in 2019, it still looks like he will prove to be a big hit for the Dockers in the near future.

  1. Chad Wingard/Ryan Burton trade

Hawks received: Chad Wingard and 2019 third-round pick (45)

Power received: Ryan Burton, pick 15 (Xavier Duursma), 35 and 2019 fourth-round pick via Western Bulldogs (66)

One of the bigger trades of 2018, the Hawks waited until the final day to make a move on Wingard and they gave up plenty for it. Wingard was troubled early in 2019 with soft tissue injuries, but proved his worth in the latter stages of the season as we saw glimpses of his best footy. The Power on the other hand received up-and-coming young defender Ryan Burton, as well as Xavier Duursma with pick 15, and both look set for long and successful careers at Alberton, seeing the Power come out slightly ahead in this trade.

  1. Jared Polec and Jasper Pittard to North Melbourne

Roos received: Jared Polec, Jasper Pittard, pick 48

Power received: Pick 11, 2019 fourth-round pick (61)

Both Polec and Pittard were players North was crying out for, and both had impressive seasons as they fitted seamlessly into the fold at Arden Street. Polec, a silky wingman and Pittard, an attacking half-back runner, are both hitting the prime of their careers and with the second half turnaround at the Roos, look set to have a big 2020 season. Meanwhile for Port, pick 11 turned into pick 5 as they traded their way up to snag South Australian Connor Rozee who came runner-up in the Rising Star award.

  1. Steve May/Ben King trade

Demons received: Steven May and Kade Koladjashnij

Suns received: Pick 6 (Ben King)

Steven May paid for a sluggish pre-season as he just played eight matches for 2019, and Koladjashnij played just the two senior games for the season. May was the Suns’ co-captain in 2018 and will be desperately looking to bounce back next season, but at this stage the Suns are the big winners as they nabbed Ben King with pick 6 in last year’s draft. If they convince King to remain on the Gold Coast, he appears to have a long and successful career ahead of him after they key-forward had a prosperous start in 2019.

  1. Jordan Roughead to Collingwood

Pies received: Jordan Roughead

Dogs received: Pick 75

This trade is in here purely because the Pies nabbed a genuine bargain as Roughead’s defensive nous almost catapulted the Pies into back-to-back Grand Final appearances. With the injury-raved Darcy Moore missing parts of the season, Roughead stood up as a consistent lockdown defender after being used as a back-up ruckman in previous seasons by the Dogs. With the Magpies premiership window wide open, Roughead was a key addition to the side and will again be relied upon in 2020.