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Draft prospect King in mix for Giants

Callum Twomey  September 11, 2013 7:15 AM

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Max King takes a strong mark during the NAB AFL Under-18 Championships

He runs well and is athletic … there's a lot to like about him
GREATER Western Sydney could snare a promising tall prospect through its list-building concessions, with the Giants able to pre-list developing ruckman Max King.

The Murray Bushrangers big man is in the Giants' recruiting zone, and has spent time with the club's academy.

The Giants can commit to recruiting the 200cm and 89kg prospect before the draft under their zone access to players from southern NSW/ACT, but could also sign him and then use him as a trade incentive player through October's trade period.

This is similar to the zoning rights the club has had to players from the Northern Territory in recent seasons, like last year when they traded Jed Anderson to the Hawks in a deal involving Stephen Gilham and the swapping of draft picks.

King, from Wagga Wagga, played 11 games for the Bushrangers this TAC Cup season and kicked 15 goals. He also played five games for the NSW/ACT Rams in the NAB AFL Under-18 Championships.

He kicked 11 goals for his state, including a four-goal haul against Queensland in round four. King marks well, competes when the ball is at ground level and is smart around goal.

Some recruiters believe King is a player worthy of a third-round pick at November's NAB AFL Draft, but others think he would fit in the first 30-40 selections given the lack of talls available this year.

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The Giants' ruck stocks are slim, after veteran Dean Brogan retired and Setanta O'hAilpin, who could pinch-hit in the role, was delisted last week.

Murray Bushrangers regional manager Andrew Carson said King had grown as a player this season.  

"Where we see him now at the end of the season to where he was at the start, he's certainly a vastly improved player," Carson said.

"He applies himself at training, he had a real impact for us in the ruck and as a key forward. Going forward his improvement will be fairly rapid over the next two years in a full-time system should he get that opportunity.

"He runs well and is athletic … there's a lot to like about him."

NSW state talent manager Darren Denneman earlier this year described King as a high-marking forward who is "light in frame but high in potential."

This year marks the end of the Giants' priority access to players from the NSW/ACT and Northern Territory zones.

Twitter: @AFL_CalTwomey