RUCKMAN Trent West has become the fourth premiership player to leave Geelong on the final day of the trade period.
After veterans Paul Chapman, James Podsiadly and Josh Hunt were sent to Essendon, Adelaide and Greater Western Sydney in return for late draft picks, West was packed off to the Brisbane Lions in exchange for pick No.41.
Recruited by the Cats in the 2005 NAB AFL Draft, West took time to find his feet, playing only 11 games in his first five seasons.
But he became an important member of Geelong's team in the second half of its 2011 campaign.
Working in tandem with Brad Ottens, he helped the Cats defeat Collingwood in the 2011 Grand Final.
After carrying the club's ruck division almost single-handedly in 2012, West fell out of favour this year.
He struggled through the early part of the season and subsequently slipped behind Dawson Simpson, Nathan Vardy and Mark Blicavs in the pecking order.
The 26-year-old, who has played 54 games in all, is now hoping to rekindle his career at the Gabba, where he will line up alongside star Lions ruckman Matthew Leuenberger.
Geelong football manager Neil Balme said the Cats were "relatively keen" to retain West but the ruckman had been keen to move.
"He's been fantastic for us, [a] premiership player. [I'm] sure it'll be good for him as well," Balme said.
West's manager Anthony McConville said the big man was looking forward to establishing himself at the Lions.
"He's quite excited about the challenge of moving to Brisbane and getting his hands on the ball at senior level again," West's manager Anthony McConville told AFL.com.au's Gillette Trade Radio.
Chapman, Podsiadly and Hunt were traded for late picks that the Cats will not use at the draft, in order to allow the players to make arrangements with certainty rather than waiting a week for the delisted free agency period to begin on November 1.
Balme said it was a mark of respect for three players who had played key roles in Geelong's recent premiership successes.
"We wanted to help those three guys to get to where they wanted to go, out of respect to them," he said.
"We won't use any of them (picks).
"It's the way the system works. We don't have to do that. We can't say we respect them and want to help them, and then not help them when it's not our turn."
Essendon used pick No.84 for Chapman, a champion former player at Geelong. In his 251 games, Chapman won a Norm Smith medal and played in three premierships.
He wanted to continue beyond 2014 but Geelong elected not to offer him a new contract, as it wanted to give opportunities to talented youngsters.
Chapman will re-unite with former coach Mark Thompson – the biggest influence on his career.
The 31-year-old passed his medical with the Bombers and hopes to play for the club for two years.
Adelaide used pick No.64 for Podsiadly who kicked 169 goals in 83 games with the Cats and was a member of their 2011 premiership team.
He will join former Geelong assistant coach Brenton Sanderson at Adelaide.
Greater Western Sydney offloaded pick No.74 to get defender Josh Hunt.
Hunt, 31, played 198 games with the Cats – the same number as one of his premiership captains, Tom Harley – and will provide some experience in defence alongside Heath Shaw.
At the end of 2007, Geelong traded premiership ruckman Steven King and teammate Charlie Gardiner to St Kilda for pick 90.