ANDREJS Everitt was flattered by an eleventh-hour approach from Gold Coast in last year's trade period, but never entertained leaving Carlton.
Everitt told AFL.com.au he had been cooking lunch on the trade period's final day when he had a call from his manager, who told him, 'Gold Coast has inquired about you'.
The former Bulldog and Swan said the Suns' approach, which came about two hours before the trade deadline, had come from nowhere.
It offered Everitt the chance to reunite with his first AFL coach Rodney Eade, who he had played under in his four seasons at the Bulldogs (2007-10).
But that was not enough to make Everitt want to leave Carlton.
In his two seasons at Ikon Park, Everitt had finished equal seventh in the club's 2014 best and fairest count (despite missing five games through injury) and eighth last season, establishing himself in a manner he had been unable to at the Bulldogs and the Swans (2011-13).
So the former Dandenong Stingray was relieved when, soon after his manager's call, new Carlton coach Brendon Bolton and Blues football chief Andrew McKay phoned and said he wasn't going anywhere.
"I was there cooking lunch and next minute I got the call from my manager about the Suns," Everitt said.
"It was a little bit left field. There wasn't long to go (in the trade period) and I was sort of listening to the radio, trying to find out who we were going to pick up and who was leaving.
"And that was all there really was to it. I never looked into it – I never spoke to Gold Coast at all – and soon after I had 'Bolts' and 'Macca' call me and just say, 'They put something forward but we weren't interested.'
"Carlton weren't going to get rid of me and I wasn't keen to go, so that's how it ended fortunately."
The Suns' approach underlines the good fist Everitt has made of his third AFL chance at Ikon Park.
The 27-year-old is also confident that his best football is still ahead of him.
"It's always nice to be wanted," he said of the Suns' approach.
"I think my last three years have been pretty solid and, even though this is my third club, I feel like I'm still learning and I'm still trying to get better.
"This year I'm running as well as I have, I'm as strong as I've been, I'm still putting out a lot better (football) each year, which is good.
"I've still got a fair bit of footy left in me and hopefully it's at Carlton from here on in."
Everitt has played all over the ground for the Blues, even filling in as a run-with midfielder in his first season when Ed Curnow and Andrew Carrazzo were injured.
He feels his best position is high half-forward/wing, but believes a constantly changing job description helps keep him focused.
"I don't mind the chopping and changing a little bit. It sort of keeps my mind engaged in the game a bit more," Everitt says.
"Predominantly, I like to play that high half-forward/wing role. I think I've got a pretty good ability to run. I'm sort of hard to match up on being someone who's six-foot-four (194cm) and can run and jump at the ball.
"But as long as I'm playing, I'm happy."