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Trade period preview: Who will your club target and shop around?

Will Bryce Gibbs find his way to Adelaide this year? - AFL,Adelaide Crows,Brisbane Lions,Carlton,Collingwood,Essendon,Fremantle,Geelong Cats,GWS Giants,Gold Coast Suns,Hawthorn,Melbourne,North Melbourne,Port Adelaide,St Kilda,Sydney Swans,Richmond,West Coast Eagles,Western Bulldogs,Trade,column
Will Bryce Gibbs find his way to Adelaide this year?

Indicative draft picks: 16, 34, 52, 71

Delisted: TBC

Retired: Scott Thompson

Unsigned free agents: None

What they said: "We've re-signed the vast majority of our playing group. We feel really comfortable that the list we've got is really, really strong. It's still very young and really talented, they're well led by 'Pykey'. I don't expect significant change, but like all clubs we'll see if we can get through trade period and finish with a list that's a little bit stronger than it is today." – CEO Andrew Fagan.

Whispers: The Crows' Grand Final wounds are still raw, but two of their vanquished 22 are expected to request trades soon. Out-of-contract defender Jake Lever will seek a move to Melbourne, while Charlie Cameron wants to get to Brisbane for family reasons. The Crows want two first-round picks for Lever, a demand that is likely to ensure its negotiations with the Demons drag on. A third club might need to be brought into the mix to facilitate a deal. If, as expected, Carlton midfielder Bryce Gibbs again requests a trade to Adelaide, Carlton looms as that third party. Cameron, however, is contracted for next season so the Crows will hold the whip hand in their talks with the Lions. There is speculation the Crows could inquire about Essendon swingman Aaron Francis in a bid to cover Lever's likely departure, but the South Australian is contracted until 2019 and Dons list manager Adrian Dodoro says he remains a required player.

Indicative draft picks: 1, 12, 18, 41, 73

Delisted: Josh Clayton, Jonathan Freeman, Blake Grewar, Ryan Harwood, Jarrad Jansen

Retired: None

Unsigned free agents: Tom Rockliff (restricted), Claye Beams (unrestricted)

What they said: "We won’t be taking anyone who’s at high risk of wanting to return home. It’s an understandable thing with young people. It’s normal." – coach Chris Fagan.

Whispers: The Lions are striving to convince Hawthorn great Luke Hodge to come out of retirement and play on at the Gabba. If the Lions' surprise bid is successful – and there's a growing sense it will be – the dual North Smith medallist will cost them a lowly draft pick at most. The Lions' primary target, Crows speedster Charlie Cameron, won't come anywhere near as cheaply. Given he's contracted until the end of next season, the Crows will drive a hard bargain and could target the Lions' second-round pick, No.18, or any compensation pick they receive if former skipper Tom Rockliff departs the Gabba via free agency. Rockliff is being courted by Carlton and Port Adelaide, and is expected to attract a salary in the $600,000 range that should net the Lions an end-of-first-round or second-round compensation selection. Despite re-signing with the Lions in June, Josh Schache remains a strong chance of being traded home to Victoria, with the Western Bulldogs and Collingwood linked to 2015's No.2 draft pick. Fellow key forward Michael Close remains out of contract and could attract rival interest late in the trade period. 

Luke Hodge's career might not be over just yet. Picture: AFL Photos

Indicative draft picks: 3, 38, 56, 75

Delisted: Andrew Gallucci, Kristian Jaksch and Liam Sumner

Retired: Dennis Armfield, Daniel Gorringe and Matthew Korcheck

Unsigned free agents: Simon White (unrestricted)

What they said: "Without going into specifics, we’re open-minded to trading. Also we’ll go to the draft. That’s been our policy for a long time." – coach Brendon Bolton.

Whispers: Blues list manager Stephen Silvagni continues to aggressively target players at his former club, Greater Western Sydney, with Devon Smith, Matthew Kennedy and, to a lesser extent, Ryan Griffen all on his hit list. The Blues have Kennedy all but signed, sealed and delivered, and are clear frontrunners in the race for Smith despite Collingwood and Essendon's interest in the forward/midfielder. Griffen, 31, would satisfy the Blues' strategy of bolstering their midfield with mature bodies, but their chief target is Tom Rockliff. Carlton is locked in an evenly poised tug-of-war with Port Adelaide for the former Lions captain. If the Blues can acquire Rockliff and/or Griffen, it could convince them to part with senior midfielder Bryce Gibbs. Gibbs, who is contracted until 2019, has said he expects to remain at Ikon Park in 2018, but the South Australian is again likely to request a trade to the Crows. In this event, the Blues will drive a hard bargain – they asked for two first-round picks last year – but the Crows, through Jake Lever's expected move to Melbourne, should be well placed to get a deal done second time around. 

Indicative draft picks: 6, 36, 54, 59, 78

Delisted: TBC

Retired: Jesse White

Unsigned free agents: Lachlan Keeffe, Ben Sinclair and Josh Thomas (unrestricted)

What they said: "The type of players we bring in and their characteristics, clearly that area is controlled by list management, of which I am a part of. I look forward to those decisions because I think this off-season, the national draft and the trade period, is clearly very important for us." – coach Nathan Buckley.

Whispers: The Pies are looking to find some aerial support in attack for Darcy Moore, so will consider second-year Brisbane Lion Josh Schache. The No.2 draft pick of 2015 is contracted until the end of 2019, but appears gettable at the right price, most likely a late first-round pick. The Western Bulldogs are among the other Victorian clubs expected to sound out the Seymour product, while fellow Lion Michael Close, who is out of contract, is another key forward the Magpies could consider. Collingwood is also in the hunt for wantaway Giant Devon Smith, but the forward appears set to nominate Carlton as his preferred new home. Collingwood had a significant win ahead of the trade period when it fought off growing rival interest in Mason Cox – primarily from the Brisbane Lions, Hawthorn and Richmond – to sign the ruckman/forward for three more years. The Pies are also likely to face a bid from West Coast for contracted small forward Alex Fasolo, but free agents Josh Thomas and Lachlan Keeffe are expected to re-sign. 

Indicative draft picks: 11, 28, 46, 65, 83

Delisted: Heath Hocking

Retired: Yestin Eades, James Kelly, Brent Stanton and Jobe Watson

Unsigned free agents: Ben Howlett (unrestricted)

What they said: "We’d like to improve our midfield – we’ve made no secret of the fact we’d like to be in the market for an elite midfielder … I think there will be some surprises during the trade period and I think that you’ve just got to be ready for the unexpected" – list and recruiting manager Adrian Dodoro.

Whispers: The Bombers are locked in a battle with Geelong to win the signature of Western Bulldogs forward Jake Stringer. The 2015 All Australian is understood to be seeking a new deal of about $600,000 a season, with the Dons better placed to meet his asking price. However, Geelong's strong leadership culture appeals to Stringer, who acknowledges he has to become more professional off the field. At this early stage, the Cats appear slight favourites to land the Bulldog. The Dons are also desperate to bolster their midfield depth, having been one of several Victorian clubs who made unsuccessful plays for emerging GWS star Josh Kelly. They have been linked with fellow Giants Devon Smith and Matthew Kennedy, but both appear likely to request trades Carlton. If contracted West Coast runner Andrew Gaff becomes available, the Dons would almost certainly seek to join St Kilda and Hawthorn in the queue for the Victorian's services, while out-of-favour Tiger Anthony Miles and Fremantle youngster Harley Balic are among the other on-ball options they could consider. Out-of-contract Suns defender Trent McKenzie is also said to be on Essendon's radar. 


Indicative draft picks: 5, 40, 55, 58, 77

Delisted: TBC

Retired: Zac Dawson, Garrick Ibbotson and Shane Yarran

Unsigned free agents: Zac Clarke and Nick Suban (unrestricted)

What they said: "When you're rebuilding, the draft process is an enormous part of what you do, and player movement has certainly been increased in regards to free agency and trade … we have a list management model, a list management process, and we'll continue to work through it." – general manager of football operations Chris Bond.

Whispers: The Dockers should secure out-of-contract Gold Coast small forward Brandon Matera early in the trade period, with a third or fourth-round pick likely to get the deal done. Contracted GWS half-back Nathan Wilson has also requested a move to Fremantle, with the Giants likely to demand a second-round pick. The Dockers don't have a second-round pick in this year's draft, having traded it to Gold Coast, so might look to satisfy GWS with their 2018 second-round pick. Freo was linked earlier this year with out-of-favour Swan Aliir Aliir, but the key defender is contracted for 2018 and, according to Swans football boss Tom Harley, remains an "absolutely required" player. A ruckman is likely to be a priority for the Dockers given the futures of out-of-contract pair Zac Clarke and Jonathon Griffin remain clouded. Midfielder Harley Balic has requested a trade home to Victoria with Melbourne leading the interested clubs. Forward Hayden Crozier appeared likely to re-sign late in the 2017 season but remains uncontracted, with the Western Bulldogs bidding to bring him home to Victoria. Key forward Matt Taberner is also out of contract and could attract interest late in the trade period. 

Indicative draft picks: 20, 33, 51, 70, 88

Delisted: Josh Cowan

Retired: Tom Lonergan and Andrew Mackie

Unsigned free agents: Daniel Menzel (unrestricted) and Steven Motlop (restricted)

What they said: On Steven Motlop remaining unsigned: "It needs to be played out and there are people at our club who should be the spokesperson for this even ahead of me. But this is one of the rare occasions I'll talk about what I want, and I sincerely hope that he's a Geelong player next year. I'm not sure how I can be any more emphatic than that, and Steve knows that." - Coach Chris Scott.

Whispers: The Cats will again be aggressive this trade period, with Western Bulldog Jake Stringer and former Gold Coast captain Gary Ablett their primary targets. Geelong appears to lead the race for Stringer narrowly from Essendon, but it's unclear whether the Cats' first selection in this year's draft, No.20 overall, would meet the Dogs' trade expectations. Ablett has eyes only for his former club, but Gold Coast won't make it easy for him to return as the prodigal son. The Suns wants a player rather than a pick and are understood to have asked for Mitch Duncan or Nakia Cockatoo. The Cats won't accede to that request, but the Suns are determined to land a best-22 player. Sam Menegola, Darcy Lang, Jackson Thurlow and Jake Kolodjashnij are among the names likely to come up in the clubs' discussions. Geelong previously registered its interest in Greater Western Sydney forward Devon Smith and Lions midfielder Tom Rockliff, but has since narrowed its focus to Stringer and Ablett. Free agents Steven Motlop and Daniel Menzel appear set to depart, with Motlop likely to join Port Adelaide in a deal that should earn the Cats a second-round compensation pick. Menzel's future might not be decided until late in the trade period.

Will Ablett get his wish this time and form Dangerwoodlett? Picture: AFL Photos

Indicative draft picks: 2, 19, 24, 34, 37, 74

Delisted: Keegan Brooksby, Ryan Davis, Jarrad Grant, Mitch Hallahan, Cameron Loersch

Retired: None

Unsigned free agents: N/A

What they said: "We indicated to Gary and his manager Liam Pickering that there are conditions that will need to be met for the Gold Coast if this is to be achieved. Scott Clayton will be available to meet with Liam and Geelong to ensure these conditions are met." – CEO Mark Evans.

Whispers: Former captain Gary Ablett's requested move to Geelong will keep the Suns busy this trade period. Gold Coast is understandably determined to get a fair return for the dual Brownlow medallist given he is contracted for 2018 and has already received most of the $3 million owing to him under a heavily front-ended three-year contract. The Suns want an established senior player from the Cats and have asked for Mitch Duncan or Nakia Cockatoo. That seems an ambit claim, with Cats such as Sam Menegola, Darcy Lang, Jackson Thurlow and Jake Kolodjashnij more likely to meaningfully feature in the clubs' talks. The Suns will also expect the Cats to pay the traded player's salary, at least for the 2018 season. Gold Coast has put contracted players Rory Thompson, Tom Nicholls and Aaron Hall on the trade table after their below-par 2017 seasons, while out-of-contract Victorians Trent McKenzie (Essendon) and Matt Shaw (Carlton) have been linked to clubs in their home state. Uncontracted small forward Brandon Matera is set to join Fremantle, most likely in exchange for a third or fourth-round pick. 

Indicative draft picks: 23, 25, 63, 69, 87

Delisted: TBC

Retired: Tom Downie and Steve Johnson

Unsigned free agents: None

What they said: "We're pretty happy with the balance and blend of our list in terms of experience and games, and the majority of our players are still reasonably young. I don't think we'll be looking for any more experienced players. We'll go to the draft." – List manager Wayne Campbell.

Whispers: The Giants achieved their primary list management goals ahead of the trade period, re-signing in-demand midfielders Josh Kelly, Lachie Whitfield and Jacob Hopper. Kelly and Hopper were out of contract and aggressively courted – Kelly, in particular – by Victorian clubs before re-signing for two years last month. Whitfield, who was contracted for 2018, was heavily linked to St Kilda before recommitting to the Giants, five days before Kelly, until the end of 2020. Nonetheless, the Giants' depth will be hit by another player exodus with Devon Smith, Matthew Kennedy and Nathan Wilson all seeking trades. Smith and Kennedy appear set to move to Carlton, while Wilson wants to get to Fremantle. These forthcoming deals should significantly bolster the Giants' trade hand and, in the event of a Smith-Kennedy package deal with Carlton, get them back into the first round. With question marks lingering over Shane Mumford's battle-scarred body, GWS is likely to seek another ruckman, with possible targets including North Melbourne pair Todd Goldstein and Braydon Preuss, St Kilda's Tom Hickey and Gold Coast's Tom Nicholls

Indicative draft picks: 32, 42, 60, 79

Delisted: TBC

Retired: Jack Fitzpatrick, Josh Gibson, Luke Hodge, Luke Surman

Unsigned free agents: Taylor Duryea

What they said: "We were pretty active last year ... on the back of that it's probably more difficult for us to be really active players." - Coach Alastair Clarkson.

Whispers: The Hawks have been relatively quiet ahead of the player exchange period – and it's making the rest of the competition nervous. Their weak hand in this year's draft – their first pick falls at No.32 – meant they were always unlikely to be active traders, while earlier industry suspicions they would bid for free agents Tom Rockliff and Jackson Trengove proved unfounded. Nonetheless, some are not prepared to write the Hawks off if contracted West Coast midfielder Andrew Gaff becomes available, in which event their 2018 first-round pick would likely be on the table. Contracted Port Adelaide speedster Jarman Impey is also on their radar, but the Western Bulldogs are circling too. Hawthorn is keen to bolster its height in defence, with out-of-favour GWS key defender Tim Mohr believed to be of interest and Gold Coast backman Rory Thompson likely to hold some appeal. The futures of free agent Taylor Duryea and midfield runner Billy Hartung are unlikely to be decided before the end of the trade period, while New Zealand-born defender Kurt Heatherley is also on the trade table. 

Indicative draft picks: 10, 27, 45, 64, 82

Delisted: Liam Hulett, Jake Spencer, Jack Trengove, Mitch White

Retired: Heritier Lumumba

Unsigned free agents: None

What they said: "The [AFL] Players’ Association are now endorsing player movement and it's what the players have wanted for a long period of time. Our list management team has been working incredibly hard behind the scenes to firm some options and strategies, over that period of time." - Coach Simon Goodwin.

Whispers: The Demons are in the box seat to land the biggest name remaining in this year's uncontracted player pool, Crows intercept defender Jake Lever. Lever is almost certain to request a trade to Melbourne now the Crows' season is over, with things set to get serious from there. Adelaide has signalled it wants two first-round picks for Lever. The Demons hold picks No.10 and No.27 in this year's draft, so at this stage would have to include their 2018 first-round selection to satisfy the Crows. However, the Demons are likely to resist the Crows' demands, at least initially, and a third party might have to be drafted into the discussions to get a deal over the line. If Carlton's Bryce Gibbs again requests a trade to Adelaide, the Blues could well be that club. Forward Jack Watts appears almost certain to leave Melbourne little more than a year after re-signing for three years. Watts has already interviewed with Port Adelaide and, at 26, will attract interest from other clubs seeking a tall forward. The Demons are also in the market for young Fremantle midfielder Harley Balic, who has requested a trade home to Victoria after two seasons. 

Jake Lever will be a great acquisition for the Dees. Picture: AFL Photos

Indicative draft picks: 4, 21, 44, 62, 76

Delisted: Lachlan Hansen, Will Fordham, Matthew Taylor

Retired: TBC

Unsigned free agents: Scott Thompson (restricted)

What they said: "I don't get too involved in the financial side of it, but more in terms of the list build and the sort of players that we need. We identified some midfielders we wanted to strengthen our midfield, because we have some really strong inside talent, but we wanted to get some more outside run." - Coach Brad Scott

Whispers: Do the Kangaroos have a trade shot left after their big-money plays for Dustin Martin and Josh Kelly failed? North is desperate to bolster its midfield class but the pool of out-of-contract options has almost run dry. The Roos have so far resisted making big plays for remaining targets such as Tom Rockliff, Steven Motlop, Devon Smith and Matthew Kennedy despite having a spare $2 million-plus in their salary cap. The question is whether North throws some of that money at a contracted star, such as West Coast's Andrew Gaff, or cools its trade jets until next year to focus on the draft. The rebuilding Roos will be keen to bring in extra top-20 picks, but brokering a suitable trade for ruckman Todd Goldstein seems a tough ask given his recent form slide and annual salary of about $800,000. Emerging ruckman Braydon Preuss will appeal to rival clubs, but North will be reluctant to trade such a bright prospect, especially one who remains contracted for 2018. Veteran defender Scott Thompson looks set to play on at Arden St after being recently offered a new one-year contract, but the futures of Jarrad Waite, Sam Gibson, Aaron Mullett and Declan Mountford remain clouded.

Indicative draft picks: 29, 47, 66, 84

Delisted: TBC

Retired: None

Unsigned free agents: Jackson Trengove (restricted)

What they said: "He (Tom Rockliff) is a pretty good player. He’s certainly one we’ll look at. " – captain Travis Boak.

Whispers: The Power are shaping to make a big splash this player exchange period, having met with two of this year's best remaining free agents, Geelong speedster Steven Motlop and Brisbane Lions vice-captain Tom Rockliff. Port is in the box seat to land Motlop, 26, but is locked in a fierce battle with Carlton for Rockliff, 27. Both Motlop and Rockliff are restricted free agents, but Geelong and the Lions are unlikely to match rival offers if, as expected, they receive attractive compensation picks. Port is believed to have the necessary salary cap space to take both players, while it is also targeting contracted Melbourne forward Jack Watts. The Power are, however, set to lose restricted free agent Jackson Trengove, with the versatile tall expected to join the Western Bulldogs on a four-year deal that could be announced on the opening day of free agency this Friday. Port won't receive any compensation for Trengove if it secures Motlop and/or Rockliff, but is almost certain not to match the Bulldogs' offer, happy to get Trengove's salary of about $600,000 off its books. Contracted speedster Jarman Impey is also being circled by Victorian clubs headed by the Bulldogs and Hawthorn, while out-of-favour forward Aaron Young has been linked to Gold Coast.

Indicative draft picks: 15, 17, 50, 53, 72

Delisted: TBC

Retired: Ivan Maric and Chris Yarran

Unsigned free agents: None

What they said: "I think our focus this year will be predominantly to retain. We have two first-round picks, and we have an opportunity, hopefully, with a father-son prospect in Patrick Naish. There are a few balls in the air there in terms of what we do, but I'd imagine at this point we are pretty comfortable retaining our picks in this year's draft." – talent manager Dan Richardson.

Whispers: A big player in last year's trade period, the 2017 premier has been conspicuously quiet so far this year. As well as their small forward line functioned this year, the Tigers will be keen to find aerial support for Jack Riewoldt. They were linked with Sydney free agent Sam Reid before he re-signed, with industry sources saying the Tigers' lengthy and costly efforts to re-sign Dustin Martin effectively ruined any chance they had of snaring Reid. Richmond talent manager Dan Richardson has said the club is unlikely to pursue contracted Brisbane Lion Josh Schache, preferring to hang on to its two first-round picks in this year's draft, No.15 and No.17. This also suggests the Tigers are unlikely to pursue other contracted forwards such as Swan Kurt Tippett and Demon Jack Watts. Could they save their pennies to go all out for Suns co-captain Tom Lynch when he becomes a free agent next year? Richmond's outstanding season has meant solid performers such as out-of-contract pair Anthony Miles, and Jake Batchelor, and Sam Lloyd, contracted for 2018, have been starved of senior opportunities, but their outstanding VFL form won't have gone unnoticed by opposition clubs. 

Indicative draft picks: 7, 8, 43, 57, 61

Delisted: Joe Baker-Thomas, Nick Coughlan

Retired: Sean Dempster, Leigh Montagna, Nick Riewoldt

Unsigned free agents: None

What they said: "It's hard to get in who you want, but our club is committed to doing whatever we can to try and get good people to our club. Now that could be through the national draft (or) it might be through trade." – coach Alan Richardson.

Whispers: The Saints' clear priority is bolstering its midfield, particularly its outside run. Who do they turn to after their unsuccessful play for GWS star Josh Kelly and the re-signing of another likely Giants target Lachie Whitfield? The industry drums suggest West Coast runner Andrew Gaff is the latest star in their cross-hairs. Gaff is contracted for next season, at the end of which he will become a free agent, but St Kilda is well placed to pounce now given it holds picks No.7 and No.8 in the draft and has the money set aside for Kelly burning a hole in its salary cap. Hawthorn has also been strongly linked to Gaff, although its poor draft hand this year – its first pick is not until No.32 – means the Saints are far better placed. St Kilda's ruck depth means the out-of-favour Tom Hickey could come on the radar of clubs such as the Giants, Fremantle, West Coast and the Western Bulldogs, but the Saints are yet to receive any opposition approaches. Speculation continues to surround the future of 2014's No.1 draft pick, Paddy McCartin, but St Kilda list manager Tony Elshaug told recently the club wanted to extend his contract beyond its 2018 expiry date. 

Could the Saints make a bold play for Andrew Gaff?

Indicative draft picks: 14, 31, 49, 68, 86

Delisted: Brandon Jack, Tyrone Leonardis, Michael Talia

Retired: Shaun Edwards, Jeremy Laidler

Unsigned free agents: None

What they said: On Aliir Aliir trade speculation: "We've got Heath Grundy, who's been a fantastic key defender for us, who's probably got a couple of years to go and we see Aliir playing a significant part in that transition. " – head of football Tom Harley

Whispers: One of the competition's best traders, the Swans have been unusually quiet this year. But that's understandable given they have already ticked off their two biggest priorities, re-signing free agent Sam Reid and Zak Jones despite keen interest from Victorian clubs. Grundy's advancing age means the Swans will be keen to acquire another key defender soon, so contracted Gold Coast tall Rory Thompson could be of interest at the right price. And could Sydney be the change of environment out-of-favour Melbourne forward Jack Watts needs to get his career back on track? Speculation continues to suggest Kurt Tippett is gettable at the right price despite being contracted until the end of 2020, but Swans football manager Tom Harley said two weeks ago he would be "very surprised" if the high-profile forward/ruckman left. Harley also said key defender Aliir, who was linked with Fremantle earlier this year, remained an "absolutely required" player despite spending most of this year in the NEAFL. Another Swan to keep an eye on is Gary Rohan. The forward is contracted until 2020 but another poor finals series might see him become available. 

Indicative draft picks: 13, 30, 48, 67, 85

Delisted: Simon Tunbridge

Retired:  Sam Butler, Paddy Brophy, Jonathan Giles, Sam Mitchell, Drew Petrie, Matt Priddis

Unsigned free agents: None

What they said: "Obviously we'd love another A-grade midfielder – they're very difficult to get - and a small forward as well. If we thought we could get the right player we'd look at the best way we could to achieve that for our footy club." – football manager Craig Vozzo.

Whispers: The Eagles are in the midst of a clean-out as they look to regenerate their list.

Out-of-favour midfielder Chris Masten is contracted until 2019 but will almost certainly be on the trade table, while out-of-contract defender Sharrod Wellingham's future is unlikely to be decided until the end of the trade period. One player West Coast won't want to part with is hard-running midfielder Andrew Gaff. The Victorian is contracted for 2018 but is being circled by St Kilda and Hawthorn. The Eagles will look to short-circuit that interest and prevent Gaff from becoming a free agent at the end of next season by re-signing him to a long-term deal this summer. Earlier this year, Eagles coach Adam Simpson identified a small forward as the club's No.1 list management priority, with contracted Magpie Alex Fasolo a likely target. Fasolo is due to become a free agent at the end of next season, but Eagles football manager Craig Vozzo recently said the club would seriously consider trading for him this year. However, West Australian Suns small forward Brandon Matera is set to join Fremantle early in the trade period.  

Indicative draft picks: 9, 26, 39, 80, 81

Delisted: Declan Hamilton, Josh Prudden, Tristan Tweedie

Retired: Matthew Boyd, Robert Murphy

Unsigned free agents: None

What they said: "We’re not going to just say, ‘Here you go, you can have Jake Stringer’. We’ve said to him, you’re going to play here mate if no one is going to treat you with the respect you should have as far as what you have achieved, because we need to do what’s right for the club as much as you as well. We’ll try to work it out together." – coach Luke Beveridge.

Whispers: The Bulldogs will be aggressive this October after their premiership defence ended so limply. Tall Port utility Jackson Trengove will cross to the Kennel on a four-year deal that is expected to be lodged early in the free agency period. The Dogs are also circling out-of-contract Fremantle forward Hayden Crozier and contracted Port speedster Jarman Impey, and are also understood to be in the market for another ruckman. The Dogs will be kept busy finalising a trade for Stringer, with Geelong and Essendon their most likely trade partners and an early draft pick their asking price. The Cats hold pick No.20 but the Bulldogs will, at least initially, want an earlier pick, while the Dons will be reluctant to part with their No.11 pick, so negotiations could drag on. Rival clubs also believe prospective 2018 free agent Luke Dahlhaus is gettable at the right price, as are fellow contracted Bulldogs Shane Biggs, Clay Smith and Tom Campbell. The futures of out-of-contract pair Stewart Crameri and Mitch Honeychurch might not be resolved until the end of trade period.