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Pie bemused by pre-draft medical worry

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It didn't matter where I went – pick one or pick 101 – as long as I got to a club
Jaidyn Stephenson

THE FUSS about Jaidyn Stephenson's heart condition in the lead-up to last year's draft bemused Collingwood's newest young star before his AFL future was sealed. 

Stephenson was long regarded as a hotshot draft prospect, a status that was suddenly in jeopardy as recruiters discovered the problem he shares with his sister and mother.

There was even speculation the 19-year-old might slide from a No.1 contender into the teens – or maybe even further, although he revealed no club ruled him out to his face.

The reason Stephenson was bemused was he never saw his condition as a problem or stumbling block to him achieving his AFL dream.

The round four NAB AFL Rising Star nominee, who kicked five goals in the Magpies' upset win over Adelaide on Friday night, takes medication three times a day to prevent it becoming an issue. 

"I've had it all my life and have gone through playing football without any dramas," Stephenson told 

"I thought it was pretty funny, but it didn't matter where I went – pick one or pick 101 – as long as I got to a club.

"I didn't think about not getting drafted."

Stephenson also wished Dylan Roberton the best, a day after the St Kilda defender's mid-match collapse against Geelong, which doctors later diagnosed as being related to an irregular heartbeat.

"Obviously it's terrible to see, but there are lots of different heart conditions, and I'm sure ours are probably different," Stephenson said.

"I'm sure he's in good hands at the hospital and with his medicos, so hopefully he has a speedy recovery and we see him out there soon."