Zak Butters walks from the field after Port Adelaide's loss to Carlton at Adelaide Oval in round 12, 2024. Picture: AFL Photos

PORT Adelaide vice-captain Zak Butters is being urged to revel, not rebel, when copping heavy tags from opponents.

Butters this week had a striking charge thrown out at the AFL Tribunal after appealing against a one-game ban recommended by the Match Review Officer for striking Greater Western Sydney's Tom Green.

The dynamic Power onballer is increasingly being tagged by opposition clubs - the Giants' Toby Bedford restricted Butters to a season-low 17 disposals last Sunday.

Port coach Ken Hinkley has spoken to Butters this week, telling the playmaker he should treat the close attention as an honour.

"One of the pieces of advice I gave him is, 'This is a great thing, mate, you're recognised as a great player in this competition, you should expect that to have happened and want it to happen almost'," Hinkley told reporters on Friday.

"Because his own belief is that he can be a very good player. Now he's just got the challenge of working through it.


"There's so many players that I've been through over my time that work through that.

"It doesn't happen overnight and it's a pretty big task to have someone hanging on your back, holding you, wrapping their arms (around you)."

On the eve of Port's home clash against the Brisbane Lions, Hinkley said Butters should look at how dual Brownlow medallist Lachie Neale copes with taggers.

"We come up against one this week ... Lachie Neale plays that way and gets that type of attention most weeks," he said of the Lions star.

Lachie Neale is tackled by Willem Drew during Brisbane's qualifying final against Port Adelaide on September 9, 2023. Picture: Getty Images

"Zak's just starting to experience what that's like a little bit, so you have just got to work your way through it."

Hinkley described the tagging tactics as a "real challenge" for the 23-year-old Butters.

"He'll be fine, he'll work his way through what the expectation of a good player is - and that is that they get attention," he said. 

"He knows that and he's taken it on head on. 

Zak Butters and Alex Cincotta in action during the R12 match between Port Adelaide and Carlton at Adelaide Oval on May 30, 2024. Picture: Getty Images/AFL Photos

"It's a bit frustrating for him at the moment, but what I do know about Zak, there's going to be a pretty determined response every time he goes out there to play.

"It doesn't necessarily mean he's going to have a great game all the time, but he will give everything he's got to try and make that happen."

Hinkley has made four changes to his seventh-placed side, which sits six premiership points ahead of the 13th-placed Lions.

Ruckman Ivan Soldo has been dropped in favour of Jordon Sweet while Jeremy Finlayson, Willie Rioli and Logan Evans, who will make his AFL debut, have been summoned.

Port dropped Quinton Narkle, Dylan Williams and Francis Evans while the Lions have made one change with the Noah Answerth (shoulder) replaced by Shadeau Brain.

Veteran forward Charlie Dixon will be unavailable for selection for the next three games after failing to have his suspension for a bump in the SANFL overturned at an appeals hearing.