NORTH Melbourne's less-heralded ex-Port Adelaide recruit might prove an equally big get if history repeats.

Jasper Pittard arrived at Arden St as almost a throw-in for the Jared Polec deal, although North had courted him for some time and only two years ago he was shortlisted for the All Australian team.

That season he averaged a career-high 22.6 disposals and 5.3 rebound 50s to earn a reputation as one of the competition's most damaging defenders.

FULL FIXTURE Every round, every game

Pittard, 27, failed to reach those heights in the past two years for one reason or another, but told reporters on Tuesday he was primed for a bounce-back campaign for the Roos.

"I'm not going to use (injury) as an excuse but in 2017 I had a bit of an interrupted pre-season and for me, really, my best footy's always come when I've had a full pre-season," Pittard said.

"My last two seasons I've come off interrupted pre-seasons.

"I thought this year, physically, I actually got back to good shape, but it was about translating the form as well, which was a bit more of a challenge.

"I'm probably in the best shape I've been at this time of year for two or three years, so I'm really excited about that and I'm glad I'm coming to North at a time I physically feel well."

WHO MAKES FINALS? Do the 2019 Ladder Predictor

Pittard suffered a hamstring injury in pre-season matches the past two years that delayed his start before a forthright conversation with Port Adelaide coach Ken Hinkley paved the way for the move.

The Geelong Falcons graduate admitted to an element of surprise at being told in his exit meeting that the Power was willing to trade him, but appreciated the frank way it was done.

"It was probably going to be a good chance I was going to stay at Port, and I'm sure if I did I would have come back and it all would have been fine and I would have worked really hard," Pittard said.

"But as it turned out, this really great opportunity opened up and it was pretty mutual from myself and Port and I think we left on good terms."

PHANTOM FORM GUIDE Cal Twomey's latest update

Both Pittard and Polec said the way the Roos outperformed the expectations the public placed upon them was appealing to them.

The ability for Pittard to work under Rhyce Shaw, a fellow hard-running defender and dual winner of the AFL Coaches' Association's assistant of the year was another selling point.

Dom Tyson and Aaron Hall also switched from Melbourne and Gold Coast, respectively, in the exchange period.

"Looking at their list and where they sit on an age point of view is pretty good," Polec said of North Melbourne's prospects.

"Bringing us four in, you can tell they're going to try and bring that offensive run game up to speed and they're looking pretty good."

BEST OF THE BEST Combine's standout performers

Polec is temporarily making the commute to training from Langwarrin, about 40km south-east of Melbourne.

But he isn't feeling hurried to find somewhere to settle in his new city, much like him saying any pressure to perform is months away yet.

"At the moment it's not too bad – it's still early days. But we'll come to that," Polec said.

"I'll definitely feel pressure come February, March, so wait until then.

"It kind of is starting afresh again. I get to learn a lot more about the game from an opposition side and see how they play and go about their business, so it is only going to improve you as a person and a player."