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WITH JAKE Carlisle finally on St Kilda's list and operating officer Ameet Bains exhausted, you'd be forgiven for thinking the Saints’ trade period is over.

But a relieved Bains left the door open for some late picks to be exchanged before Thursday's 2pm deadline.

Right now he is taking a deserved breath.

He had held his nerve under pressure late last week when Hawthorn entered the race for Carlisle with a deal that would satisfy Essendon if the youngster decided to head to the defending premier.

"It was a legitimate curve ball," Bains said.

"Hawthorn is a very professional football club as we know and has a super story to tell given how successful they have been. We weren't dismissive of it."

The Saints had to work hard to ensure Carlisle's commitment was rock solid.

They were confident in the work they had done to gain Carlisle's nomination as his preferred destination but when Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson is in the picture nothing can be taken for granted.

Public sentiment said the Saints should just hand over pick No.5 and in the vernacular that suddenly became popular, just get the job done. The Saints didn't waver.

"There was bemusement at our end that everyone was so keen for us just to hand over pick No.5 and get the deal done," Bains said.

He went to work contacting five or six clubs to see whether he could swing a deal that satisfied all parties but also gave the Saints more than Carlisle for pick No.5.

"We weren't averse to using pick No.5 as part of this trade but we felt that five straight for Carlisle wasn't the best deal for us and we needed to get something else," Bains said.

Finally the Sydney Swans became interested. Craig Bird became a prospect for Essendon. The deal began to take shape.

In the end the Saints managed to gain Carlisle and pick No.14, a selection Bains described as crucial to their list management strategy.

And Bains could walk away with a smile on the face with the right to sing 'Everyone's a winner' if he chose to do so.

"We wanted to remain patient to ensure we got the right result for the football club and not bow to any public pressure to do anything sooner," Bains said.