WITH the AFL year heading into Trade Period, Sliding Doors is getting down to business.

>> See more Sliding Doors here

So what's Damo saying about your club? What's he saying about the AFL? Check it out.

Adelaide Crows

IF ...

the Crows play the Saints' intended "game" with Crouch and therefore don't match a supposed $800,000 per year offer ...

THEN ...

the AFL must look into the why. Why it's somehow $800,000. And more pertinently, why another Saint, or Saints, and his and/or their salaries might find their way onto the Crows' books. If national draft pick No.2 finds its way to the Crows via Crouch's loss as a free agent, then the compo system is a bigger joke than it always has been.

Brisbane Lions

IF ...

I'm to offer some advice to the Lions, albeit without a scintilla of expertise nor experience in the field I'm about to refer to ...

THEN ...

I'd be suggesting a big off-season in the gym. From the Gabba seats, it looked like boys versus men when the Cats got hold of them in the prelim final.

Carlton

IF ...

we're currently in the 2020 Trade and Free Agency Period and his name is already being raised  ... 

THEN ...

if Paddy Cripps remains unsigned this time next year then the 2021 Trade and Free Agency Period is going to be a very worrying time for the Blues. The 2021 season will be massive on so many fronts and for so many people connected to this club.

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Cripps' crazy GOTY contender, simply stunning

Patrick Cripps weaves some absolute genius and produces an effort which will surely go down as a contender for Goal of the Year

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 Collingwood

IF ...

you're not familiar with the phrase 'salary dump' ...

THEN ...

watch it play out here. Treloar. Cox. Phillips. One, two, all three, maybe more, will be gone. And no matter what happens, there's still a financial commitment to Beams. Ouch.

Essendon

IF ...

the Bombers got exclusive access to big Joe as a father-son player way back in 2010 to start with, and if a banged-up big Joe has managed just 15 games in the past three years ...

THEN ...

it's a near miracle that the compo system could give them pick seven in a national draft for free agent loss. The Hawks got pick 19 when Buddy – arguably the best player in the comp – exited in 2013.

Fremantle

IF ...

there are two men who live life in different stratospheres and thought patterns ... 

THEN ...

it's Justin Longmuir and Jesse Hogan. And they won’t be together in 2021. Jesse seemingly headed to one of the two Sydney teams.

Geelong Cats

IF ...

Jez Cameron and Shaun Higgins are "done" ...

THEN ...

that leaves Isaac Smith. Some may question it, but I like it. It's very American. Bring in guns for the "now". Should be more of it. It is a policy more sound than a five-year plan beginning with two seasons at the bottom of the ladder.

 Gold Coast Suns

IF ...

the public noise is that the Suns are out of the Treloar race ...

THEN ...

I'm not so sure that is the private noise. If they can get the Pies to pay $300,000 a year of his $900,000 a year wage, then it would be just about a no-brainer.

Adam Treloar at a Collingwood training session in June. Picture: AFL Photos

GWS Giants

IF ...

you go back to preliminary final night 2019 ...

THEN ...

compared with the now, it is chalk and cheese. And I still don’t have a proper grasp on how this player exodus and near-crisis has occurred.

Hawthorn

IF ...

you had any doubt Sam Mitchell would be a senior AFL coach one day ... 

THEN ...

remove it. Appointed coach of the Box Hill Hawks, alongside responsibilities as Hawks' head of development. That'll round out his credentials very nicely. If I was North Melbourne, I’d be putting him on the current shortlist. But he's probably way too smart and savvy to even ponder that possibility.

Melbourne

IF ...

you listened to Hemisphere Management Group head Alex McDonald on Trade Radio on Thursday evening ... 

THEN ...

you were left thinking that both McDonalds have played their last game for the Dees, and that big Ben Brown to the Dees was a done deal (and also that Phillips wasn't playing another game as a Pie.).

North Melbourne

IF ...

the cowboys in charge keep making serious, costly mistakes ... 

THEN ...

maybe one day they will miraculously ride that bull for the eight seconds. But probably they will keep falling off, as they have done now for two years.

Port Adelaide

IF ...

anyone believed Orazio Fantasia last year when he said he didn’t want to leave the Bombers ...

THEN ...

they’re delusional. Knock me down with a feather that he wants out this year. He's a nice player, but not necessarily guaranteed a first XVIII spot come round one next year.

Richmond

IF ...

Josh Caddy has already been a good player at three clubs ... 

THEN ...

he may be at a fourth in 2021. Couldn’t gain a spot in the premiership team of 2020, too good not to be playing weekly senior football.

St Kilda

IF ...

the Saints baulked at paying Crouch $800,000 a season this time last year ...

THEN ...

it makes zero sense to pay him that this year, given he hardly managed a kick in 2020 and finished with an embarrassing police matter. Unless, of course, they’re choosing to add their own herbs and spices to the free agency compo mix. Other clubs know what is going on here. Surely the AFL sees through it.

Sydney Swans

IF ...

Mason Cox has always been and will forever be more red, white and blue than black and white ...

THEN ...

it would be a very convenient marketing project for him to become a Swan. Two out of three (colours) ain't bad. And don't rule it out.

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Mason Cox is the Carlton Draught Man of the Match after his heroics against the West Coast Eagles on Saturday night

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West Coast Eagles

IF ...

some people think the Eagles are guaranteed to climb back up the ladder in 2021 ... 

THEN ...

I'm not so sure. Attitude across all levels was a major concern this year. That's something not easily rectified, no matter the environment.

Western Bulldogs

IF ...

you don't secure a back-up ruck option for English in the Trade Period ... 

THEN ...

season 2021 will end the same way as the past two – good enough to make finals but not win one. Still reckon English is going to be elite, but that that moment won’t arrive for up to another three years. Would be silly to not ask the question of Goldstein.

AND THIS ONE'S FOR THE AFL

IF ...

Colonel Sanders owns the patent on the secret herbs and spices recipe ...

THEN ...

the AFL should either buy him out, or patent its own. When it comes to its free agency compensation formula, it is fair to say that on historical examples, there is no formula. Only a gut feel combined with a need to prop up certain clubs combined with a desire to drag down certain others combined with the all-important vibe. Either remove compo totally, which I have long advocated, or provide a proper, above-board system.