SYDNEY has held discussions with former No.1 pick Paddy McCartin about reviving the ex-Saint's stalled career after a year out of the game with concussion.

However, Swans CEO Tom Harley said ongoing uncertainty about list sizes going into 2021 made it difficult to make a firm call on the strong-marking tall forward.

McCartin, 24, was the first player selected in the 2014 NAB AFL Draft but he managed just 35 games in five seasons. 

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He suffered eight concussions in six years, with the most recent incident in March 2019 forcing him to step away from footy at the end of that year. 

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McCartin was delisted by St Kilda but has since recovered to the point where he's been cleared to resume his AFL career.

Former Saint Paddy McCartin after another concussion in the pre-season competition of 2019. Picture: AFL Photos

Harley said the club's need to add to its tall forward stocks, and the presence of McCartin's younger brother, Tom, on the list made the Swans an attractive destination. 

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"He spent some time up in Sydney probably six weeks ago now and we've certainly had a discussion with Paddy and a bit goes to the list spots," Harley told SEN radio on Monday morning. 

"Obviously Tom, his brother, plays up here and we've been monitoring Paddy but nothing further to update on at this point in time."

Sydney's Tom McCartin handballs despite a tackle from St Kilda's Jake Carlisle. Picture: AFL Photos

Harley said the club's position on McCartin would become clearer at the end of the Trade Period – preferably when list sizes had been confirmed. 

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"Once we know that and once we know the players we've got out of contract and what we might be doing with them – there's also rookie list opportunities as well – so certainly nothing set in stone or in concrete but we have had that discussion," he said. 


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Harley also confirmed the Swans were pursuing contracted West Coast ruckman Tom Hickey, to boost their ruck stocks after successive injury-hit seasons. 

"We've had a discussion with Tom. We think he could add something to the squad and we've obviously been challenged in that area, primarily with injuries to Sam Naismith and Cal Sinclair, who we brought in a couple of years ago as a secondary (ruck)-cum-forward. 

"(Cal) has done an admirable job over the past couple of years and we'd like to put some support around there and we'll monitor that one pretty closely." 

West Coast ruckman Tom Hickey in action against the Western Bulldogs. Picture: Getty Images/AFL Photos

Harley said Sydney had asked after Port Adelaide ruckman Peter Ladhams, who enjoyed a breakout season in 2020, but "that was shut down pretty quickly".

In other news, Harley said: 

  • Tall utility Aliir Aliir, who has been the subject of interest from Port Adelaide, is a contracted player and is expected to remain with the Swans for 2021.
  • The Swans had maintained some interest in Joe Daniher throughout 2020 but couldn't get to a point where they could commit to the ex-Bomber, who signed a long-term deal with Brisbane
  • Star small forward Tom Papley had been completely committed to the Swans after his desired move to Carlton failed to eventuate at the end of last season, and there was no thought he would pursue another trade to Victoria