COLLINGWOOD list manager Ned Guy has hit out at a media "beat-up" over the club's salary cap, and says the club's much-criticised Trade Period was "part of a plan".
Guy also scoffed at suggestions that Collingwood was having a "fire sale" of players, and said Jaidyn Stephenson was "keen to play at North Melbourne, despite the player saying he didn't want to go following the trade on Thursday.
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In an interview on Fox Footy, Guy was adamant the club was not rebuilding, "it's just adding better talent".
"I said recently we were keen to get into the draft. We want to continue strengthening our list and we think the draft is the best way to be able to do that," he said.
"We've had a couple of good years but we have been scaling backwards (moving down the ladder) and we don't want to wait to bottom-out before we start bringing in some really good talent to complement what we've already got."
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After the wash-up, Stephenson appeared on Trade Radio and said he enjoyed being at Collingwood and was "hurt" when he was told he was no longer wanted.
Guy said: "[Collingwood had] continual discussions throughout [and] beyond the exit process with Jaidyn and his management. It just got to the point where Jaidyn was keen to play at North Melbourne.
"It's part of a plan we all put together and one we executed today [Thursday]. As I said we wanted to replenish and add some talent to our list and we want to do that through the draft.
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"I don't think it's a fire sale at all. I think we just wanted to replenish the list. To be able to get into the first round, you've got to be able to give something up.
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"We spoke to Tommy (Phillips) and his management around the role he wanted to play. He would prefer to play on a wing so we were more than happy to facilitate that so he can play the role he wants to play."