JACOB Hopper will land at Richmond in a trade with Greater Western Sydney that will not involve ruckman Ivan Soldo.
The midfielder has been traded to the Tigers in a swap for Richmond's future first-round pick and pick No.31 in this draft, with Hopper and late Giants picks (No.53 and 63) going back to the Tigers.
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Richmond's Soldo met with the Giants last week and completed a medical but is not involved in the trade. He had two years left on his deal with the Tigers.
A financial element is likely to be a part of the Hopper deal with Richmond, with the player still having a year to run on his contract before he was due to hit free agency.
He joins former Giants teammate Tim Taranto in landing at Punt Road on seven-year deals in a major coup for the Tigers as they aim to extend their flag window.
"Jacob has a skillset that we know can help us across the coming years, so it is very exciting to secure this trade with the Giants," Tigers general manager of football talent Blair Hartley said.
"At only 25, we believe Jacob's best is yet to come, and we look forward to him continuing to build off the outstanding seasons of AFL football he has already put together.
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"We thank GWS for their cooperation in facilitating Jacob's request to return to Victoria, where he completed his studies, and are pleased to have been able to find a suitable trade that benefits both parties."
Hopper enjoyed a career-best 2021 season, which saw him average 26.4 disposals and 6.4 clearances, finishing third in the Giants' club champion award and earning selection in the extended squad for the Therabody AFL All-Australian team.
He was restricted to just seven games in 2022, however, after undergoing off-season knee surgery and then a follow-up operation after experiencing more pain in round one.
Giants general manager of football Jason McCartney was happy to add further picks, with GWS now holding 1, 15, 18, 19 and 31 for this year's NAB AFL Draft.
"We're pleased to add another future first-round draft pick to add to what is an incredibly strong draft hand across both this season and next.
"This deal helps us bring in some more young talent and balance our list to re-set for a big 2023 and beyond.
"Jacob has been part of building our club to where we are today, and we thank him for his contribution to the Giants over the past seven seasons.
"The Hopper family have been a big part of the Giants and we wish them, Jacob and partner Liv all the best with their next chapter."
Hopper, 25, was recruited from Leeton in southern NSW with pick No.7 in the 2015 NAB AFL Draft, collecting 32 disposals on debut in round eight, 2016.
A graduate of the Giants Academy, he signed a two-year contract extension after his excellent 2021 season and played 114 games for the club in seven seasons.
– with Nathan Schmook