Chris Fagan and Dayne Zorko speak after Brisbane's clash against Gold Coast in round 19, 2022. Picture: Getty Images

BRISBANE coach Chris Fagan has revealed Dayne Zorko's decision to step down as Lions captain was two years in the making.

Speaking on Wednesday morning, Fagan lauded his "selfless" former skipper, saying he was glad the "exceptional" Zorko got to go out on his own terms.

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The 34-year-old took over from Dayne Beams midway through 2018, when Fagan's coaching win-loss record was a miserly 5-26, and helped the club rise to four straight finals appearances.

"It's been a two-year process I reckon," Fagan said when asked about Zorko's decision.

"We chatted two years ago, he was 32 then and I said, 'Mate, there's going to come a time when you should think about whether you want to be captain or not.'

"I said, 'There's two choices, you can go on until I tap you on the shoulder or you can go until you think it's the right time to change and leave a legacy'."

Brisbane captain Dayne Zorko ahead of the 2022 preliminary final against Geelong. Picture: AFL Photos

Fagan said they revisited the conversation 12 months ago and decided the time wasn't right for a change, and then again following last season.

It wasn't until Monday, with Brisbane about to start voting on its leadership group, that the coach raised it again.

"I think he was worried that I didn't want him to say that he didn't want to captain," he said.

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"I had a very open mind about it because I always wanted it to be his call, he deserves that, and he got that.

"I'm not saying I would have tapped him on the shoulder this year, but I never wanted to do that because of what he's done for our club, so I'm so pleased he's done it on his terms."

Fagan and Zorko, like many coaches and captains, have a great relationship that has grown over the past five years.

They are a major part of Brisbane's resurgence over that period, with Zorko's emotional intelligence growing to match his energy and positivity, the coach said.

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"It would have been massively difficult for him to make that decision based on the optimism around our football club," Fagan said.

"He's taken the selfless approach, that's one of our key values and that's what he's done and I'm really proud of him."

Dayne Zorko in action during Brisbane's clash against Gold Coast in round 19, 2022. Picture: AFL Photos

Once the player vote determines the size of Brisbane's leadership group, those wanting to be captain will then be interviewed.

Fagan was reluctant to single out candidates, but expected a decision by "some time around the Geelong game I reckon", with the Lions facing the Cats in a practice match on March 2.

"I have no idea who will come out on top," he said.

"I don't know if we'll have one captain, two captains, all things are on the table."