Jordan Dawson’s choice of Adelaide as his prefered destination looms as a significant trade statement for the club. The Crows appear to have won the race to sign Dawson, with the South Australian naming the club as his prefered destination in a trade from Sydney. All that’s left now is for the two clubs to reach an agreement to ensure Dawson joins the Crows.
Adelaide is on the cusp of a historic trade deal Here’s how they can sign Jordan Dawson to a contract
After a breakout season with the Swans, Dawson opted down a “attractive long-term deal” from the club in favour of a return home, according to Sydney football boss Charlie Gardiner. When word got out that Dawson wanted to return to South Australia, both Adelaide and Port Adelaide jumped at the chance. Following his release from quarantine, Dawson went on a tour of both clubs, each of which had made their individual pitches. The Power would have boasted about how well-positioned they are to win a flag in the short term following consecutive preliminary final performances, and how Dawson – a young gun who played such a significant role in the Swans’ run into finals this season – would have fit into those plans. Port football manager Chris Davies revealed after Dawson’s Alberton tour that his club had “intense interest” in the departed Swan, who would have reunited with former teammate Aliir Aliir. The Crows, on the other hand, are still in the midst of a reconstruction. After a wooden spoon in 2020 and a 15th-place finish this season (they were 17th previous to their Round 23 win over North Melbourne), the Crows appear to be a long way from a flag.
The Crows, on the other hand, defeated the Power in the trade pitching game, which hasn’t happened in recent years. After passing a medical at the Crows, then-outgoing Bomber Orazio Fantasia picked the Power just over a year ago. While Adelaide had stated its wish to keep its picks and enter the draught, Port Adelaide simply appealed to Fantasia more, not only because of its recent on-field success but also, according to reports, because of the club’s solid injury management track record. Steven Motlop was a free agent in late 2017 and had three clubs chasing him: Adelaide, Port Adelaide, and Gold Coast, with the Cats also interested in keeping him. The Crows, who had just lost in the Grand Final, were desperate to sign Motlop after Charlie Cameron moved to Brisbane, to the extent of offering more money than the Power. But Motlop, whose family has a long history with the club, went with the Power. The Crows were also in the mix for then-Lion Jared Polec four years ago. Despite his acquaintance with Brodie Smith, Polec decided to go Alberton for the Ken Hinkley revival. Several high-profile players were snubbed by the Crows, including Cameron (Brisbane), Jake Lever (Melbourne), Patrick Dangerfield (Geelong), Mitch McGovern (Carlton), Hugh Greenwood (Gold Coast), and Alex Keath (Western). Dawson, a rising talent at a great juncture in his career who grew up supporting the Crows, selected Adelaide on Tuesday night. And, to top it off, the Crows defeated the Power. In the end, it’s believed Adelaide’s offer to Dawson was a little more expensive than the Power’s.
The Crows’ proposal focused on potential and contributing to the creation of something great, but Port understood it couldn’t provide a lucrative deal, so its pitch focused on the prospect to play in a flag in 2022. Growing up, he was a major Adelaide supporter, and his favourite player was Mark Ricciuto, who was instrumental in the club’s efforts to persuade him. Dawson will not join the club just on the basis of his talent. He’ll be a 24-year-old who’ll be coming off a career-best season in which he finished third in the Swans’ best and fairest after appearing in all 23 games. Dawson, who was originally selected with Pick 56 in the 2015 national draught, split his game time between the wing and two flanks and attended very few centre bounces. It’s difficult to put a value on a player who split his game time between the wing and two flanks and attended very few centre bounces. However, expect the Swans to be tough at the trade table, as it was evident that they didn’t want to lose him and were willing to offer him a big contract, especially given that they’re also in danger of losing free agent George Hewett to Carlton. zMany expecting Sydney to demand a first-rounder in return for the left-footer before Dawson nominated Adelaide. However, given that the Crows have already stated their intention to take Pick 4 in this year’s draught – as well as the temptation to trade up the draught order in order to give themselves the best chance of landing South Adelaide star Jason Horne-Francis – they will turn down any offer from the Swans to take this pick or a future first-rounder from them.
The Crows’ ideal scenario is to send Pick 23 to Sydney and balance the trade by rearranging subsequent draught picks. But, given the uncertainty surrounding next year’s draught class — a crop that is approaching its third year of uncertainty after two Covid-interrupted seasons – how willing would the clubs be to trade future picks? The Giants, Richmond, Brisbane, and Gold Coast all have multiple first-round picks. The Lions (Picks 14 and 17/18, depending on Melbourne’s Grand Final result) and Suns (Picks 3 and 19) are seen to be the most willing to sell those picks out of the quartet. Could the Crows arrange a selection swap with one of those clubs in order to secure a later first-round pick and therefore meet the Swans’ requirements? There’s still some action to be had. However, now that Dawson has made his decision, both the Crows and Swans have time and alternatives to come to an agreement. These kinds of deals can often come down to the wire on deadline day, but they’re usually struck before the end of the trading period. Dawson’s nearly probable arrival in Adelaide might signal a huge off-field shift for the club.
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