AFL Trade Period: Did your club win or bust with trades in 2021?


As we near the 2022 AFL Trade and Free Agency period, things are starting to ramp up in terms of player movement.

Nearly 60 players have been linked to rival clubs so far, with the potential to top 2018’s 46 confirmed deals.

However, at the completion of the most recent campaign, we thought we’d take a moment to reflect on those who moved clubs at the eve of 2022 and how they fared in new colours.

In 2021, there was a total of 25 player moves, 10 of those being Free Agents while the rest were included in trades.

Big names such as Adam Cerra, George Hewett and Mabior Chol all found new homes while Tyson Stengle and Lewis Young slipped under the radar.

We gave each player a rating out of 10:

Tyson Stengle 10

(Delisted Free Agent)

A maiden All-Australian and premiership player in his first season at Geelong, despite being moved on from Richmond and Adelaide for behavioural issues.

Slotted 53 goals for the year, including four in the grand final, Stengle has been the find of the year and was a big part of the Cats’ success.

First player to be delisted and then be named in the AA team.

Will Brodie 9

(Trade – Gold Coast)

Being offloaded by Gold Coast, Fremantle swooped in on the inside midfielder for virtually nothing and proved to be an important cog in the midfield.

Played all 24 games, Brodie averaged 27 touches, six clearances and five tackles and quickly became the perfect replacement for David Mundy and Nat Fyfe.

Jordan Dawson 9

(Trade – Sydney)

Stiff to be excluded from the All-Australian squad, however, Dawson proved to be a very good trade which was reflected by his after-the-siren goal in his first ever Showdown.

Didn’t miss a game for Adelaide in 2022, the 25-year-old averaged 25 touches across half back and through the midfield and was lethal by foot.

Mabior Chol 8

(Free Agent – Richmond)

Took off up north to Gold Coast, Chol was a tremendous find for the Suns, especially in the unfortunate absence of Ben King (ACL injury).

Kicked 44 majors (avg. 2 per game) for the season and was kept goalless on only two occasions.

Mabior Chol.jpg

George Hewett 8

(Free Agent – Sydney)

Crossing from Sydney to the Blues, Hewett turned out to be the perfect inclusion and helped get the club off to a flier in 2022 (winning eight of their first 10).

The former Swan managed only 15 games and averaged 29 disposals to go with his seven clearances and five tackles. 

Lewis Young 8

(Trade – Western Bulldogs)

Played 24 games in five seasons at the Bulldogs, Young featured 19 times in 2022 and was a key cog in the Carlton defence.

Almost a like-for-like replacement for Liam Jones, the 23-year-old allowed Jacob Weitering to peel off and come over as a third man whilst also holding his own down back.

Adam Cerra 7

(Trade – Fremantle)

Another Carlton acquisition, Cerra came across as a highly touted pick as he was initially drafted with pick five in 2017.

Arguably a career-best season, the 22-year-old has established himself as a premier midfielder for the Blues alongside skipper Patrick Cripps for years to come.

Patrick Lipinski 7

(Trade – Western Bulldogs)

Starting off with a three-vote game in round one, Lipinski did not miss a beat in 2022.

One of Collingwood’s most consistent players after leaving the Bulldogs for more opportunity, the 24-year-old was deployed in a multitude of positions and proved his versatility in a side that lost a preliminary final by one point.

Pat Lipinski.jpg

Jeremy Finlayson 7 

(Trade – GWS)

Known as a crafty goal kicker, Ken Hinkley saw Finlayson as a second-ruck who is elite on the ground.

Missing only two games, the former Giants was super impressive for Port Adelaide, averaging 15 possessions, four marks, three clearances and a goal.

Jordan Clark 6

(Trade – Geelong)

Played in every game for Fremantle in 2022, Clark was pivotal to the Dockers’ resurgence into premiership contention.

Collecting 21 touches a game and five marks, the 21-year-old proved to be the missing lin under Justin Longmuir, adding speed and dare to the club.

Jake Kelly 5

(Free Agent – Adelaide)

Essendon scooped up Kelly from Adelaide as a Free Agent to help bolster the backline.

Despite the poor season from the Bombers, the 27-year-old held his own at times although there was plenty of pressure from opposition sides. 

Robbie Tarrant 5

(Trade – North Melbourne)

Crossing from the Kangaroos after 12 seasons, a fresh start came at a good time for Tarrant.

Nearing retirement, the 33-year-old provided Richmond with a lockdown defender but was left stranded at times by the dominant forwards at the moment.

Robbie Tarrant - Richmond

Darcy Fort 5

(Trade – Geelong)

Fort added 18 games to his career under Chris Fagan, including being brought into the semi final against Melbourne.

Played the first 13 games of 2022, the former Cat was influential at times and proved to be a handy pick up.

Hugh Greenwood 4

(Free Agent – Gold Coast)

Stolen from Gold Coast, the Kangaroos saw Greenwood as a temporary replacement for ben Cunnington, who was recovering from testicular cancer.

Featured in 18 games, the club struggled and so did the 30-year-old, averaging his lowest disposal count since his first season at Adelaide in 2017.

Peter Ladhams 4

(Trade – Port Adelaide)

Ladhams teased Sydney fans and could only string 11 games in the senior side.

Included in a lucrative trade with Port Adelaide, the ruckman struggled to cement his spot in the senior side but could be in line once Sam Reid/Lance Franklin retires.

However, also missed AFL selection in the finals due to a suspension, including the Grand Final.

Nathan Kreuger 4

(Trade – Geelong)

An energetic forward/ruck who was downed by a gruesome shoulder injury, limiting him to five games, including three as the sub.

Kreuger has potential to be a crashing-and-bashing forward for Collingwood but will need to remain healthy.

Sam Petrevski-Seton 3

(Trade – Carlton)

Known as SPS, the former Blue struggled at West Coast, managing 14 games as the side slumped to 17th position in a poor season.

Has the potential to be a formidable rebounding half back but unfortunately didn’t show enough at the Eagles in 2022.

Sam Petrevski-Seton West Coast

Tim O’Brien 3

(Free Agent – Hawthorn)

A deal that didn’t really work for the Bulldogs in 2022, with O’Brien struggling to lock down a preferred position.

Can play forward and back, the Dogs weren’t able to unlock the former Hawk’s key assets which is taking intercept marks. Played 11 games and will find it hard in 2023.

Max Lynch 2 

(Trade – Collingwood)

Since crossing from the Pies, Lynch added seven matches to his career but was struck down by multiple bouts of concussion.

The 23-year-old also couldn’t find his way past Ned Reeves as the primary ruckman at Hawthorn but has tremendous upside being mobile.

Luke Dunstan 2

(Free Agent – St Kilda)

Crossing to the reigning premiers from St Kilda, Dunstan was always going to struggle to find his way into the midfield.

Notching up another five games (one as the sub), the 27-year-old was one of Casey Demons’ best players in the VFL and is a handy pickup if Clayton Oliver, Christian Petracca or Jack Viney go down.

Callum Coleman-Jones 2

(Trade – Richmond)

Featured in the most AFL games (10) since he was drafted back in 2018.

Although he struggled, Coleman-Jones has a lot of potential but is yet to unlock it yet.

Showed glimpses throughout the season but has a lot of work to do.

Callum Coleman-Jones.jpg

Jarrod Brander 2

(Delisted Free Agent – West Coast)

Was delisted by the Eagles and picked up by the Giants.

Played five games and was serviceable, but spent most his time in the VFL. 

Brander was unfortunately dropped again.

Jonathon Ceglar 1

(Trade – Hawthorn)

Typical Geelong manner, topping off with veterans to ensure they can attack the premiership each season.

Ceglar played only three matches but was a viable option for the Cats if needed, although was held out of the side by Rhys Stanley and Mark Blicavs.

Sam Skinner 1

(Delisted Free Agent)

Delisted from Brisbane, Skinner was picked up by Port Adelaide.

Played rounds two and three but that was it and didn’t make much impact.

Tom Campbell 1

(Delisted Free Agent)

Joined his third AFL club, the journeyman featured in only two games, as he fell behind Paddy Ryder, Rowan Marshall and Jack Hayes.

Despite playing impressive VFL football during 2022 and winning Sandringham’s best-and-fairest, Campbell couldn’t have the same impact in the senior side.

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