Western Bulldogs have confirmed they’d be happy to trade captain Ryan Griffen in a deal for Tom Boyd, but GWS say the young forward is not on the market.
A year is a long time in football.
In 2013, Greater Western Sydney were desperate to recruit some AFL stars and shopped around their No.1 draft pick in trade period.
The Giants were essentially asking for rivals to bid for Tom Boyd, a hulking full-forward rated the best young talent in the land by the vast majority of judges.
No serious offers were made and GWS selected behemoth Boyd in the draft, banking on him forming a monstrous forward line alongside Jeremy Cameron and Jon Patton.
Now, GWS are unwilling to consider any advances for a 19-year-old who is halfway through the initial mandatory two-year contract for draftees.
And Western Bulldogs are desperate to sign Boyd, as they were Patton prior to his serious knee injury.
That desperation is partly built on disgruntled captain Ryan Griffen, who Bulldogs president Peter Gordon rates as the most valuable player on the market since Gary Ablett joined Gold Coast in 2010.
But it is also an aggressive million-dollar play from a club in need of a key target like 104kg Boyd.
Gordon suggested on Monday a straight swap of Griffen for Boyd was “value for value”.
The Giants would disagree, if they were to entertain such a discussion.
GWS remain steadfast that Boyd will be playing for them in 2015.
No ifs, buts or maybes.
The Giants insist there is zero chance he will become the highest-profile player to leave an AFL club after one season since Nathan Buckley’s 1993 stint with the Brisbane Bears.
GWS chief executive David Matthews rubbished the notion that Boyd could be part of a deal for gun midfielder Griffen, who has a year to run on his contract and requested a trade to the Giants last week.
“We have been clear with them that despite any speculation or interest, Tom Boyd will not be traded under any circumstances,” GWS chief executive David Matthews said.
Gordon remained hopeful that “wiser heads will prevail at both ends of the transaction”.
“I reached out to GWS chairman Tony Shepherd last night and we’ll be talking,” Gordon said on the club’s website.
“Managed sensibly with mature heads, this can be a win for both clubs.
“Not managed in that way, neither club gets what it wants and we’ll be the only two of the 18 clubs that don’t benefit from that.”
Deals involving Collingwood’s Dayne Beams and Essendon ruckman Paddy Ryder, who want to join Brisbane and Port Adelaide respectively, are yet to be completed.
Monday’s only trade was a major coup for Brisbane, who offloaded pick No.21 in exchange for Geelong’s Allen Christensen.
“We just had to help him as much as possible,” Cats football manager Neil Balme said of Christensen, who left for personal reasons.
Trade period concludes on Thursday.
GORDON HOT AND COLD ON GRIFFEN:
*Oct 9: “We are extremely disappointed at his approach and have no intention of indulging it”
*Oct 10: “An agreement is an agreement. It has legal effect and people ought to think seriously before they sign them”
*Oct 13: “There wouldn’t be a player, except maybe Gary Ablett, that’s changed clubs in the last couple of years that’s had the cachet and the value that Ryan Griffen has.”