Adelaide and Port Adelaide an set for an AFL draft pick showdown.The lead-up to the AFL draft will be Showdown 45-and-a-half, with the two Adelaide clubs out to gazump each other.
The next chapter of the fierce rivalry between Adelaide and Port Adelaide will be the two clubs scrambling to improve their first-round picks ahead of the November 22-23 draft in Melbourne.
While the trade period ended on Wednesday, for the first time clubs can continue swapping their draft selections until a week before the event.
They can also live trade picks during the draft meeting.
Trading of selections is particularly important for the the Crows and Power because there are massive wraps on the quality of this year’s crop of SA players.
Locals Jack Lukosius, Izak Rankine and Connor Rozee all appear certain top-10 picks.
The Power currently hold the upper hand – they have pick No.5 and Adelaide’s first selection is No.9.
Port have three first-round picks, also with 10 and 15, while the Crows similarly are in the neighbourhood at 13 and 16, as well as the start of round two at 21.
The obvious top target for the two Adelaide clubs will be Gold Coast, who hold the second and third selections.
Carlton are at No.1 and while their list manager Stephen Silvagni has said several times they are unlikely to trade the prized selection, he will not rule it out.
“We said through the trade period that if someone came with something that was overs, we’d certainly look at it … you never know what may happen,” Silvagni said on Wednesday.
Port’s trade period looked in trouble when it became clear that Chad Wingard and Jared Polec wanted to leave.
But Polec’s move to North Melbourne scored them the No.11 pick and they traded with Brisbane for the No.5 selection.
Hawthorn also traded Ryan Burton to the Power in the Wingard deal and Port picked up ruckman Scott Lycett under free agency, as well as Brisbane’s Sam Mayes..
Overall, Port’s trade period had more wins than losses.
It is in sharp contrast to how Port attacked last year’s off-season frenzy, when they recruited Tom Rockliff, Steven Motlop and Jack Watts.
Carlton are almost certain to recruit Geelong Falcons midfielder Sam Walsh with pick No.1, while St Kilda have the No.4 pick.
Port list manager Jason Cripps fired a very public shot across the Suns’ bow earlier this week, should Gold Coast think of using their early picks on SA players.
“If Lukosius and Rankine end up going to Gold Coast … we’re probably pretty happy to try to get them back in a few years’ time,” Cripps said.