Hawthorn have made a sensational entry into the AFL trade period with a reported play for Essendon utility Jake Carlisle that could leave the Bombers with five top-25 picks in this year’s draft.
Fairfax Media reports that the three-time reigning premiers are negotiating a three-way deal with the Bombers and North Melbourne that would see one of the most in-demand players of the off-season head to the AFL heavyweights.
The proposed deal would send Jed Anderson to the Kangaroos with an exchange of picks between the three clubs.
Carlisle, who issued his intent to leave Essendon at season’s end, had nominated St Kilda as his preferred AFL destination.
On Thursday, the Bombers sealed a swap for Jake Melksham for Melbourne’s pick 25 in the national draft.
As it stands, Essendon have pick No.4, No.23 and No.25 in November’s draft and under the mooted Carlisle deal, could receive selections No.15 and No.18.
After Carlisle told the Bombers of his intentions to move to St Kilda, Essendon reportedly asked the Saints for their first-round draft pick – No.5 – to seal the deal, something the Saints have baulked at to this point.
Hawthorn’s audacious bid for Carlisle is the latest in a string of off-season moves for key players at struggling clubs.
Melbourne defender James Frawley moved to the Hawks last season, with ruckman Ben McEvoy joining as part of a trade from St Kilda in 2013.
Jack Gunston (Adelaide) and Brian Lake (Western Bulldogs) also left clubs in the bottom third of the AFL ladder to join Alastair Clarkson’s side.