Hawthorn star Sam Mitchell says the lure of potentially being regarded as the greatest AFL team of all-time will continue to drive the Hawks.
A day after Hawthorn claimed a historic third premiership in a row, Mitchell was asked if he felt Alastair Clarkson’s side had surpassed the great teams of past eras with their fourth grand final win in eight years.
“The fact that it’s still a question makes you want to go again for me personally but it’s not something that we’ve spoken about as a group,” Mitchell said.
“But I certainly want to be thought of in those lines.”
The Hawks were presented to a crowd of around 12,000 fans at Glenferrie Oval on Sunday, along with their three most recent premiership cups.
The dust has barely settled following the 2015 premiership decider but, as with all great teams, the focus quickly turns to how long that dominance will continue.
“I haven’t really thought too much about next year, to be honest,” Mitchell said.
“But everyone asks ‘Which is your favourite premiership?’ And my answer is always ‘The next one’.
“So next year is certainly what I’m aiming for as an individual but as a group we haven’t sat down together and Clarko hasn’t spoken about (winning next year’s flag).
“But we will look at what the future holds for us and I’m sure it’s going to be more silverware.”
It remains to be seen whether veterans Brian Lake or David Hale will be part of that drive for a fourth flag.
Lake is keen to play on but will turn 34 before the start of next season while Hale is mulling retirement.
“Just to leave it those guys, I think,” Mitchell said.
“I read an article a while ago about who’s going to retire and who’s not … I think let them do it in the right way. If they decide to retire or if they decide to go on in the game then fantastic.
“Whatever happens in the future happens – we can’t worry about that now.”