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The Trades – Day 1: Three confirmed deals plus a big fish

Tom Lynch fronts the media on Monday after officially becoming a Richmond player on a massive seven-year deal. Photo: RICHMOND FOOTBALL CLUB

The Trades – Day 1: Three confirmed deals plus a big fish

Ronny Lerner    

The 2018 AFL trade period has started with a bang with three deals confirmed and one big-name free agent finding a new home.

After three days of waiting, one of the most predictable player movements occurred on Monday as former Gold Coast co-captain Tom Lynch officially became a Richmond player.

The Suns opted against matching the massive offer Richmond made for the restricted free agent and as a result, the expansion club will receive pick No.3 at next month’s draft as compensation.

Gold Coast now has three picks in the top 20 – two, three and 19.

Lynch joins the Tigers on a massive seven-year deal reportedly worth more than $6 million.

With the game seemingly shifting back towards the traditional set up of two key targets in attack, as evidenced by West Coast’s premiership, the addition of Lynch up forward to help out Jack Riewoldt should ensure the Tigers stay right in premiership mode next season.

The 25-year-old hasn’t reached any great heights just yet in his career but in the right set-up, he could do just that.

He played 131 games and kicked 254 goals in his eight years with Gold Coast, including bags of eight and seven, while he also made the All-Australian team in 2016 and is a two-time best-and-fairest winner.

Premiership Eagle Scott Lycett was widely expected to join Port Adelaide as a free agent too, but West Coast have sprung a surprise by declaring they will consider matching the Power’s offer for the restricted free agent.

While Lynch was the headline act, three other players found new homes on Monday via trades.

Lincoln McCarthy earned the distinction of first trade for 2018 as the former Geelong speedster, along with picks 54 and 57, made his way to Brisbane in exchange for picks 42 and 60.

McCarthy is seen as the first piece in the puzzle of the Lions landing the bigger fish of Fremantle superstar Lachie Neale. The two are close mates and McCarthy could ultimately serve as the sweetener that gets the Neale deal over the line.

McCarthy’s seven seasons at Geelong were largely ruined by recurring foot injuries which restricted him to just 29 games.

But on the odd occasion when his body allowed him to grace the footy field, McCarthy proved that he could be a damaging small forward and has a couple of bags of three goals to his credit.

Brisbane coach Chris Fagan would be hoping that McCarthy could help take the focus off Charlie Cameron in attack.

Gold Coast was the recipient of a three-for-one deal that saw the Suns acquire Richmond pair Anthony Miles and Corey Ellis, as well as the Tigers’ future third-round pick, in exchange for their own future third-round pick.

Miles was widely regarded as extremely unlucky not to play more often for Richmond in the last couple of years. He dominated at VFL level, but so strong has the Tigers’ line-up been in the last two seasons he has only managed six games since 2016 – including just one this year – after being a regular fixture in the midfield in his first three years at Punt Road Oval.

He will provide much-needed strength and experience to the Suns’ on-ball division.

Meanwhile, the Cats used the pick 42 that they got from the Lions to acquire pre-listed Nathan Kreuger from Carlton. Kreuger is a 19-year-old key position player who played for South Adelaide in the SANFL this year.

With nine days remaining, the trade period is only just warming up.

Other big names to watch out for in the coming week and a bit are Dylan Shiel, Dan Hannebery, Chad Wingard, Jesse Hogan, Jared Polec, Steven May, Mitch McGovern and Rory Lobb, who has declared Fremantle as his preferred destination.

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