Western Bulldogs list manager Sam Power has addressed the increasing intrigue surrounding an out-of-contract Western Bulldogs ruckman.
After suffering elimination from finals contention in Round 24, the Dogs’ focus has well and truly shifted to list management as this year’s player movement space heats up.
Power was featured on this week’s episode of Gettable, as he was inquisitioned about all things regarding the Bulldogs’ list, and in particular about ruckman Jordon Sweet.
Sweet, who hails from South Australia but has deep-seated Bulldogs ties, remains without a contract at the Kennel for next season.
Quizzed on whether there’s currently a deal on the table for Sweet at the Bulldogs beyond this year, Power said there was; raising concerns about Sweet’s long-term commitment after managing just 11 games throughout his career to date.
“Yeah, there is (a deal on the table),” Power started. “We’ve had a deal on the table for Jordon for the majority of the year.
“He’s had a really good year, [he’s been] really consistent year at VFL level, he’s really improved his game, Jordon, which is a good credit to him and the work he’s put in.
“It’s probably just unfortunate he’s sitting behind a very good ruckman [who was] named All Australian ruckman last week, and Tim (English) played every game this year, which made it hard for Jordon, but we really want to keep Jordon.
“We see him as having a bright future, so hopefully we’re able to get something done, but clearly there’s generally a bit of movement from a ruck perspective across the last few years (during the player movement space) and it seems like there may be again this year, but from our end, our priority is to keep Jordon.
“We can see the bright future that he has.”
Asked whether Sweet has given the Bulldogs any indication on which way he might be leaning contract-wise, Power declared there hasn’t been a lot of communication as yet.
“He hasn’t, no,” continued Power. “He really enjoys the club, he loves the club, his old man was a Bulldogs supporter, so there was always this connection to the Bulldogs. [He] really enjoys it, [he] can see that he’s improved and the development’s been really good for him.
“I think, at the moment, where it sits is that VFL finals are going on, and it’s really just [about] allowing him to play VFL finals, put his best foot forward and hopefully take Footscray as far as they can go.”
Power detailed the Bulldogs’ list strategy going into this off-season, boasting the club’s flexibility as it looks to construct a blueprint to re-enter the finals picture next year.
“We’re open to being active (this off-season) [and] we’ve got a lot of flexibility at the moment with list spots and what we’ll be able to do, but we’ve got a really open mind as well as to whether that’s through the trade period or through the draft,” Power said.
“So, going into every acquisition period you want to improve the list and get better, but we won’t go out and bring a lot of players in just for the sake of doing it at the same time.
“It’ll be very targeted, which we have been over a period of time now, and pretty balanced as well as to whether that’s through trade period or the draft.”
This year’s exchange period officially opens on October 9, with the first night of the National Draft set for November 20.