There has been speculation that midfielder Sam Powell-Pepper could be part of a Fantasia deal, although it is unclear what precisely the Bombers would accept should the speedy forward request a move. As with Daniher, Fantasia is contracted for next year.
Adelaide are unlikely to be serious bidders for Fantasia, with Port having made virtually all the running. The Power’s co-captain Tom Jonas has a strong relationship with Fantasia, who is contracted for another two seasons with the Bombers.
The Swans can give up pick No.5 in exchange for Daniher as part of any trade. Tom Papley has indicated he wants to be traded to Carlton, which would potentially give up their first pick, No.9.
Essendon have not specified what they would seek for Daniher, but if the Swans gained that pick for Papley, Essendon would be in a position to request picks five and nine – a hefty price, but Daniher’s contract for next year means they can hold him.
Conversely, Daniher is a restricted free agent at the end of next year, and Essendon’s bargaining position is stronger this year than it will be in 2020 if they held him to his contract.
Meanwhile, Carlton sources expect that a deal will be struck with the Crows that sees Eddie Betts return to the Blues, in what shapes as an arrangement not dissimilar to Luke Hodge’s at Brisbane.
The major stumbling block to date has been Betts’ significant contract for 2020, which exceeds $500,000, and which the Blues had signalled they did not wish to pay in full next year.
But Betts would join the Blues on at least a two-year deal, even if he did not continue playing in his second season. Betts could be employed in an off-field role, working with Indigenous players and potentially the club’s next generation academy – or in development.
Adelaide’s lack of a coach makes it difficult for the Crows to acquire players, but is not an issue in this upcoming trade period, given their focus is on trading out players – Alex Keath and Hugh Greenwood wanting to cross to the Bulldogs and Gold Coast Suns respectively, while Betts appears bound for Carlton and Sam Jacobs will join the Giants as a free agent.
The future of Brad Crouch is yet to be locked in. The Crows believe he will be there next year, but there have been sounding-outs from his management to other clubs. But Crouch is contracted for 2020, when he will be a free agent.
Jake Niall is a Walkley award-winning sports journalist and chief AFL writer for The Age.