Another year gone, and another successful Trade Period – spearheaded by Head of List Management James Gallagher – in the books.

The Saints pumped up their midfield through the signing of restricted free agent Brad Crouch, added excitement into attack with Jack Higgins and solidified their key position forward depth after snapping up ex-Bomber Shaun McKernan as a delisted free agent.

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St Kilda crucially held onto its first-round selection, moving just four spots down the order (pick No. 17 to pick No. 21) in securing Higgins' services.

Speedy Saint Nicholas Hind was the only player to find a new home during the Trade Period, returning to Essendon to gain more opportunities at senior level.

See this year's ins and outs, current hand heading into the 2020 AFL Draft and words from Head of List Management James Gallagher about our three newest recruits.

The ins and outs

  Brad Crouch (restricted free agent via Adelaide) Pick No. 17 (Richmond)
  Shaun McKernan (delisted free agent via Essendon) 2021 future second-round selection (Richmond)
  Jack Higgins (Richmond) Nicholas Hind (Essendon)
  Pick No. 21 (Richmond) Pick No. 77 (Essendon)
  2021 future fourth-round selection (Richmond)  
  Pick No. 67 (Essendon)  
  Pick No. 74 (Essendon)  

2020 NAB AFL Draft picks: 21, 64, 67, 74, 93 

Brad Crouch

St Kilda traded... Nil
St Kilda received... Brad Crouch restricted free agent)

A ball-magnet with skill inside and outside, former Crow Brad Crouch is set to pack a sizeable punch as part of St Kilda's enhanced midfield brigade. The 26-year-old played 95 games for Adelaide, won the Malcolm Blight Medal in 2019 and was a part of the club's 2017 Grand Final side.

St Kilda picked up Crouch as a restricted free agent, with the Crows receiving a high second-round pick as compensation.

Words from James Gallagher:

“It’s a really exciting prospect for our club and supporters to have Brad commit to St Kilda.

"Having another high-quality midfielder join our ranks was a target for us heading into this year’s Trade Period, and we’re expecting him to have an immediate impact on our side.

“Brad’s a genuine competitor and his ability to win the footy and use it well will greatly complement our midfield.” 

Shaun McKernan

St Kilda traded... Nil
St Kilda received... Shaun McKernan (delisted free agent)

Shaun McKernan offers height, strong hands and the versatility to be a marking target up forward or a handy contributor in the ruck. The ex-Bomber was let go at the end of Season 2020 after 87 games to his name (54 at Essendon), before joining St Kilda as a delisted free agent.

Words from James Gallagher:

“We’re really pleased to have signed Shaun for next season.

“Our structure in the ruck and key forward roles, having Paddy, Max and Rowan all available, was a real cornerstone of our game plan this year.

"Shaun will provide us with the depth and flexibility we need to ensure that we are able to maintain that structure across the 2021 season.

“His experience will also be a great asset to assist in the growth of our young list.” 

Jack Higgins

St Kilda traded... pick No. 17, future second-round selection
St Kilda received... Jack Higgins, pick No. 21, future fourth-round selection

An excitement machine, a thrifty small forward/inside midfielder and a die-hard Sainter, Jack Higgins is ready to electrify the Saints' offensive alongside ex-Richmond teammate, Dan Butler. The 21-year-old registered 43 games for the yellow-and-black after being taken as a first-round selection in 2017.

Words from James Gallagher:

“It’s terrific for us to acquire Jack’s services and add another dynamic mid/forward to our list.

“He’s a player with incredible enthusiasm and we’re really excited to see what he can bring in his new colours along with Brad Crouch and Shaun McKernan.

"Jack has overcome significant challenges at such a young age and it’s a testament to his character for coming out the other side with that same passion.

“As Jack was under contract at Richmond before requesting a trade, it was incumbent on us to facilitate a trade that suited both parties.”

Nicholas Hind

St Kilda traded... Nicholas Hind, pick No. 77
St Kilda received... Pick No. 67 and 74

Nicholas Hind will continue his career as a Bomber after a deal was finalised minutes before the trade deadline.

St Kilda's fourth-round selection (currently pick No. 77) heads the Bombers' way along with Hind, while in exchange, the Saints received picks No. 67 and 74.

Hind played 21 games for St Kilda after being drafted with pick No. 54 in the 2018 National Draft as a mature-age recruit.

Words from James Gallagher:

“We’re really sad to see Hindy go.

“Nick is at a stage in his career where security and playing opportunities are a real priority.

"For these reasons, he expressed to us a desire to pursue the next phase of his career at Essendon, and we were willing to support his wishes to do so.

"Hindy’s a wonderful bloke who has brought a lot to the club over the past couple of years.

“We wish him and Telisha all the best for this next chapter of their lives and career.”