The Saints went into the 2018 NAB AFL Trade Period with four clear goals:
- Add an elite midfielder;
- Add forward-line speed and pressure;
- Improve their standing in the 2018 Draft; and
- Hold onto the coveted pick No. 4.
And although Dylan Shiel couldn't be enticed to call Moorabbin home next year, the Saints nevertheless achieved each of their pre-determined goals.
PODCAST: Lethlean says Saints 'well placed'
After a lacklustre Season 2018, many of the red, white and black faithful were calling for change, and it’s already come in spades.
In a summer clean-out that’s been as brutal as we’ve seen at the Saints in years, a total of nine players will not be at the club next year, with seven delistings, one trade and one retirement.
That number comprised a fifth of the entire 2018 list, as Sam Gilbert, Maverick Weller, Nathan Wright, Darren Minchington, Hugh Goddard, Nathan Freeman and Ray Connellan were delisted.
Koby Stevens was forced into retirement earlier in the year after a bout of concussions, while Tom Hickey was traded to the West Coast Eagles.
IN: Pick 39, WCE 4th Round Pick (2019)
OUT: Tom Hickey, Pick 60, STK 4th Round Pick (2019)
Big man Tom Hickey is headed west after the Saints completed their first deal of the Trade Period on Day 3.
READ: Hickey departs Saints
In return, the Saints gained a 2nd Round draft selection in Pick 39, bridging the gap between their 1st Round selection (Pick 4) and their next (Pick 65).
Hickey played 13 games in 2018, and 67 in total for the Saints, after crossing from the Gold Coast Suns at the end of 2012.
“We thank Tom for his contribution to St Kilda over the past six years,” Head of List Management James Gallagher said.
“We understand his desire to seek other opportunities given the number of ruckmen we have on our list and wish him well for the future."
IN: Dan Hannebery, Pick 28
OUT: Pick 39, STK 2nd Round Pick (2019)
In the club’s biggest coup of the Trade Period, homecoming Sydney Swans star Dan Hannebery signed a deal on Day 5 that will see him in the red, white and black until at least the end of 2023.
The Swans also threw in Pick 28, while St Kilda gave up their newly-acquired Pick 39 (part of the Hickey trade) and next year’s 2nd Round Pick.
Hannebery’s five-year commitment to the Saints comes after 208 games for the Swans, including the 2012 premiership.
The gun midfielder was selected by the Swans with pick 30 in the 2008 AFL Draft and was crowned the NAB AFL Rising Star in 2010, before being named as an All Australian in 2013, 2015 and 2016.
READ: Hannebery joins St Kilda
“Dan’s a highly-accomplished midfielder who will be a significant addition to our group,” General Manager of Football Simon Lethlean said.
“He will help the likes of Jack Steven, Seb Ross and Jack Steele enormously, but we’re also excited about what he can teach Jade Gresham and Hunter Clark.
PODCAST: Gallagher on Hannebery
“He is a respected leader and someone with a lot of finals experience, which will be invaluable for our young group on and off the field.
“I know he is eager to get started, and we’re equally eager to see the impact he can have in 2019 and beyond.”
IN: Dean Kent
OUT: Pick 65
Forward-line speed was high on St Kilda’s wish list after 2018 revealed a gap in that area, so when Melbourne speedster Dean Kent nominated the Saints as his preferred destination, a solution was in sight.
On the same afternoon that the Hannebery deal was completed, the Saints secured Kent’s signature at a steal for Pick 65.
The 24-year-old has 63 games under his belt, and List Manager James Gallagher said Kent would add speed and power to the Saints’ midfield and forward line.
“Dean’s biggest strengths are his speed, power and penetrating kick,” he said.
"These are attributes we’ve identified as pretty important for our group going forward and we’re excited to secure his services.
“He’s proven to be a dangerous forward during his career to this point, and we also think that he can play a role for us higher up the ground and through the midfield to add a different element to our current group.”
IN: Pick 36, Pick 46
OUT: Pick 28
On the final day of the Trade Period, the Saints’ draft outlook presented a noticeable gap between Pick 28 and Pick 67, blocking them out of the 3rd Round of selections.
It’s well-storied that the 2018 Draft pool runs deep, so St Kilda went about adding a 3rd Round selection to strengthen their overall draft position.
The Saints gained Picks 36 and 46 from the Demons in exchange for Pick 28 (acquired as part of the Dan Hannebery deal).
List Manager James Gallagher said the Saints had sought out the trade to improve its spread of draft picks.
“This deal significantly improves the position of our third selection, which has moved from the back end of the draft to pick No. 46,” Gallagher said.
“A lot has been said of the top-end talent in this year’s draft, but we are also impressed by the depth and evenness of players available in second and third rounds.”
Dan Hannebery (Sydney)
Dean Kent (Melbourne Demons)
2019 4th Round Pick (West Coast)
Tom Hickey (West Coast)
2019 2nd Round Pick (Sydney)
2019 4th Round Pick (West Coast)
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