REVEALED: How the Hawks signed Chad Wingard
Hawthorn AFL List Manager Graham Wright has revealed the key selling point which brought Chad Wingard to the club.
Wingard’s deal to move to Victoria was officially completed early on the final day of the Trade period on Wednesday.
Port Adelaide sent Wingard and a future third-round selection to Hawthorn in return for the unlucky Ryan Burton, a first-round selection, a second-round selection and a future fourth-round selection.
Wright said the lure of playing on the big stage was central to securing the young star.
“Obviously your talking around your coaching, your development, playing at the MCG regularly and hopefully playing around big crowds,” Wright said.
“We’re hopeful we’re going to be able to play finals again in the next few years.
“From his (Wingard) perspective, I presume it’s around us being able to get him and certainly Clarko (Alastair Clarkson) being able to affect his footy and hopefully get him back to that All-Australian form that he had around 22, 23 years of age and winning a best and fairest around that age as well.
“He’s 25-years-old, so we felt he’s got a lot of good footy ahead of him and he’s able to play midfield, able to go forward and I certainly think the new environment will be good for him, hopefully he can be a good player for us for a number of years.”
After being taken at pick six in the 2011 AFL Draft, Wingard only kicked 22 goals this season, two less than last year and a far cry from the 40+ goals he kicked in 2013-2015.
Wright also acknowledged that Burton was unlucky to be traded despite having a number of years remaining on his contract.
“It would have come out of the blue for him,” Wright said.
“I think all our players are told at the end of the season to make sure you’ve got your power of attorney with your manager and then the manager’s reminded before that as well.
“He wouldn’t have expected his name would come up.
“It certainly took Ryan by surprise, it’s a difficult situation when you’ve got a 21-year-old overseas dealing with that, but commercially in the end I think it’s a really good deal for him.”
Listen to the full interview below: