SYDNEY last night hoped their reputation for getting deals done would allow them to secure Kurt Tippett and prompt Adelaide to honour an understanding to deal the star forward to his club of choice.
Still basking in their premiership joy, the Swans edged Gold Coast and Brisbane to be Tippett’s preferred new home with a four-year contract industry sources estimate to be worth about $3.2 million. This is conditional on the Swans and Crows negotiating a trade, beginning tomorrow.
Tippett’s management confirmed an intriguing clause exists in the 104-game forward’s contract allowing him to get to the new club of his choice in a trade. When asked about the reported clause in Tippett’s last contract, that he could be traded to the club of his choice for a second-round draft pick, Peter Blucher of Velocity Sports said: ”There is an understanding between the parties, they would help get him to the club of his choice.”
But he added it was also recognised that arrangements had to be ”commercial” in the deal with the Crows. Adelaide, who were desperate to retain the 25-year-old three years ago, are understood to have agreed to a deal where it would receive a second- and possible third-round draft pick for Tippett.
There are suggestions the Crows would only follow through on this deal if Tippett returned home to a Queensland-based club. Industry speculation is that, whatever the arrangement or understanding between Tippett and the Crows, a deal would be done that involved Sydney’s first pick, No. 22, and a player, going to the Crows. Blucher urged the Crows to not be too demanding, as Tippett could yet ”walk” to the Suns in the pre-season draft.
Swans chief executive Andrew Ireland told The Sun-Herald that the deal between Tippett and the Crows was an understanding and was not contractually binding.
”We are certainly not aware of anything in his contract,” Ireland said. ”What we are conscious of [is that] apparently the club, when he re-signed, and he could have gone to the Gold Coast, at the end of that period … if he wanted to change they would look favourably upon it.
”His management, Kurt and his father are confident the commitment was given to wherever he wanted to go. All I can say is we have a reputation, when we traded for players in the past, for not being silly and to get the deal done.”
Greater Western Sydney and the Swans have a cost-of-living allowance that helps to retain players and ease living expenses, which traditionally have been higher in the Harbour City. This allowance equates to 9.8 per cent of total player payments, which this season meant an additional $862,000.
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