Welcome Welcome to Hawthorn: Josh Ward! Pick 7, 2021 National Draft.

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Simon Crawshay

Club Legend
Jun 4, 2016
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I have been a strong advocate for drafting taller mids but at pick 7 it seems a no brainer to draft this kid even at 181cm.

His elite endurance and skills alongside his inside / outside game will more than compensate for lack of height. If he turns into our version of Sam Walsh that would do nicely!

Would still like the club to draft some taller mids with later picks but not sure how many of that type are actually left in the draft?
 

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TylerDurden

Mischief. Mayhem. Soap
Mar 5, 2007
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I have been a strong advocate for drafting taller mids but at pick 7 it seems a no brainer to draft this kid even at 181cm.

His elite endurance and skills alongside his inside / outside game will more than compensate for lack of height. If he turns into our version of Sam Walsh that would do nicely!

Would still like the club to draft some taller mids with later picks but not sure how many of that type are actually left in the draft?
He's 183cm now.
 

Roger Rogerson

Norm Smith Medallist
Oct 9, 2006
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I don't recall much being said about his captaincy credentials; much of the hype was about how good a leader Hobbs was/would be.

Hold on, Capt Vic Metro, Capt NAB Team of the Year: what does that say about his presence, professionalism, discipline & work ethic?

He, clearly, has the respect of his peers and his coaches.


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Same his leadership qualities didn't ever seem to be highlighted much in his draft profiles. He is going to be a ripper. Super quick with his hands and finds the goals too.
 

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Judd2Sewell

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Aug 31, 2008
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Was he the best midfielder available at our pick? Yes. So the club doesn't perceive his height as an issue.

In hindsight (obviously before anyone has played) we are pretty vindicated in taking Ward over Johnson - who has slid and has been overlooked by two WA teams' selections. Overlooked by Richmond (who selected a HBF) who were crying out for a midfielder or two. Both Essendon and Sydney drafted midfielders over Johnson too.

I have a feeling Richmond take Ward if we didn't, and probably end up taking JVR with their second pick.
 

cryptor

Brownlow Medallist
May 11, 2008
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Way too much emphasis put on his height here.
Way too much emphasis put on height in the AFL in general. If a player has above average wingspan, shoulder joint range, and vertical leap then they could easily out reach taller opponents. Then there's other factors that effect a players effectiveness in the air like their ability to time a run and leap, one touch grabs, stamina for repeat efforts, etc.

Cyril was a better aerialist than most players taller than him.
 

PenAndPaperJosh

Norm Smith Medallist
Oct 17, 2011
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Was he the best midfielder available at our pick? Yes. So the club doesn't perceive his height as an issue.

In hindsight (obviously before anyone has played) we are pretty vindicated in taking Ward over Johnson - who has slid and has been overlooked by two WA teams' selections. Overlooked by Richmond (who selected a HBF) who were crying out for a midfielder or two. Both Essendon and Sydney drafted midfielders over Johnson too.

I have a feeling Richmond take Ward if we didn't, and probably end up taking JVR with their second pick.
Tbf Richmond were crying out for a KPD more so Gibcus makes sense for them anyway.
 

rogiebear93

Norm Smith Medallist
May 17, 2017
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Was he the best midfielder available at our pick? Yes. So the club doesn't perceive his height as an issue.

In hindsight (obviously before anyone has played) we are pretty vindicated in taking Ward over Johnson - who has slid and has been overlooked by two WA teams' selections. Overlooked by Richmond (who selected a HBF) who were crying out for a midfielder or two. Both Essendon and Sydney drafted midfielders over Johnson too.

I have a feeling Richmond take Ward if we didn't, and probably end up taking JVR with their second pick.
183cm definitely isn't short either, but if there's one quote I always liked it was from Boomer Harvey when he talked to other short draftees - "When the ball hits the deck, just remember that you're closer to it than the 190cm mids"
 

Simon Crawshay

Club Legend
Jun 4, 2016
2,129
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AFL Club
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Right?

"FFS I'm sick of these small 183cm midfielders we need someone with a bit more height, someone more like Petracca! He's... 186cm"
Petracca is only a little bit taller at 186cm relative to most of our mids who are around the 181 to 185cm mark (apart from Nash of course who is 197cm)

What sets Petracca apart is the fact he is 97kgs which makes him crazy strong (especially around his core) and almost impossible to tackle.

You can see Worps and JOM sometimes try to break tackles with a don't argue but at 85kg (ish) they sometimes (often) dont have the power to do get away with it.

Mind you Petracca is an athletic freak that he can be 97kg and still cover the amount of ground he does, that's not easy to do!
 

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