HOW CAN I WATCH THE AFL DRAFT?
The 2022 AFL national draft will be held across two days — Monday November 28 and Tuesday November 29 — with coverage beginning at 7pm (AEDT) both nights.
The draft will be broadcast live on Fox Footy (Channel 504) — the only place to watch the picks as they’re announced on TV — and streamed on Kayo Sports. Sarah Jones will host the coverage, with expert analysis from Kevin Sheehan, Mick Ablett, Leigh Montagna, Jonathan Brown and David Zita. You can also follow the AFL draft live on foxfooty.com.au, with analysis of every pick and every club, along with Fox Footy’s social media channels.
The 2022 national draft will be held at Marvel Stadium, with round one to be held on Monday night. Round two and onwards will also run at the same venue on Tuesday night.
Watch the first round of the 2022 AFL Draft on Fox Footy and Kayo from 7pm EDT on Monday November 28. New to Kayo? Start your free trial today >
LIVE BLOG: Follow night one of the AFL Draft here
DRAFT TRACKER: Every pick, every trade as they’re revealed
Jeremy Cameron’s advice for Cadman | 01:47
PHANTOM DRAFT: Our expert predicts every pick in the first round
TOP 50 RANKINGS: Fox Footy’s ranking of the best AFL Draft prospects, 1-50
LATE MAIL: The Monday latest ahead of the draft’s first round
HOW DOES THE AFL DRAFT WORK?
All 18 clubs earn draft picks, which are based on the reverse finishing order from the previous AFL season. These picks can be traded up to one year in advance, while some picks are also given out as compensation for departed free agents.
On draft night, the teams select in order, adding the best young or mature-aged players that aren’t already on AFL lists.
The only exceptions are when draft picks are traded on the night, as well as when bids on father-son and Academy players that are linked to certain clubs are made. Those clubs can then choose to match the bid made by their rival, using draft points, to acquire the player.
HOW DOES THE AFL DRAFT BIDDING SYSTEM WORK?
The AFL has created the Draft Value Index, which is a system that allocates a points value to the first 73 picks in the draft. It was introduced after Sydney snared star Academy prospect Isaac Heeney for Pick 18 in 2014.
The points system essentially means clubs that have existing links to draftees, either via Academy or father-son eligibility, must ‘pay’ to secure these players via multiple picks. It also gives rival clubs the chance to bid on these players.
For clubs to secure their linked talent, they must pay and match a bid by using the draft picks/points they already hold.
Let’s use Lions father-son star Will Ashcroft as an example for this year’s draft …
— North Melbourne bids on Will Ashcroft at Pick 2 (2517 points), meaning the Brisbane Lions must now match the Kangaroos’ bid using the draft picks they already hold if they want their father-son gun (they definitely want him).
— The Lions firstly receive some assistance via a 20 per cent discount, which is automatically given to clubs for father-son bids inside the first round. It means the Lions must now find 2014 points to secure Ashcroft.
— To match the bid, the Lions use Pick 34 (542 points), Pick 35 (522), 36 (502), 38 (465), equating to 2031 points, which is enough to cover the Kangaroos’ bid.
— As the value of those four picks is more than the discounted Pick 2 value, the Lions have 17 points left over. This means the last selection the Lions used to match the Ashcroft bid (Pick 38) turns into a pick closest to the 17-point value, which is Pick 73. That selection, though, moves up to Pick 70 as the Lions’ four picks disappeared but every other team in the order moves down one spot due to the Lions’ Pick 2 bid.
— The bid is successfully matched and Ashcroft is officially selected by the Lions at Pick 2, but it costs the club their first four picks.
— Despite missing out on Ashcroft, the Kangaroos retain their place in the draft order and select again at Pick 3, with the predetermined draft order continuing from there but adjusted after the Lions’ loss of selections.
If any club doesn’t have enough points at the time, they can enter draft deficit, which means their hand at the following year’s draft will take a hit. If the club opts not to match, the player goes to the club who made the bid.
WHEN WILL SOME BIDS COME ON SOME OF THE TOP ACADEMY/FATHER-SON PROSPECTS?
If it isn’t the Giants at Pick 1, it’ll be the Kangaroos at Pick 2 that force the Brisbane Lions to pay up for Will Ashcroft. The Lions could then return to the action quickly, with fellow father-son gun Jaspa Fletcher — the son of Adrian Fletcher — expected to attract a bid from Pick 11 (Carlton) onwards.
Rival clubs also wouldn’t be surprised if key defender Max Michalanney (Adelaide father-son) and forward-midfielder Harry Rowston (Giants Academy) receive attention from rivals late in the first round, with all eyes on the Magpies and Swans to see if they bid on any of the two players.
Davey bros commit to Dons via father/son | 00:36
There’s a sense Essendon might get its draft wish and be able to select two players in the open draft before a bid comes on father-son prospect Alwyn Davey Jnr, who’s now expected to attract rival club attention in the middle stages of the second round. North Melbourne will take three players in the open draft and use their fourth selection to match a bid on Cooper Harvey, the son of dual premiership Kangaroo and VFL/AFL games record-holder Brent Harvey.
Essendon will be hopeful NGA prospect Anthony Munkara doesn’t attract a bid until later in the draft, or they can even pick him up as a Category B rookie.
Versatile Gippsland Power prospect Cooper Vickery, who’s tied to Hawthorn’s NGA, could also be around the Pick 40 mark, while the Demons are closely monitoring the interest in their NGA prospect Finn Emile-Brennan – a damaging wingman/half-back player with lovely kick.
Other players that should come into consideration after Pick 40 – possibly in the rookie draft – include Jayden Davey (Essendon father-son), Shadeau Brain (Brisbane Academy), Josh Draper (Fremantle NGA), Jasper Scaife (Fremantle NGA), Conrad Williams (Fremantle NGA), Ted Clohesy (Geelong NGA), Nick Madden (Giants Academy), Nathan Barkla (Port Adelaide NGA) and Tyrell Dewar (West Coast NGA).
WHO ARE THE BEST PLAYERS IN THE 2022 AFL DRAFT CLASS?
He mightn’t go at Pick 1, but Brisbane Lions father-son gun Will Ashcroft is at the top of many club draft boards this year. A class act who oozes professionalism both on and off the field, Ashcroft is the complete midfielder as he’s just as adept at bursting away from stoppages as he is winning the ball on the inside. He barely put a foot wrong during his draft year, winning almost every award possible – Larke Medal, NAB League premiership captain, best on ground in the NAB League grand final and NAB League Team of the Year captain – and dominating at every level, including a couple VFL games for Brisbane.
Jeremy Cameron-like key forward Aaron Cadman is widely expected to be taken by the Giants with the first pick of the draft, though. He has an elite aerobic capacity, workrate and high leap, meaning he beats defenders in the air, one-on-one and on the run – at any stage of the game. Put simply, the 194cm prospect is a nightmare match-up for opposition sides.
Sandringham’s Harry Sheezel is the best pure hybrid forward prospect and looms as a big fan favourite at AFL level. Highly skilled, speedy, agile and clean with ball in hand, Sheezel is so damaging forward of centre, either kicking goals himself or setting teammates in a better position to score up.
Oakleigh Chargers duo George Wardlaw and Elijah Tsatas are different types of on-ballers — Wardlaw a Clayton Oliver-like inside mid and Tsatas an explosive type in the Chad Warner mould — but are in the top five of many club draft boards. Wardlaw should land at the Kangaroos with Sheezel, while Tsatas is one of six players that could go anywhere between Picks 5 and 10.
Tsatas, versatile big-bodied on-baller Mattaes Phillipou, explosive forward-midfielder Bailey Humphrey, balanced on-baller Cam Mackenzie, top-10 bolter Reuben Ginbey and Joel Selwood clone Jhye Clark have all been linked to those top-10 selections.
Ginbey is expected to be one of the first WA-based prospects taken on Monday night, with Jedd Busslinger — the best key defender in the draft class — also in the mix.
Outside runners Oliver Hollands (Murray Bushrangers) and Jaspa Fletcher (Brisbane Lions father-son eligible) are also expected to attract first-round attention.
The aforementioned 13 players have all been invited for the first night of the draft, which is a strong indication clubs will be taking them in the opening round.
Other prospects not invited to Marvel Stadium but are still being tipped to be taken in the first round include key forward Matt Jefferson, and exciting 194cm utility Ed Allan, while powerful WA midfielder Elijah Hewett and medium forward Brayden George will also be in the mix.
Here is foxfooty.com.au’s top 50 draft power rankings … and our full first-round phantom draft.
DOOMSDAY SCENARIOS: What every club does and doesn’t want at the draft
OFF-SEASON CENTRAL: Every trade, signing, delisting and rookie move by every AFL club
BIDDING EXPLAINED: How the father-son and Academy bid system works
LATEST WHISPERS: Dons offered three first-round picks in mega deal; Swans ‘gonna trade’
WHAT ARE THE FIVE BIG AFL DRAFT TALKING POINTS?
Do the Bombers boast the pick to swing draft plans?
It’s widely believed the first four picks will be used to snare Aaron Cadman (GWS Giants), Will Ashcroft (Brisbane Lions), Harry Sheezel (North Melbourne) and George Wardlaw (North Melbourne). Then it gets murky from Essendon’s selection, with no consensus among rival recruiters on whether the Bombers will opt for Elijah Tsatas or Mattaes Phillipou — the two players they’ve been weighing up taking for weeks. However most industry sources believe Gold Coast is likely to select Bailey Humphrey after Essendon’s selection. If the Bombers opt for Tsatas, the Hawks will strongly consider drafting Phillipou, who they flew over from South Australia recently to meet senior club figures. However it’s understood Hawthorn is also warming to taking Cam Mackenzie, who has ties to St Kilda through its Next Generation Academy. If Essendon chooses Phillipou, there’s a theory Tsatas — considered by many clubs as a top-three player in this draft class — could slide all the way to St Kilda’s pick due to Hawthorn’s interest in Mackenzie, Geelong’s strong link to local midfielder Jhye Clark and West Coast’s desire snare WA on-baller Reuben Ginbey with its top-10 pick. But if the Bombers and Hawks pass on Tsatas, the Cats will be mightily tempted to select the Oakleigh Chargers midfielder. Should Geelong stick with Clark and the Saints steal Tsatas — an elite talent and match-winner — at Pick 10, Ross Lyon will be doing cartwheels.
Who and when will draft Elijah Hewett?
He has the self-belied and on-field talent to be a special player, if it clicks, at AFL level. But just where WA on-baller Hewett is taken in the upcoming draft remains a mystery. After a slow start to his 2022 campaign, Hewett announced himself as one of Western Australia’s top prospects with a terrific carnival showing against Vic Metro, showing off breathtaking power at the coalface and finishing with a game-high 29 disposals, 11 inside 50s, six marks, five clearances and two telling goals. He also played nine WAFL league matches for Swan Districts this year, averaging 14 disposals and kicking one goal in each of his last four games. The explosive and agile prospect, however, is polarising AFL clubs, with one recruiter declaring his draft range was between Picks 12 and 40. Hewett recently spoke with St Kilda coach Ross Lyon, with the Saints (Pick 9) doing work on him. He’s also been linked to the Eagles, Crows, Blues and Giants. On talent alone, Hewett is a first-round pick, but some recruiters wouldn’t be surprised if he slipped to the back-end of the second round.
Who and when will draft Henry Hustwaite?
Like Hewett, Hustwaite is a puzzling prospect for AFL clubs. Recruiters are quick to point out Hustwaite’s deficiencies, such as his questionable impact on games, lack of speed, inconsistent kicking efficiency and uncertainty around his best position. But there’s also so much upside with Hustwaite – an agile, smooth-moving, one-touch stoppage player with elite hands in traffic that has drawn comparisons to Collingwood cham pion Scott Pendlebury. Hustwaite would love to settle in at AFL level as a midfielder, but he also has the size (194cm, 84kg) to become a third tall defender — although clubs remain unconvinced whether he has the intercept and one-on-one defensive capabilities to play that role. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see Hustwaite go as early as the first round or even slide to the back-end of the second round.
How much live trading will there be?
Probably not much in the top 10 — although some teams will try their best at the last minute — but recruiters are on alert for lots of activity from Pick 11 onwards. Rival teams are aware of Sydney’s willingness to strike a trade using one or both of their first-round selections (Picks 14 and 17) as it has a desire to boost its 2023 draft hand. The consensus is Carlton, which has been transparent about its desire to split its first selection (Pick 10) and move down the order, would be the club most likely to strike a deal with the Swans, who’d probably get a future selection back as part of any swap. An aggressive Melbourne has also been proactive in pick swap suggestions, most notably offering two future first-rounders to three rivals in an attempt to get into the top five of this year’s drafts — attempts that were quashed by the Roos, Bombers and Suns. There’s speculation the Demons could now trade up a spot or two in this year’s draft to get their hands on Ed Allan or Matt Jefferson before the Eagles, while they’re also eyeing Pick 19 — the first selection of the second round, which is a valuable pick given the two-night draft format gives the club holding that selection an ideal opportunity to pounce on a slider. As well as two future firsts, the Dees are also loaded with two 2023 second-round selections heading into next week’s draft. North Melbourne, Western Bulldogs and the Giants also have multiple future first-round selections. Pick 19 in this year’s draft currently sits with the Giants, who also hold Picks 15 and 18 in the first round. Multiple sources have suggested at least one of those three selections will be traded to another team during the draft. Multiple club recruiters are always wary of the Adelaide Crows and whether they could use their future second-round pick (tied to North Melbourne’s 2023 finishing position) to get back into the early stages of this year’s draft.
Is the ‘go-home factor’ as prominent as ever?
For many teams, yes. In fact, some clubs are not even entertaining certain prospects located outside of their state — a reality that surely threatens the integrity and worth of the draft. It comes after Jason Horne-Francis lasted just one year at North Melbourne, with the South Australian teen traded home to SA and joining Port Adelaide after a tough 2022 at the Roos. Melbourne’s prized Pick 3 from the 2019 draft, Luke Jackson, also recently returned home to WA to play for Fremantle. Of the deals done in the 2022 trade period, more than a dozen involved players heading back to their home state or club, including Izak Rankine, Tanner Bruhn and Bobby Hill. Giants footy boss Jason McCartney last month spoke about the struggles club like GWS have when drafting players, given the looming go-home factor. McCartney told Trade Radio: “When you’re an interstate club and the draft board is predominantly, at the top end, looks like it’s littered with Victorian talent, you’ve got some risk there. If there’s apprehension about a player right from the word go about making the move interstate and they may go home, you just can’t take the risk unfortunately … Everyone can throw up the players and we love all the players that have been talked about but there’s some we can’t pick. That’s the reality.” Most notably this year top-five candidate Elijah Tsatas has said publicly he would “definitely prefer to stay in Melbourne”. The West Coast Eagles, who sit this year with their biggest draft bounty in more than a decade, are already interested in a number of WA hopefuls and opted to slide down the draft order to double their chances in the first round.
WHAT IS THE AFL DRAFT 2022 ORDER?
See below, featuring the pick, club and then the draft points attached to the selection.
Note: With live-trading, the draft order is subject to change.
1. GWS Giants (from North Melbourne)
2. North Melbourne (from West Coast Eagles)
3. North Melbourne (from GWS Giants)
5. Gold Coast Suns (from Adelaide Crows)
7. Geelong Cats (from Gold Coast Suns)
8. West Coast Eagles (from Port Adelaide)
9. St Kilda
11. Western Bulldogs
12. West Coast Eagles (from GWS Giants)
13. Melbourne (from Fremantle)
14. Sydney Swans (tied to Melbourne)
15. GWS Giants (from Brisbane)
17. Sydney Swans
18. GWS Giants (from Geelong)
19. GWS Giants (from Richmond)
20. West Coast Eagles
21. Western Bulldogs (from Brisbane Lions)
23. North Melbourne (from Adelaide Crows)
25. Collingwood (from Geelong Cats)
26. West Coast Eagles (tied to Port Adelaide)
27. Collingwood (from Melbourne)
28. St Kilda
30. Fremantle (from Western Bulldogs)
31. GWS Giants (from Richmond)
32. St Kilda (tied to Fremantle from Gold Coast Suns)
33. Port Adelaide (from Melbourne)
34. Brisbane Lions
35. Brisbane Lions (compensation pick)
36. Brisbane Lions (from Gold Coast Suns)
37. Melbourne (from Essendon)
38. Brisbane Lions (from Geelong Cats)
39. Western Bulldogs (tied to North Melbourne)
40. North Melbourne (from West Coast Eagles)
41. Hawthorn (from Collingwood)
42. Sydney Swans (from Essendon)
43. Fremantle (from North Melbourne)
44. Fremantle (from Melbourne)
45. Gold Coast Suns
46. Adelaide (from Gold Coast Suns)
47. St Kilda
48. Hawthorn (from Brisbane Lions)
49. Carlton (compensation pick)
50. Hawthorn (from Collingwood)
51. Collingwood (tied to Richmond)
52. Hawthorn (tied to Fremantle)
53. Richmond (from GWS)
54. Essendon (from Melbourne)
55. Brisbane Lions (from Geelong Cats)
56. Adelaide Crows (from Brisbane Lions)
57. GWS Giants (from Port Adelaide)
58. Geelong Cats
59. Adelaide Crows (from North Melbourne)
60. Port Adelaide (tied to West Coast Eagles)
62. Richmond (from GWS Giants)
63. Hawthorn (tied to Gold Coast Suns)
64. Carlton (tied to Port Adelaide)
65. Fremantle (from Melbourne)
66. Essendon (from Carlton)
67. Western Bulldogs
68. Gold Coast Suns (tied to Fremantle)
69. Sydney Swans
70. Fremantle (tied to Geelong Cats)
71. West Coast Eagles
72. Port Adelaide
73. St Kilda
75. Western Bulldogs
80. Sydney Swans
81. St Kilda
2023 FUTURE DRAFT PICKS TRADED (pre-draft)
IN: Round 2 (tied to North Melbourne), Round 3 (tied to Collingwood)
OUT: Round 3 & Round 4 (both to Gold Coast Suns)
IN: Round 2 (tied to Geelong Cats), Round 3 (tied to Melbourne), Round 3 (tied to Western Bulldogs), Round 4 (tied to Fremantle)
OUT: Round 1 & Round 2 (both to Western Bulldogs), Round 4 (to Hawthorn)
IN: Round 4 (tied to Essendon)
OUT: Round 3 (to Fremantle)
OUT: Round 2 (to GWS Giants), Round 3 (to Adelaide Crows)
IN: Round 4 (tied to Sydney Swans)
OUT: Round 4 (to Carlton)
IN: Round 2 & Round 3 (tied to North Melbourne), Round 3 (tied to Carlton), Round 4 (tied to North Melbourne)
OUT: Round 1 & Round 2 (both to Melbourne), Round 3 (to North Melbourne), Round 4 (to Gold Coast Suns)
OUT: Round 2 & Round 4 (both to Brisbane Lions), Round 3 (to Gold Coast Suns)
Gold Coast Suns
IN: Round 2 (tied to GWS Giants), Round 3 (tied to Adelaide Crows), Round 3 (tied to Geelong Cats), Round 4 (tied to Adelaide Crows), Round 4 (tied to St Kilda)
IN: Round 1 (tied to Richmond)
OUT: Round 2 (to Brisbane Lions)
IN: Round 2 (tied to Western Bulldogs), Round 4 (tied to Brisbane Lions)
OUT: Round 4 (to Fremantle)
IN: Round 1 & Round 2 (both tied to Fremantle)
OUT: Round 3 & Round 4 (both to Western Bulldogs)
IN: Round 1 (tied to Port Adelaide), Round 4 (tied to Hawthorn)
OUT: Round 2 & Round 3 (both to Fremantle), Round 2 (to Adelaide Crows), Round 4 (to Fremantle)
IN: Round 2 (tied to Collingwood), Round 3 (tied to Fremantle)
OUT: Round 1 (to North Melbourne), Round 2 & Round 3 (both to West Coast Eagles)
OUT: Round 1 (to GWS Giants)
OUT: Round 4 (to Gold Coast Suns)
OUT: Round 4 (to Essendon)
West Coast Eagles
IN: Round 2, Round 3 (both tied to Port Adelaide)
IN: Round 1, Round 2 (both tied to Brisbane Lions), Round 4 (tied to Melbourne), Round 4 (tied to Geelong Cats)
OUT: Round 2 (to Fremantle), Round 3 (to Brisbane Lions)
AFL DRAFT VALUE INDEX
Pick — Point value — Points needed to match with discount
1 — 3000 — 2400
2 — 2517 — 2014
3 — 2234 — 1787
4 — 2034 — 1627
5 — 1878 — 1503
6 — 1751 — 1401
7 — 1644 — 1315
8 — 1551 — 1241
9 — 1469 — 1175
10 — 1395 — 1116
11 — 1329 — 1063
12 — 1268 — 1014
13 — 1212 — 970
14 — 1161 — 929
15 — 1112 — 890
16 — 1067 — 854
17 — 1025 — 788
18 — 985 — 788
19 — 948 — 751
20 — 912 — 715
21 — 878 — 681
22 — 845 — 657
23 — 815 — 618
24 — 785 — 588
25 — 756 — 559
26 — 729 — 532
27 — 703 — 506
28 — 677 — 480
29 — 653 — 456
30 — 629 — 432
31 — 606 — 409
32 — 584 — 387
33 — 563 — 366
34 — 542 — 345
35 — 522 — 325
36 — 502 — 305
37 — 483 — 286
38 — 465 — 268
39 — 446 — 249
40 — 429 — 232
41 — 412 — 215
42 — 395 — 198
43 — 378 — 181
44 — 362 — 165
45 — 347 — 150
46 — 331 — 134
47 — 316 — 119
48 — 302 — 105
49 — 287 — 90
50 — 273 — 76
51 — 259 — 62
52 — 246 — 49
53 — 233 — 36
54 — 220 — 23
55 — 207 — 10
56 — 194
57 — 182
58 — 170
59 — 158
60 — 146
61 — 135
62 — 123
63 — 112
64 — 101
65 — 90
66 — 80
67 — 69
68 — 59
69 — 49
70 — 39
71 — 29
72 — 19
73 — 9
Picks 74 and onwards — 0
Story Credit: foxsports.com.au