Hardwick has weighed into the free agency debate, saying the model needed to be fixed.
Richmond coach Damien Hardwick has weighed into the free agency debate, saying the AFL should look to use the model applied by the NFL in the United States.
Hardwick said free agency itself wasn’t an issue, but he believes the AFL’s model needs to be worked on.
“Free agency to mine is a good mechanism, the problem is at the moment we haven’t actually got it right from my point of view,” Hardwick said.
“The NFL model is what we should be actually looking at, where, for example, sides in the top four from last year can’t participate in free agency this year, unless they actually lose one.
“For example James Frawley can’t go to any of the top four sides, he’s got to go to a side that is outside of that.”
Hardwick admitted that free agency was here to stay, but that the AFL needed to make sure it did it “properly”.
“We have got the mechanism in play, but we haven’t got all the parts in play, so we have got to look at that,” he said.
“From my point of view, free agency is here to stay, but we have just got to make sure that we do it properly.”
The under-pressure Tigers coach side the lower-to-middle clubs have suffered under the current model.
“This is the problem because at the moment there are destination clubs and trying to get quality players to got to clubs that are lower on the ladder and, believe me I’ve been there, Richmond, 2010, Luke Ball is an ultimate example,” Hardwick said.
“There was no way that he was coming to the Tigers when we were at the bottom of the ladder.
“So we need to fix that. The way to fix that is the mechanism itself, so we have got to fix it.”