One player off the free-agent table for the Hawks.
The first premiership puzzle piece has fallen into place for Hawthorn, with Sam Mitchell set to announce a lucrative new deal with the club this week.
It is a significant win for the club, which is vulnerable to free-agency poachers and still has biggest fish Lance Franklin, Luke Hodge, Shaun Burgoyne and Xavier Ellis coming out of contract.
Due to the size and talent in the free agency list for the Hawks, off-season speculation has swirled around whether they will be able to retain all of their stars.
Hodge this week said he would love to stay at the club and would expect a smaller deal than his last, despite his on field importance to last years runners-up.
Franklin has put off all contract talk until the end of the year, and given the deal would likely to be the biggest of his career the Hawks might be under pressure to keep every player on its books.
The finer details of Mitchell’s deal are still to be finalised but the 31-year-old is set to announce the deal before the Hawks take on Geelong in the first round.
Despite being on the wrong side of 30 Mitchell has been consistently one of the Hawks’ most consistent performers in recent seasons having won best and fairest awards in 2006 and 2009 along with winning All-Australian honours in 2011.