TWO-time Richmond premiership winger Brandon Ellis is set to join Gold Coast after informing the Tigers he intends to explore AFL free agency.
After 176 games in eight seasons at Punt Road, Ellis is expected to sign a lucrative long-term deal with the Suns when the official free agency period opens on Friday.
“Brandon has been an outstanding contributor to our team and our club for a long period of time and we respect his rights as a free agent,” Richmond list manager Blair Hartley said on Wednesday.
“Brandon and the club have been in constant communication throughout the season and we would like to acknowledge the way he has conducted himself throughout the year.
“As always, Brandon has put the team first and he is now a dual premiership player for Richmond.”
The 26-year-old is a restricted free agent, but it appears the club won’t exercise its right to match any rival offer.
Earlier on Wednesday, Port Adelaide confirmed their interest in speaking to Essendon’s Orazio Fantasia should the South Australian forward seek a trade back his home state.
The 24-year-old is contracted to the Bombers until the end of 2021, but speculation that he is leaning towards switching clubs at the coming trade period continues.
“I can certainly tell you that when a young South Australian player wants to come home at any point that we’ve got an interest,” Power football boss Chris Davies told AFL Trade Radio.
“Orazio hasn’t necessarily suggested that is the case with him yet, but I think you can say across the board that if a young South Australian wants to come home then both us and Adelaide would generally be interested.
“But I think there’s a fair bit to play out with Orazio yet.
“I haven’t spoken to him, but he’s in between managers, so I imagine once he’s settled on who he is going to go with, then we’ll be able to have a conversation with whoever his manager is.”
Port’s ruck stocks will be diminished at the trade period which starts on Monday, with Paddy Ryder keen to join St Kilda and Billy Frampton linked with a cross-town move to the Crows.
Small forward Sam Gray is also assessing interest from other clubs, but Davies doesn’t see contracted pair Sam Powell-Pepper or Dougal Howard leaving despite speculation to the contrary.
Davies also shut down talk of contracted co-captain Ollie Wines seeking a go- home trade to Victoria.
© AAP 2019