Early 2022 Draft Scouting Report

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Whilst the exciting journey of the Hawthorn 2022 season continues and rumbles on in such a manner that is bringing about a renewed sense of optimism for the future and joy for the present, this is not a complete unit.

More youngsters are going to be needed, and what position the Hawks look to first is going to be of much curiosity, so here is a top prospect in the parts of the ground that can be looked at to help upgrade the Hawks side that we can keep an eye on for the rest of the year.

Key Defender:

Judd Busslinger

With Denver Grainger-Barras’ ability to completely shut down his opponent and allow James Sicily and Jack Scrimshaw to intercept magnificently, it’s no secret the Hawks are going to need reinforcements in a post Sam Frost and Kyle Hartigan world.

Busslinger has good intercept traits, but in a competition that’s teaching key defenders to stop your opponent first, that’s what he can do.

At 197cm tall at 18 years of age, Busslinger will be the first key defender taken, given he’s averaging nearly 25 disposals, seven marks and is so comfortable with kicking the ball, averaging 20 kicks.

North Melbourne should take him with their first pick as he fits them the best, but they love taking a midfielder first so there’s a chance.

Balanced Midfielder:

Kobe Ryan

Apart from the extraordinarily good game, the Hawks’ next wave of midfielders has taken shape nicely and needs to continue to do so.

Josh Ward is a two-way midfielder who can win the ball on the inside and outside, whilst Connor MacDonald looks so silky on the outside of the contest and makes every disposal count.

Until Tom Mitchell leaves a chasm of contested ball up for the offering to a James Worpel, adding some more balance to the midfield would be a huge plus and Ryan can do both terrifically.

 

Ryan is averaging 90% disposal efficiency across five U/18 clashes with West Adelaide, with 29.4 disposals (with 21 kicks), seven clearances, six inside 50’s, five tackles and 118 ranking points.

In his reserves debut, he had 27 disposals (with a 78% disposal efficiency), seven marks, six tackles, five clearances, four inside 50’s and 123 ranking points.

If only we could have him now.

Outside Midfielder:

Elijah Tsitas

Highly unlikely that he leaves the top five selections on current form, but the Hawks would be silly if he wasn’t on their radar.

Best suited for a wing, but looks ultra-comfortable on the outside of the contest, having a Tsitas in the team around Worpel, Newcombe, Ward and MacDonald adds another weapon in a young ‘Swiss Army Knife’ style of midfield.

In four NAB League games, Tsitas is averaging 32.3 disposals, eight marks, 7.5 inside 50’s and hit the scoreboard for the first time this year last week.

Knock on wood some midfielder-less teams don’t go for him early (Essendon would be the biggest threat to take him) but he’s frighteningly good.

General Forward:

Harry Sheezel

The Sandringham Dragons half forward oozes class and with a young Sam Butler in the wings, wanting a pure Luke Breust small forward role, Dylan Moore has proved that the half forward role is an important one and having a second one can’t hurt.

With Luke Breust on the ‘wrong’ side of 30 and Chad Wingard not getting any younger, looking at the next wave is only going to be beneficial.

Against the Calder Cannons, Sheezel had 21 disposals and kicked 3.3 and laid six tackles, continually trapping the ball in his area.

Has a really good leap and like current Crow Josh Rachele, models his game on Toby Greene, who is undoubtedly the best half forward in the league over the last few years.

Is also a huge Hawks supporter, like first selection in last year’s draft Josh Ward.

Ruck:

Jackson Broadbent

Demon Luke Jackson has proven taking a ruckman you love early can work out really well, so clubs will look at the 201cm, 100kg ruckman from WA as a project player.

Still 17, he’s averaging 27 hit-outs from a couple of Colts games and his hit-out to advantage capability is high.

The Hawks have seen some problems in the ruck department with injury, seeing Ben McEvoy and Ned Reeves being injured at the same time and whilst Reeves and Lynch are the ruck one and two in the depth chart, having a third is not going to be a bad thing at all.

Would need to be there in the second round (much like Toby Conway was for the Cats last year), but no reason why a midfielder or key defender isn’t taken first, with Broadbent taken second, especially if the Hawks get more early picks throughout the trade period.

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