Most expect Tim Kelly to return to WA. Pic: Michael Klein.
Most expect Tim Kelly to return to WA. Pic: Michael Klein.

Kelly asks Cats to get creative

TIM Kelly's manager is unsure if the star midfielder will request a trade back to WA. But he has asked Geelong to come up with something different to offer his man should he want to stay a Cat.

Kelly's manager Anthony van der Wielen said he was still unsure whether his client would ask for a trade at year's end.

But he has asked Cats list manager Stephen Wells to work on some creative alternatives that could allow Kelly to stay for next year but not be fully tied into a four or five-year deal.

For instance Kelly might be offered the security of a five-year contract that allows him to leave at any time.

In effect it would be structured as a one-year deal for 2020 then four more one-year deals on triggers he can approve that provide guaranteed money.

Or the Cats might offer an initial two-year deal with three further one-year deals which Kelly can agree to commit to as his contract progresses.

Van Der Wielen is determined to secure his client some financial security in a sporting landscape where NBA star Kevin Durant tore his achilles this week, putting in jeopardy massive free agency offers.

Kelly has not yet committed to staying at Geelong but as negotiations stagnated he is looking for left-field solutions that might allow him to remain.

Tim Kelly (right) is loving playing at the Cats. Pic: Getty Images
Tim Kelly (right) is loving playing at the Cats. Pic: Getty Images

Those kind of left-field deals would have to be approved by the AFL's salary cap guru Ken Wood, who showed more leniency in the Josh Kelly contract at GWS this year.

He has a two-year contract with a six-year trigger that is almost certain to be enacted unless the bottom falls out of the Giants.

Despite reports of an $800,000 price tag, he said the club hadn't even put figures to him yet as they worked through the types of deals he could sign.

West Coast and Fremantle continue to make clear how interested they are in a player leading the AFL Coaches Association award from stars like Patrick Cripps and Patrick Dangerfield.

"To a certain extent Tim has to make up his mind what he wants to do and that will be predicated by what offers come forward," van der Wielen said.

"It won't just be about money, it will be about family first and we will see what happens."

"I can't tell you if he is staying at Geelong or coming home but we really don't know. It will come down to what is on offer and what it means for Tim's family."

"We are really just talking a framework. How can we get creative and what would it mean for a commitment. It is really just talking very openly and honestly about what are our options."

In commercial real estate owners have to offer minimum terms - often five years - to their clients which they can then take up one year at a time.

The Kelly family is not in a position to accept a four or five year deal but if they have some comfort about asking for a trade at some stage might still stay.

News Corp Australia


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