Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson has pleaded with the AFL to quit stalling and notify clubs of their plans around list sizes as he plots to fast-track the Hawks' return to the top of the mountain.
Lists are expected to be cut in 2021 but until the details are confirmed and communicated, Clarkson feels powerless to start planning ahead.
Hawthorn are locked in the bottom rungs of the ladder.Credit:Getty Images
Once he has a frame to work with, Clarkson is optimistic of a meteoric 2016 Western Bulldogs-like leap into premiership calculations.
The 35-point loss to Adelaide was the Hawks' fifth in a row and sees them mired in 15th position but Clarkson sees the glass as half-full.
"The game and the fortunes of your club can turn very quickly," he said. "When did you think the Bulldogs' silverware was going to come in 2015? What about Richmond [before 2017]?
"It can happen very quickly as long as you have a belief in your method.
"Anything can happen in footy. We'll continue to stick to that view.
"This isn't a five, six, eight-year turnaround – this can happen very quickly.
"It just seems at the moment it's a long way away for us."
Clarkson aims to utilise free agency and rookie-list depth to mould Hawthorn's next relaunch rather than rely principally on the draft, which he slammed as "compromised" and "not pure".
"What is frustrating for coaches and clubs is there's not a pure draft anymore," he said. "The draft is so compromised with father-sons and academies, it's a bugbear of mine.
"There are two clubs up there [Queensland] that get the whole state in terms of access to junior talent in a national competition that's meant to have equality.
"Sydney and GWS share the whole of NSW in terms of any talent that comes through that state.
"People say 'why don't you just rebuild and go to the draft' … you can't go to the draft, it's so compromised. You have to do it with other mechanisms like free agency and the depth of your rookie list."
"It makes it very difficult to find the talent necessary to find your path back."
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