Sydney Swans recruit Taylor Adams has lifted the lid on why he chose to leave defending AFL premiers Collingwood after revealing the decision was primarily "based on footy". Adams was shifted from his preferred midfield role to play at the back for Collingwood, before suffering a hamstring injury that saw him miss the Magpies' grand final triumph over the Brisbane Lions.
The 30-year-old was in tears after the final siren as he seen being consoled by Collingwood teammates as the realisation obviously sunk in that he wouldn't play for the Magpies again. Swans list manager Kinnear Beatson revealed after Collingwood's premiership triumph that Adams had actually approached them about a possible trade between the preliminary final and grand final week, where he picked up the injury.
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AFL journalist Jon Ralph said Adams probably saw “the writing on the wall” when he was moved out of midfield and forced to spend more time down back at Collingwood. Speaking to reporters about his decision to move on from the defending premiers, Adams admitted being shifted out of his "preferred role" and the "decline" in his form at Collingwood convinced him that a move to Sydney was the best thing for his career.
Taylor Adams insists he has 'more to give'
"The decision was based on footy. I was clearly playing out of my preferred role," Adams said. "To be honest the biggest reason (for joining Sydney) was I felt my footy was on the decline. I felt like I had more to give.
"(Sydney) have identified that their stoppage work had room for improvement last year and maybe their on-field leadership so hopefully I can have an impact in both of those parts of the game. I still think I've got my best footy ahead of me."
Adams' devastation after failing to feature in Collingwood's grand final success is understandable, considering he was part of the Magpies side that lost the epic 2018 decider to West Coast. The midfielder is yet to taste premiership success and insists that elusive flag is a massive motivating factor behind his move to the Swans.
"I'm 30 years old, just turned 30 and missed out on a premiership. I've been playing for 12 years, chasing one of those," Adams added. "You'd go as far as saying my career would be unfulfilled if I didn't get one.
"I know that's a bold statement but I've packed up my life and moved myself and my family up here. I believe that we've got the list and the coaching panel and the support network to get it done at some point in the next three years."
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The Swans will be hoping to match the aspirations laid out by Adams after emerging from the AFL trade period as big winners, picking up Adams as well as Brodie Grundy, former Fremantle defender Joel Hamling and ex-Demon James Jordon. The quartet will join a list similar to the one that made the 2022 grand final, with the big exception being the retirement of Swans legend Buddy Franklin.
Adams' former Collingwood teammate Grundy joins after a failed move to Melbourne, where his partnership with fellow ruck star Max Gawn simply didn't work. Grundy ended up playing just one senior game after round 17 but the six-time All-Australian will have the chance to make amends in Sydney, where he's set to fill the ruck spot vacated by the retired Tom Hickey.
"I don't have any regrets about my time at Melbourne," Grundy said. "If I was really attached and fixed, then that year, I'd be framing that as a negative but that's definitely not the case.
"Like any good management or any good team you have to sit down and think about, 'Is this working?' Credit to Melbourne and my team, we were just pretty honest and forthright.
"I think everyone's happy and I get to go on and try to play some senior footy and contribute hopefully really meaningfully to this side." Grundy says he's keen to work under former West Coast premiership ruckman Dean Cox, who has joined John Longmire's coaching staff as an assistant at the Swans from next season.
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