A frustrated Alastair Clarkson is pleading for the AFL to detail next year's cuts so he can plot Hawthorn's path out of the mire.
But the Hawthorn coach says the AFL's compromised draft and inequality make it harder for a rapid rebound up the ladder.
Clarkson says angst is increasing at all clubs at the AFL's delay in announcing cuts to list sizes and salary caps from next year.
"I can't understand what the delay is on that," he said after Hawthorn's loss to previously winless Adelaide on Tuesday night.
"So please, AFL, give us some information. We need it badly."
The 15th-placed Hawks have lost nine of their past 10 games.
And Clarkson said his club's revival was hampered by the draft system.
"It's a bug-bear of mine ... this talk of maybe Queensland getting the grand final and wouldn't it be great for the code up there," he said.
"Yet there's two clubs up there that get the whole state in terms of access to junior talent.
"Sydney and GWS share the whole of New South Wales in terms of any talent that comes through that state. And Brisbane and Gold Coast do it to the north.
"When there's that sort of compromise in what is meant to be an equal national competition, it makes it very, very difficult to find the talent necessary to give yourself a really good chance.
"Gold Coast has got access to parts of Northern Territory as well so any significant Aboriginal talent like Cyril Rioli is going to come through the Gold Coast system.
"That is going to make it enormously difficult for a lot of other clubs like North Melbourne and us ... to find our path back.
"It's sounding like I am sooking about that ... we can bounce and we will, but it just makes it more difficult."
Clarkson said father-son selections and interstate club academies also added to the compromised nature of the draft.
"People say 'oh, why don't you just rebuild, just go to the draft'," he said.
"You can't go to the draft, it's so compromised.
"So you have to do it with other mechanisms, free agency, depths of your rookie lists."