Collingwood's new recruit Quinten Lynch. Photo: Sebastian Costanzo
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CHRIS Dawes will talk with Nathan Buckley to discuss the ramifications for him of the club's decision to sign West Coast free agent Quinten Lynch.
The Magpies' decision to bring Lynch into the club as a key forward-ruck — the role that Dawes played this year — naturally raises the question of what the signing means for the power forward.
Nathan Buckley and Chris Dawes at Collingwood training last month. Photo: Getty Images
Dawes is under contract for the next two years with the Magpies but could seek a move — Melbourne and the Western Bulldogs have already expressed interest in him — if it was felt Lynch was brought in to squeeze him out.
Dawes is understood to be keen to remain at the club, particularly if the introduction of Lynch was part of a plan to restore the Magpies' effective structure of 2010-11 — with Lynch filling the Leigh Brown role of ruck-forward alongside Travis Cloke and Dawes in a three-talls forward line.
The development of young players such as Jackson Paine and Jarrod Witts might complicate plans for that forward set-up.
Having re-signed Travis Cloke to a conditional five-year contract Collingwood has a tight salary cap and bringing in Lynch, albeit not on an extravagant two-year contract, further stretches that.
Out-of-contract Magpies midfielder Sharrod Wellingham met West Coast officials on Monday and will have a medical examination this week.
The midfielder has also received a significant offer from Melbourne but there is a feeling that if he stays in Melbourne he will remain at Collingwood — where he has been offered a new contract — but if he leaves the club he will go home to Perth.
West Coast would be the most likely destination for him in Perth, especially after Fremantle signed Danyle Pearce from Port as a restricted free agent this week.
The Magpies are not understood to be in the market for Kurt Tippett, who has told Adelaide he wants a trade. Sydney has made a play for the versatile ruck-forward as well as Gold Coast and the Brisbane Lions, with the Suns remaining the most likely home for the player who grew up on the Gold Coast.
Lynch, 29, fielded offers from Melbourne and Carlton but yesterday the unrestricted free agent chose to extend his career at Collingwood. He played 209 games in 11 seasons at the Eagles, booting 281 goals. He was twice the club’s leading goalkicker.
“So many things appealed to me about the move,” Lynch said. “It was exciting to think that I could play for the biggest club in the game and challenge myself at the same time to play a flexible role, which is what we have discussed. The idea of playing on the MCG every second week was really attractive, too.
“I’m a life member of West Coast and I’ll always think well of the club. So I hope everyone there understands that joining Collingwood was an opportunity I couldn’t refuse. The chance to reinvigorate and extend my career in Melbourne, with Collingwood, I had to take.”
Collingwood director of football, Geoff Walsh, said Lynch gave the club more flexibility, height and marking strength.
“Another strong-bodied marking target up forward will really suit the Collingwood game and Quinten can also play in the ruck. And we know very well how valuable a player is who can play those two roles,’’ Walsh said.