LANCE Franklin says everyone should get used to multi-million-dollar, long-term contracts like the deal North Melbourne reportedly has offered Josh Kelly to lure him from Greater Western Sydney.
Franklin’s nine-year, $10 million deal set new benchmarks when he left Hawthorn to join Sydney at the end of 2013.
He believes the new era of massive player movement and an ever-increasing salary cap will mean the nine-year $9 million offer for Kelly, 22, will become commonplace.
“That’s the industry now,” said Franklin, who will play his 250th game on Friday night against Collingwood.
“Longer-term contracts are coming in into the system.
“I’ll leave that up to him to make his decision as to what he wants to do, but good luck to him.”
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Tom Boyd was the last big-name Giant to be lured away when he accepted a seven-year, $7 million deal to move to the Western Bulldogs.
Kelly is off contract at the end of this season and despite the size of the offer and the inability of GWS to match it because of salary cap restrictions, Giants coach Leon Cameron said he was certain he would keep his young star.
“We’re really confident we can retain him,” Cameron said.
“He really likes the place and has bought in to our footy club. He’s in our leadership group and is playing some really good footy, he’s popular and he wants to stay. We look forward to getting him done and dusted in the next couple of weeks or month.”
Cameron said the practice of leaking details of contracts was deliberate and becoming commonplace.
“I think it’s a tactic, let’s be honest,” Cameron said.
“There would be people out there from every footy club trying to secure talent from our footy club or wherever, whether it’s Adelaide, Queensland or Western Australia. It will happen more and more.
“We’ve seen it at our footy club. We’ve secured some outstanding players from other footy clubs who have performed really well and we’ve lost a few as well, but we’re really confident of retaining Josh.”
Giants co-captain Phil Davis, who will play his 100th in Hobart on Saturday against North Melbourne, said Kelly was happy at the Giants and in Sydney.
“The club will take care of that,” Davis said.
“As players we just let him do his thing. His form has been outstanding, he’s in the leadership group and he loves Sydney. He just got a little dog called Kobe and is taking over Sydney.”
Originally published as Big deals are here to stay: Buddy