It was reported in August that Hawthorn had announced an interest in adding Smith to their squad as they continue to build one of the most impressive young squads in the game.
It is believed that Smith could request a trade from the Bulldogs in the hope of getting more time in midfield.
This season hasn’t been Smith’s best with 23.5 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss and 3.6 clearances per game as he struggles with injury and a dip in form dropped throughout the year due to position changes. His scoreboard impact was also the lowest of his career with just four goals in 2023.
According to Sam McClure via the Tradies Podcast, the Hawks are prepared to give up Pick 3 in the upcoming draft to complete the trade. But the debate will be whether the move will spark Smith back to top form or if it will be better to take a chance on a leading prospect in the draft.
“My understanding is that Hawthorn have not given up the chase,” McClure said of Smith.
“They’re still willing to part with Pick 3 for him. He’s a quantifiable known quantity at AFL level and you’re going to get 10 years out of him versus Pick 3, which could be hit or miss.
“Bailey Smith was one of the best players in the league not too long ago. I know he’s had problems since then.
In early September, Bulldogs list manager Sam Power spoke to AFL.com.au’s Gettable and said Smith would be in the kennel for a “very long time”.
“Obviously, Bailey intrigues everyone. He’s someone who’s going to attract attention and there’s a lot of media coverage about it. But again, (he’s) a signed player and extremely important for us,” Power said.
“We’ve talked at length about our midfield profile, there are a few guys who are getting a little bit older and Bailey is someone we really want to be that inside midfielder for us for a while very long time.
Geelong also allegedly tried to rob the midfielder, but later denied any further attempts to press charges. However, the club is said to have have held talks to attract cattery.
The trade period begins on Monday, October 9 and any move for Smith would be one of the biggest deals of this season.