Demons in box seat to land Kangaroo Brown

Unwanted North Melbourne forward Ben Brown's next AFL home appears likely to be Melbourne.
Unwanted North Melbourne forward Ben Brown's next AFL home appears likely to be Melbourne.

Melbourne are in the box seat to secure outgoing North Melbourne forward Ben Brown in this year's AFL trade period.

Brown, who is out of contract but not a free agent, has met with the Demons and had a medical with the club this week.

North Melbourne put Brown on the trade table in September.

They would be expected to demand Melbourne's earliest draft selection - currently pick No.23 - in a trade for the 27-year-old.

The Kangaroos already hold Melbourne's first round pick (currently pick No.9) after a trade completed last year.

Brown had a difficult 2020, with injuries and a drop in form seeing him kick just eight goals in nine games.

But he is a four-time leading goalkicker for the Kangaroos with 287 majors in 130 games - booting 60 or more goals in three consecutive years from 2017 to 2019.

It's believed he rejected a new three-year deal from the Kangaroos earlier this year - ahead of an AFL-imposed freeze on contract signings, with North Melbourne since moving on.

Brown would straighten up a Melbourne forward line that has struggled to function consistently in the past two seasons.

Tom McDonald has struggled with form and injury while Sam Weideman is still developing as a key tall.

Several key forwards could be on the move this off-season.

If Brown heads to the Demons, McDonald could well depart - but the athletic tall still has two years left on his current deal.

Restricted free agents Jeremy Cameron (GWS) and Joe Daniher (Essendon) are keen to head to Geelong and Brisbane respectively.

Former Demon Jesse Hogan is once again on the trade table despite having a year to run on his Fremantle contract.

Meanwhile, GWS midfielder Jye Caldwell has requested a trade to Essendon.

The Giants' No.11 pick in the 2018 draft, 20-year-old Caldwell has played 11 games across two years.

"We had tabled a very competitive offer for a second-year player but we'll now work to facilitate a trade that will provide a strong result for our football club," GWS general manager of football Jason McCartney said.

Australian Associated Press