Speculation is stilling milling in background about whether Bryce Gibbs will leave at the end of the year or not. Let’s get one thing really straight here, he has left on his contract 2 years. That he is under a legal, contracted document until the end of the season in 2019. So, will he want to move is being banded around during the middle of a season that is seeing Carlton become more than most had ever thought.
Bryce Gibbs is playing in stellar form this season, ranked number 58 in the AFL’s overall ranking, number two for the club, and if you look at the AFL’s stats for players, you will see that since the start of the season he has been climbing up, with only a few dips. Against GWS he notched up 27 disposals. He is a very handy and much needed mid-fielder for the team.
Without a doubt Adelaide would want him to join their ranks as they tried to do during the trade period with Kane Cornes stating that he will obviously be in that team this season. What neither Adelaide nor Cornes understood was that Gibbs had no real impetus to leave Carlton other than media speculation, management query and the biased-one-sided diatribe of an ex-player who categorically does not like Carlton and can never say anything worthwhile about the club.
But will Gibbs go at the end of this season? My view is, I don’t think so. Why, because Adelaide will have to do something quite extraordinary in order to get him. He is still under contract and if he does decide he wants to leave, then it will have to be on Carlton’s terms and their terms only. Not what Cornes states that Carlton should just by tearing up the contract without receiving anything of significance.
The significant terms would be for a first round draft pick and a high caliber player, anything less and Carlton will once more show Adelaide the door. That is if he wants to leave, but I don’t think he does and what he brings to the playing group and leadership on the ground is significant in terms of leading by example to the younger players.
Carlton have beyond expectations shown the footy world that they are not the team they were a few years ago. That with each and every match, they are developing and getting to a point where other coaches are starting to sit up and take notice. Leon Cameron said that coaches must now start taking notice of Carlton, after beating his Giants on the weekend.
Given that Gibbsy moving to Adelaide would enhance his chances of winning a Premiership is in my view fraught with pros and cons and more cons than pros. The gamble will be if he doesn’t jell with the other players in the group, with the exception of Eddie Betts. What if he doesn’t jell with the coach? What if he just doesn’t become the player that those in Adelaide want him to be? Given that he is nearing the side of 30, he has to weigh up all of this.
Should he leave, no. He will, in my view and it is my view, that he will only flourish more and more by staying at Carlton and that in a few years’ time, the possibilities far outweigh the cons of staying. I expect Adelaide and Cornes again to throw their resolve behind getting Gibbsy to Adelaide, I just don’t think they realise what they would have to give up to do that. So, given that, I don’t think he will leave. I could be wrong. I hope not.