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Bucks expects 'spike' from Swan

Coach Nathan Buckley has backed Dane Swan to return to his best on Saturday night against Geelong at the MCG.

2:29pm  Apr 1, 2014

Swan's wristy business

Dane Swan says he will never again have full flexibility in left wrist after undergoing a reconstruction last September.

12:45pm  Mar 6, 2014

Swan, Pendlebury face the media

Read a summation of the key points of interest to arise from Dane Swan and Scott Pendlebury's press conference on Thursday morning.

11:53am  Mar 6, 2014

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Seniors List

36

Dane
Swan

Height
185 cm
DOB
25-02-1984
Weight
93 kg
Debut
2003
Games
2014
4
Career
223
Goals
2014
4
Career
183
2014 AFL Fantasy Points
Total
360
Avg
90
DaneSwan

Player Bio

At A Glance

Junior Clubs: Westmeadows
Clubs: Collingwood (2002-2014)
Debut: Round 13 2003 v Western Bulldogs
Recruited from: Calder U18
Brownlow Votes: 164

Dane Swan represents one of football's most remarkable rags to riches stories in many years. Taken deep in the 2001 National Draft, Swan was considered to be little more than a battler with limited ability after his first four seasons at Collingwood. With a laid back approach to the game, the boy from Westmeadows in Melbourne's north-west suburbs was on the verge of the football abyss before a heart-to-heart with coach Mick Malthouse and some strong leadership from teammate Ben Johnson helped reshape his attitude ahead of the 2006 season.

In the eight years since, Swan has made incredible improvement to the point where he became the 2011 Brownlow Medalist, and earned the label of 'untaggable' from many commentators. A strongly built midfielder who is dangerous if released to half forward, Swan's unique ability to repeatedly out-sprint his opponents, allowing him to power from contest to contest, has made him Collingwood's most consistent player of the past eight seasons. Criticised by some for his occasionally errant kicking, Swan's disposal is now considered to be as good as any other.

His barrel chest means he can hunt down the ball at the stoppages and explode away from them courtesy of his deceptive pace. Far from a front runner, Swan averaged 84.4 tackles between 2007 and 2011. He also has the ability to make himself a threat in attack, be it around stoppages, outrunning his opponent when the side's in possession and when isolated one-out where his underrated ability overhead makes him the complete package.

Although he will turn 30 in February 2014, Swan is showing no sign of slowing down and still has plenty of high class football to come.

Season By Season

Season By Season

Another football season, another sustained display of excellence from Dane Swan. Such is his brilliance that 30 possession performances by Collingwood’s No. 36 are becoming routine. But don’t let the familiarity of the tattooed arms taking control of the footy lull you into thinking Swan’s performances are normal. He averaged more than 30 possessions a game for the fifth year in a row and cleared 114 stoppages for the season. He worked his way into top form, winning 35 possessions and kicking a goal in his 200th senior game against Richmond in round four, one week after he had collected 33 touches and five tackles in a 55-point loss to the Hawks. Swan’s season kicked up another cog when he had 36 possessions against the Lions in round 10, sparking a three week patch in which he received the maximum nine Brownlow votes. A quiet performance against Port Adelaide after the bye followed, but from there on in he didn’t let up, starting with a season-high 41 possessions and eight tackles against Carlton in round 15. He received best afield honours against Greater Western Sydney in round 18 and carried his form into September when he kicked three goals from six scoring shots while being used as an undersized full forward against Port Adelaide in the Elimination Final.

Season By Season

The prolific ball-winner had another consistent year despite missing two games mid-season with a hamstring injury and then another two in rounds 20 and 21 after a club-imposed suspension. Won the ANZAC Day Medal in round five for his 42 possessions, six tackles and three goals, and entered into another purple patch upon return from the hamstring injury in round 11 against Melbourne. Despite missing four games, he ended the season third in the competition for disposals. He had more than 40 possessions on six occasions including a career-high 49 against Hawthorn in round 17.

Season by Season

Showed no signs of a premiership hangover in the early rounds, playing in the NAB Cup premiership win and starting the year with 34 disposals and three goals against Port Adelaide and 40 disposals against North Melbourne. By time he had kicked four goals and won 33 possessions to destroy Richmond in round four, many were questioning whether he could ever be stopped.

Although he kept his disposal count in the high 20s and earned three Brownlow votes in the round eight loss to Geelong, Swan’s impact was blunted ever so slightly by a quad injury mid-year. In a radical move, he joined Darren Jolly, Brent Macaffer and Nathan Brown on a two week trip to Arizona to help fast track his recovery. It proved an inspired decision.

Missing only one match (his first since 2006), Swan went on a 10 week rampage in which he won between 31 and 45 disposals in each match and kicked 14 goals. He received 21 of his 34 Brownlow votes in this period, including four best on grounds.

His most commanding performances came against North Melbourne in round 16 (39 disposals and two goals in wet conditions), Essendon in round 19 (45 disposals and a goal) and Port Adelaide in round 20 (37 disposals, three goals and six tackles in torrential rain).

His form carried over to the finals, when he won 43 possessions in the qualifying final win over the Eagles. Willed his side over the line in the tense final term against Hawthorn in the preliminary final with a vital goal at a stoppage and a game-high 18 contested possessions.

Was crowned the Brownlow Medalist on the Monday of Grand Final week. His 34 votes across 21 games is the most ever in one season by a player under the 3-2-1 system at an average of 1.62 votes per game. He polled in 14 matches, the equal highest by any player (along with Robert Harvey in 1998) in the history of the game. In 159 eligible games, Swan averages 0.71 votes per game, the 16th highest average of any player to have played 50 or more games.

Started the Grand Final well but was below his usual impact, and managed only 20 possessions and one mark as the Magpies went down to Geelong. Finished runner-up to Scott Pendlebury in the Copeland Trophy, and was again an All-Australian.

2010 was the year of Dane Swan. There is no other way to describe it.

After four years of consistent excellence, Swan was finally recognised by the wider football public as one of the genuine superstars of the competition. He had 820 possessions. Played all 26 matches. Kicked 24 goals. Won 30 or more disposals on 17 occasions (including 10 games in succession between round 11 and round 20).

Received the Leigh Matthews Trophy as the Player’s Association’s MVP. Was the AFL Coaches Association’s Champion Player of the Year. Won Channel 9’s Lou Richards Medal. Represented Australia in the International Rules series and won the Jim Stynes Medal as his nation’s best player. Took out his third Copeland Trophy and his second All-Australian award, and the Bob Rose Award as the Best Player in Finals. Most importantly, Swan became a Collingwood premiership player.

He had been one of the shortest priced favourites in history heading into the Brownlow Medal count but was surprisingly trumped by Chris Judd (he finished third overall with 24 votes).

Started the season with a bang, winning 31 disposals and kicking three goals against the Bulldogs. Roasted the Bulldogs, Demons, Swans, Eagles, Power, Saints and Tigers in his mid-season hot streak and kicked a goal in 17 matches. Also laid 123 tackles and polled votes in 12 matches.

His start to the finals series was immense, as he torched the Western Bulldogs for the third time this season in the qualifying final on his way to 39 disposals and three goals. Backed it up a fortnight later in the preliminary final in winning 33 possessions and slotting two majors, confirming his status as the most valuable player in the game.

Had a slightly subdued Grand Final when St Kilda’s Farren Ray had his measure in the second half. He had 21 disposals but still contributed seven tackles. Given a week to recover, Swan hit back hard in the Grand Final replay, winning 26 possessions, one goal and 11 tackles to cap off a magical season and rise to fame.

Caught the eye early in the season with his new sleeve tattoo that quickly became his trademark. His yearly improvement continued with an outstanding season that culminated in his first All-Australian selection.

Swan gathered 769 possessions across 25 games, with a low of 17 in the preliminary final and a high of 48 against Port Adelaide in round 10 at the MCG. In the latter, the crowd began to cheer his last few possessions of the evening as he nudged towards the 50 possession mark. He stood to become the first Collingwood player since Tony Shaw in 1991 to reach the magical figure, and surpassed Nathan Buckley’s high of 46 in 2001.

Polled another 12 Brownlow Medal votes, and was best on ground in the round 17 win over Carlton. Was hampered by a thigh injury late in the season but played despite the duress and managed 28 crucial touches in the semi final win over Adelaide. Received his second Copeland Trophy at season’s end.

Sealed his reputation as one of the best players in the competition with the first of three successive Copeland Trophies. Played all 24 games, had less than 20 disposals in only four of them, and polled Brownlow votes in six matches.

Had best on ground performances against West Coast in round 10 (36 disposals, two goals) and Sydney in round 14 (30 disposals). Again stepped up his contribution in front of goal, kicking 22.23 for the year and kicking multiples in six matches. Was vital to Collingwood’s come from behind win over Adelaide in the elimination final, kicking two vital goals on the eve of half time to steer the Magpies back into the contest.

Rewarded with his first Copeland Trophy, but still escaped the gaze of the All-Australian selectors.

Backed up his breakout season with even more improvement in 2007. Didn’t miss a game for the first time in his career, finished fourth in the Copeland Trophy and had 30 or more disposals in five matches. Appeared to relish the extra midfield time he was afforded in the absence of Nathan Buckley and Paul Licuria and was a symbol of the generational change that was taking place at the club.

Had an incredibly consistent season yet managed to escape the media spotlight until Brownlow Medal night when he was among the leaders at the halfway mark only to be enjoying his night at home with teammates Guy Richards and Alan Didak, complete in Spiderman costume.

Also lifted his work rate off the ball, laying 85 tackles (up on 44 from the previous season). Was one of the best afield against Richmond, Adelaide, Carlton, Fremantle and St Kilda, and received three Brownlow votes in the loss to Hawthorn in round 13.

Had a great finals campaign, winning 38 disposals and kicking two goals (including the sealer on the final siren) in the extra-time win over West Coast in the semi final. Backed it up with 25 touches in the preliminary final against the Cats.

Encouraged by senior players and great mates Ben Johnson and Chris Tarrant, Swan bit the bullet during the pre-season and began to train at a greater intensity. His work ethic began to reap dividends as he made an explosive start to 2006. Kicked off the year with 34 disposals and a Brownlow vote in the loss to Adelaide in round one, and only dipped below 20 disposals on five occasions for the season (once when he was injured).

Made a huge impact on the scoreboard, kicking a then career-high 19 goals with a top of four against Geelong in round eight (26 disposals, three Brownlow votes). His mid-season form was outstanding, notching 24, 25, 26 and 29 possessions between rounds six and nine. Injured a hamstring in round 10 and missed the next fortnight but was a consistent force throughout the rest of the year.

Was subdued in the elimination final loss to the Bulldogs, but ended the year with 11 Brownlow votes and recorded a sixth placed finish in the Copeland Trophy.

Missed much of the early going with an ankle injury, and returned slowly via the VFL. Returned to the senior side for round eight against Richmond and only missed one more match (dropped in round 17). Accumulated possessions effectively at half back, but also had his share of midfield time. Showed his capabilities with a 29 disposal effort against Sydney in round 13.

Was consistent, but by season’s end had reached the point where he needed to stamp his authority on the competition or otherwise face an uncertain future.

Played in the pre-season competition against West Coast and was named as an emergency for the first fortnight. Was recalled for the trip to Brisbane in round three and acquitted himself superbly, kicking two goals from the forward pocket and winning 16 possessions.

He played every match until round 11, registering two disposal counts that topped 20 against Port Adelaide and Carlton. Began to struggle and only played four more times for the remainder of the year.

Was recalled after a five week absence in round 22 and had 22 possessions in the loss to Carlton. Played a total of 13 games, mainly at half back with occasional runs through the midfield.

Had a run in a handful of pre-season matches but was forced to wait until round 13 before he could make his senior debut against the Western Bulldogs at Docklands (eight disposals). He played twice more, against Richmond in round 16 and against Essendon in round 22, but missed the boat on finals selection.

Had a productive season for Williamstown, kicking five in a best on ground display against Werribee in round four. Finished seventh in Williamstown’s Best and Fairest and played in a forward pocket in their first VFA/VFL premiership since 1990 – the year his father had won the flag for the Gulls off his own boot.

Traveled to London where he played in the exhibition match against Fremantle at The Oval. Was involved in an altercation at Federation Square late in the year that would see his career at Collingwood sail very close to the wind.

Spent the season with Williamstown in the VFL, the club whom his father Billy Swan had made his name for in the VFA. Played the first two games in the reserves, and debuted for Williamstown’s seniors in round three against Essendon and made an immediate impression kicking 3.1 and gathering 17 possessions. Played every match for the Seagulls bar three mid-season when he suffered a broken hand.

Played for the Calder Cannons in the TAC Cup U18 competition. Struggled to find a regular spot in the team in the first half of the season due to a lack of discipline on and off the field, according to his coach Robert Hyde. Ended the year well for the Cannons as he began to realise his capacity to outrun opponents.

Was one of Calder’s best in their TAC Cup premiership victory when he played on Bendigo playmaker (and future St Kilda star) Nick Dal Santo on the wing. Became a TAC Cup premiership player alongside the likes of James Kelly, Andrew Welsh, David Rodan and Brent Reilly.

Had been reluctant to nominate for the National Draft as he was still a bottom-age U18 player, and was partaking in schoolies celebrations on the Gold Coast when he was drafted to Collingwood with pick No. 58.

Stats

By the numbers

  • 2014 Season Average
    Games Played 4
    • Kicks 16.2
    • Handballs 7.0
    • Disposals 23.2
    • Marks 3.5
    • Hit-Outs 0.0
    • Tackles 2.5
    • Goals 1.0
    • AFL Fantasy 90.0

2014 Highlights

Statistics Best Opponent Round
Kicks 18 Geelong Cats Rd 3
Handballs 10 Richmond Rd 4
Disposals 27 Richmond Rd 4
Marks 4 Geelong Cats Rd 3
Hit-outs 0 - -
Tackles 3 Richmond Rd 4
Goals 2 Richmond Rd 4
AFL Fantasy 105 Richmond Rd 4

2014 Season Breakdown

Rd Opponent Result K H D M HO FF FA T G B AF
1 Fremantle L 46 - 116 17 10 27 4 0 0 0 2 1 0 97
2 Sydney Swans W 69 - 89 13 3 16 3 0 0 0 2 1 0 68
3 Geelong Cats L 76 - 87 18 5 23 4 0 1 0 3 0 1 90
4 Richmond W 72 - 110 17 10 27 3 0 0 0 3 2 1 105
5 North Melbourne - - - - - - - - - - -
6 Essendon - - - - - - - - - - -
7 Carlton - - - - - - - - - - -
9 Adelaide Crows - - - - - - - - - - -
10 West Coast Eagles - - - - - - - - - - -
11 St Kilda - - - - - - - - - - -
12 Melbourne - - - - - - - - - - -
13 Western Bulldogs - - - - - - - - - - -
14 Hawthorn - - - - - - - - - - -
15 Carlton - - - - - - - - - - -
16 Gold Coast Suns - - - - - - - - - - -
17 Essendon - - - - - - - - - - -
18 Adelaide Crows - - - - - - - - - - -
19 Port Adelaide - - - - - - - - - - -
20 West Coast Eagles - - - - - - - - - - -
21 Brisbane Lions - - - - - - - - - - -
22 GWS Giants - - - - - - - - - - -
23 Hawthorn - - - - - - - - - - -
TOTAL W: 2 - L: 2 65 28 93 14 0 1 0 10 4 2 360

By the numbers

  • Career Average
    Games Played 223
    • Kicks 16.7
    • Handballs 10.1
    • Disposals 26.9
    • Marks 6.1
    • Hit-Outs 0.0
    • Tackles 3.1
    • Goals 0.8
    • AFL Fantasy 106.0

Career Highlights

Statistics Best Opponent Round
Kicks 32 Essendon Rd 23, 2012
Handballs 26 Port Adelaide Rd 10, 2009
Disposals 49 Hawthorn Rd 17, 2012
Marks 15 Adelaide Crows Rd 1, 2006
Hit-outs 2 Geelong Cats PF, 2009
Tackles 11 St Kilda GF2, 2010
Goals 5 GWS Giants Rd 18, 2012
AFL Fantasy 187 Essendon Rd 23, 2012

Career Breakdown

Season Club K H D M HO FF FA T G B AF
2014 Collingwood 65 28 93 14 0 1 0 10 4 2 360
2013 Collingwood 436 281 717 131 1 15 12 79 21 21 2706
2012 Collingwood 442 283 725 138 2 16 12 71 25 22 2744
2011 Collingwood 472 288 760 129 1 22 17 77 32 23 2874
2010 Collingwood 505 315 820 146 0 24 11 123 24 23 3233
2009 Collingwood 444 325 769 161 2 12 10 77 18 25 2890
2008 Collingwood 368 222 590 163 1 17 11 75 22 23 2477
2007 Collingwood 422 173 595 187 0 22 17 85 13 14 2576
2006 Collingwood 311 176 487 168 0 18 6 44 19 12 2091
2005 Collingwood 143 91 234 67 0 5 4 22 3 2 913
2004 Collingwood 105 66 171 49 0 4 1 18 2 5 684
2003 Collingwood 14 13 27 4 0 1 1 3 0 0 90

Legend

K
Kicks
H
Handballs
D
Disposals
M
Marks
HO
Hit-outs
FF
Frees For
FA
Frees Against
T
Tackles
G
Goals
B
Behinds
AF
AFL Fantasy points

Milestones

Career

AFL: 219 games, 179 goals

VFL: 42 games, 38 goals

NAB Cup: 20 games, 14 goals

Milestones

50th AFL Game - Collingwood v North Melbourne, Round 22 2006 at the MCG.

100th AFL Game - St Kilda v Collingwood, Semi-Final 2008 at the MCG.

150th AFL Game - Collingwood v St Kilda, Grand Final 2010 at the MCG.

200th AFL Game - Richmond v Collingwood, Round 4 2013 at the MCG.

Draft History

Selected at No. 58 (by Collingwood) in the 2001 National Draft

Awards

AFL Awards

Collingwood Premiership Side 
2010

Collingwood Pre-Season Premiership Side 
2011

Brownlow Medal
Winner: 2011, Third: 2010, 2013

All Australian 
2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013

International Rules Series
2010

Leigh Matthews Trophy
2010

AFLCA Champion Player of the Year
2010

ANZAC Day Medal
2012

Lou Richards Medal
2010

Jim Stynes Medallist
2010

Bob Rose-Charlie Sutton Medal
2009

Club Awards

E.W. Copeland Trophy (Best and Fairest) 
2008, 2009, 2010

R.T. Rush Trophy (2nd Best and Fairest) 
2011, 2013

J.J. Joyce Trophy (3rd Best and Fairest) 
2012

J.F. McHale Trophy (4th Best and Fairest) 
2007

Bob Rose Award (Best Player in Finals) 
2010

Magpie Army Player of the Year Award
2013