Tanner Bruhn has officially joined Geelong in exchange for pick 18 in this year’s AFL Draft.

Bruhn – who has been linked to the Cats for some time – will return to his home state, Victoria, after two seasons with the Giants, playing 30 games in the meantime.

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Drafted at pick 12 in the 2020 Draft, the 20-year-old comes across as a forward/midfielder, who will develop under the direction and guidance of experienced players Patrick Dangerfield and Cam Guthrie.

Bruhn is now the third GWS player to return home, with Tim Taranto and Bobby Hill leaving the club for Richmond and Collingwood.

The youngster said he is thrilled to be joining the premiers in 2023.

“I’m excited to be joining the Cats and getting back home to Geelong and continuing the next chapter of my career,” Bruhn said.

“I’d like to thank the Giants, players, staff and supporters for my time at the Club, I thoroughly enjoyed my two years and I wish everyone at the Giants every success.” 

The retirement of Selwood has opened the door for Bruhn to play more midfield minutes and develop into a player who can lead the side into the future.

List manager Andrew Mackie is also pleased that a deal could be struck between the Cats and GWS.

“We are thrilled to welcome Tanner to our football club,” Mackie said. 

“Tanner is a very talented player, who will add to our midfield stocks while also having the versatility to play other positions.  

“Tanner had a number of options available to him and we’ve been impressed with the way he has handled himself throughout this period and we’re looking forward to seeing him wearing the hoops in 2023.

“We thank Jason McCartney and the Giants for the respectful and positive discussions between our clubs.”

Bruhn’s request after two seasons with GWS sparked debate over player contracts, with the current CBA holding a player to only two years.

Giants list boss Jason McCartney believes that this should be looked at, given the fact that clubs like GWS and Gold Coast are subject to youngsters leaving after two seasons due to the pull-home factor.

Now that Bruhn is locked away, Geelong will turn their eyes firmly on young pair Ollie Henry and Jack Bowes, with both requesting trades to the Cattery.

Henry, who is out of contract, wants to join older brother, Jack down the highway.

However, a deal between Collingwood and the Cats is appearing difficult, with the Pies not budging on their return for the former top 20 pick.

Geelong have initially offered pick 38, according to former recruiter Matt Rendell and is no where near enough.

Bowes on the other hand looks locked, with the midfielder and pick seven soon to be joining the Cats.

Given Gold Coast were involved in a salary dump of Bowes’ contract, the AFL, like all deals, needed to go over the terms to ensure all things were just and fair.

Geelong are expecting to split the 24-year-old’s contract worth around $1.7 million across four seasons, whilst also topping up the amount.

After the Bruhn deal, GWS are left with a strong draft hand, currently holding picks 3,12,15,18 and 19, while also keen on snaring the first selection from North Melbourne. 

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