Show Me The Money is a Stan original documentary series that follows some of the biggest AFL player agents in the country. This series best serves as an insight into the emotion and the human aspect of the business, during the AFL trade and draft periods.
Allowing never before seen access to conversations and dealings between players, club and player agents. This action filled three part documentary follows some of the dominant AFL management firms: Connor Sports Management, Hemisphere Management Group, Players Ink and Corporate Sports Australia.
“The storylines are very, very human, and I think anybody who is into great storytelling… and especially if you like your sport… you’re going to enjoy it a lot.”Show Me The Money Co-Creator Cos Cardone speaking on ‘A Current Affair’
Show Me The Money brings the audience into the most hectic time of the year, as players attempt to move clubs and young men are vying to be drafted.
The AFL landscape is continuously evolving, becoming more and more of a profession each season. If you follow AFL you will have an opinion on the power dynamic between player and club, I personally believe that it now favours the player, as players are more in control of their careers than ever.
Following the 2021 AFL Trade Period we see the relationship between player and agent, player and club, and club and agent. These relationships are instantly tested after the last AFL grand final sounds, and players and clubs outline their intentions for the 2022 season.
I found it really interesting to watch players and agents discuss their future, allowing you to see how and why a player would want to move clubs. I was surprised at how big a role the player agent has in orchestrating said moves.
There are two players whose stories were more captivating and just more human rather than others. I believe that these two stories provide a glimpse of the emotion that emerges within the business of the AFL trade period.
The most interesting story to come out of Show Me The Money is Luke Dunstan’s willingness to retire early and move on from AFL footy.
As a delisted free agent and wantaway midfielder, Dunstan is the first to share his eagerness to make a move elsewhere from current club St Kilda.
“I’d rather go get a job and move on…. it feels good not knowing I have to go back and put up with it.”Luke Dunstan
With a potential job outside of playing AFL in construction lined up, Dunstan’s agent Robbie D’Orazio says he is too good for another job.
“Mate, you’re too good not to be playing AFL next year… it would be absolutely ridiculous if you’re not on a list next year.”Robbie D’Orazio
Dunstan like many ‘normal’ people hated his job, and although talented enough to keep playing was willing to retire early. The notion that a player would rather give up his professional athlete status to work on tools at just 26 year old is crazy to think.
Following negotiations with several clubs, D’Orazio helps orchestrates a move that sees Dunstan find a home with the Melbourne Demons on a two year deal.
“One of the best parts of my job is getting players and making them happy, putting a smile back on their face.”Robbie D’Orazio
As rumours swirl, it’s clear that the 21 year old has made a late call to move on from the Giants and find a Victorian home and support in the next stage of his personal life in fatherhood.
Left to help coordinate a move, Hill’s manager Andrew McDougall fields calls to the clubs involved as it becomes more apparent the Giants are not interested in finding a deal.
I found this situation very intriguing, the emotion inspired desire is rejected as the club regards Hill as too ‘valuable’ to give up. Already knowing the outcome prior to the documentary, it left me wondering what’s next for Hill? How does he come back next season to the club? It is really hard not to feel for him in this situation.
At just 21 years old Hill is expected to come back to the club, raise his child in Sydney without the added support that instigated his move to Victoria.
As the clock runs down and the Trade Period ends, McDougall is left to bare the devastating news to a visibly upset Hill.
“It’s not good man… Jase (GWS Giants head of football) is not letting you go.”Andrew McDougall
The two moments I have focused on here provided an often unspoken and deeper insight into the AFL world, they are very human. As an outsider to professional sports it is interesting to see players living their dream job, although unhappy with their situation and surroundings, it is something that an everyday person can relate to.
After a gloomy ending to the Trade period, the three part docu-series ends on a high as all eyes turn to the draft prospects, it is very fun to see the anticipation, excitement and relief, as young men fulfil their dream, hearing their name called out on Draft night.
Showcasing the emotion behind the scenes of the AFL Trade and Draft periods, lifting the lid on the role the AFL player agent plays in the wheeling and dealing of players, I think that Show Me The Money is well worth the watch.
Show Me The Money is available to watch now, exclusively on Stan.