Dean Kent has seemingly been left behind by the Demons as they’ve risen up the ladder, pushed out by other players with similar roles.
His best year was in 2016, when over 20 games he rated as the 9th most valuable player at the Demons in PAV terms. That was also the one season where he poked his head above the 0 marginal PAV (mPAV) mark, denoting a player who was among the minority of players who rated as above average in per-game value.
Since 2016, Kent’s fortunes have declined, playing 5 and 6 senior games in the last two years. He spent the time bouncing between the seniors and Casey, with both seasons were ended with shoulder injuries.
Given he was playing in round 23 this year when he was injured, he would have likely stayed in the side for finals, but Kent saw Melbourne’s depth with their midfield rotation and asked for a move away from the club.
The trade seems unfairly weighted to the Dees in ratio teams due to the pessimistic outlook for Kent, but the projected future outputs are low enough that a ratio isn’t a good guide. The gap in projections, 8 PAVs, is two-thirds of Kent’s best season.
The valuation suggests players with Kent’s recent output don’t generally project to have much future value. Indeed, the 20 most similar players to Kent produced an average future output of 15 PAVs, however with some notable outliers.
Similarly, pick 65 is late enough to be speculative, but still in a range that is usually taken as a live pick, and picks in that range can produce some talent.
The one quality season Kent has produced so far suggests St Kilda may be buying low for a player who has demonstrated he can contribute in a mid-table side, but this is still a speculative leap of a trade.
Verdict: Fair trade. Low values all round, notionally weighted to Melbourne, but it doesn’t matter.
Note: This post is part of a series of posts using a valuation method called Player Approximate Value (PAV) to evaluate trades for fairness and balance. Elsewhere, you can read much more about the method and theory behind PAV and also about PAPLEY, the projection method used to derive expected future PAVs. This method expresses both picks and players in terms of expected future value allowing them to be compared on this common basis.