Or so says captain Phil Davis, who believes the club’s star recruit has covered the final remaining hole in the club’s star-studded roster and turned them into flag favourites.
“If you look at our list and how it’s been building, our weakest spot so far in terms of experience has been our forward line,” Davis said yesterday at the Giants’ season launch.
“To get Stevie Johnson last year, and Brett this year, we’ve been able to add to that area and hopefully having more experience the board, we can confront all situations and get results.”
By results, Davis means improvement. And by improvement, he means better than last year’s agonising preliminary final loss to eventual premiers Western Bulldogs.
And it’s in the front third that Davis has identified that the side is in most need.
Enter the 29-year-old Deledio, whom Davis hinted would split his time in the midfield and attack, drawing on all 243 games he played at Richmond.
With a forward line that already boasts the likes of Toby Greene, Devon Smith, Jeremy Cameron and Johnathan Patton, Deledio’s addition makes the Giants even more deadly.
“You can immediately see why he’s one of the game’s greats when he’s up and going, especially through that midfield and forward of centre,” Davis said.
“Obviously his skills are fantastic but he’s a great specimen – elite speed, a big and strong man as well. He’s been able to show already what he’s going to bring into the side.
“But we’ve got a lot of work to do. It’s very hard to get in the same position we did last year, but we don’t want to bow out in that position again. So more improvement is needed.”
Davis confirmed key pair Shane Mumford and Johnson were both on track for the club’s season-opening clash against Adelaide following pre-season surgery.
Mumford recently went under the knife to fix an elbow issue, while Johnson bizarrely aggravated a finger injury while searching for his phone in his bag.
“The great thing is they both had upper body issues, which means you can get the running into your legs and kick the ball,” Davis said.
“Stevie’s been able to train the last few weeks and Mummy’s done a bit as well. Within the next couple of weeks, they’ll be coming back through and they’ll be perfect in time for the JLT Cup.”
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