Smith suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee early in Adelaide’s qualifying final win against Greater Western Sydney.
The All-Australian half-back will miss the rest of the finals and likely all of next season.
Smith’s teammate Daniel Talia says the Crows will recast their side for their home preliminary final next Friday night, against the winner of tonight’s Geelong/Sydney clash.
Talia nominated Paul Seedsman and David Mackay, who both featured on the wing in the victory against the Giants, to be redeployed at half-back.
“We have got a couple of options, we have got some guys on a wing who have played through half-back in Paul Seedsman and David Mackay and we can probably roll them through back there,” Talia said.
Seedsman appears to have been the beneficiary of some atypically good timing; having missed last year’s finals after injury, and had his season cruelled through chronic hip and groin complaints, he has returned to fitness – and form – in the nick of time to fill the void for his lookalike Smith.
The former Magpie – who played only his third senior game for 2017 in the qualifying final against GWS – told the club’s website his opportunity to play a major part in the Crows’ September campaign was bittersweet.
“I was on the bench (during the win over the Giants) and I saw Brodie sitting behind me. I looked at him and he said, ‘No, no I’m all good’,” he said.
“Straight away I knew he wasn’t… I saw the ice on his knee. Obviously, I didn’t know the extent and was hoping for the best.
“It does take away a little bit from the win. You’re through to a prelim and I’ve never played in a prelim before, so you’re thinking ‘How good’s this?’ and then you look over and one of your good mates and one of the stars of the team is down.
“You feel a bit sick, but I guess we have to look at it that it opens up an opportunity and hopefully I can play that role for the team if need be.”
Talia said the absence of Smith, among the best rebounding defenders in the competition, was a “huge loss”.
“I really feel for him because it’s a tough one, playing for three or four years now and being a part of this group where we have built and built,” he said.
“And to get to the point where we might have a crack at it and miss out, it’s shattering for him. But he has been really positive.”
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