North Melbourne coach Brad Scott says talk that his AFL team is tanking to earn the No.
1 draft pick is laughable and they will be doing all they can to keep their impressive record against Melbourne alive in Hobart on Saturday.
An understrength Kangaroos fell to Essendon last round for their seventh straight loss to languish in second-last spot on the ladder.
But Scott said he wouldn’t trade a winning culture for a top draft pick and pointed to the team’s solid recent record overall as proof.
“It has been dismissed because it is absolutely laughable,” Scott said.
“You could get offended because it does question your integrity to an extent, but it has just been so far removed from fact that I don’t want to engage too much in it, other than to say it is absolutely untrue.
“We want to create a winning culture and that’s always what our club’s been about and if you look back through our recent history, we’ve fought really hard.
“I know people will think the No.1 draft pick would be nice … but the difference between pick one, two, three and four – well, that’s in the eye of the beholder, anyway.”
In Scott’s eight years at the helm the Kangaroos have only missed the finals three times and, on each occasion, they won their last game of the year.
He said he had players he could send for early surgery but planned to play them until the end of the season in the hope of securing more wins.
A loss to Melbourne – a team the Kangaroos boast a 16-match winning streak against dating back to 2007 – would be their worst run of results since 1984.
Given the weakness of the Demons over much of that period Scott said he couldn’t read too much into the decade-long streak.
“When it stretches back that far it’s largely irrelevant,” he said.
“I think Melbourne have changed their coach and I don’t think there would be many players still involved.”