Hawthorn boom recruit Chad Wingard says he needed to get out of his “dangerous” comfort zone at Port Adelaide in order to get the best out of himself.
Wingard, 25, sealed a deadline day move to the Hawks after requesting a trade from the Power after a successful seven-year stint.
The dual All-Australian denied claims from Port Adelaide list boss Chris Davies that he became complacent during his final season at Alberton.
“You need to be challenged, you need to have that drive and I did have that drive all year,” Wingard said.
“When you don’t perform as well as you used to a lot of things get said about you, whether it’s true or false. My drive to be competitive and play the best footy I can has never changed.
“To be in a place where I can start fresh and make new connections…I was at Port for seven years and very comfortable with where I was at and I think that can be dangerous place to be.
“This is very uncomfortable for me to be in Melbourne playing in another team and I think that’s the right challenge that I need.”
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After seeing a host of players arrive at Hawthorn and immediately improve under the tutelage of Alastair Clarkson, Wingard feels the four-time premiership coach can take his game to a new level.
“You sometimes have to take the emotion out of what is actually going on,” Wingard added.
“What do you value in your career? Whether that’s money or whether that’s success – that’s the reason why I came to Hawthorn, because I’ve seen how successful they’ve been in the last two decades.
“I’ve seen Alastair Clarkson and the players that have come here have really improved their game and that’s pretty much the only reason why I came here, is because I’ve seen the players who have come here have really enjoyed it.”
Wingard played 147 games for Port, booting 232 goals.