Dustin Martin speaks on The Footy Show. Photo:Supplied
Dustin Martin speaks on The Footy Show. Photo:Supplied

Why Dustin Martin gave up $2m to remain a Tiger

DUSTIN Martin's manager Ralph Carr has revealed the Richmond star had initially decided to leave the club for North Melbourne, before loyalty prevailed.

Appearing on The Footy Show tonight, Martin said he had wrestled the decision for months.

Carr, who has driven a hard bargain with his star disciple, said Martin was out the door at Punt Rd at one point.

"This time last week he was going - well, that was the talk," Carr said.

"But you know, I mean, once we weighed everything up and really talked it through in New Zealand and looked at it correctly and Dustin looked at everything, we realised that Richmond was where we wanted to be.

"Dusty gave up over $2 million to stay."

Martin said he met with North Melbourne coach Brad Scott and the Kangaroos leadership group "a couple of times" - and that driving to the meetings "I felt like I was cheating on my girlfriend".

"I certainly thought about it (the Kangaroos' offer)," he said.

Dustin Martin re-signs: Tigers get their man
Dustin Martin re-signs: Tigers get their man

"It was a stressful year ... I was wrestling with myself."

Martin said he decided to accept Richmond's $8 million contract offer while in New Zealand early this week.

"We flew over to see Dad, got a hotel room, bunked up in there and just put it all out on the table and had lengthy conversations and spoke about what I wanted and what would be best for my future. Within an hour or two we had a decision.

"There were plenty of conversations but in the end Richmond's home to me.

"The Richmond Football Club has been great to me and we're on an incredible journey together, and I've just got such great relationships at that football club.

"This is my dream. Hopefully we can win the flag."

Martin said Richmond's army of supporters played a role in his decision.

"After I kicked a goal (last weekend) they were going crazy and I just thought, 'How good is this?'."

Martin said he was living his dream at the Tigers.

"I was talking to someone last week, you know, talking about things and she goes, 'What did you dream about when you were little, think about that'," Martin said, "and, yeah, this is my dream. I'm living my dream," Martin said.

"Hopefully we can win the flag but, to be playing football now in the MCG in front of screaming fans, it's pretty special."

Martin also revealed he had discussed his contract saga with retired Magpie Dane Swan during the year.

"He was a great support."

He paid tribute to Carr, saying "if I didn't have him I'd probably p--- it all up against the wall".


Dustin Martin's father Shane Martin appeared live on the Footy Show from Auckland. Photo:Channel 9

Martin's father Shane said the family environment at Richmond helped make up his son's mind.

"He's a very humble, shy kid. The Richmond Football Club's been amazing for him, especially Trent Cotchin. I can't thank him enough."

Martin Sr said he was hopeful a High Court decision next week would allow him to return to Australia to watch his son play for the Tigers.

Richmond coach Damien Hardwick said the news was "Christmas come early,"

"It's very exciting for our footy club, great news for Dustin and more importantly it's outstanding news for our fans.

"It's every players' right to look at free agency ... it's really testament to the guy he is to give up $2 million to stay with his mates and the club that he loves. We just hope we can repay him by playing good football in September."