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Laird unfazed by tag talk

Lee Gaskin, AFL Media  September 19, 2017 2:07 PM

Rory Laird Presser September 19 Crows Defender Rory Laird speaks to the media ahead of the sides Prelim final against the Cats on Friday night.
AFL 2017 Round 20 - Adelaide v Port Adelaide

Rory Laird

Adelaide defender Rory Laird says he can handle whatever Geelong throws at him in Friday night's Preliminary Final at Adelaide Oval.

Laird will get more attention from the opposition after attacking half-back flanker Brodie Smith tore his ACL in the Crows' Qualifying Final win against Greater Western Sydney.

"I'll take it as a compliment," Laird said on Tuesday.

"I'm just there to play my role and the most important thing is getting the win.

"I couldn't care how many touches or how much they get into me, as long as we win the game."

Laird was restricted to just 15 possessions in the Qualifying Final, well down on his season average of 29.4 per game, with Giants forward Matt De Boer restricting his influence.

"It was something new to me, I haven't had too much of that," Laird said.

"It's not necessarily all about me, it's making sure we get our structures right and do the things to help each other out or worrying about myself.

"It was good for me and I can build on that."

Preliminary Final preview: Crows v Cats

Crows forward Mitch McGovern trained away from the main group at Adelaide Oval on Tuesday morning and remains highly unlikely to be fit for the Preliminary Final as he recovers from a hamstring injury.

The Preliminary Final will also double as Laird's 100th game for the Crows – a milestone the unassuming 23-year-old is more than happy is flying under the radar.

"I don't mind it actually, having my 100th in a prelim," he said.

"It's pretty hard to think about yourself when it's such a big event and it's just really exciting to be playing in that game.

"I don't mind it like that - it gets brushed aside, which is nice."

Cats superstar Patrick Dangerfield won't have the same luxury in front of a full house of more than 50,000 Crows supporters.

Dangerfield has been the talk of the town all week after booting four goals in the first half of the Cats' semi-final win over Sydney last Friday night.

The former Crows Club Champion started the game at full-forward, but Laird is backing lockdown small defender Luke Brown to hold his own if that match-up eventuates.

"(Brown) takes the most dangerous small forward for the opposition side and it just seems to happen every week that they don't get the ball and they don't kick any goals and he just goes under the radar a lot and he's finding the footy a lot more this year," Laird said.

"I don't know how much more you want from a small back pocket, but he's just an unbelievable player.

"We call him 'The Glove' because he doesn't give you any space, so he's very good."