Damien Hardwick is "confident" out-of-contract star Liam Baker will commit his AFL future to Richmond despite overtures from his home state.
Baker, 24, is enjoying a career-best season and is the subject of strong interest from West Coast, who the Tigers host at the MCG on Sunday.
Richmond legend Matthew Richardson this week urged his club to re-sign the 173cm dynamo as soon as possible.
Hardwick - who laughed when he called on list manager Blair Hartley to "pay the man" during his weekly press conference - believes it will get done.
"Look, I'm confident," the three-time premiership coach said on Thursday.
"He's such an important player both on and off the field. He's a superstar.
"He's a guy that we brought across (to Victoria) as a rookie, he'd been overlooked in a few drafts but just has been an outstanding player.
"He's one of those guys - there's not many of them - as soon as you see Liam you start smiling.
"He's just one of those people that makes you feel great about life."
The versatile Baker has been in superb form when given more midfield time in recent weeks, averaging more than 25 disposals a game since round nine.
He will command a vastly improved contract than the one-year extension he triggered last season.
Speaking soon after Clayton Oliver inked a new seven-year deal with Melbourne, Hardwick said there is a risk associated with long-term contracts.
But he also praised Oliver's loyalty to his club in what appeared to be a not-so-subtle pointer to the decision the Tigers would like Baker to make.
"There's always a risk but great players are great players," Hardwick said.
"They're really hard to find and you want to keep them.
"Seven years is a long time but he (Oliver) is a fantastic player and they don't lose ability overnight.
"He's going to be a great player for a period of time and is to be applauded for staying at the one club."
Australian Associated Press
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