The question was “what do the AFL gain”. I didn’t suggest they are orchestrating the deal but they do gain from the outcome so its possible they could exert pressure on the club to see the deal done. We know this is how they operate. As you point out they are happy to corrupt the draft to benefit Sydney so they obviously have an interest in their success.
Its easier to appear well run when you are gifted advantage. FFS give Dodoro a mil extra to spend & a few top 5 draft picks for a handful of later picks & he’d be a farkin genius.