DOB: 6 June 1950
From: Bentleigh/McKinnon YC
Captain - 1977 - 1978
Best and Fairest - 1971, 1976
Brownlow Medal runner up - 1972
Victorian state representative - 1973, 1977, 1978, 1979 (5 games)
150 Heroes selection
Life Member - 1978
Team of the Century - Emergency
Reserves premiership player - 1969
MFC Hall of Fame - 2001
Games: 224 (267 total)
Goals: 251 (275 total)
Statistical categories led:
Most disposals in a game : 48 - Round 13, 1980
Equal most kicks in a game: 35 - Round 13, 1980
Most goals in jumper 11
Most goals in jumper 50
Most career kicks : 4280
Most career free kicks for : 694
A Demon fan as a kid, Wells had the good fortune to grow up in the heart of Melbourne's recruiting zone. When he made it to the VFL he had a sensational debut, kicking four goals against the top of the table Blues. The blonde rover/centreman soon demonstrated his compact skills at the highest level.
Nuggety and durable, Wells was a good mark for his size, a prolific kick winner and accurate with his disposal.
By his third season he had won a Best and Fairest, and in 1972 the Demon with the tigerish approach ran second to Len Thompson in the Brownlow. Some claimed he bleached his hair to attract umpire's attention, but Wells strongly denied it and said the colour was due to the effects of a summer in the surf.
Wells threatened to quit the club after Ian Ridley was sacked as coach at the end of 1973. He trained with Subiaco and had talks with Sturt and Norwood but eventually agreed on increased terms and stayed with the club. In 1975 Carlton tried to trade "six or seven" players for Wells but were unsuccessful in their bid.
Wells wanted to play finals, and with Melbourne regularly out of contention he had to cross to Carlton to achieve that goal. After originally asking for a clearance to North Melbourne before the 1980 season started he then underwent a protracted wrangle to join the Blues midway through that season.
In late May it was reported that his playing career was in doubt due to a knee injury and that he would have to take a rest from the game, but by July a deal was on the cards for him to be swapped to the Blues for Alan Mangels. The swap collapsed when Mangels declared that he wanted to be traded to Geelong instead. Carlton paid $35,000 up front but in February 1981 Melbourne launched Supreme Court action claiming Carlton was in breach of the agreement when they agreed to let Mangels join the Cats instead. The clubs then agreed on a $70,000 fee plus Rod Ashman but issues with Ashman's contract and a disinterest in playing for the club saw them change tack again. The clubs eventually settled on a $35,000 transfer fee and two players - Vin Catoggio and Michael Young. Wells played in Carlton's premiership team that year, and remained with the Blues until retiring at the end of 1982 when he missed out on their premiership side.
After his playing career ended Wells returned to Melbourne as chairman of selectors. He served as an Assistant and coached the Reserves from 1986 to the end of 1988. At the end of that year he was on the shortlist for the vacant Sydney job but was passed over.
Also selected for the 1975 interstate team but didn't play.
Later Wells claimed the deal was done without his knowledge in June 1980, and suggested in 10/07/1980 Inside Football that the price had been $100k, and Inside Football 17/07/1980 says $140k. Age 02/07/1980 says the price was $100k.