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Funny summation of The State of Play

Discussion in 'Rugby League Forum' started by HappilyManly, Mar 21, 2015.

  1. HappilyManly

    HappilyManly MWTS Premium Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

    +11,498 / 254
    Forget it Jake, it's Chinatown – or just rugby league
    March 21, 2015 - 1:58AM
    Malcolm Knox
    Sports columnist

    If rugby league were serious about a concussion test, how many clubs would be able to field a team? Daly Cherry-Evans is going to the Gold Coast to get away from off-field instability. Ding! Kieran Foran goes to Parramatta because Anthony Watmough told him it's awesome. Ding-ding! Parramatta will pay Foran one fifth of their salary cap. Ding-ding-ding! Voldemort. Ding-a-ling-a-ling….! Wayne Bennett thinks that elite playmakers being pole-axed behind play is just normal rugby league, and anyone who thinks the laws should protect them is a "drama queen let out of the cage". Please, everyone get back in the cage together, it's safer there. When a game is permanently concussed, it's little wonder that if a player is shown two fingers and he says "Half-past-three and no sugar thanks", he is sent back on the field.

    To translate Akira Kurosawa into rugby leaguish, in a concussed world only the concussed are seeing things straight.

    The Sea Eagles have long set the standard for insanity-as-best-practice, as half a century of success proves. Surely the clearest sign that they are falling off their perch is the outbreak of prudence that has overtaken a management culture better known for giving itself uppercuts while taking a swing at that shadow behind the filing cabinet. For the past year, Manly have been steadily signing, on sensible contracts, a solid squad of juniors, up-and-comers, veterans and the kind of discards they tend to turn into gold. They released their overpaid, opinionated deadwood. They refused to value their halves at more than a million dollars each. What on earth is going on in that place? There has to be an investigation.

    Occam's Razor is the notion that the most likely explanation for anything is the most simple. You would think simplicity would come naturally to rugby league, but that is not to allow for the Concussion Rule, which states that the most byzantine, diabolic rumour will get talked about so exhaustively that it becomes reality. Hence, nobody could have guessed that Cherry-Evans-Foran-Gate might have ended with both players going to … whoever offered the most money.@:D

    Of course nobody wants to reveal Foran's dirty little secret because, one, he's a jolly good fellow and two, it would reduce six months' worth of conspiracy theories to confetti. Shock horror, Foran is going to Parramatta for the same reason league players have switched clubs since Dally Messenger joined Eastern Suburbs: because his agent has been clever enough to find a club that will spend one-fifth of its $6.5 million cap on his client. Not only that, but if reports are correct next year Parramatta will be spending close to 40 per cent of their cap on three ex-Manly players, Foran, Watmough and Will Hopoate. Even if Darcy Lussick and David "The Prince of Left-Handers" Gower went from Brookvale to the Eels on the minimum wage (and overpriced at half the cost), it makes you wonder how much the non-ex-Manly Eels are getting, and how much kava Semi Radradra will eventually be prepared to play for.

    It was only ever about the money, or its synonym, "looking after my family". That's why Manly are not holding it against their playmakers, who have been taken out as cleanly as if by Beau Scott. For Foran to have gone to Parramatta because he was tired of board politics would mean he is the one needing a concussion test. For him to have gone to Parramatta on Watmough's counsel would mean he needs an IQ test. For him to have gone to Parramatta to improve his football under better coaching only raises the question, who will be Parramatta's coaches from 2016 to 2019? For him to have gone for $1.2 million a year – well, how could he not?

    Success-starved clubs put their eggs into one basket. Gold Coast and the NRL have done the same with Cherry-Evans. Building a team around star purchases has worked for the Rabbitohs, the Roosters and the Bulldogs. Those three clubs have signed Origin or international players Greg Inglis, Sam Burgess, Sonny Bill Williams, Michael Jennings, James Maloney, James Graham, Tony Williams and Brett Morris: most of the traffic in elite talent since 2012 has been sucked in by those three clubs. The result is two premierships, four grand final appearances and three minor premierships, and probably more to come.

    Spending a million dollars a year on one player seems mad, but, as Edgar Allan Poe said, "I do not suffer from insanity; I enjoy every minute of it." For Parramatta, the awkward question arises of what they do when Jarryd Hayne comes back? I know that to doubt Hayne's NFL fairytale is to risk being handled as roughly as Thomas in the Gospel According To John. But a rookie NFL contract in March is not like other sporting contracts. As John Feinstein put it in Next Man Up, his book about the Baltimore Ravens (the football franchise named after a story by Poe), "There are no guaranteed contracts in the NFL … From the moment that [signing bonus] is cashed, contracts go in one direction: the team's." A player who signs a contract is committed to the team. On the other hand, the team is not committed to the player. "That's one reason why there is no job in professional team sports as insecure as that of an NFL player." And this is NFL players Feinstein is talking about, not 27-year-old leaguies. For Hayne to survive the San Francisco 49ers' 53-man cut this October as a running back would be a miracle, a testament to his skill and determination and to the 49ers' appetite for risk. Everyone is wishing Hayne good luck, principally because he's going to need it.

    The Eels have more reasons than most to hope he succeeds. If he doesn't get too badly hurt by 160-kilo defensive linemen jumping up and down on him, it's quite possible he will be back in the NRL, maybe even next year, and if we are to believe in his apparent free pass back to Parramatta, what will that do to their salary cap? Does Foran's contract have a Hayne clause? Will Watmough take a pay cut, because after all that's what a great bloke does for his mates? Will every contract be back-ended into the never-never? Will Will go back to Manly? The whole scheme sounds crazy, unworkable, definitely in need of an investigation, until you remember it's just rugby league.
    • Like Like x 5
  2. sheridanstand78

    sheridanstand78 Well-Known Member

    +3,302 / 51
    Perception is everything. When you look at all the drama of the last few months. I think the club has dodged bullets over the recalcitrant halves.

    The values of the team and its recent success were all about the bond that was team first and individuals second.

    The halves showed that they were only really interested in money and if clubs are prepared to pay overs thats great. The fact that the whingers now have nearly half their cap consumed by our ex players is rather ironic, A club who's culture is driven by envy and hate of our club and yet they are buying our culture. You might be able to put a ribbon on a turd but it is still a turd and that is Parramatta for you!!

    If Manly do what is needed and sign all the promising juniors to longer term deals we have a chance to build a strong team that is full of kids coming through our system who are aligned to the values of the club.
    • Like Like x 2
  3. Shoe1

    Shoe1 Well-Known Member

    +4,358 / 66
    Great article!
  4. Volley

    Volley Well-Known Member

    +559 / 15
    Knoxy's a Manly fan and usually spot on.
  5. Sheikheagle

    Sheikheagle Well-Known Member

    +831 / 51
    Yep top article puts everything into perspective
  6. Brookie Brawler

    Brookie Brawler Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

    +428 / 6
    He does make a good point though about how souffs, roosters & dogs have used the strategy of spending big money on star players and have gone from the bottom of the ladder to the top.

    Just "great salary cap management" I guess...
  7. SeaEagleRock8

    SeaEagleRock8 Sea Eagle Lach Staff Member Premium Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

    +6,620 / 118
    Someone has sure changed their tune!
  8. weev

    weev Well-Known Member

    +662 / 17
    Why don't they just admit its about the money. Foran's stated desire improve as a footballer is an insult to the club that made him a great one. So you want you improve as a footballer to be worth a million a year? Or is it 1.2 million a year?
  9. sheridanstand78

    sheridanstand78 Well-Known Member

    +3,302 / 51
    Like the more things change the more they stay the same eh?
  10. Daddycool

    Daddycool Well-Known Member

    +283 / 2
    Good Article. At least it balances out the "anti-Manly agenda" stories from most of the other league writers.

    However, it's important to remember that before the ownership (regime) change happened, Manly were prepared to spend $1 million + on DCE and build the squad around him. As good a player as he is, Manly simply can't afford to spend that kind on money on 1 player. The same goes for Foran, so did they dodge a bullet by not re-signing either? Only time will tell.
    • Like Like x 1
  11. Baz

    Baz Beaver's Headgear

    +263 / 2
    Only a Manly fan could write that eloquently, when was the last time you saw Edgar Allan Poe quoted by a league Journo?
    • Like Like x 1
  12. Wombat64

    Wombat64 Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

    Church Point
    +1,262 / 31
    Who cares why he is leaving? He just is .........
    • Like Like x 1
  13. Eagles2nv

    Eagles2nv New Team, New Beginnings 2016 Tipping Competitor

    +1,338 / 31
    Whilst it is a good point, you have to admit these clubs have also have good coaches and got the most out of some players. Its just now they hold onto all these players cause they dont have salary cap (and souffs are the new purple scum, trying to injure in every tackle).

    Dogs: signed some big money players, took Des hasler and still havnt won a premiership

    Souffs: signed GI, but offloaded sandow (who was supposedly a star at the time) and dave Taylor. But Renoylds and Keary (and sutton) came through juniors, Issac Luke got alot better under macquire (and a winning team) and the burgess boys werent superstars when they joined souffs.

    Chooks: SBW was expensive, anf turned out to be a good signing. Cant imagine maloney was cheap either, but to be fair they had lost carney at the time. But players like Pearce, Mini, RTS, SKD and Napa have all developed under the roosters. Even Maria got better at the chooks (altough he would hvae gotten better at manly aswell).

    NOTE: Chooks also have a junior policy of sign everyone else cause they cant be bothered having a proper juniors system.

    The thing that is annoying is that the NRL protects these clubs and lets them get away with salary cap murder. While were forced to offload players like gift.
  14. Chip and Chase

    Chip and Chase True Supporter Staff Member Administrator Premium Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

    +6,254 / 44
    or Occams Razor ?? He generally writes good articles and this one is a refreshing take on the situation. He's cut through all the BS nicely
    • Like Like x 3
  15. Matabele

    Matabele Well-Known Member

    +466 / 6
    Nuffies who still think Max Delmege is the messiah won't like this. Makes far too much sense.
  16. mozgrame

    mozgrame Well-Known Member

    +4,345 / 36
    "The Sea Eagles have long set the standard for insanity-as-best-practice, as half a century of success proves. Surely the clearest sign that they are falling off their perch is the outbreak of prudence that has overtaken a management culture better known for giving itself uppercuts while taking a swing at that shadow behind the filing cabinet".

    Great stuff!! Hahaha! I love this bloke!
  17. Real Deal

    Real Deal Active Member

    +103 / 3
    The last time? Never...nevermore. Thus quoth the raven. I know Choc speaks well of Poe. He thought he was the best Teletubby.
    • Like Like x 2
  18. NFN2IT

    NFN2IT Active Member

    +75 / 2
    This article makes me think of the whole situation from a different perspective and actually makes me feel better about how we are looking moving forward. Great read.
  19. JenEagle

    JenEagle Well-Known Member

    +1,608 / 41
    Foran is the biggest liar of all time. No one buys all this crap it is not about the money. 3 years ago when he graced us with this services at the last minute he said he wanted a percentage of the cap in his next deal. No idea why the officials at the club are so fooled by him.

    Ryan heard him say he was gone in a cafe 6 months ago and he also picked that foran would make the decision week 2 and say it was the hardest decision he has ever has to make etc etc.

    This forum knows more about the players contracts than penn and Kelly do.

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