By Mark St John August 31, 2016 THE BULLDOGS are no closer to winning a premiership since the day they hired Des Hasler and it is probably time club and coach parted ways. When former Bulldogs CEO Todd Greenberg headhunted Hasler back in 2011, he did so on the back of a promise that the premiership would return to Belmore. Hasler had just won his second premiership as coach of the Manly Sea Eagles and was considered one, if not the, best coach in the NRL. Fast forward five years and despite making two grand finals in 2012 and 2014, the Bulldogs now look further from their first title since 2004 than ever. Make no mistake, Hasler is an excellent coach but the problem with his tenure at the Bulldogs is that he has failed to evolve his side’s style of play to suit the ever changing competition. Which is strange because Hasler has always been such an innovator – just take a look at the way he initially transformed the club when he took the reins back in 2012. He gave the forwards more responsibility in the playmaking department, and boy did it pay dividends. The tactic was a revelation as the Dogs stormed to a grand final in Hasler’s first year in charge on the back of a massive pack who had the ability to play at and through the line. But here we are four years on and that is still the Dogs’ go-to play. What’s happened to Des the innovator? The good sides have clearly figured them out. Just take a look at their record against the elite sides this year – in six attempts against top four opposition the Bulldogs have enjoyed just one win. One win. Half a decade at the helm of a club is more than enough time to mould a squad to your liking capable of getting the job done. However, he hasn’t got the job done – simple as that. And it’s fair to say the Bulldogs look the least threatening side in the finals. They might be good for an arm wrestle but that will get you only so far in September. Five-eighth Josh Reynolds is a true competitor but struggles to get his backline going at times and doesn’t have the playmaking skills to make the players around him better. Moses Mbye looked like the next big thing last season but has regressed in his development this year and seems to be a victim of the forward-dominated approach that suffocates his unique skill set. In Brett Morris the Dogs have a true finisher but the tactics Hasler employs makes it hard for his workmen-like backs to consistently create the opportunities necessary for Morris to shine. In 2012 Hasler’s ball playing big men were a thing of beauty and a real game changer . . . but the game has moved on. If Greenberg’s 2011 promise of a premiership is to come to fruition sooner rather than later, then maybe it is is time Hasler moved on.