I Don’t Want The Penrith Panthers To Sign Russell Packer

For those of you that don’t know already, I am a very jaded, very cynical, damaged Penrith Panthers supporter. Now that is out of the way, lets get on to the business at hand.

The Daily Telegraph is reporting that the Penrith Panthers are considering signing current prisoner Russell Packer in 2015.

Russell Packer played under Ivan Cleary at the New Zealand Warriors. Now Cleary finds himself coaching the Penrith Panthers, and while the Telegraph suggest Cleary would welcome Packer to the club, it seems Phil Gould is a little more cautious.

I rated Russell Packer when he played for the Warriors. Yes, there was that infamous incident where Packer was caught urinating all over himself in the middle of an NRL field and on camera, but aside from that, Packer was the type of player that could make an impact in the game.

As a Panthers supporter though, I don’t like the idea of bringing any sort of trouble or controversy to the club. When the side runs out on the field I want to be able to support them unreservedly. I don’t want to see player in the side who I wouldn’t want kids to be able to look up to.

Does that mean you lose a talent in Packer and are a lesser team for it? Maybe. I’m willing to accept that though if it means the Panthers look to avoid these type of players that bring baggage to a club.

There is a train of thought in Rugby League that if you do a crime, you do the time, and then everything goes back to normal. The problem is, Rugby League doesn’t exist in a vacuum. People remember these sort of things. They remember what players have done in the past and they never let go of it.

Its human nature. I’m not going to say its wrong for people to remember a persons past mistakes. Sometimes that sort of thing helps you avoid problems in the future.

All of a sudden here we are talking about the Panthers and not talking about the football. We are talking about off field crap that I just don’t want my team to have to deal with.

I think any time a club needs to almost apologise as it is announcing it has signed a player, that is probably a red flag right there.

Liked it? Take a second to support League Freak on Patreon!
Become a patron at Patreon!

5 thoughts on “I Don’t Want The Penrith Panthers To Sign Russell Packer

  1. Dude, i think your a bit full of yourself, ill give you an example or two.The Johns brothers, 1 accused of gang rape the other caught with ecstasy and then caught being a racist. Where are these guys now? 1 has his own show and the other is on a lot of other tv shows. Great league role models? They obviously got a second chance so i think Russell if given the chance should get one and if Ivan sees something in him…then why not

    1. First of all, if you would like to go back through Rugby League history with me and find out where I personally draw the line, by all means, lets do it.

      I am not the NRL. I am not previous NRL administrations. I don’t enforce the rules. That does not mean that I can’t hold an opinion as to where the line in the sand should be on who is allowed to play the game.

      You’ve randomly singled out the Johns brothers, which is fine.

      Matthew Johns was never charged with a crime. In fact, I don’t even know that any sort of official complaint of any kind was made against him or anyone else out of that incident.

      I wasn’t there, so I have to go by what the police do. They did nothing. That is all I can go by.

      Andrew Johns was retired when he got caught with drugs at a random check in London. The racist comments he made about Greg Inglis were a disgrace and if you search this web site I’m sure you will find what I had to say about them were stronger than anything else anyone said at the time.

      One again, I’m not Channel 9. I’m not these clubs or teams that made the decision to bring him back into the fold.

      I do need to point this key fact out however…

      Russell Packer was found guilty in a court of law of assault occasioning actual bodily harm. The court found that Packer bashed a man unconscious and then, and he pay motionless on the ground, stomped on his face.

      You want to give the benefit of the doubt to someone like that? You want someone like that to get a “second chance” to represent the club, and the game?

      Fuck that!

      He could have killed the person! If you don’t draw the line here…where do you draw it!

  2. Hi League Freak.

    I’m the new guy so, forgive me for being forward.

    Thanks for you well reasoned and intelligent post.

    As a tragic Sharks supporter, I share your views on my club signing up players that could bring us into disrepute in the wider community.

    I am glad you did stress the point that R.P. was convicted in a court of law. In my view, this is a fair and reasonable bench mark.

    1. It basically has to be the benchmark. I wish the game could be tougher but it is very black and white once the court system has seen the evidence at hand and decided to act. That makes it a lot easier for the game.

  3. First all foremost, will the National Rugby League allow Packer to be registered once his jail time is done?

    They did reject a registration of Blake Ferguson and you would think with the Intergrity Committee that someone like Packer would be under the microscope closer because of his off-field dramas.

Leave a Reply