This latest story about the Panthers is a continuation of demonising the Panthers by almost everyone prior to and since winning the GF
Granted some of the comments have been justified but i am a little troubled by the targeting of Cleary in particular.
Sure we may have been brash in some of the players antics through the year, call that youthful exhuberance but again Cleary has been heavily targeted for some time.
Its up to the senior executive group at Panthers to work diligently with the NRL in how they begin to reshape the relationship.
Broadly on the players, dumb is probably a word that covers their actions and why they ever allow anyone into a room with a phone, camera or any other recording device is beyond me.
Shame is, the dumb actions of a few pulls those who might not have done anything into the mess.
Cleary imo needs to take sometime to reflect and quickly think about his future and how he wants to be remembered.
He has it all and could leave a wonderful legacy or through dumb actions could put a potentially wonderful career at risk.
There are a few others in the squad who should also reflect.
On May in particular, not sure what lies ahead for him and what more Panthers can do for him.
The NRL penalties are quiet a sad condemnation and imo was big over reaction to some dumb actions of players.
Its hard to line up what actually is worse in bringing the game into disrepute
Storm players acting like morons doing drugs?
A Warriors player admitting to having drugs?
A Parramatta player who feigns a crusher tackle only to spring to his feet and want to fight?
Yet they zeroed into Panthers players carrying a trophy in a pram and damaging a trophy
setting aside the May social media post…are we kidding ourselves suggesting carrying a trophy in a pram is bringing the game into disrepute?
Hence my worry about the laser like focus on the Panthers.
If Cleaty (Ivan) and the Executive team do not work quickly to resolve this focus on the Panthers it could burden this squad not just for next year but for years and along the way cut short what may be brilliant careers for many in this squad.
Maybe we may see some players like May moved on to save the larger group.