Seibold, Molan team up in online fight
Big Russell Packer disappeared at halftime again and missed the Wests Tigers' moving farewell tributes to Chris Lawrence and Benji Marshall at Bankwest Stadium last weekend.
It at first appeared another bad look after the prop and utility Josh Reynolds bailed out on the team at Brookvale Oval two weeks earlier.
This time, however, there was a legitimate excuse.
Packer was still suffering from the after-effects of a heavy concussion in the 50-22 loss to Melbourne Storm on the Sunshine Coast in round 19.
At halftime in the game against Parramatta, Packer - who was watching from the clean zone - had to seek medical attention from the club doctor because of a severe headache.
He was then advised to go home and rest.
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"Russell is still getting headaches now (Friday) two weeks after the incident," said his manager, George Mimis.
"The scan earlier in the week was optimistic but he's low on energy and still getting the headaches."
Mimis doubted the injury could be career-ending, although a medical retirement would suit the Wests Tigers and free up a much-needed $700,000 in the club's salary cap.
"In 13 years of playing he's had a number of head knocks but this is the first time he's had issues," Mimis said.
"I wouldn't think his career is in jeopardy, though. "He'll see a neurologist next week if the headaches haven't gone away."
We have written 1000 stories over the years about the Canterbury Bulldogs disgracing themselves on Mad Mondays, at Coffs Harbour, Port Macquarie etc, etc. It's why this story is so special. Instead of spending Mad Monday on the drink, Bulldogs players turned up to Reverend Bill Crews' Loaves and Fishes restaurant in Ashfield to help prepare meals and feed the homeless.
Frank Puletua needs to do better in his role in charge of the NRL awards. This is the man who appointed Alan Jones as an Immortals judge … then sacked him before he even got a vote. Also, last year the Dally M award winners were leaked while the function and TV broadcast were still going. In another stuff-up, Puletua told the media in July that Nathan Cleary would lose six points for his off-field TikTok misbehaviour. Chief executive Andrew Abdo had to correct him last week.
Australia's two biggest boxing promoters, Dean Lonergan and Matt Rose, are at war. Undefeated super featherweight Liam Wilson has gone to Rose from Lonergan's stable. Wilson is regarded as a future world champ.
Which NRL official is trying to get his daughter's boyfriend a playing contract at his club despite the fact the coach is not overly keen?
Dean "Bulldog" Ritchie wandering around town as though he's an Alan Jones, Ray Hadley or Ben Fordham after a huge lift in the Weekend Big Sports Breakfast ratings. Bulldog and the world's nicest man, Ray Thomas, have gone up 28 per cent on last year's figures for their Sunday morning show.
So many NRL players start out as ball boys. Raiders coach Ricky Stuart and brother Jamie carried the sand bucket over 40 years ago for Lakes United Sharks in the Canberra comp. The team was coached by their dad, Les.
The former mayor of Gunnamatta, Marty Downs, and old league warhorse Steve Bowden at the Bundanoon Hotel.
Wests Tigers star Josh Reynolds at the V Bar in Liverpool St on Tuesday enjoying his freedom from the NRL bubble.
Ex-Broncos coach Anthony Seibold walking his dog at Manly beach and bumping into Eagles legend Phil Blake. He sure looked less stressed than two months ago.
MOLAN, SEIBOLD TAKE ON BULLIES
Channel 9 star Erin Molan and axed Broncos coach Anthony Seibold will appear on a 60 Minutes special investigation into cyber bullying.
The pair were interviewed by the current affairs show last week about their experiences of being bullied by trolls on social media.
"It's important we get our messages out there," Seibold said. "They're using us as advocates for changes to legislation to stop this from happening."
The show will go to air next Sunday and neither will be paid for the interviews.
"This isn't about money," Seibold said. "We've both had some horrible experiences in recent times.
"The laws have got to be changed. If you get caught speeding or running a red light you get punished. If you break into someone's house, you get caught and punished.
"But the social media stuff is like the old Wild West and it's got to stop.
"I'm just hoping in some small way this show can help speed up legislation changes to protect innocent people. It's something I'm really passionate about."
COOK'S OFFERING WARMS HEART
The horrible Sam Burgess allegations do untold damage to the reputation of all NRL footy players.
It's unfortunate because the vast majority do great things off the field and rarely get recognition.
Damien Cook would probably be embarrassed we're telling this story about a phone call he made last week to a youngster who was struggling emotionally.
Matthew Macbeth, 15, had witnessed his father Peter, a referee, get bashed by a player in a country rugby league game in Menindee. He watched his dad get carried off on a stretcher as police and an ambulance arrived. He was seriously rattled. Dad recovered well but Matthew struggled.
NRL boss Andrew Abdo heard the story that Matthew was a South Sydney Rabbitohs tragic. He asked Cook if he could ring the youngster.
"Damien was outstanding," Peter Macbeth said. "It has made such a difference for my son. What a great dude. In fact, the entire NRL could not have been more supportive. We are so appreciative."
AN ACE REPLACEMENT FOR CRONULLA
The Cronulla Sharks have lost major sponsor, Ace Gutters, for 2021. Rather than rush to sign a cheap replacement, the club will use the front of the jersey to promote Sharks at Kareela - the golf and licensed club they bought last year for $4.5 million. The new jumper will be available for the Christmas shopping rush.
SCO MO'S TRIBUTE TO THE WARRIORS
Prime Ministers Scott Morrison and Jacinda Ardern have thanked the New Zealand Warriors for their sacrifices this year to save the NRL season.
A video with messages from the PMs and league identities Peter V'landys, Trent Robinson, Ivan Cleary, Mitchell Pearce and Mitchell Moses was played to the team on the flight home to New Zealand last weekend.
"No team faced a tougher set of circumstances than the Warriors," Sco Mo said. "The players, coaches and staff chose to leave their families at home to come and be here throughout this season.
"Every game was an away game but the Warriors didn't complain, you just got on with it.
"Part of the reason I love the NRL is that it requires more than strength and speed. It requires heart and soul. And you guys put that out on the pitch every single week.
"I want to congratulate the Warriors. You can be so proud of your season."
V'Landys credits them for saving the game financially.
"It was absolutely imperative we had all 16 teams," he said.
"Your sacrifice will be measured for the next 20 years. You secured the financial future of the game."
CANTERBURY GEAR GOING CHEAP
The poor old Bulldogs are virtually giving away their old footy jerseys.
The leftovers that still have Kia on the front as major sponsor are down from $159.99 to just $39 at Peter Wynn Score.
TORN BICEP A KO BLOW TO FIGHT
Old Sharks warhorse Paul Gallen has lost another opportunity to fight UFC Warrior Mark Hunt.
This is a fight they've talked about for two years - but delayed by contract disagreements, COVID and now a torn bicep.
Promoter Matt Rose had secured a deal with the heavyweights to fight on the Tim Tszyu undercard in Sydney in early December. Contracts were signed.
Gallen suffered the injury while sparring yesterday morning. It will require surgery and put him out of business for the rest of the year.
Gallen was hoping to fight Sonny Bill Williams after the Hunt bout.
Rose had tentatively booked Bankwest Stadium for Tszyu's next fight but will move to a smaller venue now Gallen v Hunt is off.
BOXING SHOCK: DANIEL IS DONE
Boxer Daniel Lewis, the promising fighter who once beat Tim Tszyu as an amateur, has shocked the sport by deciding to retire.
Lewis was about to get a shot at Tszyu and the biggest pay packet of his career. He phoned his manager Peter Mitrevski jnr last week to break the news.
Promoter Matt Rose is now looking at new options for Tszyu.
Originally published as Saint, Sinner, Shoosh: Seibold, Molan team up in online fight