Manly have a significant issue brewing in their ranks with five-eighth Blake Green, who is due back at training tomorrow. And it all stems from the way his agent Isaac Moses has been dealing with the club.
To say Sea Eagles coach Trent Barrett and the Manly management are unhappy with Moses' antics is an understatement. It's similar to the situation with Mitchell Moses when he was at the Tigers and the manager wanted to shift him to Parramatta.
It became an unworkable situation at the Tigers and this is reaching a similar level.
The unfortunate thing is that Green is the one whose reputation is suffering. Green is saying things to Manly that are positioning him as a player who wants out of the club.
Moses was the one pushing for the Eagles to sign Matt Moylan a few weeks back. He rang Manly to ensure they were chasing Moylan, a player he doesn't act for.
For weeks now Moses has wanted to engineer a move to the Warriors for Green. There is a rich long-term deal waiting for Green across the ditch.
Yes, it's understandable that Moses wants to do this. Firstly, because it's a good pay packet for him and his client. Secondly, because it helps out another of his clients, Warriors coach Stephen Kearney. Green could then team up with fellow Moses clients Adam Blair and Gerard Beale, who have secured long deals that, in Blair's case, have the potential the hurt the Warriors down the track.
Rival teams and managers are questioning the Moses connection at the Warriors and if Green, 31, secures a long-term deal, the noises will only get louder.
It was Moses who came to Manly with the idea of moving Green on, and now the Sea Eagles are being forced to defend themselves against accusations they wanted to get rid if Green.
The former Parramatta, Cronulla, Canterbury, Hull, Wigan and Storm five-eighth is valued, at least in the short-term, by the Sea Eagles. His style of play complements the way Daly Cherry-Evans plays.
It would be a brave move by the Sea Eagles to let Green go without a replacement. In fact, the board will ask questions of team management if they don't have a Mitchell Pearce lined up to replace Green.
Moylan, meanwhile, is due at Sharks training this week and he will look for a property in the coming weeks. We are hearing he will live with Andrew Fifita and his family in the short-term. The two are close mates and will be quite the combination next season.
Simona eyes NRL return. Seriously
Tim Simona has taken a significant step towards trying to restart his playing career, signing on with a new manager, Sam Ayoub.
Simona did the deal a couple of weeks ago and Ayoub is of the belief that he can reignite the career of the former Tiger.
Another chance: Disgraced Wests Tigers centre Tim Simona. Photo: Jonathan Ng
We get that people deserve second chances, but it's hard to forget what Simona did to a children's cancer charity, what he did to his teammates by betting on games involving his own club and what he did to his former partner, Jaya Taki.
Ayoub doesn't shirk a challenge, but this is right up there. The NRL won't be in any hurry to let Simona come back.
Speaking of banned league figures, former Roosters recruitment official Peter O'Sullivan is being linked to a return to the NRL. He was expelled from the game because of his links with Eddie Hayson. There is considerable chatter that he will re-emerge at the Warriors. O'Sullivan is considered one of the best talent spotters in the business.
The Jack Bird shoulder injury spat between the Broncos and the Sharks is a good stink. Wayne Bennett basically said the Sharks handed Bird over as damaged goods. The Sharks say Bennett is way out of line.
Long-brewing spat: Jack Bird. Photo: NRL Imagery
But where did it all start? It's this column's understanding that Bird contacted the Broncos to raise concerns about the state of his shoulder.
Whatever the case, the Sharks v Broncos in round 15 next year is going to be one hell of a game. Other than the Bird factor, there is an intense dislike between the coaches. Bennett and Sharks mentor Shane Flanagan don't get on at all and the Bird fallout is just the latest chapter.
RISE and shine
The standard set by the Kangaroos is a tribute to coach Mal Meninga and his staff. There was a time when the pride in the jumper wasn't what it is today and Meninga wanted to make a difference. They invoked the RISE principle: respect, inspire, selfless, excellence.
And they have done so much more. The players are scored in several areas by team management. They are expected to get at least 8/10 for the areas they are judged on. And those who have been dragging the chain are asked why and put on notice.
Setting the standard: Cam Smith, Cooper Cronk and Billy Slater. Photo: NRL Imagery
The likes of Cameron Smith, Boyd Cordner, Billy Slater and Cooper Cronk are, not surprisingly, those setting the standard. It's a professional outfit.
The most harrowing story of the week was the death of two children after a car ploughed into a school at Greenacre. It touched everyone, including the local football team, the Bulldogs.
Without fanfare new coach Dean Pay and club legend Terry Lamb turned up to pay their respects (pictured below). They don't want praise, but it was good to see them showing concern. Well done to the pair of them and the Dogs club.
The Kangaroos embrace the culture of the team they are playing in the lead-up to their games. And they loved the Lebanese night they had on Monday night. Josh Mansour led the lads in their dancing and drum playing education.
"I was nervous because I knew all the eyes would be on me," he said. "And the drum playing didn't go well at my wedding, I broke it. But I was really impressed with the boys."
From the vision we saw of the night, David Klemmer had some great footwork, Aaron Woods got into the culture and Josh Dugan and Mal Meninga showed they could really bust a move.
James Maloney's decision to pull out of the Test against France for personal reasons has led to many unfair and unfounded rumours about one of the game's genuinely decent blokes.
This column knows what led to his withdrawal from the game and it's far from controversial. It's a genuine family issue and all involved deserve privacy.
The Panthers were hoping to officially announce Maloney's signing on Thursday, but the key third-party sponsorship that got him over the line was delayed.
Late withdrawal: James Maloney. Photo: NRL imagery
Matt Moylan had a sponsor, Keno, and the deal is believed to be worth somewhere in the order of $200,000. It's understood that sponsorship may be heading the way of Maloney.
The issue has been that executives doing the deal have been tied up in the world of racing. Melbourne Cup week is a massive event for people in the gambling industry. It's understandable they have other things on their minds.
Maloney's family has moved around a lot for his career and they are already eyeing off homes in the Penrith area.
Penrith general manager Phil Gould will look after the family like royalty. Gould knows Maloney is the player who could bring that winning knowledge to the Panthers in the big games. Maloney is often dismissed as a larrikin and a pest, but there is a lot more to him as a footballer. He's been in grand finals consistently throughout his career and won two titles.
When the game was on the line in last year's grand final it was a Maloney rev-up that got the team on track. The fact young playmakers Nathan Cleary, Tyrone May and Dylan Edwards are on board with Maloney's signing says the star five-eighth is a respected figure.
One of the biggest TV nights of the summer will be the World Cup final evening when Australia will take on someone in the decider. It should create an interesting ratings battle, because the Ashes pink ball Test will be shown in Adelaide at the same time. And that will be a historic event - the first time the Ashes will be played under lights. League is a huge rating sport, butnationally the Ashes has huge appeal.
The Australian league and cricket teams will be in the same city - Brisbane - for a week when the World Cup semi-final is on.
Danny Weidler is a Channel Nine news reporter.