One wonders what NRL Clubs thought when confronted with the fact that one of the wisest and most successful coaches going around in Wayne Bennett decides to release Ben Barba from the remaining two years of his contract with the Brisbane Broncos.
Like me, smart clubs would have ignored the fact that Barba was on the market.
Not the Cronulla Sharks though, or a number of other clubs for that matter who all showed an interest in the full back once Bennett gave Barba his marching orders.
Forget for the moment that the club from the Shire will be his third team in three years or that Barba had a really ordinary season for the Broncos in 2014 or that the Broncos were so eager to rid themselves of Barba that they were prepared to pay half his salary with his new team or that the player has self confessed gambling and alcohol problems or that he failed to complete a rehabilitation course ordered by Canterbury in 2013.
But return if you will to season 2013, when Barba was in a Canterbury jersey. For those with short memories, he was released on compassionate grounds from the balance of his contract at the end of that season and was headed to the Broncos because of their well regarded welfare program. The catalyst for the release on that occasion was an alleged incident where Barba struck a female companion.
One would have thought the lessons of history would have taught Cronulla well given the union with the troubled Todd Carney that ended in tears.
And all this for $800,000.00 per season – As I said ….. some clubs never learn.
07 October 2012 266.2 – Daniel continues with his preview of the NBL season. He thinks Sydney Kings will finish on the bottom and Perth Wildcats will win the title with the Adelaide 36ers being the big improvers. Mark Fiorenti previews the A League season. He sees a wide open season with Brisbane Roar winning the minor premiership and Western Sydney Wanderers being wooden spooners. He also briefly looks at the Premier League with WBA being the surprise packets so far. The Panel have no real interest in the Bathurst 1000. Paul Dalligan wraps up the NRL season with some comments on last week’s Grand Final between Melbourne Storm and Canterbury-Bankstown. Gelding queries the biting incident involving James Graham and Billy Slater.
16 September 2012 264.2 – The Professor and the Gelding talk Davis Cup tennis and the tie between Australia and Germany with the winner to get back into the World Group. They then talk soccer with Mark Fiorenti. He discusses the Socceroos loss to Jordan in the World Cup qualifying tie. He also looks at the Champions League and Premier League. Paul Dalligan comes on to talk rugby league and the NRL finals. Paul tries to keep the lid on after the Rabbitohs big win and into their first preliminary final for some time. His Rabbitohs taking on the Professor’s Bulldogs and he sees a Rabbitohs win! He’s hoping to be at Homebush at the Grand Final in two weeks time. There is a discussion between the Professor and the Gelding on the SFL division one preliminary final between St Pauls and Chelsea Heights. They are critical of the VFL playing their Grand Final on a Sunday at Etihad Stadium.
1 April 2012 240.1 – Featuring the Professor, the Gelding, Sportzfan Stan with special guests Canterbury Bulldogs digital media co-ordinator Jessica Ivers and the Sydney Colt talking racing at Moonee Valley and Rosehill, rugby league and NRL.
26 February 2012 236.2 -Wayne Holdsworth , CEO of the Southern Football League explained the reasons behind the expulsion of the Doveton Eagles from the League stemming from racial slurs and intimidation of umpires in a 2011 elimination final. This was not the first time the Club had been expelled as in 2010, their coach had been found guilty of coaching whilst his accreditation had been suspended. Wayne also discussed that due to lack of resources, community leagues don’t conduct drug testing. On a positive note, Wayne firmly believed that within three years there will be a professional Australian Rules national competition for women. The Panel discussed the Sydney Kings choice of Shane Heal as their head coach position for the remainder of this NBL season. Daniel believes that in order to increase interest and attendance at NBL games, something needs to be done to boost scoring to make it more entertaining for spectators who want to watch a more fast-paced game. Paul Dalligan provided his NRL 2012 season preview and weighed in with his picks for the first game of the NRL season picking Newcastle to win the first game of the season at home against the Dragons. He also thought the Bulldogs would beat the Panthers and the Rabbitohs would get over the Roosters. Paul gave his final 2012 ladder predictions including his top eight. He said it was difficult as the competition is one of the best in years. Surprisingly, not in the top eight were the reigning premiers, Manly, after losing their coach to the Bulldogs and the Brisbane Bronco’s who he saw finishing in the basement due to the loss of several top players.
15 January 2012 232.2 Mark Fiorenti goes on to talk about the sacking of Melbourne Victory coach Mehmet Durakovic and the appointment of Jim Magilton. He thinks the Victory could still slip into the top four. Mark also talks about the Melbourne Heart and says they are clearly the best side in Melbourne. He discusses the A League initiatives of Big Wednesday concept with five games being played on the one day and the coach of Gold Coast being miked up during the game. Daniel says if he owned the team he wouldn’t have allowed it. Mark finally looks at Arsenal signing Thierry Henry for the next few months and Eric Cantona vying for the French presidency. The Panel talk cricket and the test series against India. The Gelding says that Craig McDermott is doing a great job as bowling coach. Paul Dalligan comes on to talk both NRL and NFL especially his beloved Denver Broncos. He thinks Billy Slater will be fit to start the NRL season and that Canterbury Bankstown are a special for the coming season. Tennis is the next topic of discussion and the Professor quizes the Panel about how many Australian men and women are in the Australian Open draw. The Professor also queries whether Ian Thorpe should have come back after a fifth place in the Victorian championships. Daniel likens it to the embarassing comeback of Tony Lockett. Daniel also talks both NBL and NBA looking at the LA Clippers, Melbourne Tigers and Patty Mills.
13 November 2011 226.2 – Mark Fiorenti comes on to talk soccer and has to deal with questions over the Socceroos defeat by Oman overnight. He thinks it was a subdued performance and one of the worst in recent history. He is looking for a much better outing against Thailand on Tuesday and predicts a one all draw. The Panel also discusses Internationl friendlies between England/Spain, France/USA and ‘traditional’ rivals Gabon/Brazil. Mark also quickly reviews the fortunes of Melbourne Heart and Melbourne Victory in the A League. The Panel discuss the proposition that cultural diversity is the reason Australia is not performing as well in sport and believe this is not a true reflection of how things are. Paul Dalligan is enthusiastic about the rugby league Four Nations Tournament with the stirring win by England over New Zealand making way for the final next week between Australia and England. He says England will be fired up at home. He also discusses Des Hasler’s sacking at Manly and the implosion there. This will free Hasler up to coach Canterbury Bulldogs next season. The Panel look at golf and the Australian Open with many Aussies doing well and Tiger Woods form improving with the President’s Cup a week away. John Daly’s antics are discussed as well and it looks like his most recent walk off will be the last straw. Daniel Eade has a bit of hayfever and the Gelding comments he was worried that as Daniel had not been in the studio for a few weeks, he thought Sportzfan Stan had sacked him. Daniel talks NBA lockout and thinks there could still be a season. He also discusses NBL television ratings with the 1.15am game netting a very poor 15,000 viewers Australia wide.
9 October 2011 222.2 The Sydney Colt continues with his discussion of racing and comments hot tubbing should be a mandatory sport especially in the latter years of High School. Mark Fiorenti talks about the Socceroos recent big win against Malaysia in a friendly and previews the World Cup tie against Oman during the week. He predicts a 2-0 win. Mark also talks about the A-League season launch held in Sydney and the first round of the A League. Daniel says Melbourne Heart need to do something to get into the paper as Melbourne Victory are grabbing all the headlines at the moment. Daniel comes on to talk hoops and the Professor asks him what the segment should be called. Mark Fiorenti suggests ‘White Men Can Jump’. Daniel says he can’t so he has gone back to the drawing board. He talks about the start of the NBL season. Sportzfan Stan asks whether the Breakers after losing players are as good as last year. Daniel thinks that they will be as good. Paul Dalligan comes on to talk rugby league and reviews the NRL Grand Final. He discusses with the Panel the signing of Des Hassler by Canterbury to coach them in 2013. Paul also talks about the coming 4 nations tournament with the opening game between Australia and New Zealand. The Panel talk about the Rugby Union World Cup with the Wallabies taking on South Africa in the quarter final. The Professor looks finally at the MLB payrolls with the top two being the Yankees and the Red Sox but neither have made the Championship Series.
23 January 2011 186.1 – The Panel starts off by talking to Daniel Eade about the Charity Baskets match to be held at MSAC on 30 January 2011 at midday. The event will be covered by Sportzfan Radio with a live broadcast on 88.3 Southern FM. The former players including Gaze, Copeland, Anstey… all say they are still able to match it on a basketball court. Sportzfan Stan takes a look at the recent drug controversy involving Albert Contador and Lance Armstrong. The Panel then chat with radio personality and former Canterbury Bulldogs premiership player Graeme Hughes who discusses his recently published book “Dogs at War”. The Gelding reviews the race results from both Flemington and Rosehill where both the Gelding and the Sydney Colt were successful…much to the joy of the ladies at the Tennis club. Stan adds that his uncle Albert owned a horse El Galea and he learned from a very early age that if you wanted to know whether a horse was going to win or not you needed to ask the trainer first and then the jockey. There is also a discussion of the NFL selling tickets outside the stadium and counting those attendees as part of the game’s crowd. Stan says it is a rot and the NFL should be sacked. The Panel also discuss the NFL Divisional Championships in the NFC – Green Bay Packers at Chicago Bears and in the AFC – New York Jets at Pittsburgh Steelers. The Panel is split as to who will win the Green Bay game but agree that the Steelers will be too strong. Paul thinks the Packers defence is the least intimidating of the teams remaining. Dr Leslie’s CSA makes a welcome return and Lanard Copeland comes on to talk about the Charity Baskets basketball match to be played at MSAC next Sunday with all proceeds going to Queensland flood relief.
19 December 2010 184.1 – The show starts off with a festive intro and Daniel, Stan, the Gelding and the Professor talk about what they would like for Christmas. Daniel then discusses the blockbuster NBA trade sending Gilbert Arenas, Jason Richardson & Hedu Turkoglou to the Orlando Hornets for Vince Carter, Rashard Lewis and Mickael Pietrus. Stan is all over the poor form of the Melbourne Tigers and the Houston Rockets scouting Eric Devendorf and Luke Nevill. Daniel says the Tigers need a miracle to make the playoffs.
Nick Tedeschi comes on to talk rugby league and the retirement through the week of Eric Grothe Jnr from Parramatta Eels. Nick thinks Eric did not live up to his potential and was basically a waste of space, He believes the Eels may go after Greg Inglis as they have a very big war chest. He sees Canterbury as being the big improvers next season. The Wests Tigers can go one better and make the Grand Final and Melbourne Storm will bounce back. Parramatta Eels and Cronulla will struggle in 2011.
The Gelding and the Sydney Colt talk winners and losers at Flemington and Randwick whilst Mark Fiorenti talks all things soccer with the A League and Premier League updates.