Infotainment Factory: Storm boss calls out Paul Gallen

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Sunday, 10 March 2019

Storm boss calls out Paul Gallen


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Melbourne Storm CEO Dave Donaghy has hit back at Cronulla captain Paul Gallen after the NRL veteran was involved in a war of words with Storm skipper Cameron Smith over punishments dished out to both clubs over salary cap breaches.

Smith said the Storm should have their premierships reinstated after the club was stripped of two titles in 2010 for rorting the salary cap considering the Sharks were only fined for cap breaches committed since 2013. Gallen hit back at Smith's claims on Sports Sunday:

“I will say this to Cam: be very careful what you wish for. We went in and self-reported a $50,000 discrepancy and the CEO thought that was all it was,” Gallen said.

“It turned out to be a $700,000 discrepancy. Maybe you don’t want the NRL going back and searching those books particularly when they were found to be $3.7 million over the salary cap over five years.

Three of those years they were $1 million over the salary cap, compared to the Sharks. We were $750,000 in illegal third-party payments that were intended to be paid. The NRL found that they were not even all paid.”

Paul Gallen

Gallen was responding to claims made by Smith at the NRL's season launch, with the Storm star calling out alleged double standards in relation to the punishments handed out to both teams he believes were guilty of the same crime.

Donaghy echoed Smith's sentiments at a recent Storm fan day, telling the club's supporters that there's a huge difference between the punishments handed out back in 2010 as opposed to the recent sanctions imposed on the Sharks.

“It’s not a case that Melbourne Storm feels like it was not doing the wrong thing at the time, it’s a case of the penalties that were dished out in 2010 were far different or much different to what has been handed out most recently,” Donaghy said at the club’s fan day.

“From a club stance I think at some point it would be worth the Commission looking back into the process that was taken and whether the penalties were manifestly excessive for what took place — particularly when you benchmark it against recent incidents and occurrence of salary cap breaches.”

Donaghy also responded to Gallen's claims, urging the Sharks great not to delve into matters of the Melbourne Storm.

“I think Paul should worry about Cronulla,” Donaghy said.

“I missed the show and the comments but it’s important to put Cam’s comments into context.

“He wasn’t coming out saying Cronulla’s premiership should be stripped.

"What it’s saying is drawing a comparison between recent clubs who have had salary cap strife have been treated as opposed to how Melbourne were treated back in the day.

Cameron Smith

“There is a different view around salary cap sanctions [now] and we think that’s the right view.

“What happened back in the day was vastly different to how some clubs have been treated.

No love has been lost between the two sides since Cronulla's drought-breaking 2016 grand final win.

Both clubs engaged in a war of words last year, with the Sharks accusing the Storm of dirty tactics in the lead up to the NRL finals.

Gallen and Storm centre Will Chambers had an ongoing feud after the Melbourne centre called him a "drug cheat" in 2017, while Chambers was suspended last year this season for a crusher tackle on the Cronulla captain.

Cameron Smith was also sin-binned for the first time in his career following a tense clash between the teams in 2018.

Melbourne Storm CEO Dave Donaghy has hit back at Cronulla captain Paul Gallen after the NRL veteran was involved in a war of words with Storm skipper Cameron Smith over punishments dished out to both clubs over salary cap breaches.

Smith said the Storm should have their premierships reinstated after the club was stripped of two titles in 2010 for rorting the salary cap considering the Sharks were only fined for cap breaches committed since 2013. Gallen hit back at Smith's claims on Sports Sunday:

“I will say this to Cam: be very careful what you wish for. We went in and self-reported a $50,000 discrepancy and the CEO thought that was all it was,” Gallen said.

“It turned out to be a $700,000 discrepancy. Maybe you don’t want the NRL going back and searching those books particularly when they were found to be $3.7 million over the salary cap over five years.

Three of those years they were $1 million over the salary cap, compared to the Sharks. We were $750,000 in illegal third-party payments that were intended to be paid. The NRL found that they were not even all paid.”

Paul Gallen

Gallen was responding to claims made by Smith at the NRL's season launch, with the Storm star calling out alleged double standards in relation to the punishments handed out to both teams he believes were guilty of the same crime.

Donaghy echoed Smith's sentiments at a recent Storm fan day, telling the club's supporters that there's a huge difference between the punishments handed out back in 2010 as opposed to the recent sanctions imposed on the Sharks.

“It’s not a case that Melbourne Storm feels like it was not doing the wrong thing at the time, it’s a case of the penalties that were dished out in 2010 were far different or much different to what has been handed out most recently,” Donaghy said at the club’s fan day.

“From a club stance I think at some point it would be worth the Commission looking back into the process that was taken and whether the penalties were manifestly excessive for what took place — particularly when you benchmark it against recent incidents and occurrence of salary cap breaches.”

Donaghy also responded to Gallen's claims, urging the Sharks great not to delve into matters of the Melbourne Storm.

“I think Paul should worry about Cronulla,” Donaghy said.

“I missed the show and the comments but it’s important to put Cam’s comments into context.

“He wasn’t coming out saying Cronulla’s premiership should be stripped.

"What it’s saying is drawing a comparison between recent clubs who have had salary cap strife have been treated as opposed to how Melbourne were treated back in the day.

Cameron Smith

“There is a different view around salary cap sanctions [now] and we think that’s the right view.

“What happened back in the day was vastly different to how some clubs have been treated.

No love has been lost between the two sides since Cronulla's drought-breaking 2016 grand final win.

Both clubs engaged in a war of words last year, with the Sharks accusing the Storm of dirty tactics in the lead up to the NRL finals.

Gallen and Storm centre Will Chambers had an ongoing feud after the Melbourne centre called him a "drug cheat" in 2017, while Chambers was suspended last year this season for a crusher tackle on the Cronulla captain.

Cameron Smith was also sin-binned for the first time in his career following a tense clash between the teams in 2018.

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