Melbourne Storm ‘deeply offended’ by Brandon Smith’s recent remarks
Melbourne Storm chief executive Justin Rodski has slammed Brandon Smith’s recent remarks, emphatically declaring those connected to the club were “deeply offended” by what the star had to say.
Smith appeared on the YKTR Sports podcast where he not only claimed he saw himself winning a premiership in a Sydney Roosters jersey, but also lifted the lid on the club’s off-field antics and revealed drinking is “a massive part of the culture” at the Victorian club.
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Rodski confirmed the rake would move on to pastures new after the 2022 season has concluded, but didn’t hold back in how those at the club felt about Smith’s remarks on the podcast.
“Recent comments made by Brandon in a podcast, and the way he expressed them, do not align with Storm’s values and the way we operate as a club,” Rodski said in a club statement.
“The statements have deeply offended current and former players, coaches, staff and board members and the club strongly rejects the comments made about the Storm culture.
“We acknowledge Brandon’s apology made on social media today and his willingness now to prepare for the 2022 season with Storm.
“Brandon has every right to explore future opportunities as any player would in his position, and ultimately we respect his decision to play football elsewhere in 2023.”
Rodski also confirmed Smith would report back to the club for pre-season training on December 7.
Given Smith was caught up in the white powder scandal not long after the Storm were dumped out of the NRL finals by Penrith, it’s no wonder his comments went down like a lead balloon at Storm HQ.
The club’s culture has long been heralded as a model for other NRL teams to look up to, but Smith’s openness has shone a less than ideal light on what it’s really like at the Storm.
“We have so many piss-ups and it’s no secret piss-ups build relationships, there’s a reason I was getting piss fit this whole time,” Smith said on the YKTR Sports podcast.
“Because you start letting loose, you can talk and be yourself. At the Storm bro, drinking is a massive part of the culture.”
Earlier on Tuesday, Smith released a statement on his Instagram where he apologised for “how some of the comments have been received” but also felt his comments weren’t reported fairly.
“I want to address current media speculation going on around me at the moment, and specifically my recent comments on the YKTR Sports podcast,” Smith wrote.
“Over the past two months, I’ve read multiple headlines about me day in day out, many of which were untrue, and none that came from my mouth directly.
“I done this podcast for that very reason. To be fully transparent about the process I’ve been going through.
“It’s honestly been really exciting throughout and I’m truly grateful to be in the position I’m in.
“One thing I pride myself on is being myself, and regardless of backlash I will continue to so.
“That being said, I do acknowledge and want to apologise for how some of the comments have been received.
“Specifically to the Melbourne Storm, it was never my intent to disrespect or come across as ungrateful to the club that has done so much for me and my family.
“And that goes for my coaches, members, staff and most of all, my teammates.
“I speak from the heart – for better or worse sometimes – and I’m sorry if anyone was hurt by my words.
“But at the end of the day they are my words.
“I specifically also want to address the media honing in on my comments around the Storm culture, and it being framed as a “drinking culture” they have going on down there. Our culture is built on hard work and effort as the main priorities.
“These comments have been taken way out of context, and I implore anyone interested in the matter to please watch the interview in its entirety before jumping to conclusions.
“This will be the last time I address the comments made on this podcast.
“My focus is now fully turned to the future with the Melbourne Storm and all the amazing opportunities laid before me.
“Whatever happens I will give 100 per cent. It’s all I know. If I’m to be labelled a terrible person so be it, if I cuss too much, I’m sorry, but that is me and I will continue to be me.
Originally published as Melbourne Storm ‘deeply offended’ by Brandon Smith’s recent remarks
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