Discussion in 'St George Illawarra Dragons' started by jeffdragon, Aug 9, 2018 at 6:52 AM.
Next big media phenomena - you watch
Thank you Jason, it's been a pleasure.
Jason is a club legend pure and simple
Very clever. Extremely well spoken.
Look forward to seeing him in a commentary box very soon !!!!!!!
Thank you for the memories Jason !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I have always admired Jason Nightingale, pleyed well above his weight a real competitor.
One of my fav players from outside of my team.
congratulations to him for a wonderful career
Nighty has been mighty for the red v and nz just a very decent good bloke simple as that
Step down to reggies?
Since when do you ever critique players?
Focus on Hunt and Widdop, and our misfiring and lame numbers 3 and 4.
You won't see many one club players anymore.
Thanks for the pleasure of seeing Nighty play.
A quality footballer but more importantly, a quality person-never heard a word of off field scandal about him- played the game with courage and fairness- played above his weight. If only, he'd been about 10 cms taller, 15 kgs heavier and 5 metres faster, he would being talked about now as one of the greatest wingers to have ever played the game.
Reading all the posts and tributes today, not gonna lie had a tear in the eye. Jase is one of the players and people that come around once in a generation.
When I saw him play in 2005 for our jersey flegg side my first thought was " very unique". He made his way through the grades and in 07 his debut was quite mixed but was evident he put his body on the line and always gave his all.
Multiple times throughout his career he could have left to get more money. But he didnt. Stayed on modest money, always put his body on the line and bled for this club.
You watch a highlights video on YouTube of him and realise how special he is. His heart passion and desire to play for the red v was unmatched. Played in the front row and back row because he wanted to play for the red v and wait for his opportunity.
It's a sad day but it's a happy day. To reflect on what a legend he has been. Hopefully the boys create more memories for gypsy cause he deserves it. I could go on forever. Sorry for the long post but it just what I'm feeling at the moment. All the best to Gypsy and his retirement. Hopefully he is sent out a winner.
KICKOFF: ‘Awkward’ Nightingale all class
CALLING TIME: Dragons veteran Jason Nightingale has announced he will retire at the end of the 2018 season. Picture: AAP
THERE’S irony in the fact Jason Nightingale will play the remainder of his career nursing bulging discs in his neck.
Ironic given he’s stayed largely injury-free throughout his 267-game career despite showing next to no regard for his body. For a case in point, look to round one this year at Kogarah.
With centimetres to work in Nightingale scored what appeared to be an impossible try against the Broncos, leaping over the cover defence and corner post to ground the ball. He landed smack bang on his face in doing so but, as he said at his retirement announcement on Thursday, it’s been his habit.
“Putting myself in positions like that and bouncing out of them is something I’ve been able to do, something I’ve been lucky to do. I can’t really explain why,” he said with a shrug.
He remarkably came through that unscathed, but it was one of the 41 tackles he made as a back-rower against Melbourne in round 17 that left him with the injury.
"I do have two bulging disks in my neck that I didn't know about until yesterday,” he said.
“I knew I had a sore neck and left shoulder but we got the scans and found out yesterday. It sounds bad but it's all good. It was from trying to tackle people and getting in awkward positions, exactly like that, ducking at the wrong times and that sort of thing.
"I have been lucky and blessed because there's been people that have had so much worse and have had careers cut short because of it. I'm definitely not in that boat which I'm really grateful for.”
So what does one of the NRL’s great contortionists put his durability and longevity down to?
“I don’t know, probably muscular genetics,” he said.
“It looks ugly, I don’t try and do it the way it happens. I know I’m awkward and ungainly and make easy things look hard, and hard things look easy, but having that motivation and enjoying what I’ve been doing is the reason I’ve been able to do it for so long.
“I probably have to thank my parents somewhere along the way there for giving me these weird genetics. It helps with durability, obviously I work very hard on my body as well.
“I’ve tried to model a lot on consistency and I found a lot of motivation in not wanting to let people down. That’s something I’m proud of myself for being able to do.”
The club and coach Paul McGregor were both confident the soon-to-be 32-year-old could get through another season – a one-year contract was on the table.
If he were waiting for the body to wear out he’d be playing til he was 50, but the man affectionately known as ‘Gypsy’ said the decision to call time on his career at the end of the season was about a shift in life priorities.
‘‘I remember finishing last season, I rang a few people going, ‘this’ll be it’,” Nightingale said.
“I worked pretty hard through preseason because I knew if I wasn’t mentally in it I wouldn’t even get through it. I went OK there and started feeling good. We added a couple of people that made me feel a bit younger in James Graham, Jeremy Latimore, and even Benny Hunt, who’d been around for a while.
‘‘The enjoyment that I got from spending time with this group we’ve got this year, all of a sudden it made me question, ‘do I want to let this go?’ It was more on the mental side of things, physically, I’ve been very lucky.
“It would have been selfish of me to keep going and I wanted to make sure I went out when I wanted to go out and not the way it may have played out if I had played on. The club were great in offering me a contract for next year and they left the ball in my court. I know I’m making the right decision.
“Team first has always been something I have tried to live and motivated me through not wanting to let my teammates, myself and my family down. I think it is probably a point for me to shift that to family first.”
It would have been his ninth contract with his junior club and one he’s considered leaving “about zero times.” That fact hit home on Thursday when he crossed paths with former teammate and current neighbour Brett Morris.
“I saw Brett Morris this morning actually, he lives around the corner from me,” Nightingale said.
“He knew I was retiring because I told him a few days ago. Just the fact he’s going to his third club and he obviously would have had ambitions of staying at the Dragons forever as well… I do appreciate it.
“I owe this club a lot. It was one of my goals as I fell in love with my junior club as a kid, to play my whole career at the one club. To do that’s very special.”
It also puts him within reach of great mate Ben Hornby’s all-time club record of 273 appearances, though the Dragons would need to make the grand final for him to get there. It’s feat Nightingale believes is not beyond his side.
“People that do it, you always think ‘wow, that’s a good way to go’ but it’s not about myself and how I finish my career, it’s about what that achievement would mean to my teammates,” he said.
“We’ve got to check our expectations. We created our own expectations because of the way we were performing throughout the season and the weight of those expectations lately has probably got to us a bit.
“That was created because we were a confident team playing well. The pressure is a privilege and we just need to embrace that and perform because we have the potential, we’ve shown it before.
“If we can do that, we do have the side to go all the way.”
Ive had Nights as my profile pic for years for a reason......he IS along with Tingah Blacklock one of the 2 wingers of my all time St George team of history.... I was too young to remember back past 77
He was the wingers winger.... he always found a way to score and his defence was crunching and laser beam, few got past him and hed smash blokes too aswell as physically rest the forwards running back off our line and take the hits , hed save tries and like all champions swing games, for a winger this is a special special player for mine and one of the great and loyal Dragons team men of all ....all I can say is 100 percent of the wingers coming through trying to take his place will not do half the things he did for us ....or with such style and skill bugger the 'awkward' tag he was a Ferrari!, every damn game, Ive been too hard on him this year also, Im shamed as even this year hes done great things and swung and saved matches! players are judged on their whole career not just one season and Im even sickened how much shit Ive hung on him lately sorry brother today its a damn sad day for me and even though I live far far away in WA Ill forever be so grateful that even I got to see you play live in Perth a few years back, youre a towering man not just player.
All I can say is THANK YOU.......just THANK YOU JASON NIGHTINGALE!!
NO ONE put in as much as you EVERY Game!
now I hope to god the boys can send you out with another GF ring its what you deserve nothing short!
Agree with all that has been said.End of an era in last of the 2010 side and a one club player.
Still flabbergasted that they offered another year though.
It will be sad not seeing this champion in the red V next season. He has been a fantastic servant to the club and fans. All the best Nighty as you have provided so many great highlights and will go down as one on the best of all time for me to wear the red V. A true legend.
The first time I noticed Flo was at Kogarah, a Jersey Flegg match. We conceded a try at the north end and a young player was chucking a fit at everyone.. the opposition, the ref... and when his team mates tried to calm him down, he started pushing them back and was very vocal about it
I looked at the BL mag and saw the player was Jason Nightingale. Looked like he had a temper, but it was really a passion based on pride.
I've been a fan ever since.
Doesn't surprise me at all that he stayed as a one club player. And it's a credit to the Club that they stuck by Nighty. IMO, he had every right to go out on his own terms.
he is not in the team tonight, his latest post on instagram feels like he has been given the tap and won't see the field again
One of my favourite all time players, if not my favourite. He’ll be missed.
Should have played ahead of Perrera (or however you spell it) tonight.
Nightingale would, alongside Graham being giving his all and keeping pride in the Red V last night.
Don't get me wrong, i've been saying it's time for him to go but we kind of missed his effort and pride last night as it turns out.
He was lucky his name was not associated with last nights shambles....
From a Rabbitoh,as Jack would say"played strong,done good"!
Hope he has a wonderful life after footy,scored plenty against us Bunnies during his career.
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