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"It’s very realistic to say that we’ll have a second team in Brisbane in 2023": V'landys

Messages
4,995
It’s very realistic to say that we’ll have a second team in Brisbane in 2023: V’landys’ NRL bombshell

The NRL is on the verge of making the biggest change to its competition in 14 years, moving ahead with plans to add a 17th team in time for the 2023 season.

The Herald can reveal the ARL Commission will make a decision on a potential second Brisbane team by June.

V'landys and NRL chief executive Andrew Abdo will need to find an additional $12 million as part of its distribution to the clubs, but a 25 per cent reduction in staff at the end of last year will save around $50 million a year.

The Herald last year reported that V'landys and Abdo travelled to the United States on a secret trip where it is believed they received the blessing for expansion from News Corp co-chairman Lachlan Murdoch, who last year rubber-stamped Foxtel's pay television rights extension until 2027.

The NRL is yet to secure a free-to-air television deal beyond 2022, but the code believes adding a new team into the competition for the first time since the Gold Coast Titans were accepted in 2007 will be of interest to Nine Entertainment Co.

The NRL is waiting on a business model from senior strategic projects manager Lachlan Smith in the next three months before making a final decision, however V’landys is adamant that 2023 - the first year of the next players CBA - is within reach and will be a major topic of discussion when the commission gathers later this month.

"It's very realistic to say that we'll have a second team in Brisbane in 2023," V'landys told The Herald. "From what I've seen and the presentations that have been given to me, they are well advanced. If I said 2022 they'd be ready. They've been doing work for years. There's no reason why we can't be up and running in 2023.

"The one thing that I am impressed with is how advanced these bids are. They are not mucking around. They are serious. If we came to a decision in June this year, that would give them a year and a half. It's plenty of time. If it's going to happen, it's going to happen mid this year.


“I’m not going to do it if it’s going to hurt the game. It’s got to benefit the game. To benefit the game, it can’t cannibalise the Titans and Broncos, and I don’t think it will, just how Parramatta doesn’t cannibalise Penrith. One of the good things is that we still haven’t signed our free-to-air deal. We ensured ourselves with our pay TV deal. The cream is going to be the free-to-air deal. For 2023, we need to have all our strategies in place soon for our free-to-air deal.”

The bids include the Brisbane Bombers, Brisbane Firehawks (Easts Tigers), Ipswich and Redcliffe Dolphins. The news of V’landys’ intention will leave prospective clubs scrambling for two of the greatest coaches of the modern era, with both Wayne Bennett and Craig Bellamy off contract at the end of the year and in a position to spend 2022 building a roster ready to compete for a title the following year.

That could leave the Storm feeling a little uneasy in the player market, given that they have Ryan Papenhuyzen, Harry Grant and Brandon Smith all free to open negotiations for the 2023 season from November 1. The Rabbitohs could also be in a similar position with Adam Reynolds, who is off contract at the end of this year, and Cody Walker the following season.

A new team in 2023 will have major ramifications on the player transfer market. Newcastle superstar Kalyn Ponga, Gold Coast livewire AJ Brimson, Parramatta skipper Clint Gutherson, Canberra hooker Josh Hodgson, Penrith wrecking ball Viliame Kikau and Eels five-eighth Dylan Brown are among the available players that would be high on the recruitment list of the successful franchise.


V'landys believes the addition of former Queensland government minister Kate Jones to the ARL Commission at the end of last year will be an asset for the NRL in regards to expansion in Brisbane.

"There are five big issues on the commission's timetable at the moment," V'landys said. "In no particular order, one is concussion and the welfare of the player. Two is going back to three grades. Three is the integrity of the game. Four is expansion in Brisbane. And five goes hand in hand with expansion and that is participation."

"Participation to us is everything. One of the reasons we want the team in Brisbane is because of participation. I want to expand because of participation. We've been very lucky in my view to able to procure Kate Jones as a board member because she's been inspirational in participation. She's actually been made chair of a committee to look at participation.

"What she wants to do is have a presence in the education departments. One of the things that happens in primary schools now, it's mainly female teachers. They don't traditionally become rugby league coaches. So we need a program to train these primary school teachers into being rugby league coaches. You can only do that with a real good joint venture with the education department."
https://www.smh.com.au/sport/nrl/it...3-v-landys-nrl-bombshell-20210131-p56y80.html

Turns out that V'landys and the commission may be much more serious about expansion than previous administrations, which is great, but it concerns me that by trying to launch in 2023 that they are rushing it.

So let's say that they pick the team in June like they plan, that means that they need to start the bidding process in late April or early May at the latest if they are going to have a formal bidding process, and even then that would leave only a year and a half for the new license holder to build a club and team.

Sure some clubs like Easts and Redcliffe have a lot of the basic infrastructure in place already, but unless they get significant amounts of help from the NRL it's going to be a big ask to sign a competitive team in a year and a half, and the whole thing would be a disaster if they don't have a competitive team from day one.
 
Messages
4,995
The Titans were confirmed in 2005 for a 2007 start so there’s precedent.
Yeah and look how that turned out...

The NRL can't afford another expansion club that struggles to succeed, especially not when the Broncos are just around the corner ready and willing to swamp the new team out of the market.
I wouldn’t be surprised if there isn’t a formal bid process and the NRL just picks one
I wouldn't be surprised either.

Lets hope that they don't do it that though, because if they do they'll basically remove any opportunity for new, possibly better, bids to pop up before the deadline.
 

flippikat

Bench
Messages
2,741
If he's serious about a 2nd Brisbane team sooner rather than later, then there's got to be an 18th NRL club by the end of this decade.

That's gonna be an even more interesting tussle than the current "who's the best Brisbane bid?" conundrum.
 

Captain Apollo

First Grade
Messages
9,542
Considering the state of the national economy and the impact of COVID-19 on things, I think 2023 is rushing things. Going to be a bit hard in the current climate to find sponsorships, and I doubt any clubs will agree to a cut in their grants to accommodate a 17th team.
 

Diesel

Coach
Messages
15,697
Warriors were permitted entry in May 1992 for 95, and NQ was later in the year. I’m not sure of the WA and SQ timeframe but say it was 93, they had at least 18 months to be ready.
Melbourne cherry picked a few teams so had a good advantage but from memory that was a quick turnaround and the Titans had around 18 months.
I’m sure the front runner bids have letters of intent
 

The_Frog

Bench
Messages
4,951
The NRL can't afford another expansion club that struggles to succeed, especially not when the Broncos are just around the corner ready and willing to swamp the new team out of the market.
This is what happened to the Crushers, sure enough, but surely the Broncos would be brought onside with the new club. The NRL has to ensure they are viable but that does not mean they have to ensure they win games.

(I reckon they are a possibility of the spoon again this year)

Broncos won't run last again this year. It took an awful lot to go wrong for that to happen.
 
Messages
4,995
Warriors were permitted entry in May 1992 for 95, and NQ was later in the year. I’m not sure of the WA and SQ timeframe but say it was 93, they had at least 18 months to be ready.
Melbourne cherry picked a few teams so had a good advantage but from memory that was a quick turnaround and the Titans had around 18 months.
I’m sure the front runner bids have letters of intent
Yeah and with the exception of Melbourne (whom came in under unique circumstances) look how that turned out for most of them...

Success is one of the biggest factors in whether or a club is successful, and a bad first impression can lead to generations of work to change that public perception, or even the club failing, especially when the club has strong competition in the market.
 

flippikat

Bench
Messages
2,741
Perth Red meltdown in 3,2,1...

I don't think so.

Adding a 17th club is a big step towards an 18th club soon afterwards.. and Perth has a lot going for it to be that 18th club.

Keep in mind that by 2023 the population should have a decent vaccination coverage against Covid-19, so the logistics should be easier to bring in a club from another state then.
 

flippikat

Bench
Messages
2,741
Firehawks haa the best bid.

South of the river.

Large footprint from Bulimba through to southern suburbs of Logan.

Strong Leagues Club at Coorparoo which is linked to the Eastern Busway.

Exactly. They create a good north/south of the river divide, are backed by a traditional Brisbane club, AND are centrally based & not out on the city fringes.

Redcliffe and/or Ipswich may have their time - ideally when Sydney reduces by a club or two, to bring better balance to the comp - but right now, IMO the Firebirds bid is the best of the bunch.
 

The_Frog

Bench
Messages
4,951
Success is one of the biggest factors in whether or a club is successful, and a bad first impression can lead to generations of work to change that public perception, or even the club failing, especially when the club has strong competition in the market.
The expectation of immediate on-field success is a bit of a problem. Even 50% isn't good enough. I know it is stating the obvious but that is the average. When you've got teams like Melbourne and the Roosters perennially well above 50%, that doesn't leave so much for everyone else to build a supporter base. Strong supporter bases seem to build on eras of spectacular and sustained success, and survive lean periods. All the strong Sydney clubs have had a sustained period when they were top dog.
 
Messages
4,995
The NRL has to ensure they are viable but that does not mean they have to ensure they win games.
The problem with that is that winning games can be the difference between being viable or unviable.

In 1996 the (original) Winnipeg Jets move to Arizona and became the Phoenix Coyotes. From their first day in Arizona they've been complete f**k-ups, pretty much every bad decision that could be made has been made and they've rarely if ever been competitive and as such they've struggled to build a strong fanbase in Arizona.

Those experiences in Arizona lead NHL pundits and fans to be very reticent about placing teams in other 'desert states' and you'd often here things like 'ice hockey doesn't work in the desert', then the Vegas Golden Knights came into the NHL in 2017 and were a massive overnight success despite most reasonable pundits and fans predicting they'd be an utter failure that would only exist because of their rich owners bankrolling them like the Coyotes.

What was the main difference between the Coyotes and the Golden Knights that made the GKs a massive success where the Coyotes weren't?
Well the Coyotes were a relocation whom inherited the bones of a team from Winnipeg and struggled on the players market to sign strong free agents on short notice, while the GKs were an expansion club, so they got an expansion draft and the NHL used that draft to make damn sure that their team would be competitive from day dot.

The GKs made a Stanley Cup final in their first year, and despite some minor hiccups, are going from strength to strength and are quickly becoming one of the bigger teams in the league, meanwhile Arizona have mostly been cellar dwellers for decades now, whom are only still in Arizona because every time an old owner gives up or is run out of town a new owner steps in to make sure they aren't relocated.

My point in telling you all this; you don't want your expansion clubs to be the Coyotes if you can avoid it, and most of the time that means making sure that they make a good first impression by ensuring they win games.
 

Jamberoo

Juniors
Messages
706
Brisbane needs more than two teams. It is twice the population of Adelaide (two AFL teams) and half of Sydney (8.5 NRL teams). That Sydney has more AFL teams than Brisbane has NRL teams is the most ridiculous anomaly in Australian sport.
GO with the strength.
Bring in the South East Firehawks (2023) and North Brisbane Dolphins (2024). That gives you at least one game at Suncorp each week and six Brisbane derbies. Huge for RL.
Now that might actually kill off the current Brisbane Lions revival.
 
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