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Why is Matt Lodge allowed to play?

Matt Lodge's return to the NRL is rather controversial. (AAP Image/David Clark)
Roar Guru
5th March, 2018
49

In light of the footage that has been released recently of Brisbane Broncos prop Matt Lodge terrorising a family in the USA, serious questions should be raised as to why Lodge’s registration was approved by Todd Greenberg.

Why has no disciplinary action has been taken yet against him?

Sure, we’re not privy to all of the details surrounding what happened in New York, but from all reports Lodge had taken a large amount of prescription drugs and alcohol on the night. This led to his violent assault and kidnapping of a family who were trying to assist a complete stranger who had pressed their intercom pleading for help.

If you were to compare the transgressions of Todd Carney and Mitchell Pearce to those of Matt Lodge you could easily mount a strong case of double standards here by the NRL, particularly when you consider what the family endured.

Make no mistake, in no way at all should we condone what both Carney and Pearce did, they deserved to be punished for their actions and they were – but how Matt Lodge can escape any form of discipline at all is beyond belief and hard to comprehend.

From all reports Lodge hasn’t had an alcoholic drink since that horrific night in New York back in 2015, has made a concerted effort to reform and had an outstanding season for the Redcliffe Dolphins in the Queensland Cup last year. Does that entitle him to walk back in to the NRL and be allowed to play in Round 1 of this season?

It still appears as though Lodge is trying to negotiate the amount of Damages that he’s going to pay the family even though a a US Civil Court ruled that he had to pay the family $1.6 million.

We all make mistakes and deserve a second chance, but if the NRL doesn’t step in and allows Lodge to play, then they are setting a dangerous precedent considering their zero tolerance policy on violence.

With the game of rugby league becoming more and more heavily scrutinised, the NRL has prided itself on it’s strict policy regarding player behaviour both on and off the field. What kind of message are they sending to those aspiring to play in the NRL when a player brings the game in to disrepute and appears to get off lightly?

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