Dean Young succeeding Anthony Griffin as St George-Illawarra coach could be a matter of when, not if, as a call on the future of superstar Ben Hunt looms large at the club.
The Daily Telegraph’s Brent Read said on Triple M’s Monday Scrum Young continues to be linked with the top job, and the uncertainty could have implications on the club’s bid to re-sign their skipper Hunt.
Hunt has been open about how he enjoys playing under Griffin and Read believes the 32-year-old is eager to get an extension signed as soon as possible.
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“The focus will now fall on Ben Hunt and his contract situation,” Read said on Triple M.
“I’d imagine the Dragons would want to resolve this as quickly as they can.”
“… I would have thought it would be (resolved before the World Cup) one way or the other, I’m sure they want to sit down in the next week or two and nut this out.”
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With one more season remaining on his contract the Maroons hero’s current salary of $1.1 million a year will likely a decrease in an extension.
“The year after yes, so obviously we’ve spoken about it the deal’s on the table,” Read said.
“It’s $1.45 (million) over two years with the ratchet clause it goes up to about $1.6 just over $1.6 for two years.”
While Hunt’s management will no doubt be appealing for more than what Hunt has reportedly been offered, the Dragons captain is eager to stay put as he remains under Griffin’s leadership.
“I suspect it’s a bit of both, I think his camp probably think he’s worth a little bit more, he’s obviously wanting to play under Hook and if you listen to all the mail around Hook the drums are sort of beating that he won’t be there for the long term,” Read revealed.
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“Dean Young was the name that keeps getting tossed around at the Dragons, that he’ll eventually take over from Hook whenever that may be.
“If Hook wants to be there next year I think he will, they won 12 games this year.
“That would normally get you in the finals and I think Dean’s signed a new deal in North Queensland.”
Woods posed: “What if we start of the year well next year and we’re going good?”
“I don’t think it’ll matter [if the Dragons perform well in 2023], I think Dean will be there eventually,” Read said.
“That’s my thoughts.”
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Read said it was unlikely Young could take over as coach as soon as next season, however.
“Well I don’t know whether they’ll go down that path, it probably depends there’s a few things at play but certainly Dean Young’s name keeps getting linked with that job,” Read revealed.
“His dad’s the chairman so I think while his dad’s the chairman it’ll be hard because the appearance wouldn’t be great.
“Certainly I think he’s the guy that will eventually, they will look to eventually take over from Anthony Griffin whenever that may be.”
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