NRL Round 18 talking points

The Queensland-based NRL second round for the year saw some predictable results, but there were some interesting moments that grabbed attention as well.

Here are your talking points for the NRL Round 18.

WTF, Lachlan Lewis?
I have absolutely no idea what was said between Bulldogs eighth Lachlan Lewis and South Sydney’s Cody Walker at halftime, but Lewis’s decision to tackle Walker to the ground as they left the pitch was more than disconcerting.

It really stung his team too. With him in the trash for the first ten minutes after halftime, the Rabbitohs scored eight points and turned a 10-12 halftime deficit into an 18-12 lead. The Dogs fought to the end, but you’ll be hard pressed to find a sillier act on the pitch in 2021.

Canterbury has enough trouble without such acts bothering them. Add to that the possible reports of Dylan Napa and Jack Hetherington hooking up a lazy arm again in a tackle, and you’ll get a good idea of ​​why the Doggies are where they are.

Newcastle attack is anemic against good teams
Of course, Newcastle aren’t the first team to get caught up in the Melbourne Storm. But the Knights’ 48-4 surrender was a debacle.

It’s a team that’s supposed to be on an upward trajectory after years in the quagmire. Right now they’re tenth with a points differential of -137.

This differential is the responsibility of the Knights’ attack. They scored fewer points than North Queensland, Wests and New Zealand. In fact, they only scored one point more than the Broncos, who are considered a total laughing stock.

They are 2-6 against teams currently in the top-eight, averaging 10.6 points for and 28.5 against. The “give it to Kalyn” game plan is not working.

The next three knights are the Roosters, Raiders, and Broncos. They will need at least two of them to keep in touch with the last places in the final.

Kalyn Ponga directs the ball for the Knights.

Kalyn Ponga. (Photo by Jason McCawley / Getty Images)

Adam Doueihi should never play center again
Many eyebrows rose to the sky as Wests Tigers coach Michael Maguire moved his best player from five-eighth to center to give Moses Mbye a shot at wearing the number six jersey. A lot of bad things happened for the Tigers in 2021, but almost 100% of everything good could be attributed to something Doueihi had done.

At the time, Maguire said: “We have tinkered with how we’re going to play and I can’t wait to see how it all plays out on the pitch. This is the key. “

Well, now we know. Doueihi organized a masterclass against Brisbane. Five assists for testing, four assists in the event of a line break and 147 running yards as his team hooked a big number to the Broncos. His class helped the Tigers move away when Brisbane was ready for the fight.

Here’s your answer, Madge.

How will Penrith fare away from home?
The Panthers did what they needed to do against New Zealand, controlling the majority of the game to keep their opponent at bay. Their fifth win solidified Penrith in the top two and most importantly gave Tyrone May and Matt Burton more playing time experience in the halves.

Before packing up and heading north, Penrith was 9-0 at Bluebet Stadium. Over the past year, there has been a lot of talk about Penrith’s luck with the draw preventing them from making the travel burden of much of their opposition to the season hit by COVID-19. Will being away from the comforts of home have an impact or will the classroom shine at the end?

Personally, I don’t think Penrith will fight in Queensland. They are too good. But there is a big difference between playing in front of a worshiping crowd and playing in front of a few thousand interested spectators.

Xavier Savage is exactly what Canberra needed
The Raiders have been mediocre this year, performing well below what most expected of them. They’ve been slow, unfit and quite fragile when given back-to-back scores by a team. The past two weeks have therefore been encouraging, with solid wins against Manly and Cronulla.

It was especially good to see 19-year-old full-back Xavier Savage get a shot, after Canberra lost goalkeeper Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad at the start of the season, gave Caleb Aekins a shot that didn’t work , then winger Bailey Simonsson looked good at the back until he got injured.

Savage destroyed Cronulla in his second game in the NRL, racking up 246 yards of running, nine huge tackle breaks and a charity try from teammate Seb Kris to start. Savage has been a player the Raiders have been passionate about for some time. His speed and nose for an unload was a spark that got his team moving.

It wasn’t just Canberra’s wins that were noticeable, but the way Ricky Stuart uses his bench and quick players like Tom Starling unbalances the opposition and makes Canberra’s attack much more interesting. It looks like the men in green are finally figuring out how to play V’landysball, but it’s surely too little, too late.

Ricky stuart

(Photo by Mark Nolan / Getty Images)

Kane Evans is easily inspired
Athletes around the world love to put motivational words or phrases they love on duct tape, inside their caps, on their shirts, or anywhere else they can peek and remember to dig deeper.

Sometimes it’s “faith”, sometimes “courage”, sometimes “believing”, sometimes “concentration”. A number of players, including Canberra’s Sia Soliola, often put the name of a sick child on their wristbands to inspire them when the going gets tough.

Well, now, thanks to New Zealand accessory Kane Evans, we can add ‘fold a few c ** t’ to the list of inspirational quotes, shown to everyone on live TV as the 18th man of the Warriors “Warriors” sat on the bench.

Seriously, doesn’t anyone notice these things when a player is getting ready for a game? Maybe because Evans was “just” the concussion surrogate, none of the Warriors thought it was a big deal. Evans never took the pitch and was only shown on camera because New Zealand had a high number of injuries.

But it takes a special kind of jerk to think that you can write that word on your bracelet without consequence. Perhaps he learned it from his new teammate Matt Lodge, who was suspended for two games in 2014 for writing the word in question on his bracelet during an Origin Underworld game. 20 years old. Sometimes all you can do is shake your head.

What did you think of Round 18? What are some interesting things that caught your eye? What motivational phrases adorn your wrist band?

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