Death of the "Possibility"

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pearce_off

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Dear Friends,

As you'll notice by my post count I'm more of a listener than a talker, but I have intently monitored your observations on our team on both this forum and the old forum for many years. Breaking with tradition, I feel the need to pen some thoughts on how I feel about yesterday….

I'm not saddened by the loss yesterday, I'm saddened that it represents a bitter milestone in our club's rich history. I believe it officially ended what has been an exciting era - the era where the tigers were "The Entertainers" of the NRL.
During that time, we flew in the face of convention. Our forwards were small but agile. Our defence was poor but attack was brilliant. We ran hot and cold. But through it all you always got the sense that if we could just "click" it would be amazing ..... and that happened brilliantly in 2005.

So I forgave Tim Sheens for all his perceived frailties. Yes, we rarely fielded a well drilled team, but they always had that sparkle in the eye that let you know something magical could happen. I was upset to constantly miss the eight but I knew if we did, we'd be "different" enough to worry the other contenders. People fear insanity - it is impossible to plan for. I loved the fact that my team was a bit insane.

I can understand how Tim Sheens has been put under little pressure by the club/media, because everyone loved the "Possibility" that only the Tigers could deliver.

We've had some low times since 2005, but everyone would agree, yesterday was the lowest...and I'll tell you why. Yesterday, the flame of "Possibility" was extinguished. This team isn't the Messiah - it's just a very naughty boy. I'm sad that we now have to change the team. We need to conform to the standard. Being different and a little bit insane has once and for all been disproved as a viable approach. This is what I'm most upset about. I won't see the miracle of 2005 again. We'll need to become more conventional. Big forwards, strict game plans, Precision kicking, play the percentages. None of this was important if the "Possibility" was alive and well.

I can't see the adding of a few select players changing things. A top shelf prop and halfback isn't going to change the underlying structure. I hate to say it, but we are all tip and no iceberg. We have to change the way we play and the game of league will be poorer for it. Playing the way we play, we can beat anyone on the day, but it won't deliver more than 12 wins a year. The dragons are the bench mark. They have a style that will guarantee them 14 wins a year before the season has even started.

No doubt the team will rally and string together some wins this year. But after yesterday, I felt like something died. I'd like to thank Tim Sheens for his efforts, and especially for the magic of 2005 (how we won, was almost as good as the fact we won). But I'm 19 hours into the new era for the Wests Tigers and I'm sad to think I won't see my team bet it all again ... and win. Don't get me wrong, I understand the need for change - i'm just sad our style of play will never be rewarded with a Premiership (or finals series) again. I can't see Tim delivering the "conventional" approach that is an inevitable requirement. That really leaves him without a role to play at our club. Sorry Tim, I think this is the first time I've turned on you.

Anyway - thought I'd share. What are your thoughts? Are you more upset with the loss - or the death of "Possibility"?
 

Alf_Duguid

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I think you make a very important point in that this team has had the same underlying playing structure for the past five years. Changing a few players here & there won't address the issue if we keep playing with this same structure. Unfortunately, the team is so used to this structure it will be difficult to re-coach them in the middle of the season. It is the sort of style that pays off every now and again, but in terms of consistency, will never deliver.

It appears that unless a change in our coaching structure occurs, we will be stuck with these inconsistencies for at least the rest of this year
 

Tigerpete

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Thats it, without change at the top, nothing really changes below.

Good post PO! You make some valid points.
 

innsaneink

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Great post PO….Ive been thinking similarly for some time, we dont play the way everyone else plays, we dont play semis style, we dont play origin style...we're like a ballet dancer on stage with Motorhead.
 

stryker

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@innsaneink said:
Great post PO….Ive been thinking similarly for some time, we dont play the way everyone else plays, we dont play semis style, we dont play origin style...<big>we're like a ballet dancer on stage with Motorhead</big>.

:laughing: :laughing: Thats the best analogy I've ever heard!!!

It is so so true …great post PO, your right - it is a crying shame but if we want to CONSISTENTLY mix it with the elite sides, then we need to grow up.

The clubs fans and indeed Rugby League in general will be the sadder for it but I think has to happen if we are to be successful.
 

supercoach

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Probably the best post I have read in years.The good teams now base their game plan on the Storm style of play. Its not always pretty but very effective and if it is done well it will win you plenty of football matches. Its all about completing sets, five charges up the middle get a quality kick in and defending with aggression. When you have dominated the other team both on the field and on the score board you than can have the luxury of ten minutes of flashy stuff at the end of the game. Okay it might be robotic and boring but it wins games and every september these teams get to play on while the others plan their mad mondays.

The only trouble we have assembled a team that dosnt want to play this style of football, they want to play the flashy way or should I say the easy way. Great to watch when it comes off three times a year but most off the other games when we are being rag dolled and dominated with and without the ball is sad.

The tiger style of 2005 will never be forgotten buts its dead and buried now. The old story if you cant beat them join them. You cant win a title without making the eight and we cant make the eight playing Sheens football, its that simple
 

Icon

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Pearce-off

You know what, i think you have nailed it

That's what's upsetting me too, even though i hadn't realised it till i read your post.

I'm just hoping that's the low point, a few more losses like that and the whole team could implode after so much expectation this year from within and from the fans.

I'm getting a bad feeling worst is to come.
 

Icon

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@supercoach said:
Probably the best post I have read in years.The good teams now base their game plan on the Storm style of play. Its not always pretty but very effective and if it is done well it will win you plenty of football matches. Its all about completing sets, five charges up the middle get a quality kick in and defending with aggression. When you have dominated the other team both on the field and on the score board you than can have the luxury of ten minutes of flashy stuff at the end of the game. Okay it might be robotic and boring but it wins games and every september these teams get to play on while the others plan their mad mondays.

The only trouble we have assembled a team that dosnt want to play this style of football, they want to play the flashy way or should I say the easy way. Great to watch when it comes off three times a year but most off the other games when we are being rag dolled and dominated with and without the ball is sad.

The tiger style of 2005 will never be forgotten buts its dead and buried now. The old story if you cant beat them join them. You cant win a title without making the eight and we cant make the eight playing Sheens football, its that simple

you know what, i just read the post again and i think it is the best post ever written on this forum.
 

Paris_Cobbs

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Excellent post P-O. Since the league took steps to slow down the play-the-ball at the beginning of 06, I'm afraid what you say has been correct. After 5 rounds this season, though, I think that a lot of us believed that we might finally have found the balance between brilliance (Farah, Marshall and Tuquiri, the 'Possibility') and grunt (Gibbs, Galloway and Rhino) and Ellis with a foot in both camps. Then, 4 losses in a row, culminating in 50-10 disgrace on a day meant to celebrate the proud history of the Balmain Tigers.

No wonder we are all so upset. Has the 'possibility' finally died? I hope not. I still beleive that if we can grind out a win vs Newcastle this week and then the Dogs, we might start to believe in ourselves again. Lets not give up hope yet.
 
P

pearce_off

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Thanks for the encouragement guys. I've been wrestling with this feeling for a while and it wasn't until the loss on Sunday that it dawned on me that we weren't witnessing the loss of a game, we were witnessing the death of a strategy, a belief, "The Possibilities" - and that is far more serious. I've followed my Tigers through thick and thin - and the last time I felt like this was after losing to Manly in the 1990 semi-final. I knew after that game, that we had peaked and the "Possibility" for success was dead. What followed was years in the wilderness. I hope I'm wrong. Please Tigers, prove me wrong.
 

Icon

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@pearce_off said:
Thanks for the encouragement guys. I've been wrestling with this feeling for a while and it wasn't until the loss on Sunday that it dawned on me that we weren't witnessing the loss of a game, we were witnessing the death of a strategy, a belief, "The Possibilities" - and that is far more serious. I've followed my Tigers through thick and thin - and the last time I felt like this was after losing to Manly in the 1990 semi-final. I knew after that game, that we had peaked and the "Possibility" for success was dead. What followed was years in the wilderness. I hope I'm wrong. Please Tigers, prove me wrong.

Bloody hell PO, i know Precisely the game you mean and how i felt after it. 20 - 0 wasn't it? It was the end of an era, never managed to get a band of players like that again.

I need a drink.
 

KingOvKingz09

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Keep posting PO… one of the best posts i have ever read... made me want to cry... the fact that "The Possibilities" may be dead and gone :frowning:
 

izotope

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fantastic post, the last 4 weeks they agree. but i refuse to give out hope.. i can't understand the first 4 games we played usual WST hot and cold, we lose moltzen and thats it.. into the shell to try and replicate the dragons.

I just hope there is trouble @ concord and in the coming weeks we will see the copperfield style magic
 

Lukic

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So…. why are you a looker more so than a talker. That was a very good, insightful post and sadly I agree with you. No longer will we be the fast, elusive wildcats of the past but a more methodical, well-thoughtout Tiger who prowls in the woods.

I won't be too upset at the loss of the attacking flair though, just look at the Dragons fans, they're a happy bunch. I guess there's nothing for them to remember or reminisce about though. Ah well, we'll see what happens and whatever it be, in the best interests of the club.
 

magpie_mania

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@paris cobbs said:
excellent post p-o. Since the league took steps to slow down the play-the-ball at the beginning of 06, i'm afraid what you say has been correct. After 5 rounds this season, though, i think that a lot of us believed that we might finally have found the balance between brilliance (farah, marshall and tuquiri, the 'possibility') and grunt (gibbs, galloway and rhino) and ellis with a foot in both camps. Then, 4 losses in a row, culminating in 50-10 disgrace on a day meant to celebrate the proud history of the balmain tigers.

No wonder we are all so upset. Has the 'possibility' finally died? I hope not. I still beleive that if we can grind out a win vs newcastle this week and then the dogs, we might start to believe in ourselves again. Lets not give up hope yet.

the slowing down of the play the ball is the one biggest change of rule interperation that has torpedoed our chances of a premiership.
 

Geo

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Yes top post very well said…PO....

However call me foolhardy but the "Possibilty" is not dead for me just yet....On Life support yes...the next 5 weeks loom as the most important in it's short history.....

If it's dead so be it...

It's just another 2 to 4 years to transform into a conformist no mistake boring football team...

Wish the next bloke the best of luck with it ....really do....
 
P

pearce_off

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@Icon said:
@pearce_off said:
Thanks for the encouragement guys. I've been wrestling with this feeling for a while and it wasn't until the loss on Sunday that it dawned on me that we weren't witnessing the loss of a game, we were witnessing the death of a strategy, a belief, "The Possibilities" - and that is far more serious. I've followed my Tigers through thick and thin - and the last time I felt like this was after losing to Manly in the 1990 semi-final. I knew after that game, that we had peaked and the "Possibility" for success was dead. What followed was years in the wilderness. I hope I'm wrong. Please Tigers, prove me wrong.

Bloody hell PO, i know Precisely the game you mean and how i felt after it. 20 - 0 wasn't it? It was the end of an era, never managed to get a band of players like that again.

I need a drink.

16-0 I believe Icon. We battled hard but we were clearly out of our depth. Garry jack looked old. Junior Pearce retired. End of an era. Truth be told, the cracks appeared earlier that year when we had the GF rematch with Canberra. We were couldn't compete - they'd taken it to another level. Ironic that Sheens put the end to the Big Forwards era back then and now we are witnessing Sheens grapple with the reality that small mobile forwards and flair just can't work as a concept anymore.
 

Aladinsane

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Pearce Off , Awesome post ….it would have made any editor worth his crust , very proud to have that article presented to him yesterday,, instead if the mediocrity that was printed in the Sydney papers today regarding that SCG match.

I also agree that in the first 5 games or so Sheens was trying with Folkes in the coaching squad to find that balance of flash & grit...then With Moltzen gone , [Racist or culturally insensitive words are automatically censored]ing forward injuries iand it started to all unravel ....Look at Panthers , they have a very healthy squad, all hands on deck , and are coming 2nd.

With so many injuries to key players,we all know that only a massive 17 man team effort is needed this Friday to turn or season back around .....anything is possible
 
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