Suddenly it’s looking like a leap from the frying pan into the fire, but Aaron Woods is shutting out the dramas surrounding his next NRL club Canterbury.
Frustration after seasons of turmoil at Wests Tigers was a factor when skipper Woods decided to leave and join the Bulldogs next year.
But recent events at Canterbury must make him question whether he is headed for more of the same just as the Tigers’ issues start to settle under new coach Ivan Cleary.
Bulldogs coach Des Hasler is feeling the heat in the wake of the latest embarrassing 38-0 drubbing by Penrith, with some discontented fans calling for a boycott of Canterbury matches.
Questions linger over why highly regarded CEO Raelene Castle decided to quit at season’s end with a year left on her contract and there are reports of discontent over the looming departure of fan favourite Josh Reynolds.
“I’m not at the Dogs yet. I don’t know what’s going on there,” Woods said at training on Wednesday.
“You can read everything you want in the paper, but like I found out here, half of it’s not true.
“When you go through dramas, people have got to write a story and find something to talk about. It doesn’t really bother me too much because I’m (at) Wests Tigers for this year.”
Woods confirmed he had no out-clause in his Canterbury contract linking him to Hasler, should the coach depart.
The NSW Origin star remained committed to finishing strongly in his last season with the struggling Tigers, who are one spot below the Bulldogs on the ladder in 15th and facing a battle to avoid the wooden spoon.
The Tigers’ four-game losing streak shows no signs of ending with Sunday’s date against the red-hot Sydney Roosters.
The Tigers have beaten them only once in their past 12 meetings, in Woods’ rookie season of 2011.
“It starts this week with the Roosters. What better challenge do you want, probably the form team of the comp,” he said
With the season at its halfway mark, the Tigers would need to win an unlikely nine of their remaining 12 games to reach the traditional 28-point mark and make the finals.
That’s what it would take to give Woods his first taste of September football in his seven-year career.