I could care less for the salary cap talk. What the Roosters do well is release players who are not great value to the club. They dont pay overs for bit players. They then identity and recruit who add to the style of play and culture they are trying to achieve.
I used to think that too, but I’m not so sure anymore.
A couple of seasons ago there were some quite authoritative articles in the press concerning how much Easts were paying their players - not the marquee players but other squad members. They went into specifics, but unfortunately I have forgotten the details. I do remember that the articles raised some eyebrows at the time because it was claimed that many of their regulars were being paid substantially less than what one would expect their market value to be.
The obvious conclusion was that these players were in receipt of good TPAs. But, it appears not, because last year the NRL released official figures re TPAs by club and, to everyones amazement, Easts TPAs were middle of the pack.
So, that led me to conclude that either; (a) the bulk of the squad are happy to play for significant unders, which is possible; or, (b) their players are in receipt of other sources of money that does not have to be reported to the NRL, which I think is more likely.
The problem for the NRL is the lack of transparency around players remuneration. Until that is resolved, the NRL and Easts will continue to have a credibility problem.
Im leaning that way too. Proving it is impossible however.