Storm re-sign Griffin, add youngsters
Melbourne Storm has today announced that resilient utility Slade Griffin will remain at the Club until at least the end of 2017.
Griffin’s re-signing adds another deserving chapter to his remarkable comeback from injury.
The 25-year-old bounced back from three knee injuries in four years to make his NRL return in Round 15 this season – 1,056 days since he last appeared in the purple jersey.
The Club’s decision to re-sign Griffin is a further testament to his unwavering resilience and dedication, which has been a source of inspiration to his teammates.
“Slade has been through a lot in his four years at the Club and that comeback game showed how strong of a character he is,” Storm Football Director Frank Ponissi said.
“He is a valued member of the playing group and the boys love having him around the Club because of how hard he works every day.
“We look forward to seeing Slade back to his best on the field in 2017.”
As well as re-signing Griffin, Storm has also cast an important eye to the future, securing the signatures of exciting youngsters Jahrome Hughes and Brandon Smith as well as standout Queensland Cup half Ryley Jacks.
Smith and Hughes come to Melbourne as highly touted youngsters from the North Queensland Cowboys.
Smith, a 20-year-old Junior Kiwi, has signed a three-year deal with Storm after an impressive season for the Cowboys’ NYC side. As well as guiding them to a Preliminary final berth, he was also named at Hooker in the NYC Team of the Year.
Hughes, 21, made his NRL debut for the Titans in 2013 and played one game for the Cowboys in Round 12 this season.
The utility back played most of this year with the Townsville Blackhawks in the Queensland Intrust Super Cup and was named at fullback for representative side Queensland Residents. He joins Melbourne until at least the end of 2018.
Jacks has signed a one-year deal with Storm after a stellar season for feeder side Sunshine Coast Falcons.
The 24-year-old halfback/five-eighth ranked highly in the votes for Queensland Intrust Super Cup Player of the Year and is the second Falcons player to join Storm next season after Erevonu Kamikamica.
Ponissi said signing the young trio was another important step forward for the Club.
“We are delighted to have Jahrome, Brandon and Ryley come down to Melbourne,” Ponissi said.
“Jahrome and Brandon are very talented and exciting young players that we look forward to seeing develop at Melbourne Storm and become a big part of our Club’s future.”
“Ryley has been outstanding for the Falcons and impressed our recruiting staff during this season. He is a welcomed addition to our halves and we look forward to seeing him thrive in an NRL system.”