Melbourne Storm has received written confirmation that Brandon Smith will leave the club at the end of his current contract at the end of the 2022 NRL season.
Smith made his debut with Storm in 2017 and has gone on to play 86 NRL matches with Melbourne, including 24 in the recently completed 2021 season.
The 25-year-old has also gained seven caps for New Zealand and represented the Maori All Stars on two occasions.
As well as playing in the 2020 premiership-winning team, Smith was a member of Storm’s victorious 2018 World Club Challenge squad and won this year’s Dally M Hooker of the Year Award.
He will return to training on December 7.
Storm CEO, Justin Rodski, said today: “Recent comments made by Brandon in a podcast, and the way he expressed them, do not align with Storm’s values and the way we operate as a club.”
“The statements have deeply offended current and former players, coaches, staff and board members and the club strongly rejects the comments made about the Storm culture.”
“We acknowledge Brandon’s apology made on social media today and his willingness now to prepare for the 2022 season with Storm.”
“Brandon has every right to explore future opportunities as any player would in his position, and ultimately we respect his decision to play football elsewhere from 2023.” Rodski said.