Penrith Panthers NRL stars hit back at Paul Kent by sharing a Betoeota Advocate article
The Penrith Panthers have returned fire on a high-profile NRL commentator who blasted their “schoolboy” antics, claiming that the Grand Final winning team behaved like “mugs” after the game.
But the celebration continues in Sydney’s west amid the bitter feud, nearly 48 hours after the team claimed back-to-back premierships with an emphatic victory over arch-rival Parramatta Eels.
However, celebrations have been marred by controversy for the second year in a row with the team being accused of arrogance over their wild antics after the game and the day after.
NRL journalist Paul Kent did not stop Fox Sports NRL 360 Monday night, claiming the Panthers “missed class” and acted like teenagers.
Several Panthers stars reacted to the roasting early Tuesday before others shared a satirical article from the Betoeota Advocate mocking Kent.
Panthers winger Brian To’o was one of the Panthers stars who backtracked on Paul Kent’s criticism on Tuesday by sharing a screenshot of an article by The Betoeta Advocate
Panthers winger Brian To’o (pictured Sunday night celebrating with his fiancée) laughed off Paul Kent’s criticism of the team
Viliame Kikau, who will join the Bulldogs next season, responded to a Kent video on Instagram with the comment, “Uck up Kenty.”
Co-captain and halfback Nathan Cleary also commented, “Grateful. I love my bruddas.
The panthers continued when The Betoeta ran an article in which the journalist mocked the headline “Visible hangover Paul Kent loathes youthful Polynesians enjoying the fruits of hard work and talent.”
Screenshots of the article were shared on Instagram by Brian To’o, the hero of the two-try Grand Final, James Fisher-Harris and the five-eighth Jarome Luai.
“I love you Paul,” To’o wrote on his Instagram story.
Teammate Luai captioned his screenshot with several crying laughing emojis.
Luai’s spot on the Samoan side for the rugby league World Cup is under threat after the NRL Integrity Unit was warned about some of his social media posts on Sunday night.
On his Instagram, he shared a photo of him and teammate Jaeman Salmon. The publicly shared post contained a word that Daily Mail Australia has chosen not to republish and was quietly removed seven hours later.
Part of the uproar against the Panthers came on Monday when prop Fisher-Harris showed up with a vape in hand to celebrate with fans.
He then declared to the crowd that Parramatta “are our sons” before adding the 2022 team to the “best ever” Panthers squad.
“I just want to say that Parra are our sons. It’s just a fact here and now,” Fisher-Harris told the crowd.
“Like I said last night, we are the best Penrith team ever.”
The crowd erupted into a “We hate Parra” chant before several Panthers took to the stage.
Fisher-Harris has since hit back at the outcry over his comments which Kent labeled the “cult of arrogance.”
“I’m cool with the players and the area isn’t bad, just try to keep the rivalry alive,” he wrote.
“I have the most respect for the players who have gone before me/us. So don’t twist it.’
James Fisher Harris, labeled by Kent as the ‘high point of arrogance’, defended his controversial comments made at a fan day Monday
Outgoing hooker Api Koroisau also raised eyebrows when he sarcastically told the crowd at Bluebet Stadium that he would “probably do the same thing (win premieres) at the Tigers” – who ended this year with the wooden spoon.
Kent argued that the Panthers behaved ‘like mugs’ and risked ‘ruining their own party’
“It’s stupid, it’s really stupid to be honest. I just think Penrith are really bad winners, they’re bad winners,” Kent said Monday night.
“There’s a complacency and they’re pissing at their own party, Penrith. Because they should be celebrated, this is going to be one of the great teams and they should be celebrated and remembered that way, but they are just mugs as they go on after a game.
“Imagine James Fisher-Harris coming out and saying we’re the best Penrith team ever. That is the height of arrogance.
“Once the dust settles and the result is in, the weapons are down, show some humility and grace towards your adversaries.”
Penrith Panthers player James Fisher-Harris puffed on a vape (above) during a Mad Monday fan event following his team’s big final win against Parramatta Eels on Sunday
Kent singled out skipper Isaah Yeo and Clive Churcjhill medalist Dylan Edwards as the only Panthers players to behave gracefully.
“Someone at Penrith, whether it’s Ivan Cleary or Brian Fletcher the CEO, they need to bring these guys in and say ‘boys show a little bit of class, a little bit, show some grace and humility’… because not one ounce is up to revealed so far.
“Isaah Yeo and Dylan Edwards are the only ones you would look at and say can walk away from what they say with a certain integrity.
“The rest just act like rat mugs.”
Jarome Luai’s spot in the Samoan for the rugby league World Cup is under threat after the NRL Integrity Unit was warned about a social media post that has since been deleted