AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - AUGUST 24: Shaun Johnson of the Warriors in action during the round 24 NRL match between the New Zealand Warriors and the Penrith Panthers at Mt Smart Stadium on August 24, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. (Photo by Anthony Au-Yeung/Getty Images)

Cronulla have signed former New Zealand Warriors halfback Shaun Johnson on a three-year deal.

The 28-year-old has signed until at least the end of the 2021 season, and told the club’s website he was thrilled to lock in his playing future.

“It’s been a crazy few weeks but it’s good to lock it all away. I can’t wait to get over here and to rip in. It’s really exciting,” Johnson told sharks.com.au.

“I want to add value where I can. The Sharks are a tough side, they know how to win and that’s what I’m excited to be a part of.”

Sharks coach Shane Flanagan also spoke about Johnson’s signing, and said it was a “massive boost” to what the club are building towards.

“To recruit a current Test half at this time of year is a massive boost to our club, the playing group our members and fans,” Flanagan said.

“Shaun’s football talent is going to be a huge plus for our team and his experience will undoubtedly help with the development of our younger players.

“Players like Jayden (Brailey), Kyle (Flanagan) and Blayke (Brailey) are some who can only benefit from having Shaun in our team.

“And added to all of that, he has outstanding character, has done some great work in the community in New Zealand and he will also be an asset to the club off the field as well.”

22 COMMENTS

  1. I wonder how Moylan will feel about moving back to fullback. That was part of his reason for walking out on the Panthers last year. I can’t see Cronulla parting ways with Townsend or Kyle Flanagan, or running Johnson at fullback?

    • Personally, I have never rated Moylan as a FB and I would be very curious to see what SJ could do in the custodian role. I am interested in how he could spark the Sharks attack on BOTH sides of the field but expect very little in terms of his defensive capabilities. Remember Ben Barba back in 2012? Same thing, but just look at the difference that he made to the Bulldogs even without a decent defensive game.

      • Perhaps but unless you have seen him play there and fail you are only speculating aren’t you?

        A lot of eyebrows were raised when Greg Inglis was moved by Madge from centre to fullback and yet it was an immense success. Moving Moses Mbye from HB to FB has also been a successful move and he is now playing better football.

        Dogs fans can correct me if I’m wrong but I think tgat Ben Barba initially played at 5/8 or hooker when he started playing for the Dogs before he was moved to FB.

        FB is a highly specialised position with high risk and high pressure. It is not a position to throw players in don’t have the requisite skill or temperament but I think SJ could make the switch successfully.

        He is one of the best open field attackers in the game and us skilled at making even a set defensive line miss. I think SJ could carve teams up on kick returns and also with precision timed surgical attacks on both sides of the field as he sees an opportunity chiming into the backline on a block play.

        I suggested this change long before it was mentioned here to fill a gap left by Valentine Holmes just as I have suggested to positional changes for Mbye to FB, Josh Reynolds to hooker and Darius Boyd to 5/8 with Milford moving back to FB. I also suggested almost 4 years ago that Michael Lichaa was NOT a hooker but was instead better suited to lock or as a left edge back rower. All these positional changes make sense and some have already proved successful while others have not yet been attempted.

        I’m just trying to think outside the box Jwoodzy1 and sometimes THAT is precisely what is needed.

        • I’m not disagreeing with your comments re SJ, but I wouldn’t play him at FB.
          5 years ago, yeah maybe, but at 28, no, well certainly not unless you had to.
          I don’t know how he would go doing the defensive FB role (positioning wise, high balls etc), but I do know he can play in the middle, and with a halves partner like Townsend, he’ll be allowed to play his natural game.
          I think we’d agree you wouldn’t play him with Moylan in the halves together, so it’s back to FB for Moylan, unless the Sharks move him on.

  2. I wonder what the Sharks are paying the players with?
    They had borrowed 1 million from a board member, who’s not a board member any longer. So guessing he wants his money back? They had to dismiss 10 office staff from the football club to save money. So things aren’t so great on the money front at the Sharks.
    Now they sign Johnson & want to buy Taupau. ?
    Moylan at fullback is interesting. He was rubbish there in 2018, so they had to move him. To slow in cover defence & doesn’t defend opposition kicks well.
    Then add Flanagan.. He would have been expecting to go into first grade in 2019. Does it mean no go to him at half/ 5/8th? Or Townsend at half, Flanagan at 5/8th, Johnson at fullback. See you later Moylan?

  3. I think that was a bad move by Johnson. The NRL have already said they won’t bail out the Sharks if they get flooded in more debt…As it stands now the sharks future looks grim…I thought Johnson would be too concerned about that to actually sign. Ah well, good luck to him.

  4. SJ in this team wont make any difference..he was crap most of the year against the same opposition. Lewis gone, Graham out for half the year, lucky to make the 8 in my eyes. Their best player off to NFL, a really good centre gone, Dugan being Dugan and nuffety Moylan,,no money and a cheating captain and coach. Kyle Flannagan is seriously nothing more than average as well. LMAO at the sharks.

  5. SJ is about to feel the wrath of the Shire fans if he doesn’t control his ego. You’re not back home now bro better pull your finger outta your a$s and i hope u play to your potential!!
    @Reg…once his confidence is back he could light up the field from fullback but it looks like Flanno has his mind set on him playing #6.

    • That would also be a good move warriorz7. I have said for some time now that SJ is better suited to an open running role, unshackled by the constraints of playing a first receiver HB role organising the attack rather than running at a defensive edge.

      Except for an attacking short kicking game, he does not have a great kicking game in general play so Townsend will have to manage that. I just think that from FB Johnson would have more time to assess opportunities to attack on BOTH sides of the field and also could be lethal running the ball back at broken defensive lines from kicks. I believe he has shown signs of being able to handle a high ball which will be crucial to any success in the custodian role. But a running 5/8 role, to begin with, will present far less pressure initially fitting into a new club for the first time in 8 years.

      I think it will be a good move for both Johnson and the Sharks. As Luke Lewis recently said, Johnson will benefit immensely from being behind an experienced Sharks forward pack that is known for laying a solid and stable attacking platform consistently for SJ to capitalise on. This should be a welcome change from having to continually pull a rabbit out of the hat after a stalled forward drive through the middle third of the field.

      As I have said before warriorz7, the Warriors forwards usually have great individual skill and they are strong and athletic and are able to get amazing offloads away. However, they can be guilty at times of trying to play more like Harlem Globetrotters than to do their basic job of trying to break the defensive line and look for supports and offloads after that. The Warriors need to focus on their go forward and cut out the razzmatazz before the defensive line IMO. They need to run like they are trying to escape a burning building as Souths forwards did back in 2014 when they won the premiership.

      • Reggie: all it took was 2 words. Not A b00dy essay.

        Good move, SJ.

        Verbosity is not a skill, Reg. It’s a literary disability.

        So p1ssed Dragons were not even a look in on that one.

        Less is more, Reg. Less is more.

        • Just because YOU don’t enjoy or UNDERSTAND a more in-depth technical analysis of the game doesn’t mean that everyone shares YOUR views. If it bothers you DON’T read my posts. PLEASE! Think of it as a challenge to do something that you know you are unable to do.

          And after what you have posted about my wife and 8-year-old daughter, DON’T post to me again!

  6. I for one quite enjoy reading yourposts Reg. Some are defining,objective but definitely offer an insight from other angles. Then there’s the tongue in cheek comments that can be humorous too.
    You either like em or u don’t!
    There’s a few entertaining comments by people on here and some great suggestions…but you Danielle? Hmmm not sure about you

    • Cheers warriorz7. This time of year when things slow down I lean more heavily towards banter to help get throw the LONG, SLOW off-season. The “Banter Train” just helps everybody to connect to this shared effort to make things more relaxed and enjoyable over this boring period.

      Many people here make positive contributions (even if we don’t always agree) and some, like you have pointed out, never do. Infact, it is quite the opposite.

    • As you say; “You either like em or u don’t!”. I am sure there are people here who don’t like reading my posts (for whatever reason) and choose NOT to read them, and fair enough.

      I certainly don’t read every post here, at least not all the time, and some I avoid altogether. But I don’t complain if I choose to read a profile I already try to avoid. No one forced me to read it. It was MY choice. It seems it is easier just to skip posts from profiles you have no time for but if you do CHOOSE to read them and you don’t like it, then don’t blame others for your choice. Sorry, but your time is not refundable so choose wisely. πŸ‘πŸ»

      • Keep it coming reggie the rabbit. Esp the posts from the angry eagle. That guy is spot on with most of his predictions!

        • Well the “Angry Eagle” said that Seibold was going to the Broncos in 2019 MONTHS ago! He said that Des, Cleal and “snake” would be at Manly in 2019 BEFORE it was announced and that Cooper Cronk was 80% coming to the Rabbitohs in 2018. So….
          πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

          I hope he gets some wrong because he has also predicted that Damien Cook is going to Newcastle in 2020! IF that happens look out Knights fans I will be using my salary cap blowtorch on the Knights next!

        • Btw “reggie the rabbit” was SSTID-1970’s pet name for 3hats so let’s not steal that honour from him shall we? Reg will do just fine, less typing and just 3 letters! πŸ˜‰

Comments are closed.