Broncos head coach Kevin Walters has rubbished claims of a divide amongst his backroom staff as reports of an alleged brawl between two notable names of the club.

It is claimed in a report by the Courier Mail that assistant coach John Cartwright and former player Chris Johns clashed in an intense altercation at a Christmas breakup party.

According to Johns' interview with the Mail, the bust-up was ignited by comments made by himself after a discussion regarding Cartwright comparing the Broncos to the Panthers.

“I said (to Cartwright), ‘At the Panthers you have won one comp, don’t compare the Broncos (who have won six premierships) with the Panthers’.

“Carty got the s***s and said, ‘Don’t start bagging my old club’."

Johns, who played from 1984-96 in the NSWRL/ARL, chairs the Broncos Old Boys Club and won premierships with the side in 1992 and 1993.

However, the dual premiership player denied that there was a rift amongst the staff as a result of the incident, citing him and Cartwright's friendship.

“We’re the best of mates. We always have been. It was at the break-up of the coaching staff (before Christmas) and they had asked me if I wanted to have a beer.

“If you were watching it you would have said, ‘What are these blokes doing?’”

There were reports emerging that Cartwright grabbed Johns by the throat, but the claims were rubbished by the Broncos assistant coach.

The incident, which played out at the Caxton Hotel, occurred weeks after Walters was unveiled as the new Broncos coach following their dismal 2020 campaign.

Walters has claimed that he had no knowledge of the incident and maintains that it is very much business as usual at the club.

“If it did happen, I wasn’t there.”

“’Johnsy’ was at training the other day having a burger, so there’s no problem ... I don’t think too much happened.”

The Broncos will be looking to improve on their disappointing 34-18 loss to the Cowboys in their pre-season trial runout on Saturday night.

Brisbane go up against Paramatta in the first round of the 2021 NRL season on Friday, March 12 and will hope to not make it back-to-back wooden spoons.


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