When reading, please take into account I have spent zero time looking into the legality of Des Hasler’s upcoming challenge to the Bulldogs regarding him no longer being the coach. If he’s entitled to a complete payout, he should receive it.
News has broken that former Bulldogs coach Des Hasler will take the club to court over an alleged breach of contract following his sacking from the club.
Strangely, earlier in the year the Bulldogs announced the re-signing of Hasler as coach, despite a horror run of results. To fans outside the club, it looked a case of better the devil you know.
To highlight the insanity of the situation, it was on April 3rd that the Bulldogs announced Hasler had re-signed until the end of 2019. There was thought to be a ‘get out’ clause of sorts inserted, but ultimately it was seen as a move to bring stability to the club as well as backing Hasler long-term.
The announcement came as a surprise to the majority of Dogs fans on social media who had been calling for a change following a season and a half of less than exciting football.
Fast forward a matter of months as Hasler was sensationally sacked by the Dogs to be replaced by former Bulldog Dean Pay. You’d be forgiven for asking why the Dogs didn’t just let Hasler’s contract run out then announce Pay later in the year, but that is another story for another day.
Yesterday it was announced that Hasler and the Dogs were set for a court battle as a result.
According to reports, Hasler is targeting the entire $2.4 million worth of his contract.
Legally, I have no idea where he stands, but footballing wise, he should be forced to pay back a large part of 2016/17 contract rather than chasing more money.
To say the Dogs were dire in the past two years would be an understatement. Remember this is a team who would rather take a hit up on the last tackle of a set than risk a stray kick leading to seven tackle sets.
Seriously. It happened multiple times a game. If it wasn’t a game plan then it was the most bizarre thing I’ve ever seen in the game. There’s no way halves get caught running the ball that often in that area in the field without it being somewhat of an order.
In 2016, the Bulldogs posted a total of 360 points across their 22 games (with two byes). To put that into perspective, the Knights scored 428.
The Dogs were 53 points worse off than the side who scored the second least amount of points in the season. The Tigers, who lost their star half before the mid-way point of the season, managed to score 413.
I don’t know too many sides who can win titles, or even play finals, scoring 16 points per game.
This despite a side containing the likes of Brett and Josh Morris, two men who until 2016 had any trouble finding the try line.
Hasler’s tactics not only stunted the growth of Michael Lichaa, but it sends him backwards in a huge way. It’s only once Hasler threw the reigns open that Lichaa reminded everyone of his talents. It was only once Hasler was dismissed that Lichaa was re-signed. Considering this is the youngster the Dogs allowed Michael Ennis to leave for, that is downright crazy.
I’m not trying to sink the boot into Hasler too much here. He’s a Premiership winning coach with a final’s record every coach not named Bellamy would kill for. That said, he was the man responsible for the brand of footy the Dogs played over the past two seasons, and it was painful to watch.
I’m someone who goes to great lengths to watch every game, every round, all season (where possible). It got to a point where I would hope the Dogs would get flogged as it was the only chance I’d see attacking footy during a Bulldogs game.
I have nothing against the Dogs as a club, but I absolutely hated the brand of footy they played.
I can only imagine the frustration poor Dogs fans felt watching their team ruck it up for five then either take the tackle or kick it dead.
For the life of me, I can’t see why the Dogs re-signed Hasler given the concerns. Every single sign was pointing toward the need for a fresh start at the club. Simply letting Hasler’s contract expire would have been a clean break for all.
They’ve created this situation and look as though they’re now in a fight to avoid paying for it. That said, you’d have to imagine the lack of results, combined with the painful brand of footy played by the Dogs, that there’s more than enough reason to justify removing Hasler.
Judging PURELY on output, if I were the Dogs I’d be extending my hand asking for half of Hasler’s 2017 salary back.