Panthers GM Phil Gould has revealed that the Titans tried to lure Panthers five-eighth James Maloney so that star centre Tyrone Peachey could remain at Penrith.
Speaking on his podcast Six Tackles with Gus, Gould discussed the potential deal that never took off.
“The Gold Coast said, ‘We’re prepared to do a little bit of a trade. We wouldn’t mind having James Maloney at the Gold Coast, you can keep Tyrone Peachey and we’ll take James Maloney because we’d like a player of his experience’,” Gould said.
“I said, ‘James Maloney’s not for sale’. That wasn’t going to happen. It’s within their rights to make the inquiry. But Tyrone will honour his deal at the Titans.”
Peachey signed a three-year deal with the Titans but is reportedly considering backing out of it.
Gould also said he made Maloney’s manager away of the inquiry just to be transparent.
“I spoke to (Maloney’s) manager just to let him know the inquiry’s come in,” Gould said.
“I refused it but I rang his manager and said, ‘Gold Coast Titans have made an inquiry about James Maloney, I’ve said no, I’m just letting you know they’ve shown some interest.’
“James has brought so many great things to our club. We’ve signed him for three years for a reason, and he’s only in the first year of that contract. I can understand the Gold Coast Titans too because they’re a young club on the rise, they’re within their rights to chase the player they think can help their club as well.
“I think other clubs know we’re going to run into salary cap issues over the next couple of years so that’s why they make approaches to Corey Harawira-Naera and those sorts of players. We’d like that to be in our control but by the same token we’re mindful that if our players are worth more money and other clubs are wiling to pay it and we can’t, we’ll look at that with a compassionate view.”