Grand Finalist hooker Reed Mahoney may be a Parramatta Eel no more but that hasn't stopped him from giving an emotional goodbye to the club that made him a "man".
A hard-nosed yet skilful player with great service from dummy half, Mahoney has inked a four-year deal with the Canterbury Bulldogs starting next season.
Mahoney reflected on his time in the blue and gold after a disappointing 28-12 Grand Final loss to the Penrith Panthers on Sunday.
“This club's been instrumental for me, I came here as an 18-year-old, I think I'm leaving a 24-year-old I feel like I'm a man now,” Mahoney told Fox Sports.
“I've learned a lot of things along the way and I can't be more grateful for where they've put me in my life and it's sad to end this way but I'm really proud to be Eel 794."
Mahoney debuted for Parramatta back in 2018 but it was the following season that he would become a mainstay in the sides spine appearing in 101 contests for the club.
The hooker also detailed his close bond to Eels' head coach Brad Arthur, who has coached Mahoney for the entirety of his NRL career.
"He's like a dad figure to me, gives me a fair few roughing ups when I need it and he's helped me be the man I am today and the footy player I am today," Mahoney told Fox Sports.
“Just really grateful, proud of the people I've got to know and some great players here, it's been awesome.
Eels five eighth Dylan Brown also had nothing but kind words for 'Reedy'.
"Reed's been here four, five years now and he's been massive for the club," said Brown.
“His work ethic, his service is the best and honestly we're going to miss him a lot."
Mahoney's final season for Parramatta saw him make 28 appearances making 1207 tackles at an efficiency of 92.1%.
Eels fans will be hoping that former Raiders veteran Josh Hodgson will be able to recapture some form in the back end of his career to fill the void in 2023.