Former NRL star and Triple M commentator Wendell Sailor has teed off at Parramatta forward Ryan Matterson after his decision to accept a three-game ban instead of copping a $4,000 fine.
Matterson was charged with a Grade 1 crusher tackle on Dylan Edwards following the NRL Grand Final, leaving the one-time Origin player with a choice between his team, and his wallet.
The ensuing backlash led Matterson to backflip on the decision, however the NRL have rejected his decision, meaning the 28 year-old will sit out the Eels' opening three matches against Melbourne, Cronulla and Manly.
Expected to make the right edge his own following Isaiah Papali'i's defection to Concord, Matterson's decision could cost him a starting spot as the side gels in the opening rounds.
Former Brisbane and St George Illawarra star Wendell Sailor was adamant Matterson had made the wrong choice.
"Ryan Matterson... I know he's a good player, but for me I would have just paid the money," Sailor told Triple M radio on Tuesday.
"He would be on five or $600,000 a year, then there's other stuff on the side that.
"What it says to me is he would rather sit out three games than try to win a grand final or competition points.
"He should have known, him doing that says to the players and the club, 'money is more important than playing for the jersey'."
He wasn't the only member of the Triple M team to take a shot at the forward, with Red V prop Aaron Woods unleashing on the decision back in October.
"He's just one of the tightest humans you'll meet. I can't believe it, there's no way I'd miss a game, I'd pay $50,000 to play one game," Woods said at the time.
"If he was at the Dragons he'd be in the other change room because he wouldn't be allowed in our one, he'd be with the NSW Cup team.
"I don't understand, some people would be dying to play an NRL game and he's missing it for $4000."
The $4000 equates to about three days of gross pay for Matterson, who's on a reported $600,000 per season deal at the Western Sydney club.
The back-rower will return in Round 4 against Penrith in the Grand Final rematch, as both Matterson and the Eels pray his absence doesn't affect their early season form.