Anthony Griffin

Griffin reveals plan for star recruits after Dragons change 14 roster spots in squad overhaul

The Dragons have overhauled their pack adding Jaydn Su’A, Aaron Woods, George Burgess and Francis Molo, while Moses Mbye and Moses Suli have boosted their backline.

The club made massive strides in 2021, but Griffin clearly felt they needed some fresh blood and experience to help them return to the finals this season.

“I thought for long periods last year we competed really well with the squad that we had,” Griffin told

“But we have changed 14 roster spots since then so it is a fairly different squad.”

Maloney masterclass pleases Griffin

The strong platform laid by their forwards for the full 80 minutes allowed Maloney to turn up the volume in game control. He scored 21 points out of the Panthers total of 33 through eight goals from eight attempts, a try, and a field goal.

Then you can throw in the two try assists as well.

Griffin was understandably happy with his halfback's performance, especilaly after losing regular No.7 Nathan Cleary to a serious knee just six days earlier.

Panthers still building: Griffin

In a fairly-even contest between the two sides, a late four-pointer to Roosters fullback Michael Gordon secured the win for the visitors, but Griffin said his men were out of luck after a number of 50-50 calls failed to go their way and a strong defensive effort was trumped by the Tri-colours.  

Panthers' backline puzzle not yet solved

Long-term injuries to internationals Dean Whare and Peta Hiku handed Waqa Blake and Tyrone Peachey an extended run as the side's first-choice centre pairing in 2016, while Josh Mansour and Dallin Watene-Zelezniak nailed down a spot on either wing with skipper Matt Moylan anchoring the side at fullback.

Griffin laments crucial defensive lapses

Griffin was upset with the Panthers' first-half defensive efforts as the Storm were able to clear their lines too easily. 

"I thought we didn't have the 80 minutes of footy in us that we needed," Griffin said. 

"We started very well and in the second half we clawed our way back into the game physically, but over the whole 80 minutes we just weren't strong enough. 

"They got out of their end far too easily in the first half with penalties and our lack of defensive pressure.