‘I’m not a person who wants to create drama’: Why Haas shelved contract talks

Payne Haas has revealed he put contract conversations on hold over fears the fallout was causing stress to his family and assured Broncos fans he is totally committed to bringing the club success this season.

Haas’ management retracted his release request after emergency talks with Brisbane officials earlier this week, with the parties agreeing to shelve further negotiations until the end of the season. It’s a move the NSW prop made to shield his family and ensure the matter wasn’t a distraction from his Blues and Broncos commitments.

While the 22 year old said he was relatively unaffected by the reaction to his request really – “It doesn’t really rattle my cage” – he wanted the fans to know that he was more concerned with performance than his pay cheque.

“I’m not a person who wants to create drama,” Haas told the Herald. ”Obviously there was some stuff going out early, some rumours that I’m money hungry and this and that.

“That’s far from the truth. I’ve seen some people from the media put that out … it is what it is. Me and my management spoke about it. We just wanted to put it all on hold. I’ve got Origin at the moment to worry about.

“Obviously if I can just put that away now, put everyone at ease a little bit, especially all the fans as well in Brisbane. At least they know that I’m there until the end of the year.

Payne Haas at NSW training.Credit:Getty Images

“It’s good to give them clarity. We understood why they were a bit angry and we just wanted to put it to bed a bit. We can play some footy now for the rest of the year.

“People didn’t know the full story yet and if I can give one piece of advice, it’s wait for the real story, when it comes out of my own mouth or the management.”

Broncos fans booed him following Herald revelations that he sought an immediate release. It has subsequently emerged that the sticking point in negotiations was the desire to put team performance clauses into his contract, which would allow him to exit if they weren’t met. The Broncos knocked back the request.

Rather than allow the situation to fester, Haas recommitted to the club until the end of the year. The decision was made after consultation with his management and partner Leilani Mohenoa.

“Obviously there was … rumours that I’m money hungry and this and that. That’s far from the truth.”

“It’s not just how I feel, it’s obviously how she feels,” he said. “My partner, she’s looking after my daughter at the moment as well, I don’t want to put her under stress and with all of that stuff it’s obviously a bit stressful.

“Especially for my mum and dad, it’s a bit stressful, people calling me this stuff. Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but when they see that stuff they know who I am as a person, those people. Our club is going good at the moment, it’s now six [wins] on the trot with Brisbane and top four as well.

“No one thought we were going to be there and it’s good to be there. Obviously there was some stuff going on, but I love Brisbane and all the boys there.”

Asked if there was a main message he wanted to convey to the public about the events of the previous week, Haas said: “I just want them to know that I’m still committed to the Broncos.

“I’m going to play my best footy regardless of what’s going on outside of it. At the end of the day it’s a business and I’m going to put that aside and put in 100 per cent for my teammates.

“If people know that, that’s all that matters.”

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