Embarrassed Brisbane players Adam Reynolds and Pat Carrigan have apologised for their late-night scuffle, with the Broncos ruling out suspending the duo.
Reynolds and Carrigan fronted the media at Broncos headquarters on Tuesday, less than 48 hours after wrestling at a Brisbane nightspot.
The pair refused to go into detail over the incident, and would not delve into whether Reynolds was attempting to drag an intoxicated Carrigan out of a venue.
But regardless, Broncos captain Reynolds said he was embarrassed by the situation less than three weeks out from their Las Vegas opener against the Sydney Roosters on 2 March.
“I take full responsibility for what happened, it’s obviously not good enough,” Reynolds said.
“I’m pretty disappointed in it. As a club, we’ve come a long way with our culture.
“We’re embarrassed … we’re a really tight group. We understand it’s not a good look.
“We were there as mates. It started out as a playful fight, a little bit of wrestle. It got a little bit heated, but there’s no one injured.”
In a video that surfaced on Monday, Carrigan and Reynolds can be seen wrestling on a night out in Fortitude Valley after a fan day for last year’s grand-finalists on Sunday.
In the footage, a female at the scene can be heard yelling “Adam … Pat … stop!”
Carrigan said it was now clear the players should not have been out, as they dodged questions over how many venues they had been asked to leave.
“I take full responsibility for my actions. It’s obviously not ideal behaviour that I am proud of,” Carrigan said.
“I stand side by side with Adam.
“Adam had my best interests at heart. It was probably time for me to go home. We were mucking around and joking in a public place when we shouldn’t have been.
“I’m lucky that, as a leader, he’s there to support me, and I wouldn’t want to have any other captain or teammate or friend in that regard.”
The incident prompted the pair to receive a stern talking-to on Monday from Broncos bosses, who informed the NRL’s integrity unit of the matter.
The NRL are still looking into the incident, having previously banned Broncos pair Payne Haas and Albert Kelly for an altercation with each other in 2022.
However, this case differs from that one, in that there were no punches thrown, and there is a prior clean record for both Carrigan and Reynolds.
“We won’t be suspending them,” Brisbane coach Kevin Walters said.
“The NRL integrity unit is looking at all the vision and they’ll be obviously doing some interviews. So it’s out of our hands now and into theirs.
“I have walked in their shoes before. Sometimes it’s not easy. Rugby league is a very competitive sport, lots of testosterone and boys like that have fun.
“They’re not boys, they’re men and wrestling. Obviously (it) got a bit out of hand, so it’s disappointing, but it’s not the end of the world, really.”