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‘We’ve got a special bond’: Hibberd playing for the Essendon 34 - and his brother


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It is wonderful that if Hibberd plays and wins a premiership medal that he dedicates it to his brother.

But I can't abide that he is representing the 34 WADA suspended Essendon players.  They were found guilty by the highest court in the world.  It is beyond crass and disrespectful to invoke those players in our premiership campaign.

“I guess I represent those guys. I do. I feel like I represent all those guys over all the years. We’ve got a special bond, whether we contact each other frequently or not, I think it’s a bond I’ll have with those guys forever.”

I get that he has a special bond with them but why invoke them now!! 

I would rather he talked about representing Melbourne supporters, getting a flag for us, creating our history, playing for his teammates etc

I have an ugly lump in my throat.  We remember the ambush and thuggery of 2020.  He needs to learn something of our history and should know how galling that interview is for Demon fans.

There may some on here that have forgiven.  I haven't. 

I hope he doesn't play in the GF.  His jumper colours are red and blue but based on that article it sounds like his heart beats for the red and black.

Edited by Lucifer's Hero
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Live and let live. Melksham and Hibberd have that history and treatment by Essendon and then by WADA and the media.

That is their history as much as any player having a grief filled past, or any personal challenge.

Don’t forget that the real victims in the Essendrug scandal were the players.

And your last bit is way OTT.

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Just now, rpfc said:

Live and let live. Melksham and Hibberd have that history and treatment by Essendon and then by WADA and the media.

That is their history as much as any player having a grief filled past, or any personal challenge.

Don’t forget that the real victims in the Essendrug scandal were the players.

And your last bit is way OTT.

Time and place is my issue.

Yes, the last line is OTT.  I'm venting.  An occasional indulgence which in part why DL is a good place to be part of.

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If it was any other team I’d probs be comfortable with it to a degree. But not Essendon because Essendon. 🤮 

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2 hours ago, rpfc said:

Live and let live. Melksham and Hibberd have that history and treatment by Essendon and then by WADA and the media.

That is their history as much as any player having a grief filled past, or any personal challenge.

Don’t forget that the real victims in the Essendrug scandal were the players.

And your last bit is way OTT.

Not sure how I feel about hibbo's comments about his ex teammates. Ill advised and poorly timed comes to mind.

But I feel really strongly about the narrative those players were the real victims.

FMD those knuckle heads were not victims. And certainly not the 'real victims'.

Weak. Naïve. Poorly advised. Sheep like. Sure.

Victims. No. 

They chose their path. They are  completely complicit and should have been more harshly penalised.

They were all consenting adults, who at the very least must have known they were being asked to cheat given the secrecy of the program. 

Some of that group who chose to have hundreds of injections of god knows what cocktail of experimental drugs will no doubt refuse to be vaccinated.

The only victims in that sad affair are their fans. 

Edited by binman
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I hardly think he would have bought it up without prompting and the journo has run with the headline, most click worthy part of the interview. Whatever motivates hibbo is personal to him and if it's what would have been a horrible time for him and his teammates that is his motivation so be it

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If I was a neutral and I heard that, I’d be hoping the Doggies flogged us.

I’ll add one rider to what @binmansaid. I have a slight amount of sympathy for individual blokes who were in the 20 to 22 age range at the time. I’d hate to think of all the idiotic things I did at that age. Furthermore, the club was probably as insular as we were, and it would have taken a very brave member of said demographic to tell Tird to piddle off. Hell, the club president didn’t have the stones to tell him to clean out his desk after his ‘study’ tour. 

That being said, I won’t even remotely consider accepting the ‘we were victims’ line until any of the 34 point the finger at one of the key architects: James Hird.

His reaction post Essendon self reporting was hubristic, delusional and self righteous in the extreme. If he really was duped, wouldn’t he have jumped at the chance to take ASADA’s deal to have the ‘time served’ suspension that would have seen the players miss a few games at the start of the year? Would he have hired Malcolm Tucker style spin doctors to ring journos and threaten them for a good 2 years? 

The Essendon 34 have had 8 years to think about all this, and none of them has yet to put the blame on Hird at all. From what I’ve heard so far, they have put him in the ‘victim class’.

The leadership was absolutely appalling from their senior core at the time. In 2017 when we were going to go to Sargent Slaughter’s army camp for another round of 5 to 6 week injuries, the players voiced up and got it stopped. Essendon had plenty of older blokes around with enough standing in the group to pull Hird, Thompson and co. aside to say ‘no more’. 

Sorry, but when the abovementioned  doesn’t get mentioned, and they come out and act as though they were kidnapped off the street by Stephen Dank, thrown in a van with a bag on their heads and driven unwillingly to his clinic, I tend to stop listening.

I hope he does his brother proud. The Essendon 34, not so much.

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1 hour ago, binman said:

Not sure how I feel about hibboa comments about his ex teammates. Ill advised and poorly timed comes to mind.

But I feel really strongly about the narrative those players were the real victims.

FMD those knuckle heads were not victims. And certainly not the 'real vitims'.

Weak. Naive. Poorly advised. Sheep like. Sure.

Victims. No. 

They chose their path. They are  completely complicit and should have been more harshly penalised.

They were all consenting adults, who at the very least must have known they were being asked to cheat given the secrecy of the program. 

Some of tbat group who chose to have hundreds of injections will no doubt refuse to be vaccinated.

The only victims in that sad affair are their fans. 

Same with Jack Trengove?

The Essendon fans are anything but victims. 

You trust your employers and they lost a lot from that trust. 

The MFC right now is built it’s success of 2021 on the easily lost and difficult to build up idea of trust and if you didn’t feel for the players during that fiasco - I think you should reflect on that.

Especially considering Goodwin was also ‘on the gear’ as he said.

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2 hours ago, WalkingCivilWar said:

If it was any other team I’d probs be comfortable with it to a degree. But not Essendon because Essendon. 🤮 

I’ve had a re-think and now I feel that if Hibbo is using that group of imbeciles for motivation and we end up saluting, it would be fine by me. Imagine revelling in the knowledge that that team had a part, albeit small, in us taking out the big one! 

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2 hours ago, binman said:

Not sure how I feel about hibbo's comments about his ex teammates. Ill advised and poorly timed comes to mind.

In the sen interview Pert said he was managing the marketing and communications.  The club is running with a very tight script whenever anyone speaks to the media.

It makes we wonder if Hibberd went 'off script' here as it strikes me as odd that the club would endorse his theme.  Playing for his brother would certainly be endorsed.  Not sure about the rest.

I'd like to think that Jack Niall reported only part of the interview but he is a good reporter and not prone to 'click bait.

Edited by Lucifer's Hero
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I thought we liked players speaking honestly? And not with endless cliches.

I'm more than comfortable with Hibberd's comments and his personal motivation. 

I look at it this way...if a former Melbourne player who'd been with us in the dark days and ended up playing for another team in a Grand Final had said he was motivated by the thought of all his former team mates caught up in the "tanking scandal" I would have said, "good for you". 

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35 minutes ago, rpfc said:

Same with Jack Trengove?

The Essendon fans are anything but victims. 

You trust your employers and they lost a lot from that trust. 

The MFC right now is built it’s success of 2021 on the easily lost and difficult to build up idea of trust and if you didn’t feel for the players during that fiasco - I think you should reflect on that.

Especially considering Goodwin was also ‘on the gear’ as he said.

I didn't say I didn't feel for them, particularly the younger players.

Standing up for what is right and pushing back on what is evidently and clearly wrong can be hard, particularly in an ultra alpha environment that controls everything and pushing back is not encouraged. 

And everyone makes mistakes, particularly when you are young. Lord knows i have

But the difficulty of doing the right thing does not absolve you for failing to do so.

And it certainly does not make you a victim

On trust, sure the club abused the players trust.  But perhaps a greater breach of trust was the complete failure of the senior players to show any leadership and courage to protect their teammates, particularly the younger players.

The MFC has indeed built it's success on trust. But not one way trust - club to players. The players trust each other. Jake Bowey and his young teammates no doubt trust Gawn and the senior players.

I would like to think that our senior players would have the courage of their convictions and would stand up to the club if it were trying to  force the players to do something that crossed ethical and moral boundaries. Like cheating. 

And why on earth would you say the the Essendon fans are not victims? They are the only victims. 

Edited by binman
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While on mia culpa's (thank you @WalkingCivilWar), I'll walk back on my 'hoping he doesn't play in the GF' comment but I would have like some mention of the club supporters and awareness of our history etc.  2000 GF really makes me see red.

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15 minutes ago, Lucifer's Hero said:

While on mia culpa's (thank you @WalkingCivilWar), I'll walk back on my 'hoping he doesn't play in the GF' comment but I would have like some mention of the club supporters and awareness of our history etc.  2000 GF really makes me see red.

Keep in mind what was written may not include everything Hibberd said. He may have made very positive comments about our club and supporters but those words might not have made into the published article. And it may not even be the journo's fault. If those words had been written they may have been cut by the editor.

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21 minutes ago, La Dee-vina Comedia said:

I thought we liked players speaking honestly? And not with endless cliches.

I'm more than comfortable with Hibberd's comments and his personal motivation. 

I look at it this way...if a former Melbourne player who'd been with us in the dark days and ended up playing for another team in a Grand Final had said he was motivated by the thought of all his former team mates caught up in the "tanking scandal" I would have said, "good for you". 

Tanking is a completely different issue.  It is cheating by the coaches and management without any involvement by the players.  I presume you are not saying our players (like players in other tanking teams) threw matches?

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11 minutes ago, sue said:

Tanking is a completely different issue.  It is cheating by the coaches and management without any involvement by the players.  I presume you are not saying our players (like players in other tanking teams) threw matches?

You are quite correct that my comparisons were not of equal merit. But if the boot had been on the other foot and we'd been the club caught up in an ASADA scandal, I would have liked any ex-Demon from that era to continue to feel a bond with his former team mates. And i would be even prouder of him for saying it publicly.

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