Is the three-peat on?
Will the return of Pap lead the Storm to glory?
What about a $76 pop?
As we approach the 2023 NRL finals series, BetDeluxe breaks down those in line for premiership success.
We’re calling it; the historical three-peat is on track.
Even the most courageous punter would find it difficult to ignore the Panthers on their quest for a hat trick, with Ivan Cleary’s champion team hitting its straps at the right time of the season.
Sitting at the top of the table and on a five-game winning streak, the 2021 and 2022 champions have been crunched into $2.30 with BetDeluxe following their 28-0 obliteration of the Sharks over the weekend.
They’ve recently made light work of the Storm and the Knights and come home with winnable games against the Sea Eagles, Titans, Eels and Cowboys.
Nathan Cleary is back from injury and sitting second on the Dally M leaderboard, Dylan Edwards is having a season to remember at fullback, and Brian To’o is punching home tries for fun.
There’s not a whole heap of value to be found at this point of the season, but we can’t see that $2.30 quote getting any longer as we approach finals.
A genuine contender to the Panthers’ reign has emerged in the form of Kevin Walters’ Brisbane Broncos.
Trailing the favourites only on points differential, the Broncos are potentially on track to record their first minor premiership since Walters was captain in 2000. The romance of the situation doesn’t end there either, with Walters and Darren Lockyer leading the Broncos to the premiership in the same year. Omen?
Either way, Brisbane’s #1 team has won seven of its past eight games. While their record at home is OK (6-4), it’s on the road where the damage has been done, with the Broncos winning 90% of their away games.
Payne Haas leads all comers in the Dally M voting. At the same time, Reece Walsh, Selwyn Cobbo, Ezra Mam, Adam Reynolds and Thomas Flegler undoubtedly possess the firepower to win the club’s first premiership since 2006.
Something is brewing in the Sunshine State, and we’re more than happy with the $4.30 to find out what it is.
There’s no such thing as an NRL premiership futures story without the Vics. The big, scary, premiership-winning Vics.
While 2023 has seen greater inconsistency from the Storm than we’re used to, Craig Bellamy has still led his side into fourth on the ladder with a 12-7 record.
This weekend’s match against the Panthers will give greater insight into how far the Storm has come since the start of the season, but we’re confident of a strong showing after big wins over the Roosters and Eels in recent weeks.
Harry Grant has taken his game to another level in 2023, while Cam Munster and Xavier Coates were part of the successful Maroons Origin squad.
Lastly, and most importantly, is the news that Ryan Papenhuyzen is closing in on a return from a knee injury he suffered in Round 18 last year. There is no bigger name set to come back ahead of finals. The difference?
At $76, surely it’s worth a dabble?
The Knights have turned a corner in recent weeks, and while they are still yet to cement a spot in the top eight, Adam O’Brien’s men are well and truly on track with four consecutive wins.
Kalyn Ponga has led the resurgence with seven try assists and 54 points during the four-game stretch, alongside competition-leading try scorer Dom Young (20), Greg Marzhew (14), Dane Gagai and Tyson Frizell.
They’ve got winnable games against the Dolphins, Bulldogs, Sharks, and Dragons on the run home, with the thought of finals now a genuine possibility.
Having been starved of the ultimate success since 2001, Knights fans are beginning to wonder if the fairytale is unfolding before their eyes. And with the A-Grade talent on their list, it’s easy to see why.