Panthers fullback Dylan Edwards had the NRL world in stitches on Saturday night after his hilarious reaction to Andrew Abdo's bizarre moment during Penrith's minor premiership ceremony. The Panthers won their second straight NRL minor premiership title on the weekend having demolished the Cowboys 44-12 in a statement victory.
Abdo was on hand to congratulate the Panthers and during his speech the NRL CEO praised the team after claiming he didn't want to single anyone out. However, in a bizarre moment, Abdo reserved some special praise for a surprised Edwards.
FLOPS AND SHOCKS: Where your NRL team went wrong in 2023
"It's very difficult to single out any individual in such a phenomenal team effort, but I would like to acknowledge how unified this team is," Abdo said. "Dylan Edwards at fullback has made 193 assists. That's phenomenal."
The broadcast panned to Edwards who looked bewildered at the bizarre stat and was clearly confused to why he was singled out. Edwards' epic reaction had the NRL community in stitches.
Adbo's comment of '193 assists' also had fans confused with no player coming even remotely close to this NBA style number. Edwards has played 23 games this year and has five try assists and 12 line break assists. Quite short of Abdo's '193 assist' stat.
Edwards has made 134 tackle breaks and has averaged a whopping 203 running metres a game. Fans were left perplexed to what stat Abdo was referring to in his speech.
Asked by media if Dylan Edwards 193 assists should make him a certainty for the NSW Origin Fullback position; Andrew Abdo did point out that James Tedesco has had 754 assists #NRLPanthersCowboys https://t.co/U48ZBSf0Ax
— NRL CONSPIRACIES-The Championship Rounds (@NrlConspiracies) September 2, 2023
Andrew Abdo just said Dylan Edwards has made 193 assists. Huh???
— Anton Posa (@antonposa) September 2, 2023
i cant believe andrew abdo said dylan edwards had 193 try assits 😭 how could he get it so wrong
— abby (@lowkeyabby) September 3, 2023
Dylan Edwards has no idea what Abdo is talking about
— Kyle (@kyle_waller2) September 2, 2023
Ivan Cleary praises Panthers after back-to-back feat
Cleary was thrilled after the win, which saw them bounce back from a shock defeat to the Eels the week before. The coach praised the players for four years of consistent effort amid the Panthers' title reign.
“Really pleasing, a great night for the club,” he said. “The boys prepared really well this week and played well. It’s four years in a row we’re first or equal first at the end of the year. Consistency is such a big part of being successful. I think we've shown that for a long period of time so I’m really proud of that.”
Cleary will be up against a familiar foe in Warriors coach Andrew Webster in the first week of the finals. Webster has helped take the Warriors to title contenders in 2023 after a remarkable year.
But a 7.50pm start for the Panthers and Warriors would have meant fans in New Zealand wouldn't see the game until 9.50pm their time - meaning it would finish around midnight. Instead, the NRL has put the Panthers-Warriors game at 4pm on Saturday afternoon (6pm in New Zealand).
NRL Week 1 finals schedule:
(2) Brisbane Broncos v (3) Melbourne Storm - Friday 7.50pm, Suncorp Stadium
(1) Penrith Panthers v (4) Warriors - Saturday 4.05pm, BlueBet Stadium
(6) Cronulla Sharks v (7) Sydney Roosters - Saturday 7.50pm, PointsBet Stadium
(5) Newcastle Knights v (8) Canberra Raiders - Sunday 4.05pm, McDonald Jones Stadium
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