Here’s our look at the 2015 Key Signings for New Zealand Warriors. The team from across the Tasman has had a quiet season recruitment wise, choosing to instead focus on retaining the key players that had them on the verge of the finals in 2014.
1. Ryan Hoffman
The State of Origin and Australian team member is the biggest recruit for the New Zealand side. Hoffman will cover for the loss of Jayson Bukuya to the Sharks, and will look to tighten up the defences of the Warriors unit. Hoffman is an astute buy for a team that has a great deal of attacking flair, yet sometimes struggles to hold its line. The representative second rower will take defensive pressure from the tackling machine that is Nathan Friend. Hoffman was labelled by his former coach Craig Bellamy as the best clubman he could remember, highlighting just what a coup his signature is for the Warriors.
2. Bodene Thompson
Thompson joins the Warriors following a couple of seasons with the Wests Tigers, where he began in the second row before moving to the centres, offering the side a couple of options. He looks set to play back row, with Coach Andrew McFadden impressed by his work ethic, and his ability to play that position for eighty minutes.
3. Matt Allwood
Allwood signed with the Warriors from Canberra in less than favourable circumstances, the centre falling out of favour with the squad following disciplinary action from the club for unknown reasons. While this will cause some to question his attitude, no one can question the 22 year olds talent. In his appearances for the Raiders he showed great ability and speed with the ball, however did struggle defensively. If McFadden can work on tightening up his tackling technique, the Warriors may have scored a wonderful talent. However, with the club securing Jonothon Wright from Cronulla, Allwood will need to live up to his potential quickly, or find himself out of touch with the NRL squad.