Pangai Jr in talks with Broncos just six months after retiring
January 25, 2024
Tevita Pangai Jr is plotting an NRL comeback just six months after walking away from the game to pursue a boxing career, and he’s already sat down with Brisbane Broncos officials as he sounds out landing spots.
The Sporting Base understands nothing formal has been offered to “TPJ” or his management yet, but the Broncos do like the idea.
One potential problem is the 27-year-old has no plans to walk away from boxing despite this new rugby league plot. He has already had one of two signed fights, with the second inked in for March, and any club that signed the gamebreaking second-rower would have to understand he would not be available around any bout dates.
TPJ’s management is more eager to set something up where the former Bulldogs star can make a cameo towards the end of the season in a similar fashion to what he did with the Panthers during their 2021 campaign.
If he did similar with the Broncos—with whom he played 96 games before joining the Bulldogs in the 2022 preseason—then they would be handed clear-cut firepower right before any possible postseason charge. Considering the club lost Tom Flegler, Herbie Farnworth, Keenan Palasia, and vice-captain Kurt Capewell this past offseason, it’s likely Brisbane bosses would be keen to bolster their stocks however they can.
Playing in Brisbane would mean Pangai Jr is in the same city as boxing coach Chris McCullen, suggesting it may be the best of both worlds for the (for now) retired rugby league star.
If anything formal is offered, The Sporting Base has heard figures around $250,000 to $300,000 floated around, which makes sense considering he earned around $750,000 a season with the Bulldogs while he was playing there.