Brandon Smith has been torched over his "highly disrespectful" comments in a revealing interview where he all but confirmed where he'll line up in 2023.
Smith's future has been a major storyline as of late, with the Gold Coast Titans, Redcliffe Dolphins, North Queensland Cowboys and the Sydney Roosters rolling out the red carpet to convince the Kiwi to commit to their club.
However, the 25-year-old — who has one year left to run on his deal with the Melbourne Storm – emphatically declared his ambitions with the Roosters, stating "I want to win a premiership in that jersey."
Those comments did not go down well with veteran rugby league journalist Phil Rothfield.
Speaking on Sky Sports Radio's Big Sports Breakfast, Rothfield believed Smith's comments were "way out of order".
"I think it was highly disrespectful to his club, Melbourne Storm," Rothfield said. "I think this is a similar situation to (Viliame) Kikau putting on a Canterbury Bulldogs jersey.
"Now, Brandon Smith is on big, big money at the Storm. He came over as a kid from New Zealand, he got the benefit of great coaching from people like Craig Bellamy, learning under Cameron Smith, (Cooper) Cronk, (Billy) Slater to become a marquee player.
"But he's contracted there for another 12 months; he's 16 months away from joining the Roosters, which he's obviously going to do.
"But to start talking about winning a premiership, and his dream of doing that in a Roosters jersey, I think personally is way out of order.
"And I think he's got to go home this week, he's got to tell Melbourne Storm, he's got to have a meeting with Craig Bellamy, and I don't think it's going to be all that pleasant.
"Brandon Smith, if he'd been a bit smarter, would have held that interview … until he told Melbourne, and then toned it down a little bit, throw in a few lines about his commitment to the Storm for the next twelve months.
"What he's said makes me wonder if he's trying to get out of there a year early and join the Roosters next year.
"I was really, really disappointed. He's a great character. One of the beauties of Brandon Smith is that he tells it how it is and there are no cliches. He's open and honest in whatever he says, but I was really disappointed."
With Smith set for talks with Bellamy and Storm chairman Matt Tripp, it certainly looms as an uncomfortable conversation with the star rake.
However, Fox Sports rugby league journalist Cody Kaye believes any such discussion between Smith and the powers that be at the Victorian club now "seems redundant".
"If I'm Melbourne I'm telling Brandon Smith forget about coming back," Kaye tweeted.
"Unbelievably disrespectful to the club, his teammates and Storm fans to talk about winning a premiership at the Roosters.
"Also seems redundant having a face to face with Bellamy. Think he knows now."
Rothfield echoed a similar sentiment to Kaye and felt Smith could be filled with regret over the revealing interview.
"If he (Smith) had his time again and he sat back and listened to it, I think he'd agree with us," Rothfield said.
"I would not like to be him walking into a meeting with Frank Ponissi and Craig Bellamy this week.
"They've been able to come to grips with the fact that he's been talking to other clubs because he hasn't broken any laws. They've come to grips with the fact that they're likely to lose him and it's all fair in love and war in rugby league."