As the dust settles on the dramatic departure of Stephen Kearney, a host of names have quickly emerged as leading candidates to take over as coach of the Warriors. We rate their chances.
Griffin has a strong pedigree after working at the Storm, Broncos and Panthers, while also helping steer Tonga to groundbreaking wins over Australia and England last year. Of the known candidates, Griffin has the best credentials. His coaching style has been described as "hard nosed".
Griffin couldn't restore the Broncos to former glories during a 100-game first grade career there, but his record was okay. Working under Phil Gould's management at Penrith, he should just about be bomb-proof, a handy weapon at the Warriors.
Started as a junior coach at Redcliffe, the Brisbane club which recently became the Warriors development system.
On the surface, being bladed by the Panthers in 2018 when in sight of the finals is hardly a strong recommendation. Then again, it was Phil Gould who wielded the axe, and there is no bigger ego in league. Gould accused Griffin of shunning the modern way of involving other opinions. Griffin reckoned Gould was happiest when the Panthers lost. Classic Aussie league.
Griffin also seems to have fashioned a career as a sort of new-age motivational mentor in the corporate world. Some may see this as a good thing. Some may not.
Chances: Very strong.
Brown was the early favourite in some minds, having already had brief special-assignment stints assisting Kearney.
This created the impression Brown was being lined up, because Kearney was clearly under pressure from new sole owner Mark Robinson.
The 46-year-old should be in his prime and comes across as someone who can fit in. He fashioned a pretty decent record as a young first grade coach at the Dragons, the club where he made his name as a player.
Brown really struggled with a dodgy squad at the Knights. And he'll start off with a dodgy squad at the Warriors. He lacks the wow factor, and hasn't created the impression of a winner. Brown once lost the plot on a sideline by getting physical with a few of his own Dragons players but that was a long time ago. Uncertain if he will even be available.
Chances: Decent if available.
Legendary Manly Warringah figure, where he was a player and coach. Toovey typifies the Sea Eagles – a club with a tough mentality even if it is struggling to match old glories. He got them to one grand final.
He'd certainly make the press conferences interesting – he once called for an inquiry after his team lost a penalty count.
His reputation has been hurt through being unable to find another NRL job, since being fired by Manly in 2015.
Chances: Probably not as good as people might think.
The veteran NRL playmaker hasn't been out of work as long as Geoff Toovey, since being dumped as Manly coach two years ago. And he is assisting Ivan Cleary at Penrith, making him very current.
His Sea Eagles record doesn't excite.
Chances: Needs a great interview.
Been there and done that, over an incredibly long career. Might be the perfect fit if the Warriors want to retain Todd Payten as their long term choice, and if former prop Payten is willing to work under his old Tigers coach. Had some great days at the Raiders and Wests.
Sheens built one of the most famous teams of all time at the Raiders. At the Tigers, he won a premiership with a fairly ordinary squad in one of the great coaching performances, thanks largely to his work with Benji Marshall.
The 69-year-old has been out of the NRL for too long (eight years), which might put him behind the eight ball in tactics and pulling power with big name targets. But Wayne Bennett is still going strong, and he's a tad older than Sheens. Sheens really struggled at the Cowboys.
Chances: Might be better than imagined.
The 55-year-old – a brief British test forward – guided Wigan to three Super League grand final victories. Good enough to win the English coaching job this year.
The passion for the game which emanates from the few English league strongholds is infectious and unique. Their players have been making a huge impact in the NRL at clubs like the Rabbitohs and Raiders.
This is a guess, but Wane would bring a lot of character and fan engagement to the club compared to some of the more robotic Australian coaches. And English league treasures ball movement with a tradition of encouraging creative forwards, things which should be a trademark of the Warriors.
It would be a huge risk hiring an English coach at a wobbly NRL club. And European Super League teams are not known for great defence – the cornerstone of successful NRL campaigns.
Chances: Certainly an interesting candidate, but only an outside chance.
A man on the rise according to the drum beats. Payten's initial media interviews as interim head coach reveal an authentic and down-to-earth character. If he was to perform a miracle under these circumstances it would be hard to turn him down if Payten felt ready. But nobody knows if he has the head coaching acumen yet, and they won't for some time.
Timing. Kearney's assistant, until the weekend drama, may not even have enough games in which to impress the Warriors bosses, before they make the new appointment. After all, a reason for sacking Kearney when they did was to give a new coach time to get everything in order before taking over next year.
It is clear the Warriors have no intention of making him their first grade coach. He would have to produce one of the great bursts of stunning and unexpected success to change the thinking.
Chances: Slim to zero.
The former goalkicking forward, an old Roosters favourite who played a stack of tests and State of Origin games, is getting a lot of great press assisting Trent Robinson at the Roosters. Fitzgibbon is a defensive specialist, which is exactly what the Warriors need.
No runs on the board as a head coach. Not worldly enough as a coach yet for such a challenging assignment at a club with such a wobbly history.
Chances: Minimal but the Roosters' reputation and his role in their rise means you can't rule him out if available.
Maguire would rival Griffin in favouritism if available. Took Wigan to titles, and more significantly broke South Sydney's long premiership drought in 2014. Maguire is famed for tough training sessions.
He already has a job at the Tigers, so he's not available. But there are weird whispers that the man who has done a respectable job as the Kiwis coach could somehow end up in the mix, seeing a more secure future in Auckland. Who would know with the NRL? It is a place where just about anything is possible. Maguire is infamous for tough training sessions.
Chances: Very high in the unlikely event he's available.