Canberra coach Ricky Stuart is facing a historic ban for his stunning attack on Panthers young gun Jaeman Salmon.
Stuart called Salmon “a weak-gutted dog” after the 23-year-old was placed on report for lashing out with his foot while being tackled by Raiders hooker Tom Starling.
The Salmon family has called on the NRL to act, while Stuart has copped an avalanche of criticism for the stunning outburst in his post-match press conference on Saturday night.
Stream every game of every round of the 2022 NRL Telstra Premiership Season Live & Ad-Break Free During Play on Kayo. New to Kayo? Start your free trial now >
MORE NRL NEWS
TALKING POINTS: NRL facing moment of truth after ‘ugly’ Ricky spray
WHISPERS: Dragons eye hookers amid shock retirement; Haas’ lucrative switch
PHEW: Knights win a ‘relief for everyone’ after ‘tough’ week
DRAMA: Knights trainer breaks silence, reveals word that made Klemmer saga ‘worse’
The NRL are furious with the veteran coach and are expected to throw the book at Stuart, with the 55-year-old potentially facing an unprecedented ban.
Stuart has been fined $135,000 by the NRL since becoming a coach in 2002, but could now be looking at a match suspension for the first time.
NRL boss Andrew Abdo described the remarks as “very serious” and “disappointing” and is expected to speak again on Monday afternoon.
“I think it was so serious what happened that we’re looking beyond a fine this time,” Phil Rothfield said on Big Sports Breakfast.
“I think Andrew Abdo was so angry about it yesterday that he’ll probably look at some kind of suspension, it might just be standing him down for one week or two weeks.”
MORE NRL NEWS
‘SAVED MY LIFE’:Hynes’ touching tribute to ‘best mate’ after thick blow
‘TRULY SORRY’: Stuart issues apology to Salmon after controversial post-match spray
SIMS’ RED V CAREER OVER: Dragons veteran handed huge ban for ugly high shot
The NRL Integrity Unit launched an immediate investigation, while Stuart issued an apology on Sunday.
“I’ve crossed the line there on the weekend,” NRL journalist Adam Pengilly said on Big Sports Breakfast.
“I love Ricky’s passion and the way he talks about the game but he shouldn’t have used an NRL press conference to say what he did about an NRL player on an issue going back at least a decade.
“I think the NRL will be really hard and firm on this. Ricky has been fined a number of times in the past, we know that, but I would be very surprised if they don’t go down the route of suspension given how serious an issue it has been.
“Ricky did the right thing yesterday by apologizing but I’m very keen to see what Andrew Abdo and Peter V’landys come up with later today.
“I can’t think of a coach ever being suspended, certainly in the past 10 years I can’t think of an incident where a coach has been sat down on the sideline for something in a post-game press conference.
“We’ve seen off-field stuff, Shane Flanagan comes to mind, but nothing for a press conference.
“I think the NRL will wrap this up as quickly as they possibly can, if not this afternoon then tomorrow at the latest, they don’t want to leave this lingering on.
Get all the latest NRL news, highlights and analysis delivered straight to your inbox with Fox Sports Sportmail. Sign up now!!