Nathan Buckley Regrets Telling Young Jaidyn Stephenson To “Back Himself”

Nathan Buckley has shouldered some of the blame for the betting scandal to engulf the life of forward Jaidyn Stephenson, with the coach expressing regret over some words of advice offering to the Collingwood youngster earlier in the year. 

“I took Jaidyn aside after the loss to Geelong in Round One and said, mate, just block out the noise, you’ve got the ability, I want you to just back yourself,” Buckley told reporters at a press conference sponsored by Bet365, Sportsbet and TAB (always gamble responsibly). “Who knew he would take it so literally? I should have chosen my words more carefully.”

Stephenson was handed a 12-match ban for what amounted to $36 in bets earlier in the year, a relatively small amount for an AFL player but far exceeding the average weekly income for Collingwood’s supporters. 

More to come.