There is an old adage often credited to college football legend Bear Bryant that says offense sells tickets but defence wins games. It is certainly a truism in modern Rugby League that attack brings in the fans but defence is what wins premierships.
There is no more important basic statistic than points conceded when analysing the premiership credentials of a team. Clubs almost certainly will be eliminated from contention before Grand Final day if their defence does not rate among the elite.
Let’s look at the defensive rankings of all Grand Finalists dating back to 2006: