Mbye is close friends with Reynolds after playing four seasons together at the Bulldogs and he admired the way the playmaker handled the unenviable scenario over the summer.
“He’s just got a great attitude to life. He comes from humble beginnings and he doesn’t take anything for granted,” Mbye said. “He appreciates the little things in life and he had a great attitude throughout the whole thing. He had his moments where he was a bit down but overall he’s been so good to have around. He hasn’t affected anyone with his attitude. He’s just been really good.”
With Reynolds now set to play in round one, the Tigers’ attention has turned to breaking the longest finals drought in the competition.
Coach Michael Maguire was frank about raising the standards at the club after the Sharks beat the Tigers in the final game of the season to earn the final spot in the eight and that has seen pre-season training kicked up a notch this summer.
“I feel like those standards are being raised every day. I certainly feel like our standards have been raised every day – every day that we turn up is a step in the right direction, for sure,” Mbye said. “Madge is obviously huge on his culture and what he wants to build and I feel like we’ve built some really strong values and feel like the boys have really bought into what we are driving.
“We’re certainly going in the right direction and I think we’re in a really sound position to give the comp a shake up this year.”
Mbye believes the impact both Leilua boys and Adam Doeuihi will bring justifies his assessment.
“Obviously we’ve lost Esan Marsters and the strike he brings but we’ve gained two quality players,” he said.
“Everyone knows what BJ can do. He’s a strike centre – he’s a big frame and he carries his weight really well when he gets around the park. He’s going to be vital for us.”
The Tigers kick off their Nines campaign against the star-studded Rabbitohs on Friday night.
Sam is a sports reporter for The Sydney Morning Herald.