Reynolds said he failed in trying to convince back-rower Jaydn Su’a to follow him to Brisbane, but remained more optimistic about Gagai, who featured in an excellent and feisty Origin battle with Souths teammate Latrell Mitchell.
“He’s obviously a very good player at every level of the game, and he’d be a great asset to any team,” Reynolds said. “I worked hard on Su’a following me to Brisbane but he was one that got away [to the Dragons], but I’d love to have Dane up there. He’s a great friend of mine, a great teammate and our families get along well together.
“He’s played for them before and knows what it is all about. He’d be a bonus. He’ll never get beaten on attitude – he never takes a backward step and competes to the death.”
Reynolds quipped he had ridiculed Jai Arrow since he was sent home from Queensland Origin camp for inviting a dancer back to his hotel room and breaching biosecurity measures.
The No. 7 said Arrow regretted the decision and had learned a harsh lesson.
“He’s tucked away for two weeks and can’t have contact with anyone,” Reynolds said. “It’s disappointing what happened with him, but he apologised and took it to heart. He won’t make the same mistake. He’s a good person, a lot of things have been said and a few things have been out of line, but you have to remember we’re all human. He’s been quiet.”
Reynolds and Cody Walker have been in top form for Souths and were even in the Origin conversation before selectors opted for Mitchell Moses and Jack Wighton in the final game against Queensland.
Departing coach Wayne Bennett has a knack of starting to rev up his sides around now in the run home to the NRL finals, and Souths are short-priced favourites to produce a similar 38-0 scoreline they put on Canterbury back in round four.