While they are trying to keep the focus on their NRL final against Parramatta, Melbourne pack leader Jesse Bromwich says it's hurtful to hear a Storm player being accused of deliberately injuring an opponent.
Max King was suspended for three games for an ugly hip drop tackle last round on Dragons prop Blake Lawrie, with commentator Greg Alexander claiming he had "an intent to injure".
The tackle revived the annual September furore about the Storm's tackling technique - with Melbourne skipper Cameron Smith this week admitting such "outside noise" got to them in last year's finals campaign.
Bromwich described King's actions as a "tackle gone wrong".
"It's really disappointing and I feel for him (King) because we're not trying to go out there to hurt people on purpose," Bromwich said on Wednesday.
"It's definitely a tackle gone wrong - we don't train on doing that, we haven't been coached to do that, even the name hip drop, I've never heard that before until the media started bringing it up.
"To be associated with that is not very good but we've got to block that out as we've got bigger things on our mind - we've got finals footy so we've got to block out the outside noise and really focus on us."
As well as the tackle scrutiny ahead of their Suncorp Stadium clash on Saturday night, the Storm are dealing with plenty of off-field speculation.
Their coach Craig Bellamy is believed to contemplating a 10-year deal to join Brisbane and their chief executive Dave Donaghy is similarly said to be heading north.
Whether Smith will retire or play on has been a talking point all season.
Former New Zealand captain Bromwich said he wasn't looking past 2020.
"For us it's a really important time to lock down our mindset heading into the final series," he said.
"I've been a part of finals series when outside noise can affect you.
"I'm not fazed by the speculation - as long as they are here for this year.
"We're here to win the comp this year and we're not thinking about what's going to happen next year."
Apart from injured Dale Finucane, Melbourne are back to full strength to take on the Eels in their top-four clash after resting most of their stars, including Bromwich in the final round.
A qualifying final win will earn them another week off before the preliminary final, while the loser goes into a sudden-death semi-final.