'Ardie is part of us' - Hurricanes ignoring Savea's rugby league comments

The Hurricanes aren't sweating on star Ardie Savea's recent comments about potentially swapping codes in the near future, insisting they're focused on more important matters like his injury and a Super Rugby title.

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Assistant Chris Gibbes says their priority is getting Savea fit, not his comments that one day he’d like to play league. Source: 1 NEWS

Savea made headlines yesterday when he said on the Ice Project podcast he wants to switch to the 13-man code during his career, with the All Black already able to name NRL clubs he'd like to play for.

But Hurricanes assistant coach Chris Gibbes said the club isn't buying into all the noise.

"If you look at it, he's a competitive athlete and he's not the first guy to talk about different codes," Gibbes said.

"But we haven't really talked about it too much because at the end of the day, Ardie is part of us and he's working his way back into our team and helping us prepare as well as we can for the game.

"It hasn't dominated our discussions."

Savea's current contract with New Zealand Rugby expires next year. He opted to sign an extension to remain with the Hurricanes instead of lucrative offshore offers from French clubs back in 2018.

Since signing that extension, Savea has become a mainstay in the All Blacks' starting line-up with his physicality and work rate in Test rugby making it impossible to keep him limited to the impact role he had previously off the bench.

However, that quick rise in status slowed down in last year's Rugby World Cup semi-final loss to England with a serious knee injury that required surgery, ruling him out of most of this year's Super Rugby competition as he rehabilitates.

But that estimate has since been reduced with the Hurricanes pleased at how the 26-year-old was "doing everything right" to recover.

Gibbes said Savea's recovery is what matters to them right now.

"We want to win a championship and we want him to be a part of it," Gibbes said.

When asked how far along Savea was in his recovery, though, Gibbes remained coy on a return date.

"He's just ticking along week by week."